This week, in partnership with the University of the Aftermarket, we offer you an inside look at the Leadership 2.0 experience thanks to participants in this year’s session. Leadership 2.0 is a two-week, residential aftermarket-focused education program hosted by The University of the Aftermarket at Northwood University. The program is designed to develop the leadership and business skills of the next generation of visionary industry professionals. In today’s blog, we hear from Mark Tucker, brand manager for Gumout and Black Magic at ITW Global Brands.
In our morning ritual known as the Aftermarket Roundtable, we discussed a variety of topics including the status of the Right to Repair Act and the rise of the ride-share phenomenon and its potential long-term effect on the industry.
As the conversation ebbed to autonomous driving and the question of just how fast technology is advancing, University of the Aftermarket Director Brian Cruickshank asked the class to look deep into the industry’s crystal ball and predict the future of the aftermarket in 2025. Before we glanced ahead, we took a look back at a similar exercise conducted by the inaugural class, then called “Leadership 2010” in 1995. It is fascinating how the concerns from more than 20 years ago are still top-of-mind issues today, such as the changing role of the parts store salesperson and the factors that influence entry-level employee turnover.
We broke into teams to discuss the future view of various market segments (service dealers, parts manufacturers, retailers, vehicle manufacturers, independent shops, traditional warehouse distributors, technicians and consumers). We were asked to ponder what the segments’ typical characteristics will be in 2025, what trends will drive the group’s segment the most and what the biggest challenges will be. Some of the recurring observations included continued consolidation in key areas, complexity in manufacturing, efficiency through technology, the importance of parts availability, training and education, the growth of government regulations, the continued rise of online price pressures and the shift of the millennial generation as the primary consumer.
After lunch, eight teams created history of their own by sharing presentations six months in the making. The group named “Hitting the Snooze Button” tackled dealership intrusion in the service bay arena. “Star Techs” discussed how to attract the next generation to solve the dilemma of the aging workforce in the service sector. “Industry Icahns” investigated consolidation and vertical integration in the aftermarket. The “ME-llennials” delved into a detailed sociological account of this very important generation and their role in the industry. My team, “Dashboard Confessional,’ dug into telematics and debated who owns the right to a vehicle’s data. “The Jetsons” took an animated tour of several future-forward glimpses of technology and how they will change the industry. “Chasing E-Tail” showcased a 360-degree view of the future of online “sales”-scape. Finally, “The Globetrotters” hit the court with a presentation about how the aftermarket can capitalize on OEM globalization.
Great job, everyone!
I wanted to send a special shout out to my fellow Dashboard Confessionals: Dave Collier from Kollinger Auto Body, Jack Danley from Advance Auto Parts, Denise Hanefeld from Tenneco, Gary Moldovan from Eastern Warehouse Distributors and Melinda Oram from Delphi Automotive. It’s been a blast.
On behalf of all my Leadership 2.0 classmates and colleagues, allow me to say a massive “thank you” to the entire team at Northwood’s University of the Aftermarket for organizing and delivering the industry’s definitive cross-functional leadership course. If you haven’t taken this course yet, what are you waiting for?
Editor’s Note: The next Leadership 2.0 class is scheduled for August 6-11, and March 11-16, 2018. For more information and to register, visit universityoftheaftermarket.com.
If you missed Blog 4 from Lester Kovacs, click here.