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Sennebogen Dealers of the Year Build Success With a Personal Touch

Wed August 03, 2011 - National Edition
CEG


The Sennebogen team at the ISRI show.
The Sennebogen team at the ISRI show.
The Sennebogen team at the ISRI show. (L-R) are Lee Johnston, David Shea, Constantino Lannes, Trevor Ash and Pierre Bazinet.

Sennebogen LLC recently recognized its three top-selling distributors for 2010. All faced the challenges of the year’s difficult economy, and succeeded by putting a personal face to their machinery lines.

The three sales leaders included Top Lift Enterprises of Stoney Creek, Ontario, Gibson Machinery of Cleveland, Ohio, and Tracey Road Equipment of Syracuse, N.Y. While the three firms differ greatly in their size and product range, their principals agree that fielding a sales team that adds personal value to the customer is a consistent key to their success.

Top Lift Restructures for Focus

At Top Lift Enterprises, Managing Director David Shea recently reorganized the business to deliver more focused expertise to his customers. Top Lift represents Sennebogen throughout vast areas of Canada covering Canada’s central region of southern Ontario and southern Quebec as well as the west coast’s Vancouver territory.

Shea segregated his primary equipment lines to create a specialized heavy industrial unit representing several leading manufacturers of material handling equipment.

“With the growth that we have been experiencing, both on the construction side as well as in the heavy industrial applications, we knew that we would have to match that increase with more qualified staff to maintain the level of customer service we are known for,” he said.

To support his customers in recycling, manufacturing and port operations, Shea also has recruited three additional staff, combining more than 63 years of industrial sales experience.

Commenting on the impact of the economic downturn, Shea said, “Our approach has been to treat every deal like it was our last. We invested our time to get involved with the customer instead of just quoting what they requested. By understanding their actual needs, we could show them some more attractive options.”

Gibson Credits Relationships for Sales

For Lee Gibson, president of Gibson Machinery, Sennebogen is the primary line sold by the company. The number of green line machines in the Ohio and western Pennsylvania regions is a testament to the focus his sales staff has on key applications such as scrap handling and barge loading. Gibson also has been expanding his sales force and facilities to help staff keep closer to customers.

Gibson’s company has ranked in Sennebogen’s top dealers list for each of the past eight years.

Tracey Remaps Territories

Jerry Tracey, president of Tracey Road Equipment, said that he expects each member of his sales team to be a “true solution provider.” Tracey feels he was bucking an industry trend when he remapped his sales territories to give each representative a smaller territory to cover.

“I want them to have less windshield time and more face time,” Tracey explained. “Our guys are becoming the equipment managers for many of their clients. We know that our customers are great at what they do; we just want to help them make sure they get the best equipment for the jobs they have to do.

“We are very fortunate to have a person like Dick Riddings, our sales manager, to work with the customer and not only to make sure they get the right equipment, but the right payment schedule, too.”

Flexibility Requires Expertise

Constantino Lannes, president of Sennebogen LLC, also believes that the quality of personal service from his distributors has been an essential ingredient in the manufacturer’s rapid growth over the past 10 years.

“The depth of the Sennebogen line and the engineering behind it allows us to be very flexible in matching our machines to the customers’ applications. We rely on high caliber sales people to fully understand the details of what the customer needs. Then we use this flexibility to develop exactly the right solution, but it all starts with the right mindset.”

For more information, call 704/347-4910 or visit www.sennebogen-na.com.