TYSONS, Va. – American Truck Dealers (ATD) Academy Class 040 President John Mauseth has some strong words of advice for current and future leaders working at commercial truck dealerships who want to take the next step in their career development.
“I am confident the class would agree when I say the ATD Academy was a great experience,” said Mauseth, in remarks at their graduation ceremony last month. “The knowledge gained will give us the confidence to do well in our respective dealerships, and continuously make improvements along the way.”
His class included 27 graduates from dealerships in the U.S. and Canada who attended six intensive week-long classroom sessions over a one-year period at ATD headquarters in Tysons, Va. The classroom experience was combined with hands-on practice back home in each area of their respective dealerships.
“One of the greatest benefits is the friendships and connections we made along the way. I hope to stay in touch with our class for the rest of my career and even after,” added Mauseth, general manager of Beaver Truck Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, which includes Volvo and Hino franchises and employs 100 people. “I would encourage dealers to invest in their staff and the ATD Academy. It is well worth the investment.”
The graduation ceremony also included a dealer panel session. The dealers answered a variety of questions from the graduates and offered advice about what they can expect in their careers, which included to keep learning, maintain open and honest communications with employees and customers, and how to attract and retain employees.
The dealer panelists were Kim Mesfin, Affinity Truck Center in Fresno, Calif., and ATD Volvo line representative; Kelly Sheehan, Beaver Truck Centre; Craig Young, Young Truck Sales in Canton, Ohio; Ron Whiteford, Whiteford Kenworth in Perrysburg, Ohio; Greg Lesher, Lesher Mack Sales and Service in Lebanon, Pa.; Blaine Roberts, Roberts Truck Center in Amarillo, Texas; Bob McCoy, McCoy Freightliner in Portland. Ore.; and Andy Jablonski, Landmark Trucks in Knoxville, Tenn.
Other topics of discussion included the challenges dealerships are likely to face from transitioning from one generation to the next, fleet ownership consolidation and best practices in dealership management; industry disruptors such as autonomous trucks and electrification from new OEMs entering the global market; and learning how to strike a work-life balance though time management.
The ATD Academy’s September 2019 class is sold out. The next available class, which is now open for enrollment, begins in April 2020.
For more information about the ATD Academy, click here or call 800.557.6232.