ASA Insights
Oct. 20, 2016

Senate Overtime Champion Pushes for Action, Cites ASA's Efforts
American Supply Association
In response to ASA’s and other leaders in the business community’s calls for Senate action addressing overtime regulations, Senator Lamar Alexander, Chairman, Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee issued a statement highlighting ASA’s leadership in this effort. As the Senator continues building the case for Senate action following the elections, he states, “My hope is that when we come back in November, senators on both sides of the aisle will have heard from their Boy Scout troops, from colleges and universities, from non-profits, and from workers, who say: ‘Wait a minute, this overtime rule makes no sense the way it is being implemented. Do something to change it before December 1.’ These are employers who can't just raise prices. They are dependent on tax dollars or on charitable donations. And if they are in trouble because of this rule, our communities will lose critical services: surgeries for cleft palates, scouting opportunities, church camps for underprivileged kids, and others.”More

ASA Members to Join 'Boards for Distributors' Webinar Discussion
American Supply Association
ASA Members Joe Poehling (First Supply) and Dr. Donald McNeeley (Chicago Tube & Iron) will be panelists on ASA’s CEO Webinar “Boards for Distributors” facilitated by Victor Aspengren, Director at Prairie Capital Advisors. More distributors are looking at the value of establishing a Board of Directors to gain perspective and fresh ideas from outside the company. Whether it’s a formal board or one that is more advisory in nature, a board can assist your team in stepping back and focus on higher level goals and vision. On Thursday, October 27, ASA’s CEO Peer Networking Council will host a webinar entitled “Boards for Distributors: The Value of Utilizing a Board of Directors to Advance Your Distributor Business." REGISTER NOWMore

More than 400 Business Groups Push Senate to Act Now on Overtime
American Supply Association
Last week, more than 400 business groups, representing thousands of small businesses called on the Senate to act quickly to address the looming overtime regulations. Noting that “a responsible increase to the salary threshold is due, the DOL’s drastic increase of more than 100 percent to the salary threshold is too much, too fast, and will have a disproportionate impact on a wide variety of industries, sectors, and geographic areas of the country.” Along with hundreds of national groups, other signatories to the letter were WANE (Wholesaler Association of the North East) and the Western Suppliers Association (WSA). ASA also sent a letter of its own, adding to long list of supporters demanding action on this critical issue. The letters can be viewed here and here.More

GAO Report: Large and Midsized Cities' Population Declines Impacting Water Infrastructure
American Supply Association
On the heels of the Flint, MI water crisis, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) reviewed census data and found that nearly 15 percent of the country’s mid-size and large cities have lost population in the last three decades. For many of the cities, that has led to high rates of poverty and economic distress, reducing revenues and requiring higher water rates to fund infrastructure, much like what occurred in Flint in the lead-up to its lead contamination crisis. As the report found, even with increases water rates, needed repairs and upgrades continue to be delayed or ignored. The report examined a number of cities and six federal programs designed to combat problems such as this. More

Invest in Your People Now to Maximize Productivity in 2017
ASA Advisor©
Ensure your pricing is competitive to retain market share as business-to-business activity declines into late 2016. With the current period being slower, now is the time to train your labor force and make necessary investments in order to maximize productivity in the coming period of rise. Do not fall victim to pessimism as there is much to be optimistic about moving into 2017 given economic fundamentals and leading indicators, particularly New Orders activity. It’s likely that the strong U.S. dollar, uncertainty due to the upcoming election and faltering U.S. corporate profitability are dampening the New Orders transition to recovery in the near term. However, the leading indicators support that this cyclical decline will abate in late 2016 and will then rise in 2017. Log in to MY ASA to access the latest report.More

Creating a Respectful Workplace

ASA University is pleased to announce that “Creating a Respectful Workplace” is now complete and available online, in our store. This online course explores workplace respect, establishes self-respect, develops reciprocity with colleagues, and maintains respect when faced with stress, uncertainty, and change. Creating a Respectful Workplace includes an interactive case study, quiz questions, and a 10-question final test. Creating a Respectful Workplace is designed to help employees consistently demonstrate respect in their day-to-day interactions. From electronic to face-to-face communication, participants learn the behaviors that contribute to a respectful environment. LEARN MOREMore


“I love being able to network with other Wholesalers and Vendors. The speakers and content at ASA events are top notch, and send us home with ideas and ways to improve our business models today and for the future.”Betsy Miner, Hulbert's Tri-Lake Supply, Inc.

