We Take the Lead
Terry: Walt, he truly understands what it is being a Rep Owner. He’s been in the business for so many years and I’ve only been a Rep for 11 years. He’s been a tremendous teacher and mentor but I think one of the key things that Walt has taught me is, and I hope this doesn’t come across wrong, but I’m gonna tell you, is that you’ve got to, like playing chess, get to be ahead of the principal and be prepared for the next thing they’re going to want or need.
And we kind of know where things are going and so he’s taught me to be prepared and having reports ready, having the presentations ready for the principles. Because he’s seen this movie many times, it’s taught me to be a better owner because the principles are under tremendous stress by their management, the company and things of that nature and the things that they ask for, they repeat themselves and by having Walt here and teaching me, I’m better prepared for the questions they’re going to ask. To give them what they need and help them as they move along.
Walt: We want to be in the lead. We want to take the lead. We don’t want you to push us, we want to push you. We’re bringing you stuff, we want you to do this. We want you working together with us. We don’t want you pushing us, badgering us because we’re not doing our job. We took the line on because we really feel like we can sell this line. We have turned down lines that we didn’t think we could sell or didn’t fit our model of what we want to do in Florida. That is very important to us.
The other thing I told Terry is, “If you don’t sell. If you don’t get a design win. If they don’t get an order. If they don’t ship the product, we don’t get a commission. If you don’t do that, you don’t eat!
Terry: That’s a huge motivator!
Walt: That’s a big motivator.
Years of Market Experience
Walt: So often, in the military, when you deal with these Engineers you’re working a year, two years, three years. We’ve even gone as far as four years where we didn’t make a dime. But, we can do that because we’ve had so many years of doing that behind us, we still have that money coming in. So we’re not worried about getting a quick turn capacitor order from Arrow or whatever. It’s just not on our plate. We don’t need that commodity stuff. It’s all changed. It is about very specific design wins and being successful in the Market place and doing the little things unusually well. When you do the little things unusually well you’ll get noticed and have success.
The other thing that I told Terry that was very important for his life is just one of those life lessons, “Pay off your mortgage! Get that mortgage paid off”! That’s very important.
Terry: One thing, as a Manufacturers’ Representative as Walt just said is you have to be self-motivated. There’s nothing wrong with working for a company where you’re told to do something. However, even though all our guys are under FLA Technology, you can think of them as their own entrepreneurs. They get us and have their plan together. As Walt said, “we eat what we kill”. So our guys get up, go out and do it. They are prepared for whatever the day brings. You’ve got to be self motivated and you’ve want to go out there and be productive.
Walt: You want self-motivated people. In this business you want very self-motivated people and all these guys are. You want people that are going to go do it for themselves. When I hired Terry, we were talking about vacation. I told him, “yeah, take as much vacation as you want”.Because I knew a very self motivated person doesn’t take vacation. Two of our guys never take vacation. We’ve even suggested that Ron go on vacation, he won’t do it. Terry goes on vacation once a year. I vacation more than any of them because I’m at a point in my life that I want to go do things with my wife. They just don’t want to vacation, because they’re working.
So we want to invite you to come to Florida and visit us and visit our account. We’re not a Rep Firm that wants to keep you out of Florida. We, typically, before Covid we were getting 40 to 45 visitors a year. There were a lot of people. But we were very successful with those visitors because we were focused and we were getting design wins. So, we want that back. We want that to happen again. So welcome to Florida.
Terry: When you do come, the way that we work it is really good. The work along the I-4 corridor. You’ll spend a day in Tampa/St Pete, Orlando typically and then the East Coast. So, you are going to be in Florida for 3 to 4 days.
Walt: We’re not gonna do the one stop and go. Stopping for 15 minutes to drive two hours to get back to the next account. Because I want to take you where it is real business, real opportunities and that’s where we’re gonna take you.
So if you’re interested in FLA Technology Sales, Inc. as your Manufacturers’ Sales Representative for Florida and the TOLA region, then we need to have a conversation. What do you wanna know? Do you want to know where the accounts are? We know. Do you want to know who the corporate people are at those accounts? We know. Do you want to know who the engineers are and/or the buyers? We know. Do we know everything? No! But we will find out for you. If you have something specific in an account that you’re dealing with now, tell us what you want.
And then after the meeting, when you come down to Florida, we can take you out for margaritas!