ERA Water Cooler Teleconference Series

ERA Water Cooler Teleconferences

Every Other Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. EST … NO NEED TO REGISTER

This teleconference series provides an open forum to both ERA members and non-members. Participants can join in on the conversation and contribute to different topics by sharing challenges that ALL of us face today.

These calls are facilitated by ERA CEO Walter Tobin and will be targeted for 45 – 60 minutes in duration.

The next teleconference is December 1 – 4 p.m. EST  (Add to calendar)

TOPIC: Startups, Incubators, and Accelerators: How Best to Navigate this Complex but Necessary World!

Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Co-Facilitators: Stacey Weismiller, Program Manager at Second Muse and Jeff Bergstein, President of Jeff Bergstein Consulting

This Water Cooler session will focus on the world of startups, the best practices for reps and distributors to support their needs, and how to evaluate the criteria for continued support and investment.

Join the call to learn about:

• How and where to find startups
• The process of vetting startups
• Evaluating and analyzing startups for success
• The value of working with incubators/accelerators in the evaluation process
• Where to find trusted incubators/accelerators and best practices to work with them

Contact Stephanie Tierney if you have any questions.

Teleconference Participation Information

NEW FORMAT – Now you can join us at the water cooler by using TEAMS!

Join Microsoft Teams Meeting

+1 323-419-5946 United States

Conference ID: 123 373 84#

Local numbers | Reset PIN | Learn more about Teams | Meeting options

Water Cooler Audio Library

Miss the last call? Listen to past Water Cooler conferences in our Audio Library:

November 17, 2020, audio recording

Media Expert Panel – Tips for Trusted Industry News Among the Chaos
Sifting through news today can be overwhelming. Where do you turn to for trusted resources? How can you speak up and be “heard?” This Water Cooler dives into timely accurate news sources as well as news board suggestions. Learn how to verify news while removing bias as the panel of media experts unpacks the news content analysis.

Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Co-Facilitators: Steve Cholas, Vice President/Business Development for Big Zeta; Barb Jorgenson, Editor-in-Chief for Aspencore (formerly EPSNews); and Bolaji Ojo, CEO of DataSights GmbH, media executive.

November 3, 2020, audio recording

Staying Connected to Your Employees
Over the course of the year, how we stay connected to employees has changed drastically. In this water cooler session, learn about communicating with staff, keeping up morale, maintaining a personal touch, and promoting balance while sustaining expectations and productivity in the remote work environment. The discussion also includes how to manage performance reviews virtually, onboarding tips and challenges, and finding new talent remotely.

Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Co-Facilitators: John O’Brien, VP for Coakley, Boyd and Abbett; Gary Zullo, Director of Sales, Passive, Electromechanical and Interconnect for Arrow Electronics; and John Guetens, North American Sales Manager for E-T-A Circuit Breakers.

October 20, 2020, audio recording

Refreshing your company’s website and digital image is more important now than ever before. Learn valuable tips, where and how to start improving your digital image during this conversation from two experts from Upright, an ERA Recognized Resource. This in-depth discussion touches on topics such as what are people looking for in your website, how to enhance your company’s digital image and add calls to action, how to evaluate the effectiveness of your website, social media best practices, and ways to improve your SEO.

Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Co-Facilitators: Emma Gaedeke, Co-Founder and Director, Upright Labs for Upright and Danielle Gaglioti, Co-Founder and Innovation Lead for Upright

October 6, 2020, audio recording

Two manufacturers share their views on the pandemic. Learn what manufacturers expect from their reps and from the channel, as well as what they think reps could be doing better. Gain valuable manufacturer’s insight on other topics, including how to be creative with building (digital) relationships, how best to approach virtual opportunities, and the manufacturer’s outlook on travel and the return of face-to-face meetings.

Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Co-Facilitators: Gary Mountford, Vice President, Head of Sales Americas, C&K Components and Kris Whitehouse, Vice President Sales Americas, Omron Electronic Components

September 22, 2020, audio recording

Two reps share their experiences in finding new opportunities and maintaining business in today’s challenging business environment. The discussion included tips on how to engage new customers, how to add more value than ever to existing customers, tricks for reaching someone you don’t know, how to lead targeted conversations with solutions, and what successful things they are doing now that will carry over into the post-COVID world.

Download chat notes

Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Co-Facilitators: Kingsland Coombs, CPMR, CSP, President, Control Sales and Greg Miner, President and CEO, Thorson Rocky Mountain

September 8, 2020, audio recording

A valuable conversation with attorney Andrew Bell, from long-time ERA counsel resource, Schoenberg Finkel Beederman Bell and Glazer LLC, covering updates and details surrounding current legal and tax topic such as PPP loans, economic nexus laws, succession planning, and valuing/selling/buying a rep company. If you would like to contact Andrew regarding a legal question, his contact info follows:

Phone: 312-648-2300
Email: andrew.bell@sfbbg.com
Website: https://www.sfbbg.com

Download chat notes

Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO

Co-Facilitators: Andrew D. Bell, Attorney, Schoenberg Finkel Beederman Bell and Glazer LLC

August 25, 2020, audio recording

An in-depth discussion on using data analytics to create actions, administer efficiencies, increase the timeliness of getting information, track split commissions, and to help connect the dots to ensure that you are getting paid. Learn about data system alignment, the synergy of CRM management systems and POS management, using data to forecast and grow your sales, and most importantly, the benefits of using data analytics to benefit the customer.