Share your ‘I AM ASA’ with us!More

Incentive Plans to Attract, Motivate & Retain Your Best Assets
American Supply Association
ASA’s Midwest Distributors (formerly the Midwest Distributors Association, MwDA) will continue the tradition of hosting the annual Fall Industry Dinner on Monday, November 14th at Ditka’s Restaurant in Oak Brook Terrace, Illinois. Ken Serwinski with Prairie Capital Advisors has accepted the invitation to share his insights and perspective on how incentive plans attract, motivate and retain key employees – creating value for your business when your best assets are your people. All ASA members as well as channel partners from throughout the Midwest are strongly encouraged to participate. Click here for complete details; the deadline to register is Friday, November 4th. More

Uponor's Noonan recipient of 2016 AIM/R Golden Eagle Award
American Supply Association
Uponor Vice President of Sales Brent Noonan is the recipient of the 2016 AIM/R Golden Eagle Award. Noonan was presented the prestigious honor by the manufacturers’ representatives best-practices group during its annual reception held in conjunction with ASA’s NETWORK2016 at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City. AIM/R presents the Eagle Award annually to an individual in senior-level management with a proven track record in support of manufacturers’ reps being the most efficient, cost-effective method of going to market.More

Building Development Plans from the Succession Planning Process
American Supply Association
Successful managers build development plans for their employees to help them grow. Successful companies build succession plans to ensure their strategic plan will succeed. Yet, often times there is a disconnect between individual development plans and those the organization needs to meet its succession plan. On Tuesday, October 25, ASA’s Training & HR Networking Council and Doug Dillon (Director of Professional Development, ASAEF) will look at building development plans “backward” from the succession plan, and why it’s important to do this IN CONCERT with career development plans that are initiated by employees. REGISTER NOWMore

Preparing for the Challenge Ahead
American Supply Association
During the ASA Member Luncheon program during the recently concluded Network2016 in New York City, a new phase in the Karl E. Neupert Endowment Fund campaign was introduced. As a direct result of the Neupert Fund, created to support all of the education, training, and support programs offered through ASA University, more than $6.5 million has already been reinvested back into the PHCP-PVF industry. Faced with a looming labor shortage over the next 10-20 years, a new fundraising goal has been set to position ASA University to support members’ future workforce - $3 million by 2020. Consider a donation today and utilize your member benefits through ASA University to the fullest.


Read the Latest from Morris Beschloss
American Supply Association
This week's news: Why is Big Business Increasingly Unpopular?

Want to read more from Beschloss? Click here to go to The Beschloss Perspective for a full archive of past articles.More

2017 Design & Construction Week
American Supply Association
Design & Construction Week ® (DCW) features the co-location of the NAHB International Builders' Show ® (IBS) and NKBA's Kitchen & Bath Industry Show ® (KBIS). In 2017, this synchronization of tradeshows and markets moves to Orlando, Florida, January 10-12. The fourth annual DCW will bring together 80,000+ design and construction professionals in the largest annual gathering of the residential design and construction industry. ASA members receive special discounts to explore the exhibit floors of both shows—a combined total of 2,100+ exhibits! Register for your DCW expo pass today.More

How to Create a Winning Employee Retention Strategy
A comprehensive people strategy is not comprehensive if it doesn't include a proven retention strategy for holding on to the employees you've worked hard to recruit into your company. That may sound logical, but many, if not most, small businesses overlook this critical component in their human resources program. In a recent Watson Wyatt survey, more than 50 percent of the responding companies said they didn't have a formal strategy for retaining employees once they had been successfully recruited.

Want help developing your own training program? Go to ASA-U Advisory Service today for more information.More