Latest Event Updates

Client Testimonial: Alameda Electrical Distributors

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Alameda Electrical Distributors, the largest independent electrical distributor in Northern California and one of the top 100 electrical distributors in the nation, partnered with SPA to put a stop to a long term trend of margin erosion.

“The program is great and the timing couldn’t have been better for us! We would absolutely recommend SPA to other distributors.”

          – Greg Berkowitz, Director of Operations | Alameda Electrical Distributors

“Prior to working with SPA, we had a history and long term trend of margin erosion. “

Prior to working with SPA, we had a history and long term trend of margin erosion. Once we implemented SPA, that trend not only ended, it reversed. The timing of this program could not have been better based on the current economic conditions our industry is facing.

“After working with SPA we averaged between a 2%-3% increase on our gross margin.”

After working with SPA we averaged between a 2%-3% increase on our gross margin.  Since implementation of the program we have seen a bottom-line improvement of over $225,000 in nine months with additional improvements every month.

“SPA brought a level of technical skill we simply don’t have internally.”

The best part of working with SPA is the knowledge and the data. Although our team has a solid understanding of pricing and where the opportunities were, SPA brought a level of technical skill we simply don’t have internally.  It would have taken us weeks, if not months, to compile the data and conduct the analysis to show us where the real opportunities were.  Working with them allowed us to isolate and quickly focus on the opportunities.  And knowing we are maximizing our margin opportunities and we have a process in place that works allows us to work on improvements in other areas of our business.

 

Click here to read more SPA client testimonials.

 

SPA Events

Click here for other SPA Seminar dates and locations and click here for upcoming SPA webcasts.

 

Follow SPA

To easily keep up with the latest SPA announcements, events and resources you can follow us on LinkedIn or on the following major social media channels and file sharing platforms: Twitter, Google+, Facebook, SlideShare, and YouTube.

We also encourage you to join the Strategic Pricing discussions in our LinkedIn group and to sign up to receive our Strategic Pricing Newsletter by clicking here.

Client Testimonial: Embarq Logistics

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Embarq Logistics, a $750 million distributor of telecommunications products and services, partnered with SPA to increase their ability to use pricing as a strategic weapon in the marketplace by improving processes, automating functions and measuring the effects of pricing changes.

“SPA is a well-kept secret and has earned my unqualified recommendation. There should be a 1-800 number and you should call now.”

          – Brad Clark, Senior VP of Sales and Marketing | Embarq Logistics

“We consider pricing a strategic weapon in the marketplace and consequently spent a good deal of time improving processes, automating functions and measuring the effects of pricing changes.”

Our division was in the process of soliciting buyers for divestiture and we needed to improve our EBITDA as much as possible to drive up the sales price. As sophisticated as we were, we employed SPA because our results had plateaued and we thought we might be leaving money on the table.

And we were. Millions of dollars. Millions of dollars that drop right to the bottom line. SPA likes to talk about delivering 2-4 margin points but from our experience that estimate is very low. If you are not evaluating your product and customer sets for price sensitivity and setting pricing accordingly, you are likely leaving 6-10 points on the table. We provide some degree of price flexibility to our inside sales reps and even with those modifications, we still see meaningful margin improvements. We expect these increases to continue, and we will continue to cash checks with each improvement!

“SPA can help you increase your bottom line in a matter of months and we are very pleased how quickly the process happened —from the analysis to bottom line impact.”

We started in early spring 2008 and we had new pricing for 140,000 SKUs analyzed, designed and implemented by September 2008.

We’ve seen minimal pushback from customers; most haven’t even noticed the price change.  Because we were nervous about potential customer backlash, we established a control group that didn’t receive the SPA-determined price increases as a way to be sure that the SPA program would not negatively impact sales.  I tracked this every week, for every group, and I can say definitively that not only did the SPA program not hurt sales, the margins for the SPA group improved over the control group.

Our sales force had some initial concerns.   But because their compensation is weighted more heavily towards margin and because we saw an immediately benefit, which was reflected in their commission checks, they were onboard very quickly.  It also helped that this had no negative impact on our supplier relationships.

