Best Practices Archive

Distributor-Supplier Relationships

  • Manufacturers’ Bold Move To Online Sales

    ‘We need to work through this.’ Miller has been selling online to consumers for a little less than two years; Lincoln Electric has been at it since late October 2014, just three months. The entry of these two welding equipment giants into the online arena has been the cause of some angst. In fact, a large [...]

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  • Manufacturers Speak Out On the State Of The Relationship

    Doing business in 2014 is certainly very different than doing business in 2004 or (yikes!) in 1994. We all know that 1994 was so last century. Welding and Gases Today discussed the ever-evolving relationship with distributors and, without exception, each supplier pointed to the importance of their partnership with distributors and the importance of continued [...]

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  • Rethinking The Relationship

    It’s time to identify, define and reveal each other’s sense of purpose. “Suppliers are in a better inventory position. Unfortunately, supplier salespeople are not as available to work with our salespeople who do not have the training and expertise that the suppliers’ salespeople have. The distributor is handling more of the technical aspects of the interaction [...]

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  • Our “Manufacturer Partners”

    It’s an odd phrase, isn’t it? “Manufacturer Partner.” I have to admit that I’ve never put too much stock in the phrase, as it sounds like a contrived corporate term (see “core competency” or rebranding staff and co-workers as “associates”). I’ve spent a little too much time writing myself to not spot when someone is [...]

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  • Industry Supply Chain Partners Join The Conversation

    The McGladrey Manufacturing and Distribution Monitor Report provides an annual update on the state of middle-market companies in the industrial sector. Respondents to the 2014 survey included 1,147 executives from small and mid-size U.S. manufacturing and distribution companies: 50 percent manufacturers; 33 percent distributors; 16 percent both manufacturing and distribution. Below are some highlights of [...]

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  • Watching Customers In Action

    Engineer Peter Twarog looks at equipment through a customer's eyes.

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  • All Suppliers Are Not Created Equal

    Action steps distributors can take to manage their supplier relationship. By Gary Moore

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  • Manufacturer–Distributor Playbook

    A full court press from suppliers and distributors is a win for all. By Michael A. Tarala

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  • What Makes A Good Relationship

    GAWDA distributors and suppliers speak about developing great relationships and how to know if you have one.

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  • Teaching The Rep A Thing Or Two

    Supplier sales reps should understand the keys to the distribution business. By J. Michael Marks

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  • Building A Bridge Between Manufacturer, Distributor And End-User

    Knowledge is power when the manufacturer and distributor work together to achieve the end-user’s goal. By Frank S Salvucci Jr.

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  • Mike Weller On Relationships

    In the gases and welding industry, the manufactuer/distributor relationship is constantly evolving. Transactional relationships are a thing of the past. ITW Welding North America’s Mike Weller explains how this will impact distributors.

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  • Distributors And Suppliers Bring It Together At Convention Roundtables

    Distributors and suppliers of industrial gases and welding equipment sat down at roundtable meetings at the Gases and Welding Distributors Associations (GAWDA) Annual Convention

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  • Relationships Count

    Strong distributor-manufacturer relationships in the industrial gases and welding industry lead to success for the gases and welding distributor and manufacturer. By Patrick Kirk.

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  • The Distributor–Manufacturer Rep Relationship

    Best practices for industrial gas and welding equipment suppliers and distributors in managing relationships with each other and with end users. By Doug Huber.

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  • Managing Your Supplier Relationships

    Industrial gas and welding equipment distributors should focus on supplier and manufacturer relationships as much as customer relationships. By Gary T. Moore.

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  • Trust Matters

    GAWDA's Industry Partnering Committee (IP Committee) is a forum for gases and welding distributors and manufacturers to improve the welding equipment and gas distribution industry. By Mark J. Blakely.

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  • The Right Stuff

    Members of the Gases and Welding Distributors Association seek to strengthen relationships between gases and welding distributors and manufacturers.

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  • Distributors Uncensored

    Industrial gases and welding distributors in GAWDA discuss their biggest concerns about their gases and welding manufacturers and suppliers.

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  • Working At Cross-Purposes

    Working at cross-purposes in the gases and welding industry can negate a win-win situation and be counterproductive for both supplier and distributors of industrial gas and welding equipment. By Tim Horan.

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  • Manufacturers Talk Back

    Gases and welding manufacturers and suppliers respond to distributor concerns regarding marketing and price hikes in industrial gases and welding equipment.

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  • “The Best Of Both Worlds”

    Linde AG completed its takeover of BOC Group, leaving questions for the major gases and welding company's distributors about the major merger and the future of the distributors.

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  • Effective Communication

    BOC developed its Distributor Advisory Council (DAC) as a way of communicating with its gases and welding distributors and exchanging ideas. By Terry Hall

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  • Wise Council

    Advisory councils that bring together vendor or associate members of GAWDA with distributor members prove beneficial to both parties in the industrial gases and welding industry.

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  • What Matters Most?

    It is important for welding equipment distributors to recommend the correct welding reel to a customer for each application, which requires understanding the welding reel itself and its uses. By David Guilzon.

