Representor Summer 2020 - Chapter News

Summer 2020 – Chapter News

Chapter News reports the local activities of the 22 chapters of ERA. The chapters sponsor educational and training workshops, local trade shows, legislative and industry projects to enhance the professionalism of individual members and to advance the goals and mission of the national association.

ERA’s Chapter Officer Leadership Training (COLT) Is Postponed to Fall of 2021

Due to COVID-19, the corresponding demands placed on ERA’s rep company members and the issues around being able to ensure safe airline and hotel travel, the decision has been made to postpone COLT until the fall of 2021. All scholarships earned will roll over and will be eligible for an additional year. All chapters are encouraged to consider sending participants in 2021 to share best practices in chapter leadership to help continue to drive a strong chapter network.

Carolinas ERA hosted a BYOB (breakfast) virtual networking meeting on June 5. The toast topic, “Selling in a COVID-19 World: Sharing Ideas for Customer Engagement,” offered members a forum for discussions on this timely topic. The chapter plans to continue its bi-monthly breakfasts and also held a virtual board of directors meeting on June 19.

In May, the chapter hosted “Improving Internet Search Results for Sales Growth,” a virtual event that provided a review of the 2020 ERA Conference general session, “The Secrets to Sales Growth,” presented by Sam Richter, founder and CEO of SBR Worldwide/Know More. The remote meeting discussed internet search results and best business practices. The chapter also plans to hold a virtual coffee break in July.

The chapter is busy planning its industry golf outing, scheduled Friday, Aug. 28 at the Golf Club of Indiana in Lebanon, Ind.

Metro New York ERA’s 5th Annual Charity Golf Outing has been scheduled for Sept. 24. The event, to be held once again at St. George’s Golf & Country Club in Stony Brook, N.Y., will benefit the Long Island Cares for local veterans.

In May, the chapter hosted a Water Cooler call that featured an interactive discussion among chapter members. Topics discussed during the call included rep firm and distributor plans to reopen, how members are managing through the current times, what are members hearing about customers, what are customers’ positions on visitor/supplier meetings as part of their reopening plans. Also discussed was the role of the field sales rep navigating the current business environment and ideas on how reps can strengthen their roles in the supply chain. With the success of the Water Cooler call, the chapter plans to schedule another one soon.

Northern California ERA Executive Committee recently awarded scholarships to two of its chapter rep members to attend the Certified Professional Manufacturers’ Representative (CPMR) training program. The scholarship recipients are Lori Bruno of Luscombe Engineering of San Francisco and Jacob Medina of Straube Associates.

Due to the effects of the pandemic, Southern California ERA Chapter members are employing new sales techniques previously discussed during the in-person educational meeting held in January in Oceanside, Calif.

In May, the chapter held its first virtual owners’ forum, which was well attended. The group discussed the current global events and their impacts on doing business. The June meeting addressed the pluses and minuses of virtual meeting programs and their functionality.

The chapter is planning virtual monthly meetings for the remainder of the year focusing on topics such as line profitability, excel tutorial and succession planning. Additionally, the chapter is exploring virtual trade show options and looks forward to the day when they can safely host an in-person meeting.

Southwest ERA announced that, due to COVID-19 concerns, the chapter has decided to hold a virtual event that will include the entire chapter territory, instead of hosting three separate city meetings as in years past. The virtual event will be conducted as a round table forum. Discussion points will include how everyone is meeting the challenges of the current economic climate due to COVID-19, and open dialogue about what attendees have been experiencing recently with their customers, distributors, rep firms and manufacturers. The goal of the event will be to dive into how members are handling these challenges, and discuss best practices and ideas moving forward. The call will be hosted in September. Date, time and more details to follow.