“The SPA team members are consummate professionals and quickly became an extension of our pricing team.”

They are extremely nimble, very responsive and deliver exactly what they commit to, typically ahead of schedule.  They are also extremely flexible and able to meet you where you are.  Regardless of the maturity and sophistication of your pricing discipline, they will look at your unique situation, improve it and quickly drop money to your bottom line.

Click here to read more SPA client testimonials.

 

SPA Events

Click here for other SPA Seminar dates and locations and click here for upcoming SPA webcasts.

 

Follow SPA

To easily keep up with the latest SPA announcements, events and resources you can follow us on LinkedIn or on the following major social media channels and file sharing platforms: Twitter, Google+, Facebook, SlideShare, and YouTube.

We also encourage you to join the Strategic Pricing discussions in our LinkedIn group and to sign up to receive our Strategic Pricing Newsletter by clicking here.

Webcast: Six Sigma Strategic Pricing: How to Leverage Six Sigma Methodology to Drive Profitable Growth

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“Basic human processes are 4 Sigma at best … 99% good is just not good enough.”

Greg Preuer – Former Pricing Director at Cooper Lighting and General Electric

 

The webinar will be held June 15, 2017 at 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM EDT  and will provide an overview of SPA’s Six Sigma Strategic Pricing Course. Six Sigma Master Blackbelt Greg Preuer of SPA has created the first course designed to apply time tested Six Sigma methodology to pricing.

Those who complete the program will learn not only how to drive the pricing process towards excellence, they will also learn how to sustain the gains and automate the process. They will become Six Sigma experts (Blackbelt) in business process with a focus placed squarely on price management.

Click here to register

 

Why Six Sigma Pricing Training?
In short – graduates will improve margins by making better pricing decisions…with better processes and decision making tools. Graduates from this course will learn to chart a clear path to pricing improvement.

They will learn each of the following steps:
1) How to design and design goals which are consistent with their company’s pricing strategy.
2) How to measure and identify characteristics critical for pricing success.
3) How to analyze the current situation and steps along the way.
4) How to design an improved alternative which moves closer to the desired result.
5) How to verify that actions taken create the right results.

Click here to access more details and download our Six Sigma Pricing White Paper.

To learn how you can realize the benefits of SixSigma Pricing training online or on-site go click here.

 

Follow SPA

To easily keep up with the latest SPA announcements, events and resources you can subscribe to our Strategic Pricing Pays blog or follow us on LinkedIn or on the following major social media channels and file sharing platforms: Twitter, Google+, Facebook, SlideShare, and YouTube.

We also encourage you to join the Strategic Pricing discussions in our LinkedIn group and to sign up to receive our Strategic Pricing Newsletter by clicking here.

Six Sigma Pricing – 99% Good is Just Not Good Enough!

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“Basic human processes are 4 Sigma at best … 99% good is just not good enough.”

Greg Preuer – Former Pricing Director at Cooper Lighting and General Electric

 

The Power of the Last 1%

One glaring example follows about healthcare related mistakes. Using a standard process performance at 3.8 Sigma (99%) nets 200,000 wrong drug prescriptions per year. At 6.0 Sigma (99.99966%) the number is reduced to only 68 per year.

Use the following link to access a short video that highlights why 99% is just not good enough!

https://youtu.be/HWhOy2xfTkY

 

Why Six Sigma Pricing Training?

In short – graduates will improve margins by making better pricing decisions…with better processes and decision making tools. Graduates from this course will learn to chart a clear path to pricing improvement.

They will learn each of the following steps:
1) How to design and design goals which are consistent with their company’s pricing strategy.
2) How to measure and identify characteristics critical for pricing success.
3) How to analyze the current situation and steps along the way.
4) How to design an improved alternative which moves closer to the desired result.
5) How to verify that actions taken create the right results.

Click here to access more details and download our Six Sigma Pricing White Paper.

To learn how you can realize the benefits of SixSigma Pricing training online or on-site go here https://spasigma.com/pricing-mastery

 

Upcoming SPA Events

Set You and Your Team Up to Win Better Agreements at Battle For Margin

Your organization’s profits depend on the individual and collective negotiation skill of your employees – from sales to purchasing. The Battle for Margin negotiation intensive is a rare opportunity to dive deeper into negotiation strategy that will immediately drive for more profitable agreements. Don’t you and your team deserve to be set up for success? Don’t miss the Battle for Margin.

