The Board of Directors decided on a different approach to start the search for my replacement. In the past, the search was kept behind the scenes. Sometimes head hunters were used to identify candidates, but now the Board is convinced that a person from within our industry is best suited to help manage the affairs of the association.
NARSA/IDEA is still the only trade association that represents engine heat transfer for transportation and stationary engines along with the diesel particulate filter systems industries. Our members are service/repair facilities, distributors and manufacturers. The board still believes in creating the one idea, the one opportunity, and the one connection which will allow your business to be more profitable.
The diesel engine has seen many changes over the last 20+ years. One of the most significant changes was to the diesel emissions system in 2007 which was necessary to meet new Environmental Protection Agency mandates for diesel exhaust. When the EPA mandated these new lower levels of pollutants in the exhaust, engine manufacturers had to develop emissions systems that would meet the new criteria. Previous advancements in turbos, charge air cooling, common rail fuel injection and Exhaust gas recirculation helped to pave the way in creating more efficient cleaner operating diesel engines.
2021 left us with a lot of questions: With the fragility of our supply chain exposed, will there be any long term changes? Has partnering with countries who have a different governing philosophy made us vulnerable? Will small businesses who are struggling with their labor forces ever fully recover?
By being able to speak intelligently about the diesel exhaust system, your people can be a resource for your customers. In some businesses, the technician cleaning the diesel particulate filters is one of the least experienced people in your shop. To help them better understand the process, let’s do a simple review of how the diesel engine operates and the components that control and or create the exhaust. Understanding that the diesel particulate filter is just a trash can and only catches what comes down the exhaust pipe is the first step in understanding the process.
NARSA/IDEA has weathered the COVID storm with you, which since the founding of NARSA in 1954 has probably been the most serious threat to the viability of your association. The Board of Directors had the foresight to plan for an economic atmosphere where we could sustain a financial downturn. I am proud to report the membership in your association is the same as it was at the end of last year. Through all of the hardships and uncertain times our members have chosen to support their association. We have lost some members, but have had new members take their place. I feel so lucky to have had the opportunity to be part of the custodial effort in ensuring the future of NARSA/IDEA.
The greatest advantage to social media has been our ability to communicate and engage with cooling systems and emission service facilities around the world. This year, we have added members in South America, Africa, and France. Social media is the tool which has given us an opportunity to expand our footprint beyond U.S. borders. Canada and Mexico have always been and continue to be important to the success of NARSA/IDEA, but now we are truly the international organization.
What I learned late in life was meetings actually increased our productivity and most importantly improved the employee and customer experience. How can so many businesses and managers of companies be so far off without realizing the detriment of bad meetings?
Whether your business is down or it is booming, one thing is for sure; It is necessary to set the direction for your company at the beginning of the year. If your business is slow, now is the time to think about your vision for your company and how you can turn your vision into reality. If you are busy, you must still plan for the new year because perhaps you have been blessed, and now you need to plan for expansion which is another type of vision.
NARSA/IDEA has been impacted just like a lot of other businesses. All of our in-person events this year were canceled and future events are on hold to see what the beginning of 2021 looks like. This doesn’t mean we don’t have reasons to give thanks.