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The drive to continuously grow and improve is at the heart of the MRAA, our members and our staff. That’s why we’re launching this blog: to share what we’re learning in our work and in our lives with you – and in hopes you’ll share what you’re learning too.

 

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Top tags: dealer development  dealer focused  continuous improvement  Annual conference  certification  mraa history  customer experience  growth  experience  Annual meetings  dealer to dealer  MRAA  discussions  employees  Experiences  training  Continuous Certification  MDCE  customer service  education  employee satisfaction  future  marine industry  relationships  resources  throwbackthursday  workforce  communication  history  industry insight 

Tell Your Boss MDCE Is Right for You

Posted By Liz Keener, Tuesday, October 30, 2018

You’ve looked at the MDCE lineup and schedule and have determined the 2018 conference and expo is the right place for you to grow your dealership and advance your career. Now how do you convince your supervisor that this is the right training for you? The MRAA has developed a letter for you to deliver to your boss, helping you explain all the reasons you should attend, including which sessions would bring the most ROI to your dealership and what other events and activities can aid in your learning and networking. The template is laid out in a simple form – just add your personalization, turn it in and be prepared to discuss why MDCE 2018 will help you and your dealership flourish.

To choose your best lineup, read through all the material on the MDCE website. If you need further guidance, reach out to education specialist Liz Keener.


Dear Supervisor’s Name Here,

I’ve been researching the upcoming 2018 Marine Dealer Conference & Expo, which will be held December 9-12 in Orlando, Florida. I would like to attend the conference and represent our dealership at the event this year.

In particular, I believe the following sessions would allow me to learn more about my position within the dealership, how I can better serve the dealership and some best practices that I can share with the team when I return.

Those sessions include:

Session Name:
Session Description:
How I believe this could help our dealership:


Session Name:
Session Description:
How I believe this could help our dealership:

Session Name:
Session Description:
How I believe this could help our dealership:

Session Name:
Session Description:
How I believe this could help our dealership:


Of course, there are others I will attend as well, including the opening keynote, “Build Trust or Die in the New Economy” and the closing keynote, “Future-Proofing Your Business.”

In addition to gaining knowledge in the educational sessions, I plan to participate in the Dealer Roundtables, which will allow me to bounce ideas off fellow boat dealer peers and learn from their failures and successes. I also intend to attend all of the networking events with the hopes of meeting fellow dealers, speakers, industry advocates, manufacturers and suppliers in order to glean insight from them.

The cost to attend the conference will be the registration fee, travel expenses, additional meals not included in registration, the hotel and transportation within Orlando.

  • Registration: $449 for MRAA members, or $529 for non-members

  • Pre-conference workshop: $185

  • Flight: Varies

  • Additional Meals (lunch and breakfast are included Tuesday and Wednesday): $150

  • Hotel (needed for Sunday through Tuesday nights): $189.75 per night for a total of $569.25

  • Transportation to and from the airport: About $50

  • Total expense: Varies
Although this is a sizable expense, I know from looking at the session Walk Away Withs and from the variety of testimonials shared about the show that I will bring back ideas worth more than the dealership’s investment. The MDCE is designed specifically for boat dealers and their employees, which will make its sessions, networking events and expo hall especially pertinent to what we’re trying to accomplish here.

Thank you for your consideration. I hope we can discuss this more this week!

Your Name

Tags:  Annual conference  continuous improvement  dealer development  mdce 

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MRAA History: BoatPAC

Posted By Mickaela Hilleren, Thursday, October 25, 2018
In honor of BoatPAC reaching this year’s fundraising goal, let’s throwback to the BoatPAC event at MDCE 2016.

 Attached Thumbnails:

Tags:  Annual conference  Annual meetings  BoatPAC  dealer focused  fundraising  mraa history 

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MRAA History: Shirtsleeve Session Workbook

Posted By Mickaela Hilleren, Thursday, October 11, 2018
The 1977 Dealer Shirtsleeve Sessions Work Book, brought to you by MRAA and the Boating Trades Association of Texas.

Tags:  Annual conference  Annual meetings  dealer focused  mraa history  shirtsleeve session  workbook 

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MRAA History: A Year of Firsts

Posted By Mickaela Hilleren, Thursday, October 4, 2018
The 1987 MRAA Conference was deemed a success. The Caesars Palace welcomed a record-setting number of marine dealers, the first Woman of the Year was recognized, and the number of accessory exhibitors increased by 90% over the previous year.

