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Crafting Tire Registration: Bring Your Ideas to the Table

Now that the president has signed the massive five-year, $325 million surface  transportation reauthorization bill, work can begin on fixing more of our badly broken roads and bridges. And tire registration system. Everything needs a starting point, and I suggest this process would best be served if all of the parties – in particular the

Year of the Tire Dealer

The long-term survival of independent tire distribution depends on dealers. The best ones are the smart businesspeople that build customer-first cultures, make finding and nurturing good employees a priority, and spend their time on the business and not in the business. We created the Top Shop Award program with a single purpose: leverage the very

Raising the Bar: Safety Systems for People or Profit?

If you raise the bar should you expect others to follow? Does raising the bar establish only one new level of competence or does it instill consistent focus on continuous improvement? What if you felt that raising the bar would benefit another group, but that group doesn’t seem to notice or care? Where is the

Safety Must Drive Tire Registration Conversation

You’ll see on page 8 of this issue that Tia Disagrees with my take that our industry’s two associations aren’t really speaking with each other. I will say only that, respectfully, we will agree to disagree. That lack of relationship – not just being “in agreement” – does matter, for a lot of reasons. Real

The Evolving Tire Landscape

Thirty years ago it was a much different world. Fax machines had just become a thing. There was no Internet, no such thing as a cellphone let alone a smart one, and the first PCs were appearing in offices. In the tire universe, we were still busy radializing consumer and truck tires; OTR and agricultural

Students Reinvent the Tire Store

If you had it to do all over again, what would your tire store look like? How would it function? What would it feature? Would you go with the “that’s how it’s always been done” approach, or would you transcend “tradition” and look to capture customers with a new and unique approach? If you had

Return to Mandatory Registration ASAP

Among the many current hot button questions being asked across the industry is this: Should tire registration be made mandatory and put back into the hands of independent tire retailers? The short answer is: Absolutely…and as quickly as possible. This is not a tough issue to handle, and we need to get it done and

ChemChina, Pirelli Can Gain Much in Deal

Ren Jianxin, the 57-year-old chairman, referred to the $7.7 billion acquisition of Pirelli SpA , as “revolutionary” for ChemChina, almost as though it was the mouse that had swallowed the elephant. In fact, Ren’s ChemChina, which he created 30 years ago on a $1,600 government loan, is six times Pirelli’s size, certainly the elephant in

Change Will Have to Come

It will take some time before the dust fully settles, before all of the final decisions are made and all of the appeals exhausted. And only then will we be able to fully understand all of the direct ramifications of the absurd countervailing and anti-dumping duties heaped on imported China-produced consumer tires. Trade protection is

Disorder in Our House

It was totally ironic that Warren Zevon’s “Disorder in the House” was playing in the background when I started piecing this column together. It was hard not to think about this whole thing, especially when Warren warbled: “The floodgates are open We’ve let the demons loose. The big guns have spoken And we’ve fallen for

Effective and Desirable

2014 was a hell of a year, wasn’t it? The ups and downs were familiar from past years, but there was also a growing sense of optimism pervading the country and our industry in particular. A positive feel in the business – and in people’s wallets – for the first time in quite a few

Ever Changing Tech

Tis the season when a person’s fancy turns to holiday cheer and thoughts of really cool Christmas gifts you crave this year. [Editor’s Note: You are likely reading this post-Christmas 2014 – perhaps a few days into 2015 – but it was Cyber Monday when I wrote this column. When you work on a monthly