PAFED Hosts Newly Formatted Spring Conference

By: Dale R. Eller, PAFED Association Manager

For nearly 20 years PAFED has regularly held a spring and fall conference in geographically diverse locations across the Keystone State.  In past years these conferences have included a myriad of technical and business presentations, exhibiting vendors and suppliers and no shortage of social events.

However, for 2010 the PAFED membership expressed a desire for something different, something more focused on the needs, challenges and opportunities presented to fire equipment distributors in the current economy.  To address those requests PAFED decided to theme the spring conference with business topics while the fall conference remains a mix of both technical and business sessions.

Gone were the exhibitors and technical presentations, replaced with a full day of business focused presentations.  Topics ranged from understanding the cost of doing business, to marketing, to employee profiling, and the in’s and out’s of business insurance and contracts.

The newly designed format presented four distinctive presentations:

“Profit Focused Marketing” – presented by Jim Murphy, Amerex Corp.  When faced with tough economic conditions it becomes even more important to have organized sales and marketing plans in order to maximize revenue and assure profitability.   This presentation reviewed the key components of a plan and helped identify opportunities and to set sales targets looking especially toward customers with the best potential.   A discussion of pricing products & services based on margin was included. An Excel file that helps in selecting price was shared with attendees.

“Managing Chaos or Creating Growth (Spend More Time on the Business Instead of In the Business) ” – presented by David Mills- The Sandler Organization.   David is the founder of Prescient Advantage and Principal of Sandler TrainingSM of Philadelphia, possesses 20 years of business development, management, and training experience.

He has significant experience in developing unique sales and marketing strategies for both new and mature product portfolio’s and has led the revitalization of numerous sales teams.  David has created many proprietary products and processes and today holds three global patents. David is internationally published and holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Delaware.

“Selling Your Business” – presented by S. Bryan Lawrence III.  As a part owner of two fire suppression companies, Bryan is a businessman in addition to being a lawyer. As such, he understands the practical realities involved in operating a successful business. In a transaction, for example, he recognizes that business necessities often outweigh legal issues and works with clients to achieve their goals with a minimum of risk and cost.

“Risk Transfer for Contractors & Service Providers” – presented by Jeff Spangler, CPCU, CSP, REM Loss Control Field Director, The Cincinnati Insurance Companies. Each year, the landscape for the construction and service industries becomes more complicated.  Contractual requirements and litigation are serious challenges that must be faced with more regularity, making risk management and risk transfer a necessity.   This seminar addressed many of the challenges that a typical contractor or service provider faces regularly regarding risk transfer. Emphasis was given to the perspective of the service contractor who must provide certificates of insurance and agree to the terms and conditions of those who are doing the hiring.  Key topics addressed include –      Risk Management Practices, How Risk Transfer Works, Construction & Service Contracts, Indemnification Agreements, Hold Harmless Agreements, Additional Insured Status & Language, Certificates of Insurance.  Following the main presentation, there was a Q&A session.

The general consensus from the over 40 attendees on hand was that the new formatted conference accomplished its objective by allowing distributors the opportunity to discuss candidly issues facing their businesses in today’s economic climate.

PAFED will resume its typical conference format (including exhibitors, technical and business sessions and social events) this fall when they hold their Fall Conference at the Split Rock Resort and Conference Center on October 21 – 22, 2010.

Plans are already underway for the 2011 PAFED Spring Conference to be held again in the center of the state, and following the new business only format.

Individuals interested in attending or presenting at future PAFED conferences should contact the PAFED office at (888) 923-3473 or visit

If you would like to view a PDF of this press release please click here: PAFED Hosts Newly Formatted Spring Conference


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