Tags:  Annual conference  Annual meetings  dealer focused  mraa history  Women of the Year 

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MRAA History: "Change...for the better"

Posted By Mickaela Hilleren, Thursday, September 27, 2018
The theme of the 1985 MRAA Annual Conference was “Change… for the better.” If you could make one change to MRAA’s Annual Conference today, what would it be?

Tags:  Annual conference  dealer focused  mraa history  throwbackthursday 

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To attend or not attend MDCE

Posted By Katie Eichelberger, Friday, September 21, 2018
According to science making a decision is a 7-Step process. Let’s say that’s true for deciding whether to attend MDCE or not. But really, it shouldn’t be that hard. The answer is yes. To humor you and ourselves, we’ll empower you with the information to make this decision, step…by…step…

Step 1: Identify the Decision
  • Not attend MDCE (Not probable)
  • Attend MDCE (Probable)
  • Attend and bring teammates along (strongest probability)
Step 2: Gather relevant information
  • Like world-class education? > 
  • Like in-depth workshops? >
  • Like Dealer-to-Dealer Roundtable discussions for moving the industry forward by working through obstacles and opportunities with other dealers? >
  • Like the current MDCE schedule, event list, educational line-up, and a grand list of testimonials both written and spoken?
Step 3: Identify the alternatives
  • None?
  • Name something bigger, more dynamic and beneficial than MDCE
Step 4: Weigh the evidence
  • We went out and hired super-secret personal detectives to investigate the MDCE, this is what they said... just kidding, we didn’t hire fake detectives, these are REAL people, REAL attendees and these are their stories.
Step 5: Choose among alternatives
  • The alternative: sit at home in your dealership while your competitors better themselves for 3 days straight
  • The alternative: sit at home in your dealership and listen to customers complain that you don’t have the ZL-4 in electric blue.
  • PS: we have the tools to manage situations like this like the customer-centric dealership that you are and should be.
  • PPS: ZL-4 is not a real boat model, we googled it and Jay-Z came up.
These may be great, but how cool would it be to step away, engage with world-class education, connect with over 1,000 attendees looking to make the industry the best it can be and discover your dealership’s true potential?

Step 6: Take action
  • REGISTER
  • Or keep reading and then register
Step 7: Review your decision and its consequences
  • You go, meet new people, gain new insights and learn a ton to help your dealership be successful in 2019.
  • You don’t go and you risk asking yourself what you could have been if you had attended.

After all this reading, was it worth it? Or was your decision made before you even read the list? We think you probably knew you were meant to attend and the answer is yes. Yes, to engaging with the opportunities offered at the MDCE to challenge and drive you and your dealership to improvement. Yes, to connecting with dealers and partners that will change the way you view your dealership. Yes, to discovering what you and your dealership can do in 2019 and beyond.

See you there.

Tags:  Annual conference  continuous improvement  dealer development  dealer focused  dealer to dealer  marine industry  mdce 

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MRAA History: Phil Keeter

Posted By Mickaela Hilleren, Thursday, September 20, 2018
The 2011 MRAA Annual Conference celebrated the career of Phil Keeter, who retired as MRAA President. Keeter was one of the founders of MRAA and was employed by the association for more than 20 years.

Tags:  Annual conference  Annual meetings  history  Keeter  members  mraa history  President  retirement 

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MRAA History: Supporters

Posted By Mickaela Hilleren, Friday, September 14, 2018
We can count more than a dozen organizations that were supporting MRAA and its Annual Conference way back when that continue to support us today. That list of leading members has grown tremendously, but our appreciation remains the same.

Tags:  Annual conference  Annual meetings  history  members  MRAA  mraa history  organizations  partners  supporters 

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MRAA History: Don Galey

Posted By Mickaela Hilleren, Thursday, August 9, 2018

One of the original founders of the MRAA and of its Annual Conference, Don Galey of Galey's Marine Supply, has collected awards like these at MRAA’s Annual Conference as far back as the 1970s and as recently as last year. Straight-ahead, Don.

Tags:  Annual conference  award celebration  dealer focused  mraa history  throwbackthursday 

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MRAA History: Shirtsleeve Sessions

Posted By Mickaela Hilleren, Thursday, August 2, 2018
MRAA’s Shirtsleeve Sessions, which launched in 1977, represented the earliest days of MRAA’s Annual Conference. Leading dealers discussed and provided insights and solutions on the leading challenges and opportunities facing the marine business.

#MRAAhistory #dealerfocused #throwbackthurday

Tags:  Annual conference  dealer focused  industry insight  marine industry  mraa history  shirtsleeve sessions  solutions  throwbackthursday 

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