Topics Blogs

Management Trek: The Next Generation

For the first time in history, four different generations of employees are working side-by-side in the workplace, and a record-topping fifth generation is on its way.  Gail Wilkinson, human resources director for Karmak, noted at the company's annual Leadership & Technology conference in St. Louis last month that we're ...

Real Penetration: 5 x 5 Service

A number of years ago, I had the good fortune to hear a lecture by the organization and quality guru W. Edwards Deming. It was strange, because the talk was being delivered at a seminar presented by the Japanese Union of Scientists and Engineers, in Tokyo, because no Americans would listen back in the U.S.! Beyond ...

How to get the fire marshal to bless your natural gas conversion

Stepping out and embracing new technologies can be a lonely venture, especially if you’re one of a very small group of people who understand what you’re trying to accomplish. Shop owners looking to expand into natural gas service have found this out on more than one occasion. Many local ...

Are you ready for 2025?

August’s Commercial Vehicle Outlook Conference focused heavily on new technology entering the trucking industry. Telematics and prognostics led the discussion, but during one of the conference’s final sessions the discussion turned to autonomous trucks. Futuristic as the driverless truck may sound, Rich Glasmann, vice president, OEM strategy, sales and marketing ...

Planning is not Simply Multiplying the Past

The parts business is a collection of micro-bursts — regionally, vocationally, technologically. Volumes and profitability turn on a dime, with nothing to blame but the essential aftermarket cop-out: the weather. Business cycles appear as a chimera — often definable only in hindsight. Learn from history, sure. But wallow in it ...

Competition changes everything

Intense competition pushes everything to the outer limits of what we think is possible.  Most techs in the room know this competition is intense - but, is SuperTech pushing us to the limits?  Is it helping to reset the boundaries of what we’ve come to expect from our ...

Predicting the changing truck market

The trucking landscape is changing. I know what you’re thinking; “Again?!” Change is constant, but in an industry like trucking — one that is regulated in practically every capacity — change is inevitable. In 2013, 2.7 million medium- and heavy-duty trucks were sold globally. By 2022, that number is expected to ...

Improving Supplier Relations Increases Profits

Results of a new study released show major automakers – in fact, most manufacturing companies – could significantly improve their profits simply by improving their supplier relations. According to the study, Chrysler, for instance, which went through a decade of turbulent ownership changes from 2000-2012 (that included the worst ...

Extracurricular activities

My high school guidance counselor was a big fan of extracurricular activities. She would constantly push students to get out of the classroom and try other things — sports, arts, student government, volunteer work. What we did was never as important as the fact that we actually did it, because ...

CSA and the technician

With three decades of experience in the heavy-duty maintenance industry, Tommy Davis is no stranger to CSA. The aftermarket veteran dealt with the program on a daily basis as vice president of service centers at AMBEST, Inc., and now shares his knowledge on the program and its impact on service ...