It will be held June 8-9 at the Mandarin Oriental in Las Vegas, NV.

Get negotiation intelligence you’ll find nowhere else:

Revolutionize how you and your team view negotiation. Give your organization the tools and knowledge to drive more profit than ever before with compelling and eye-opening case studies, critiques, and group exercises. Instill knowledge fast. The day will fly by because our seminars are purposefully entertaining and educational; people learn more when they’re having fun.

Attendee Testimonials

Here what our clients have to say about the power of strategic pricing tools from SPASigma Negotiation Training Seminars.

“SPASIGMA breaks the standard mold of slow pace seminars. It’s engaging, fun, and interactive in a setting that feels warm and comfortable.”

     — Mitch Koepp, Marketing Manager, All World Machinery

Other SPA Events

Click here for other SPA event dates and times including our upcoming webcasts.

Follow SPA

To easily keep up with the latest SPA announcements, events and resources you can follow us on LinkedIn or on the following major social media channels and file sharing platforms: Twitter, Google+, Facebook, SlideShare, and YouTube.

We also encourage you to join the Strategic Pricing discussions in our LinkedIn group and to sign up to receive our Strategic Pricing Newsletter by clicking here.

Paul Bickford Reveals 5 Reasons to Attend Battle for Margin and One Issue

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Paul Bickford knows world-class training, and he says that’s definitely what he found when he attended SPASIGMA’s Battle for Margin negotiation seminar, Feb. 9 and 10, in Miami. As Epicor Software’s  Senior Manager, Sales Training and Enablement, Paul is an award-winning senior learning and development professional, and selling and negotiation expert. We recently had a conversation with him about his experience at Battle for Margin. Here’s what he said makes this training stand apart…

5. Leading Training Techniques

While many negotiation seminars Paul has attended devoted most of the time to teaching theory, with a small opportunity to practice it at the very end, he was pleased SPASIGMA took the opposite approach.

“They had such high quality materials, and everything was real-world specific instead of broad-based academic techniques,” he said, noting that while what SPASIGMA teaches is academic, they showed attendees how to use this theory on the job.

“They made it bite-sized. They taught, then you practiced what they taught. And then they taught a few more techniques, and you practiced them in addition to what you touched on earlier,” he continues.

Their approach reminded him of what training professionals call “spaced learning over time” which maximizes learning retention. This is one of the reasons why everyone who attends SPASIGMA’s seminars are automatically enrolled in SPASIGMA’s 90-day online learning-management system. There is nothing like this in the industry. It uses highly professional, interactive online education to reinforce and expand on what is taught in the seminar.

 

Click here to access the full article and to learn more about SPASigma.

 

Follow SPA

To easily keep up with the latest SPA announcements, events and resources you can subscribe to our Strategic Pricing Pays blog or follow us on LinkedIn or on the following major social media channels and file sharing platforms: Twitter, Google+, Facebook, SlideShare, and YouTube.

We also encourage you to join the Strategic Pricing discussions in our LinkedIn group and to sign up to receive our Strategic Pricing Newsletter by clicking here.

 

SPA Featured in The Distributor Channel article “Applying Black Belt Principles to the Pricing Process”

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SPA was featured in a recent The Distributor Channel article, “Applying Black Belt Principles to the Pricing Process”, which discusses how distributors can apply Six Sigma methodology to the pricing function to generate repeatable margin gains and why a solid pricing process is an essential part of any strategic initiative.

Excerpts of the article follow.

“Initially, Black Belts worked entirely within the manufacturing process”

One person saw the advantage of putting the same principle to work on the pricing process.  Enter Greg Preuer of SPASigma.  Greg was certified as a Master Black Belt DMAK by General Electric.  He saw an opportunity to apply the same Black Belt methodology to the pricing used by companies.

The goal:  better pricing programs.