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  • The Rules Of Engagement

    Sales in the gases and welding industry should be a process of providing solutions by defining customer problems and helping customers discover motives to change. By Richard P. Farrell.

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  • Application Sales Profiles

    Selling plasma cutting equipment to a welding customer requires knowledge of plasma cutting equipment application and application sales profiles. By Harry Mellott.

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Leadership

Management

  • Branch Manager Fundamentals

    The branch manager makes your company successful. As I made my career advances from branch manager up through progressive management levels, I realized that the differentiator in my division or region or company was ultimately the knowledge, attitude and skills of the local manager at the market level, the branch manager. The branch market space is [...]

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  • Managing the Front Lines

    Managing a branch store is an intricate dance that requires a high level of skill in many disciplines: communication, time-management, diplomacy, organization, and oh yes, math. Jeff Call General Air Service and Supply Company Branch: Denver, Colorado I love the variety of our business – the variety of customers, the variety of their questions, the variety of our [...]

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  • Developing Cross-Location Standards

    Standard operating procedures across facilities keep everyone working on the same page.

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  • What You Can’t See Can Sink You

    Discovering the hidden waste in your organization is where the most significant opportunities for improvement exist. As global competition continues to drive and change the business landscape, the ability of distributors to remain profitable and sustain positive results gets harder every day. It is easy for distributors and suppliers in the gases and welding industry to [...]

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  • It’s Okay To Be The Boss

    The truth behind seven common management myths. By Bruce Tulgan

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  • The Wisdom Of Bear Bryant

    Bear Bryant's coaching wisdom led him to great success. His selfless attitude generates results when it comes to managing employees too. By Larry Johnson

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  • Is It Real Or Is It Karaoke?

    Listening to subordinates can prevent managerial mistakes. By Larry Johnson

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  • Softball—The Secret to Success

    There are no secrets on the diamond. All you need to know about your office can be learned from the company's softball team. By Jim Caple.

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  • We’re All In This Together

    During an economic downturn, finding ways to save money is a team effort. This is an area where Young Executives can make a difference. By Bob Ames

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  • Family Business Challenge V

    What to Do When No One is Listening To Your Advice

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  • Family Business Challenge IV

    One of your tech-savvy employees is pushing you to invest in pricey, but important, new technology. What do you do?

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  • Family Business Challenge III

    You’ve just learned that one of your competitors is going out of business. How do you react?

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  • Family Business Challenge II

    A customer tells you that business is slow and he needs a price decrease.

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  • Family Business Challenge I

    What advice do you have about young professionals joining the family business?

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  • The Family Business Challenge

    What do family business members see as the best, and most difficult, parts of being in business together?

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  • Juggling Work And Family

    How to juggle work and family. By Charles Petty

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Planning

  • The Red Team

    GAWDA Convention Speaker James D. Murphy shares a simple, effective method to improve your mission planning.

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  • Working Your Plan

    What would you want your business to look like if you left it and returned a few years later?

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  • Strategic Planning: More Than A Mindset

    A well-written strategic plan is essential to the capital raising process for your company. By Bart A. Basi and Marcus S. Renwick

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  • The Image Of Our Industry

    Faced with a sizeable shortage of welders and an unforgiving economy, distributors are looking out for the industry's future.

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  • Weathering The Storms

    An emergency action plan can save the life of your business. For a business hit by a disaster, be it natural or man-made, preparation and response can be the difference between failure and survival.

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  • Six Lessons From Hurricane Katrina

    With Hurricane Irene bearing down on the East Coast, Welding & Gases Today revisits distributors hit hardest by Hurricane Katrina.

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  • Succeeding With Succession

    A large number of GAWDA members are family-owned companies. Ten distributors talk about the challenges they face, the things they learned from the previous generations and what—and how—they are passing it on.

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  • Legacy Learning

    Many of GAWDA’s most prominent supplier members are family businesses. The current generation of leadership talks about what they learned from the family members who came before them.

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  • Now That We Have It, What Do We Do With It?

    A case study of a family’s business in succession. The Jones family faces a difficult decision about succession planning whether to keep the business in the family. By Wayne Rivers.

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  • When Family Isn’t The Answer

    Tips for family business owners and non-family executives in the gases and welding equipment supply industry.

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  • Are You Ready For Some Convention?

    Seven tips to prepare for GAWDA's Annual Convention and get the most out of your experience. By Bill Lampton

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  • When To Sell Your Business

    Factors affecting when to sell a gases and welding distributorship include professional objectives, risks of selling or not selling, financial and family situation and available buyers. By Gary T. Moore.

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  • Strategic Planning Is More Than A Dusty Three-Ring Binder!

    Wally Brant looks at strategic planning at Indiana Oxygen Company, including leadership succession and alignment of key players within a gases and welding organization. By Wally Brant

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  • Managing The Defining Moment

    Selling a private gases and welding business requires preparation and legal counsel in order to ensure the purchase goes smoothly and the seller comes through. By David Corsaut.