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Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO

Co-Facilitators: Michael Budde Jr., Vice President, Budde Marketing Systems, and John Mitchell, Founder, Repfabric

August 11, 2020, audio recording

An energetic and insightful conversation with Linda Clemons, Sales and Body Language Expert (and top rated speaker at the 2019 ERA Conference) who tackles the timely topics of virtual call etiquette and how to keep people engaged during video conferencing. Linda gives valuable tips and takeaways regarding how to present your best self virtually, how to read body language and how to “see” what your customers are really thinking during video calls. Also discussed are extra verbal suggestions, how to set the tone to keep customers engaged, how to open a “cold” video call, and most importantly how to constantly add value during this time when we cannot meet in-person. You can learn more about Linda on her website at https://www.lindaclemons.com or connect with her on LinkedIn.

Download chat notes

Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO

Guest Speaker: Linda Clemons, Sales and Body Language Expert

July 28, 2020, audio recording

Gain valuable insight on what ERA National has been up to since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. This special update features reports from the ERA Executive Committee, covering current ERA goals and initiatives, chapter activities, events updates, manufacturer and distributor perspectives, as well as various ways that ERA is working to support its members during these challenging times.

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Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO

Co-Facilitators, ERA XCOM: Ken Bellero, Schaffner EMC; Cameron English, English Technical Sales; Bob Evans, EK Micro; David Fitzgerald, WESCO Sales Group Inc.; Tom Griffin, Catalyst Unity Sales; David Norris, Norris & Associates Inc.; John O’Brien, Coakley Boyd & Abbett Inc.; Craig Sanderson, Sager Electronics; and Chuck Tanzola, Fusion Sourcing Group Inc.

July 14, 2020, audio recording

A give-and-take conversation with call attendees asking questions about what’s on their minds. An open discussion amongst the group giving their perspectives and opinions on topics such as expectations on when in-person sales calls will begin again, how ERA Chapters are working to staying active, cybersecurity, hiring the next generation, delivering sample sales kits, and how lack of travel has impacted efficiencies.

Download chat notes

Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO

June 30, 2020, audio recording

An interactive discussion featuring Microsoft experts from Cloud 9 Infosystems Inc. focusing on an overview of Microsoft Office 365 and its uses, the difference between One Drive, SharePoint and Teams and the benefits of all, collaboration and sharing of files, security features and how third party apps work within the Microsoft Office 365 platforms.

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Facilitator: Stephanie Tierney, ERA Membership Director

Co-Facilitators: Chetan Malavia, CEO, Cloud 9 Infosystems Inc., Richard Barclay, Sales Director, Cloud 9 Infosystems Inc., Ashwin Ganesan, Associate Cloud Engineer, Cloud 9 Infosystems Inc., Dennis Swenson, Principal Consultant, Cloud 9 Infosystems Inc.

June 16, 2020, audio recording

Perspectives from a Rep, Manufacturer and Distributor regarding what they think tomorrow will look like for themselves as well as the customer, how they have recently enhanced their digital online image, preparations they are making for a potential second wave of COVID-19, new and effective ways that they are communicating with their customers, and their plans for upcoming in-person meetings.

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Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Co-Facilitators: Bryan Teen, President at Tech Marketing; Steve Nolan, Vice President of Sales and Business Development at Advanced Thermal Solutions, Inc., and Sean Sisson, Vice President North America & Latin America at RUTRONIK Electronics Worldwide

June 2, 2020, audio recording

An insightful conversation with rep and manufacturer focusing on how they are using social media now more than ever to reach people more efficiently, best practices they have implemented with virtual product training and demos, their thoughts on adapting to the new “fact-to-face” way of communicating, and benefits they are experiencing from less cost and time from not being out in the field.

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Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Co-Facilitators: Holly Good, National Distribution Manager at Cornell Dubilier Electronics and Bruce Scoggin, CPMR, Territory Manager at Electro-Rep Associates Inc.

May 26, 2020, audio recording

A dynamic and spirited discussion around how electronics professionals are utilizing LinkedIn in today’s environment. Featuring in-depth perspectives from a rep, manufacturer and distributor on LinkedIn best practices in promoting product knowledge and brand, who to follow on LinkedIn, the benefits of using free vs. paid LinkedIn Premium services, and how to use LinkedIn for lead generation.

