The special event was held at Syberg’s, located at 270 and Dorsett in Maryland Heights, MO, from 6:30–9:00 PM. AXALTA and Colormaster sponsored the event, so there was no fee for attending and complimentary hors d’oeuvres and iced tea were served.
The meeting began with the State of the Collision Industry Report, which comprised most of the meeting. Ron Reiling, executive director of AASP-MO, offers his praise: “Mike did a great job of letting the shops know where they stand, compared to their peers. Many of them will go back and take a good, hard look at their businesses and make changes to improve.”
During the second part of the meeting, “Mike gave his opinions on PartsTrader and reminded them that, when making decisions that affect their businesses and employees’ well-being, they shouldn’t be taken lightly or be made hastily without thinking outside of the box; however, once that decision is made, you have to live with it,” Reiling recounts. “So, if you want to belong to a DRP, you have to be willing to follow their rules and make the best of it. Also, he gave examples of mandates from the past that are now part of everyday business, and they got better as time went on.”
Overall, the meeting went very well with 156 attendees representing 83 different businesses, a fact that exceeded Reiling’s expectations. He also notes that he received great feedback from attendees, several of whom claimed it was the best meeting they had ever attended.
Reiling believes these types of sponsored events are important to AASP-MO members and the industry as a whole “so shops realize they are not out there all alone and that, through associations, you can bring change to the industry much easier and faster than on your own…AASP-MO works diligently to provide our members with these types of meetings and information to assist them in making good business decisions.”