This week, Paul McAdam started lean inventory management training. I received requests for product information from potential customers while my kids qualify for the Canadian National Regatta. I present the first quarter financial performance while we reserved trade show space for distributor’s spring booking shows to create more growth.
Paul McAdam runs Trail Blazer’s Xtend-A-Pole & Pole Pruner production lines, including the Home Professional extension poles & Mark’s Choice 12′ tree pruners. Paul has taken a noticeable leadership role. He began training this week with a goal of achieving a management position. The training will give Paul the necessary skills to allow his products to ship within 48 hours of receiving the purchase order. Paul’s success in his line has expanded into our snow shovel production where he has provided great assistance & advice. He achieves this while still finding time to assist with Xtend-A-Saw production, where there’s staff shortage from summer vacations. Paul’s hard work has been noticed … and much appreciated.
Brent Jensen runs Trail Blazer’s Collapsible & folding saw production lines, including both Mark’s Choice & Green Thumb Xtend-A-Saws. Brent has also taken a leadership role and begins training next week with a goal of achieving a management position. Brent was on a well deserved vacation this week and we all are looking forward to his return next week.
This week I received a request for Trail Blazer’s new product catalogue from our distributor, TruServ Canada in Manitoba. I answered questions from A. M. Leonard in Ohio about our unconditional life-time warranty. A. M. Leonard is looking at adding our products in spring 2013. I received an update from SilexTools in New Zealand. We sent Gaston Monge-Grassi, with Silex Tools, our product information. At the moment he is very interested to see our products. They’re very busy and things are quite hectic at the moment with pruning season, but as soon as the season slows down they’ll spend time looking at our catalogue andpricing in terms to find out what Trail Blazer products they’ll market in New Zealand.
We received requests for product information from Summerland Builders’ Mart in British Columbia, Boekett Building Supply in Minnesota, Pro X Homecenter in Idaho and Valentine Feed Service in Nebraska. We sent some samples of Trail Blazer products to http://www.canteenshop.com, so they’ll bring them to the woods for a work out.
This week started with the qualifying regatta at Banook Lake in Dartmouth Nova Scotia. Saturday, Sunday & Monday, my Son Travis & my daughters Natalie & Victoria competed, with the hopes & dreams of qualifying for the Canadian National regatta later in August. At this year’s National regatta my son, Travis, will be competing with Andrew Gardiner, James Borden and Nevan Tait for the Canadian national title in Junior K4 1000m & with Andrew Gardiner in Junior K2 1000m. Travis Natalie & Victoria will be competing for the Canadian national title in Juvenile War Canoe 500m. I am very proud of Travis, Natalie & Victoria’s hard work & that they qualified for this year’s Canadian National regatta … I love all 3 of them very much!!!
I would like to acknowledge, at last year national regatta, Travis qualified in Midget K4 1000m … This year he qualified in Junior K4, Junior K2 and achieved his best time in Juvenile K1 1000m & 200m races (Great Job Travis!!!). I would also like to thank Travis’s coach, Corey Firth for a job well done… Keep it up guys, Nationals in 3 weeks!
Back at the office, we continue to focus daily on our financial objectives while the production and shipping departments continue to improve delivery performance. It appears to be paying off because this week we reviewed our first quarter financial performance and I am pleased to announce Trail Blazer Products Limited performed a 47% increase in profits (compared to last year) and a 63% decrease in operating expenses (Wow!!! 63% what did we spend the money on last year? Why!?!). This would not have happened without the appreciated hard work & dedication from everyone in Trail Blazer’s team. I would like to extend a special thank you for the appreciated guidance we received from our BDC consultant, Dale Thibodeau and the leadership demonstrated by Monica Furlotte (valued member of Trail Blazer’s team). These results create the best first quarter in the history of Trail Blazer Products Limited.
Such an accomplishment can not go by without a celebration. That is why Dawna & I look forward to joining the Trail Blazer team (with my Mom & Dad) aboard the Tall Ship Mar for a relaxing and beautiful sailing tour of the second largest natural harbour in the world (The Halifax Harbour) and see where the wind takes us … in the 2nd quarter.
On the road this week, Trail Blazer’s newest sales reps Trey Smith from Woodstown, New Jersey & Mike Streets from Ephrata, Pennsylvania show some movement in creating distribution. They started representing Trail Blazer products in the North Eastern United States on July 16th 2012. Trey was meeting with potential distributors last week for the very first time and I am pleased to say he will be representing us at two distributor shows this fall (the H.B. Davis Spring Expo in Saratoga Spring, New York this September and Meyer’s Market in Maryland this October). I would also like to extend my thank you to Trey & Mike for their appreciated efforts and say I am very excited to see the progress towards growth. I also look forward to Trail Blazer’s dealer list increasing in the North Eastern United States this spring 2013.
I believe working with distributors is necessary for a successful distribution, but would like to stress the importance of visiting our knowledgeable and valued dealers. It is the independent dealers who provide great direction and advice for product development, local promotional opportunities and most important … they sell our products.
All the Best, Shawn Levangie