Listen to Jason Bader of the Distribution Talk Podcast and Dave Roller Discuss Margin Improvement and Sales Culture.
Dave Roller: So many of our customers started as small family owned companies. And the founder might have been a strong salesperson or manager.
Jason Bader: Absolutely, majority of them are. I think you just hit it right. Absolutely they are.
Dave Roller: So that culture kind of permeates and I always admire how our customers have grown their business and the job their salespeople do. I think that they haven’t had the same opportunity to do what a lot of industries have done. You know, like the grocery store. The companies that have survived in that business, they have become very proficient at using their sales data and then using that, so when you walk in, and if you go to the bakery first like I do, you’re paying 80-90% margin. When you pick up that gallon of milk at the back of the store where they’re hiding it, there’s a reason they call it 2% milk. It’s margin is in the low single digits.
Jason Bader: Interesting. I didn’t know that. Well, I’m avoiding the bakery aisle from now on. There it is. I think my diet will thank you for that. You know, I think it is interesting when you start looking at this, again, the family owned business that that’s my sweet spot. That’s where I spend, all of my time, really, and they tend to be very sales dominated. I mean, I think we can be very honest about that. You know, bigger sales more sales, people get excited about sales, but not many of them love and talk about margins and improvement and margin or even EBITA. That’s one where you just don’t see people at conventions walking around “man, oh, yeah, my EBITA grew 2%” you know, a percentage or something I used to see him do it they were talking about, but boy, they’ll talk about their sales, they boast and crow about that sales side. So…
Dave Roller: There may be a bit of a generational shift happening, because when we start talking to the younger executives, in distribution companies, the daughters or sons of the current CEO, there’s a little bit different sensibility and a greater comfort with the concept of data mining and utilization. So that’s always an encouraging factor for us.