It is human nature to sit around and complain about things that we don’t like. One of our favorite things to complain about is the government and how its policies impact our lives and our businesses.
While complaining can make you feel better, it does not accomplish much. If you want to affect change in Washington, you have to be part of the process. I am sure some of you are nodding your heads and thinking to yourselves that because you are a member of a trade association like CVSN or HDDA that your interests are being well represented.
Trade associations, in fact, do a good job of trying to make your voices heard, but they can’t have the same impact on an individual legislator as you can. Think about it.
How much more impactful would it be for you to go visit your Senator or Representative and explain to him or her how the laws they are enacting are adversely affecting your business?
Not sure how to go about visiting a legislator? CVSN is going to make it easy for you by hosting its first ever legislative summit in conjunction with its upcoming convention from September 18-21 in Washington, D.C.
It is time to stop assuming that someone else will take your message to Capitol Hill.
On the afternoon of September 20 the association is going to conduct a briefing and prepare attendees for the next day’s meetings with Representatives and Senators.
The briefing will not only cover the issues impacting the aftermarket, but also will give you tips on effective meeting strategies and explain the importance of follow up.
While it is a safe bet that most legislators know what a truck is and maybe even understand a little bit about the challenges fleets face, they probably are completely in the dark about what the aftermarket is and the important role it plays in the economy.
This is your opportunity to educate them about what you do and the challenges you face.
While you are meeting with our elected officials why not extend an invitation to them to visit you at your place of business so they can really see what you do?
The American Truck Dealers is encouraging its members to do just that and many of them already have hosted a Senator or Representative at their dealerships. According to ATD, in the last six months more than a dozen Congress members have visited truck dealerships.
Dick Witcher, ATD vice chairman, says, “We face so many policy challenges in the nation’s capital. These Congressional visits are our way of making sure our voices are heard. When Congress members visit your dealership, they will walk away with a better understanding of how the decisions they make in Washington effect what we do every day.”
This is equally true for distributorships and repair garages, which face even more challenges.
If you want the folks in Washington who are enacting the laws that are impacting your business to understand how what they do affects your ability to make a living, you have to stop assuming that someone else will take your message to them.
It is time for you to take your own message to Capitol Hill and maybe even bring Capitol Hill to your place of business.
You never know what might happen if our elected officials actually understand and appreciate the hard work you do. One thing is certain, if you don’t tell them no one else will.