Podcasts Archive - Modern Distribution Management

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S9E7: MDM’s AI Research Report Highlights

Research lead Kevin Reid-Morris and Tom Gale discuss the insights, surprises and hopes for AI this 2023 research into artificial intelligence surfaced. We also map out five behaviors and supporting building blocks for distributor AI success, with comments from our research partners. 

S9E6: Education, Industry Demand and What STAFDA’s Up To

STAFDA Chief Executive Georgia Foley stops by to discuss the association’s new educational initiative, the state of industry demand how it’s being impacted by U.S. Infrastructure Bill rollout and factory building boom, as well as a preview of the group’s annual convention in early November.

QuickTake 09.01.23: Distributors’ Key Business Objectives for 2024

With budgets and operational planning already eyeing the year ahead, Mike Marks and Tom Gale explore where distributors have the most leverage, and where their common gaps are.

Quicktake 05.05.23: The Move from Gen-One to Gen-Two Distributor

The industry is in a disruptive business model revolution with traditional (gen-one) distributors threatened by new competitors with radically different financial and go-to-market models. IRCG’s Mike Marks shares thoughts on how distributors can build a next-generation distributor that can grow profitably and take share from the new competitors.

Quicktake 04.28.23: Category & Supplier Management Strategies

Customers are experiencing price increase fatigue and looking for new ways to reduce costs in their operations. James Dorn shares thoughts on how distributors can manage their manufacturer suppliers more strategically to protect margins going forward as supply chains normalize. 

S8E11: Voices of ISA23 – Networking Push a Big Hit

Mike Hockett interviewed a handful of industry executives on the expo floor of ISA23 in Phoenix, where a focus on networking events was the talk of the show. The resulting series of brief interviews also touched what those are hearing on the product demand front, supply chain and labor situation.

QuickTake 04.21.23: Sales Transformation Trending in 2023

This week Tom Gale and IRCG’s Mike Marks debrief on the Industrial Supply Association Summit, with a deeper discussion on what’s new for 2023 as more distributors engage in transforming sales processes and go-to-market models. Key question: What year will inside sales outnumber outside sales industrywide?

S8E10: Family Ties, Women in Industry & ‘Distribution’s Moment’ with Katie Poehling Seymour

Katie Poehling Seymour might be the busiest executive in distribution. But she made time to stop by and discuss her path to leading family-owned First Supply, the progress on women’s representation in distribution and why “this is distribution’s moment.”

Quicktake 04.14.23: Profit Levers For a Tightening Year

One quarter through 2023 the pricing pendulum appears to be reversing with volume moderating across most distribution sectors. Dorn Group’s James Dorn and Tom Gale discuss sell-side, buy-side and program improvements distributors can make in this year’s environment of contraction to protect and improve profit.


S8E9: Jeff Crane on ERIKS NA’s Year of Change and Path Forward

CEO Jeff Crane joins to discuss a year of change for ERIKS North America, which divested from ERIKS NV in early 2022. We discus the company’s new-look leadership team, a recent acquisition and how the company is looking to grow as standalone entity.


Quicktake 04.07.23: The Right Way to Unwind Company Mistakes

Great ideas sometimes turn into train wrecks. No company bats 100% when it comes to initiatives or projects. But too often management is reluctant to admit a mistake, holding out hope that a positive outcome might be salvageable. In this week’s Quicktake, Indian River Consulting Group’s Mike Marks outlines strategies for minimizing damage and creating best possible outcomes.


S8E8: The Master Group Wants to be North America’s Top HVACR Distributor

We chat with The Master Group President Neil McDougall about the Quebec, Canada-based HVACR distributor’s recent growth and greater North American expansion roadmap, as well as how product demand and the labor situation compares between Canada and the U.S.

S8E7: Debunking Skilled Trade Myths with Toolfetch’s Andrew Brown

In the distribution sector, there’s arguably no bigger champion for the skilled trades than Andrew Brown, who founded eCommerce-based industrial distributor Toolfetch in 2002. This episode dispels misconceptions about the skilled trades, why Brown is so passionate about supporting them and how they tie in with distribution.

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Quicktake 03.17.23: What AI & ChatGPT Really Mean for Distributors

GPT-4 released this week and with it another wave of hype, hope and hysteria over the ways artificial intelligence, search and chatbot technologies will change our world. Indian River Consulting Group’s Mike Marks joins Tom Gale to examine the impacts and implications for distributors.


Quicktake 03.10.23: Levers to Increase Enterprise Value

Leadership teams have several options for increasing long-term enterprise value. This week Dorn Group’s James Dorn and Tom Gale recap some of the key themes from MDM’s recent Distribution M&A Summit and outline the most pertinent areas of improvement for EBITDA margin, growth and value.

Quicktake 02.24.23: Three Gap-Makers in 2023

We are in the midst of profound industry structural changes for how distributors create profit and remain competitive. MDM’s Tom Gale and IRCG’s Mike Marks discuss three things – talent inertia, artificial intelligence and culture – that are defining the competitive landscape of 2023.


S8E6: How One Distributor’s “Swagger” Powers its Talent Pipeline

Mike Hockett chats with Terry Albrecht, who has been led Green Bay, Wisconsin-based Packer Fastener since co-founding the company when he was 22. They discuss how the distributor’s culture and unconventional hiring and retention practices have worked wonders.

S8E5: NAW Voices – What Are Distributors Seeing Out There?

From a trio of short interviews at the recent NAW Executive Summit, distributor leaders tell us about their top challenges and how demand is faring as of early 2022.


S8E4: Brendan Breen on Year-Round Association Engagement

We chat with ISA President Brendan Breen to preview ISA23 in April, how the association has evolved to focus on year-round engagement and what he’s hearing from members about business conditions.

Quicktake 02.03.23: Recap of 2023 NAW Executive Summit

Like the industry it serves, the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors is undergoing a powerful transformation as an organization. MDM’s Tom Gale and IRCG’s Mike Marks debrief on their takeaways from an energizing program of content, networking and sharing of ideas on innovation, transformation and much more.


S8E3: MSC Leaders Say Acquisitions Aren’t Just Business, They’re Personal

As a primer to MDM’s Feb. 22-23 Virtual M&A Summit, we chat with MSC Industrial Supply President & CEO Erik Gershwind and Business & Commercial Development leader Jim Drohan about the company’s M&A strategy, which has moved aggressively in the past 2 years.


Quicktake 01.27.23: Private Label Outlook for 2023

Private label market share traditionally increases in a downturn. James Dorn of Dorn Group sees a perfect storm brewing as softening inflation and supply chain pressures add some tailwinds to that equation. But brands are not going away. Our conversation reviews strategic options for large and small distributors to consider, as well as brand manufacturers. 


S8E2: NAW’s Eric Hoplin on Combating Challenges in Distribution

Ahead of NAW’s Jan. 31-Feb. 2 Executive Summit in Washington D.C., CEO Eric Hoplin stopped by to discuss how distributors are handling the labor market, economic headwinds, supply chain conditions and more.


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