"My past working experience has given me the sense to keep things in balance and make sure the details have been covered," says [Carole Miller]. "The economy and weather are changing every year, and we have learned to not get too 'big' when things are good and not too 'down' when they are not."
POWER PROFILE Careful By Lisa Danes GROWTH After a Smart Purchase With a customer base that reaches an estimated 40-mile radius, the dealership makes deliveries cost-effective by adjusting pricing with distance. Purchasing a dealership without any power equipment experience is a tough decision made easy by having a staff to back it up. H aving a dedicated, knowledgeable “Two of our guys had worked with the previous staff along with loyal customers is ” owner for over 30 years, shares Carole. “They are what helps a dealership achieve suc- still with us and are invaluable. They were the only cess. That is especially the case for employees two years ago and now we have 10. ” BERTELS SALES & SERVICE Bertels Sales & Service located in small-town Dorsey, IL Dorsey, IL. Working Together to bertelssales.com Carole Miller bought the already-established Improve the Business DEALERSHIP DATA FOUNDED: 1929 dealership in 2002, when the power equipment Everyone on staff and in the family plays a role OWNERS: Carole and business was strong. With little experience, she in the business’ day-to-day operations. Vance helps Vance Miller relied heavily on her staff for the next few years as manage the business and is one of their best EMPLOYEES: 6 full-time, 4 part-time the industry took a turn for the worse. Despite the salesmen. His wife Kelly has taken on the role of ANNUAL SALES: $1-3 industry’s downturn, their sales have grown every bookkeeper. Darren, Carole’s youngest son, also million year since she took over the business. helps by taking care of new projects and keeping SALES MIX: 60% wholegoods, computer programs updated. 40% parts and service Employees Help Transition the “Their help gives me the time to take care of CUSTOMER SALES MIX: Business to New Ownership advertising and networking with business groups, ” 70% consumer, Carole and her son Vance took over the deal- explains Carole. “I also enjoy traveling, and the 30% commercial ership without an ounce of background in the staff knows that if I’m not at the business I’m just SHOP LABOR RATE: $60 per hour industry. Their experiences in learning the business a phone call away.” MAJOR LINES: Ferris, and taking steps to improve it have all relied heavily Husqvarna, Shindaiwa, on the staff and their supportive community. S
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