The Representor, Spring 2017 – From the Top
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by David Norris
Norris & Associates, Inc.
We certainly face many challenges, but we are strongest together, so please raise your hands, get involved and help us drive OUR association forward in ways that serve our members and our industry!
2017 will be an exciting year for ERA, and I feel most fortunate to take over as president during such a dynamic time for our association.
2016 saw a surge in membership as we added 95 new members, increased the ranks of representatives and manufacturers, and welcomed 11 distributors as this new category of membership was introduced. A number of world class distribution organizations joined to demonstrate their support for and belief in the value of manufacturers’ representatives. We thank each new member for their support and look forward to delivering value to all who have joined our ranks.
The rep value
In the upcoming editions of The Representor, you will be seeing a series of articles centered around the theme, “Why Reps?” where manufacturers and distributors will share their perspectives on why and how the manufacturers’ representative model provides value to their organizations.
Often, we talk about articulating the reps’ value proposition and have a task force, in fact, working on data that can be presented to C level executives to help reinforce that value. The articles to follow will use the voice of industry leaders as they share with us why and how they have thrived working with manufacturers’ representatives. Stay tuned for more to follow as we help reinforce that message through the perspectives of some very successful organizations.
2017 also will bring greater collaboration and local programming driven by all three of our constituent members. One of our goals this year, and those to follow, is to increase the opportunities for member participation as we grow the deliverables to our membership through involvement by our membership. The best way to serve members of our association is by having members who serve!
Many thanks to our 2017 Conference Committee who delivered a program rich in valuable content which drew a record crowd to Austin in February. The feedback from attendees has been received and reviewed, and all indications are that we are continuing to develop a strong momentum and delivering real value through our conferences.
ERA also has welcomed both a manufacturer and distributor to its Executive Committee (XCOM) as we’ve expanded the structure of our committee. Ken Bellero of Schaffner and Chris Beeson of Digi-Key joined the XCOM effective in February and already have begun to provide input and guidance to our team. Both Digi-Key and Schaffner are best-in-class examples of organizations that support and value the rep model. We appreciate their willingness to serve and look forward to them helping shape our efforts to move ERA forward.
There is lots in store for 2017 to be sure. The best way for us to succeed together is through the participation of our members. We certainly face many challenges, but we are strongest together, so please raise your hands, get involved and help us drive OUR association forward in ways that serve our members and our industry! We welcome your participation!