Dealership déjà vu

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Liz Walz, Columnist
June 12, 2014

It feels like just yesterday that we were using the words, “technician shortage” to describe one of our industry’s biggest challenges. Well, here we are again. The phones at the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas have increasingly been ringing with dealers struggling to find qualified... Read more »

At the Helm: Investing in your business at MDCE

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Jonathan Sweet, Editor in Chief
June 12, 2014

Inserted in the current issue of Boating Industry you’ll find your first taste of the Marine Dealer Conference & Expo with the preshow brochure. It includes information on our full lineup of speakers and all of the exciting improvements we’ve made to this year’s MDCE, which will be Nov. 16-19... Read more »

At the Helm: Taking action to grow boating

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Jonathan Sweet, Editor in Chief
May 1, 2014

For years, the boating industry has been talking about the need to reach new audiences beyond the core customers of white male baby boomers. The good news is that now there is finally some action to go beyond the talk. Some recent moves that caught my eye illustrate that trend. A new task force focused... Read more »

The human equation

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Liz Walz, Columnist
May 1, 2014

I know that being a boat dealer isn’t easy. But in March, I gained a little more insight into just how tough it can be. That wake-up call took place during the Spader Total Management 1 workshop, where we took a deep dive into price vs. gross margin, key expense ratios, seasonal trends, inventory management,... Read more »

Investing in you

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Liz Walz, Columnist
April 1, 2014

I have a confession to make. I grew up discriminating against salespeople. Our family consisted of health care workers, engineers and scientists, so it was easy to throw salespeople under the bus. I didn’t know any. And the movies, books and television shows that featured them weren’t very kind. Salespeople... Read more »

At the Helm: 10 years of the Top 100

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Jonathan Sweet, Editor in Chief
April 1, 2014

Back in 2005, Boating Industry started the Top 100 with a goal of elevating the industry. From the beginning the program has been not only about recognizing the top dealers in North America, but also sharing their best practices with other dealerships. While the industry has changed drastically changed... Read more »

At the Helm: Bringing the fun back

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Jonathan Sweet, Editor in Chief
March 1, 2014

It wasn’t intended that way, but as we were wrapping up this issue I realized there was a bit of a theme going. Whether it’s in senior editor Tom Kaiser’s look at the latest pontoon trends, managing editor Liz Keener’s article on crafting a marketing plan or my piece on creating new profit centers,... Read more »

A story to live by

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Liz Walz, Columnist
March 1, 2014

A few weeks ago, if you had suggested that the L.L.Bean story contains a wealth of lessons for our industry, I would have been skeptical. I can probably list more ways in which L.L.Bean is different from the average marine dealer than they are the same. But when I received “L.L.Bean: The Making of... Read more »

Is 2014 the year your best employees set sail?

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Jonathan Sweet, Editor in Chief
February 1, 2014

Most companies have had it pretty easy the last several years in managing employee turnover and keeping the team happy.With a recession that made employment conditions tough and an industry depression that made the situation downright desperate, most people have been happy simply to have a job.Too many... Read more »

Getting retail right

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Kelsey Houle
February 1, 2014

I was recently reminded of what a critical role the retail experience plays in how a brand is perceived and how hard it is to get it right. Over the holidays, I was surprised and delighted to receive two very generous presents: a 48-GB Kindle Fire HDX and a 16-GB iPad Air. Either tablet would have been... Read more »

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