2012 Business and Technology Outlook
ffective business planning is largely a function of strategy. And strategy is in part a function of accurately assessing
what the future holds. What new technologies present opportunities? What economic
dangers lie ahead? What effect will political
and competitive forces have on your company—or on your customers?
The PEI Journal doesn’t have a staff
fortune teller to provide those answers. We
have something much better—the 20 officers and directors who constitute the current
leadership of the association. These professionals are as knowledgeable, as engaged
and as forward-thinking as any group you are
likely to find. They know the industry. They
think strategically. And they aren’t afraid to
give their opinions to the industry they love.
For the “2012 Business and Technology Outlook,” we asked these leaders two
questions. First, why would they encourage
the PEI members in their district or division
to get more involved in the association?
Second, how do they see the next 12 months
shaping up? In this article, we’re sharing
their answers with you.
After reading what your association’s leaders think, go through this exercise yourself.
What do you think the next 12 months will
bring? And, even more important, how will
your business respond?
pei When I first started in this industry, the then-owner of our company, Maurice Hubbard, encouraged me to get connected with PEI. In fact, his advice was stronger than that. He said, “You need to get involved in this organization. You’ll get so much out of it.” He was right. I’ll mention just one
example—my 10-Group. There’s no telling how many times I have picked up the
phone to call one of the other members for an opinion or idea on how to deal with
a problem. There’s never been a time when these peers haven’t been willing to help.
I know some owners fear being open about their challenges. But I encourage every
member to get involved in a 10-Group. There’s so much to be gained.
The past couple of years, I have had a “cautiously optimistic” business forecast. In our part of the country, 2011 was a tough year for distribution, service and
construction. Around the country, PCI compliance opportunities dwindled, and DEF
did not gain the traction many thought it would. However, I think 2012 will be the
year DEF takes off. After a prolonged slump, I think commercial spending is coming back. And my sense is that companies now realize they have to fine tune and
enhance their operations in order to sustain growth and a positive bottom line.
So, once again, I go into the New Year as an owner who is cautiously optimistic.
Joey Cheek pei preSiDent
Jmp solutions tampa, Fla.
First Quarter 2012 | pei journal |
The more you get involved with PEI, the more you will get out of the association. While I know this sounds like a cliché, it is true. From committees to Recommended Practices to the PEI Board of Directors, every time I have been active in the association, I have gained more knowledge of the
industry, more networking relationships, more friends and more mentors. Personally,
I have found that as my involvement in PEI has grown, the higher my credibility has
been within the industry and with regulators.
Business in the near term will be highly contingent on the upcoming elections. With that said, the current mood I have seen and heard in my travels is that the
industry is strong. Don’t turn on the TV and listen to the news reports and the politicians. I think the business climate will be positive in the coming days. Opportunities
for the future will be in alternative energy—ethanols, biofuels, wind power, solar,
Terry D. Cooper pei ViCe preSiDent
acterra Group Marion, iowa