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New Year Changes

2012 is bringing exciting changes to MHEDA and hopefully a robust business environment to all of you!

We are pleased to report that MHEDA ended the year 2011 on a very positive note. Membership saw a significant net gain with more and more companies realizing the benefits of MHEDA involvement and joining the ranks with their industry peers. Thanks to the high participation level in MHEDA programs, we closed the year with a financial surplus, which enabled us to provide every member with a valuable resource, the B-to-B Online Marketing Toolkit, a 116-page manual filled with do-it-yourself advice on how to improve your online marketing and social media strategies. This publication is available to everyone within your organization via the members’ only section of the MHEDA website and is filled with tips for both the novice and the expert. Each member company was also mailed a CD set made available to us by Caliper and titled How to Hire & Develop Your Next Top Performer. Thank you to author Bob DeStefano and his team at SVM E-Business Solutions and to our friends at Caliper for providing us with affordable options to make these useful publications available to all of you.

We have outstanding programs planned for you in 2012, including a very comprehensive line-up of industry-specific educational offerings, an exceptional convention program and two industry benchmarking reports, the Employee Compensation & Benefits Report and the Distributor Statistical Comparison (DiSC) Report. We are delighted to announce that Currie Management Consultants will be producing MHEDA’s DiSC Report for the first time. Be sure to check out the article on page 88 about this new partnership and some of the tools they will share to help analyze your operations and improve your bottom line. There are 2012 networking events planned across the nation. We look forward to visiting your local area when we host MHEDA’s Regional Lunch and Learn programs and hope to also see you at the MODEX Show in Atlanta, February 6-9. Please be sure to visit the MHEDA booth, attend the February 6 Networking Reception, and register for MHEDA’s Social Media Boot Camp on February 7. We are also thrilled to be co-sponsoring Classroom Day again, bringing students to the show and introducing them to our dynamic industry filled with career path possibilities for them and new talent opportunities for you. Visit the MHEDA website for program updates!

We owe a great deal of thanks to Chuck Frank, President of AHS, Inc., who led our association as president in 2011 and saw us through a number of pivotal changes and exciting transitions. It’s always difficult to say goodbye to Board and MBOA members who have completed their terms of office, but we do so with sincere gratitude to our friends Jack Phelan, TriFactor Distribution Solutions, Steve Strifler, Cisco-Eagle, Inc. and Steve Johnson, Nashville Wire Products. Be sure to read the article on page 26 to learn more about the industry leaders who will be joining us on the Board as we guide the association forward and help us welcome your new MHEDA President, Richard Donnelly, EVP at Gregory Poole Equipment Co.

Finally, with this issue of The MHEDA Journal, we bid a fond farewell to our friends at Data Key Communications who have been producing MHEDA publications since 1996. We are very grateful to Judy Flanagan and the DKC associates who have done a tremendous job promoting our association and this industry with their creative talents and expertise. With DKC venturing off into new horizons, we are very pleased to announce our partnership with Naylor, LLC, a print and online media firm dedicated exclusively to the association community, who has partnered with MHEDA to produce all of our print and online publications for the remainder of this year and beyond. Please expect to receive a call from the team at Naylor as we work together to continue to bring you value for the time and resources you spend with MHEDA.

Happy New Year MHEDA!

Material Handling Equipment Distributors Association
Liz Richards Liz Richards
MHEDA Executive Vice President