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  • From Kid To King

    Business owners must prepare next-generation successors for leadership roles in the gases and welding industry to ensure successful succession. By Mike Henning.

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  • Is There “Value” In A “Valuation”? Part II: Qualifications of an Appraiser

    In performing a gases and welding distributorship valuation, qualifications of an appraiser include knowledge, CPA, tax preparation, and experience. By Bart A. Basi.

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  • Is There “Value” In A “Valuation”?

    A valuation of a gases and welding distributorship is a method of putting a price tag on the company in preparation for a future sale of that gases and welding company. By Bart Basi, CPA, Esq., and Roman Basi, Esq.

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  • Management Succession Planning

    Management succession in the gases and welding industry involves planning for a replacement by identifying future needs, candidates, skills necessary and establishing training for the position. By Bruce Carlyle.

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  • Who Is Heir To Your Throne?

    Succession planning in the gases and welding industry involves who will run the company and it is important to have a buy-sell agreement with a selected successor. By Bart A. Basi.

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  • Exit Planning

    Exit planning in the gases and welding industry involves setting exit objectives, valuation of the gases and welding company, increasing company value, selling to a third party and developing a business contingency plan. By John H. Brown.

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  • Business Valuation

    Business valuation involves establishing a value for a gases and welding business and can be affected by federal estate tax and state inheritance issues. By Jim Devine.

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Productivity

  • Optimism in the Air for Distributors

    Many See Improving Prospects for 2017, Tell What Has Helped Them Grow By Charles McChesney and Diane Stirling Every year brings unique business challenges, and usually a few opportunities to make good. As GAWDA distributor members set forth on a new year, they discuss what worked well for them over the past 12 months and the conditions [...]

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  • The Warehouse Manager Makes It Great– Or Not

    Employee engagement, not employee enragement, is key to what your customers value most A lot of new and very good investments are being made to the warehousing operations across the industry nowadays. Technology upgrades and investments are not the whole story, however. A phrase that has been used and re-used for decades still holds true today: success is [...]

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  • The Company With The Best Supply Chain Wins

    Is there such a thing as the “perfect order”? Not many distributors would disagree with this statement: “Our customer service sets us apart from our competitors.” In an article published in Harvard Business Review called “Staple Yourself to an Order,” the authors write: “Every time an order is handled, the customer is handled. Every time an [...]

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  • Supply Chain Productivity

    Waste is something you do that the customer is not willing to pay for. Remove it. The Industrial Production (IP) Index has averaged about three percent annual growth over the last five years. Gases and welding supply industry growth generally tracks local industrial production in the regions in which a business operates. While three percent volume [...]

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  • Making Your Service Department Profitable

    For a long time in our industry, it was thought that the service department was “special.” In other words, it was a necessary part of the distributorship, and if it made money, great; if not, oh well. We all know that those days are over, and a service department, if run like the rest of [...]

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  • Balancing Inventory Turns & Customer Service

    Most distributors hold at least 30 percent more inventory than necessary to keep up with customer demands.

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  • Cylinder Pallet Rental

    Renting pallets is an often-overlooked revenue stream for distributors. By Jim Herring

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  • How To Foster A ‘Winning Streak’ Mentality

    Break through the monkey traps and get on a winning streak. By Peter McLaughlin

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  • Stem The Tide

    A human resources expert examines health care options to decrease costs for small businesses in the gases and welding industry. By Laurie Waller

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  • What It Means To Be Lean

    Todd Linnenbringer breaks lean operations down into inventory, collections and personnel. He shares how to cut costs and what it means for Young Executives. By Todd Linnenbringer.

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  • Tips For Tackling The New Year

    While the economy may not return to its pre-recession peak, it’s going to get better. This means there will be opportunities out there for those companies and salespeople who are ready for them.

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  • 7 Ways To Keep Your Job Safe

    GAWDA Edge offers 7 tips for young executives to help ensure job security during tough times.

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  • Driving To Distraction

    Industrial gases and welding supply distributors face lawsuits if drivers are using cell phones while performing deliveries of their gases and welding products. By Tony Hopkins.

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  • Will You Freak Out Or Hunker Down?

    Two individuals respond to crises late in their business lives. Both learn to make opportunities out of otherwise negative situations in their careers. By Robert Evans Wilson.

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  • Obtaining Organizational And People Capability

    Personnel organization within a gases and welding business involves having the right people in the right positions in order to achieve peak performance. By Gary Nader.

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  • “It Has To Be Here Somewhere”

    Inventory organization in the gases and welding industry saves time and money and lost inventory is a result of identification, unit of measure, data entry, storage, damage or theft. By Dan Belanger.

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  • Supply Chain Efficiencies

    Supply chain efficiency in the gases and welding industry is determined by the number of times a product is touched, the flow of the material and space optimization in the warehouse. By Chris Doyle.

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  • Do’s And Don’ts Of Efficient (And Safe) Warehouse Operations

    Warehouse efficiency and safety for industrial gas and welding equipment distributors focuses on material handling, receiving and warehouse safety. By Dan Belinger.

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Regulatory Compliance

Going Green