Every business professional wants better results. In 30 years of working with companies – many in the factory-built and log housing arenas – I've yet to see a client or prospect say, "We want to sell less and lose more money next year." That would be absurd, the CEO would be replaced or a mental institution would be called for such top leadership thinking. Business people want to grow results, period.
The question then becomes how do we get results? What are the things we must do differently to achieve our organizational targets? Who do I have to involve to get my goals done? What are the costs? What are the potential rewards? What are the risks? And so on.
I attended the informational/educational seminars at the Louisville Manufactured Housing Show last January. The array of practical business building topics was a solid. I didn't hear anyone say, gee I wish I had not come. Yet it rained all day on day one of the show, and snowed on day two. Nearly 1100 attendees from manufactured home retailing, land-lease communities, developing and installation were there, along with hundreds more who came to engage those professionals with their products and services. People drove or flew in from many parts of the country. Homes were sold. Products and services engaged.
It was a fine example of everyone involved winning.
Knowledge is power. Goal and solution orientation. A willingness to adapt to be more successful. These are among the keys to success.
Certainly Dennis Hill's office does a great job of organizing and running events like the Louisville Show. But let's not forget the role that Tony Kovach and the MHProNews team played, because certainly the Midwest Manufactured Housing Federation (MMHF) member state executives didn't forget their role. I've seen the positive comments on Tony's linked in profile from those execs. I've listened to people acknowledging his work on this trade media website.
For 2.5 years, Tony's MHProNews (MHMSM.com) online trade media website has gotten results for the Industry and his clients. Award winning retailer Doug Gorman said Tony is one of the best go to guys in the Industry. Hall of Fame award winning Dennis Hill and the MMHF execs have applauded Kovach's work. The seminars at the Louisville Show were all organized by Tony. I also sat in this year on a some training sessions on marketing and sales that Tony was doing for some retailers via webinar. The material was terrific, but more important, the client company was getting results.
Tony has been exploring ways we could deliver more training to more companies and their team members. I'm told that various states are keenly aware of the need and thirst for business building education. Tony will be at the Texas Manufactured Housing Association's (TMHA) event on August 19-21, presenting on How to Get More Customers with Cash or Good Credit. Now I imagine that many readers aren't in Texas, but would like to have quality business building information and training by multiple professionals like Tony and others. Well, I've been throwing out ideas to get it done Tony. A plan is being formed. When Tony gets involved in a plan, factory built housing pros should take note and listen. But before talking about the plan, a survey of the landscape is in order.
I've watched and worked with companies in this great industry for decades. What has often baffled me is that some things just don't seem to change. Some of the same old things keep plaguing manufactured housing.
For example, the subject of tornadoes.
How many times do we have to hear from the weather man that if you 'live in a 'mobile home,' you better run for cover or you may die.' Crawl into a ditch if you have to, but leave that mobile home.'
Isn't it beyond odd to tell people living in manufactured housing that they are safer outside then inside in a windowless room, say a bath or closet? Haven't these same TV weather men shown us video footage of cars and tractor trailers being carried up by the winds? Haven't they shown us photos and videos of leveled houses – and I mean conventional site built buildings – where the people inside we're carried off by those winds? Do they really believe that you are safer outside in a ditch, waiting to get sucked up by the winds than inside?
That's Absurd! But it has gone on for decades! Why? Because there needs to be a systematic approach by the Industry to solving the problem, that's why. If you don't like the results, you have to do something different.
With state association budgets at record lows in too many cases, there is only so much an association executive can do, their plates are full. But what can be done is to form a task force in every state to reply to the media – on behalf of the Association and it's members and under the guidance of the Association – to answer each and every time that negative news happens.
But what answer should be made that would help manufactured housing? What should the goal of such a task force be?
Glad you asked.
Every piece of bad news is an opportunity to engage the media and turn it into an opportunity for free – and positive – publicity. Hollywood stars have the mantra, there is no bad publicity. The very biggest companies turn negative news into a positive, all by engaging the media. They have the budgets for it, but guess what? If you start to turn media lemons into lemonade on topics like tornadoes and manufactured homes, you will sell more homes and you will have the bigger budgets too.
I've been talking with Tony about having a mix of online training and live events. The online events could be started in short order. They could tackle topics like engaging the media successfully, something Tony and others in this industry can talk about first hand.
We could do management, marketing, sales and other subjects online too. Ways to build your business without even leaving your desk, just an internet connected PC, laptop or tablet computer and a good telephone line.
I've been nudging Tony Kovach on this training and event topic for some time now. Because we need someone like him that can get the word out, and provide the promotion and audience we would need, and can connect with the various states that would want this for their members.
Think about this. How would you like your business to double in the next year? How many customers and sales are you missing that you ought to be closing?
i read what Tony Kovach writes, and MHMSM.com (MHProNews.com) has gone from 10,000 page views a month on this site two and a half years ago when he launched to over 800,000 page views from last month. Do the math, and you'll see that its is 8000% growth in 2.5 years. Doug Gorman, Dennis Hill and others are right. Tony gets results!
And that power can get you results too.
Watch for updates. Get involved. Don't let old patterns trap you. We could start with a topic like how to change negative tornado stories into positive publicity in YOUR state or market. We could start with a topic like change management, something I do. We can cover those or a vast array of topics from your favorite speakers and writers, because MHProNews.com has the platform and audience.
That audience is made up of smart business people like you. When you read this far, it is because you are ready to get results.##
Tim Connor, CSP