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Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Guest Facilitator: Gary Lee Smith, CPMR, President of G.L. Smith Associates
Co-Facilitators: Zach DeVillers, CPMR, CSP,
Director of Sales for Brainard-Nielsen Marketing Inc., Maryellen Stack, Director of Marketing Communications for Sager Electronics and Ken Bellero, President of Schaffner EMC Inc.

May 19, 2020, audio recording

Listen in for perspectives from a Rep, Manufacturer and Distributor as they discuss topics focusing on the cadence they have now developed in their daily & weekly schedules, what they are doing now to prepare their companies and teams for more normal times to come, and how they are redefining the role of the face-to-face sales person and arming their outside sales team for challenges to come.

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Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Co-Facilitators: Tom Griffin, President at Catalyst Unity Solutions; Bob Gourdeau, Vice President of Sales at AVX Corporation; and Bill Gallucci, President at Peerless Electronics Inc.

May 12, 2020, audio recording

Gain valuable takeaways from this robust conversation covering several topics, including how reps are currently supporting principals and distributors; what distributors and principals are expecting from reps during these uncertain times; and what new e-marketing initiatives reps, distributors and manufacturers are implementing to generate leads.

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Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Co-Facilitators: Dave Fitzgerald, Principal Owner at Wesco Sales Group; Tom Wichert, Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing at TDK-Lambda and Anthony Disclafani, Director of Sales and Product at Dove Electronic Components

May 5, 2020, audio recording

A rep, manufacturer and distributor weigh in on new collaboration and training methods, ways they are setting boundaries since most are working from home, as well as addressing what new practices they have recently implemented that they will continue to utilize moving forward, what they are doing to prepare for more normal times, and what they are implementing to help create a hygienic and safe office environment for their staff.

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Facilitator: Walter Tobin, ERA CEO
Co-Facilitators: Joe Braun, Partner and Field Sales Rep at EK Micro; Mike Calabria, President and CEO at Abracon, and Holly Myers, Vice President at Genie Group.

April 28, 2020, audio recording

A discussion featuring two reps and a distributor centering around new ways of communicating internally with their teams, how rep companies are communicating externally to principles, customers and channel partners, learning curves they are encountering implementing new tools and software (specifically Microsoft Teams), and methods for staying focused.

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Facilitators: ERA’s CEO, Walter Tobin and Nicki Weiss of Saleswise, ERA’s sales consultant and columnist in The Representor.
Co-Facilitators: Lori Bruno, Vice President Distribution at Luscombe Engineering of San Francisco, John Latimer, President at Luscombe Engineering of San Francisco and Tom Vanderheyden, Senior Vice President, Americas Sales at TTI Inc.

April 21, 2020, audio recording

A conversation with ERA General Legal Counsel focusing on details surrounding the CARES Act and the PPP and what they mean to ERA members. Also addressing essential vs. non-essential businesses, independent contractors, dealing with communication with landlords, and how workers’ comp rules apply to employees now working from home.

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Facilitators: ERA’s CEO, Walter Tobin and Nicki Weiss of Saleswise, ERA’s sales consultant and columnist in The Representor.
Co-Facilitators: Gerald M. Newman and Adam J. Glazer, ERA General Counsel

April 14, 2020, audio recording

Three ERA Rep members discuss what they are doing to lead and nurture their teams remotely and describe tools they use to stay in touch with customers, distributor partners and manufacturers. This conversation also features input by Rich Greaves from Empowering Systems, Inc. on how different systems can be linked to various software to help companies manage their data and teams.

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Facilitators: ERA’s CEO, Walter Tobin and Nicki Weiss of Saleswise, ERA’s sales consultant and columnist in The Representor.
Co-Facilitators: Richard Greaves, Senior Partner at Empowering Systems, Inc.; David Norris, president and owner of Norris and Associates; Chuck Tanzola, VP of Fusion Sourcing Group and John Hutson, President MacInnis Group

April 7, 2020, audio recording

A conversation with a Distributor, Rep and Manufacturer on tools and methods to keep employees engaged with customers, engineers and co-workers, and ways to keep everyone sane and connected while working from home.

Facilitators: ERA’s CEO, Walter Tobin and Nicki Weiss of Saleswise, ERA’s sales consultant and columnist in The Representor.
Co-facilitators: Craig Sanderson, VP Supplier Marketing & Product Management at Sager Electronics; Dave Foster, Director of Sales at Ohmite Manufacturing and John O’Brien, VP at Coakley, Boyd & Abbett

March 31, 2020, audio recording

An open forum on the challenges of working from home, taking care of yourself and team, software tools and more. Listen in for the rep and manufacturer perspective.

Facilitators: ERA’s CEO, Walter Tobin and Nicki Weiss of Saleswise, ERA’s sales consultant and columnist in The Representor.
Co-facilitators: Craig Anderson, President of Sumer Incorporated; Mike Swenson, President of Mel Foster Company and Ken Bellero, President at Schaffner, EMC.

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