“Pricing is a big deal”

In an age when most companies find themselves facing competitive pressures, pricing policies have fallen into disrepair: special pricing abounds, discounting has grown rampant and operating margins have been pushed and squeezed.  Here’s where Six Sigma (Black Belt) efforts come into play.  Black Belts work to understand and leverage each specific customer’s willingness to pay a price slightly different from their peers.  Simply put, they focus on already existing price sensitivity variances between customers.

Most companies rely heavily on their sales teams for what little direction they may have.  But the reality of the situation is very few sales teams have the proper training or tools to determine price.  Because they place priority on closing the order at any cost (or price,) they tend to underestimate the proper price level.  With this approach in mind, it’s no wonder that pricing has fallen in to disarray.  What sales teams crave is an advanced scouting report on what each specific customer would be willing to pay for every (specific) product in the portfolio; real data that kills the guessing game they currently must play.

“One wholesaler described pricing in his organization as a visit to the wild west.”

Lone Ranger salespeople set pricing for their customers mostly without firm understanding of costs associated with handling or servicing the customer.  Gross margin numbers are used for the same customer regardless of order size or difficulty in providing the products.  Reviews of the pricing used by hundreds of distributors reveals sell prices using familiar numbers which predictably end in zero or five.  Profitability suffers.

“Quoting Greg Preuer:”

“While most formal Black Belt training uses case studies pulled from academia, we apply exercises using the student’s own company’s data.  We’re talking about real actions with real people and dynamic environments.  It’s not just busy work to flesh out the course material, our exercises are tasks developed to make an impact on your companies pricing organization.”  The Black Belt makes a real impact even before certification is achieved.

Click here to read the complete article.

About SPASigma Six Sigma Pricing Training

“Basic human processes are 4 Sigma at best … 99% good is just not good enough.”

Greg Preuer – Former Pricing Director at Cooper Lighting and General Electric

Click here to learn how manufacturers and distributors can apply Six Sigma methodology to the pricing function to generate repeatable margin gains.

Click here to read an interview of Greg about developing a program for training others in a Six Sigma Black Belt of Pricing program. Greg applied the same concepts while successfully serving as the Director of Pricing at Cooper Lighting.

Click here to learn how you can realize the benefits of SixSigma Pricing training online.

To learn how you can realize the benefits of Six Sigma Pricing Training on-site for your team, contact SPA today at info@strategicpricing.com or 216.455.1545.

 

Upcoming SPA Events

Set You and Your Team Up to Win Better Agreements at Battle For Margin

Your organization’s profits depend on the individual and collective negotiation skill of your employees – from sales to purchasing. The Battle for Margin negotiation intensive is a rare opportunity to dive deeper into negotiation strategy that will immediately drive for more profitable agreements. Don’t you and your team deserve to be set up for success? Don’t miss the Battle for Margin.

It will be held June 8-9 at the Mandarin Oriental in Las Vegas, NV.

Get negotiation intelligence you’ll find nowhere else:

Revolutionize how you and your team view negotiation. Give your organization the tools and knowledge to drive more profit than ever before with compelling and eye-opening case studies, critiques, and group exercises. Instill knowledge fast. The day will fly by because our seminars are purposefully entertaining and educational; people learn more when they’re having fun.

Attendee Testimonials

Here what our clients have to say about the power of strategic pricing tools from SPASigma Negotiation Training Seminars.

“SPASIGMA breaks the standard mold of slow pace seminars. It’s engaging, fun, and interactive in a setting that feels warm and comfortable.”

     — Mitch Koepp, Marketing Manager, All World Machinery

Other SPA Events

Click here for other SPA event dates and times including our upcoming webcasts.

Follow SPA

To easily keep up with the latest SPA announcements, events and resources you can follow us on LinkedIn or on the following major social media channels and file sharing platforms: Twitter, Google+, Facebook, SlideShare, and YouTube.

We also encourage you to join the Strategic Pricing discussions in our LinkedIn group and to sign up to receive our Strategic Pricing Newsletter by clicking here.

Webcast: SPA Customer Panel Discussion: Top Strategic Pricing Opportunities in Fluid Power

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During this 60-minute webcast Frank E. Hurtte Jr. will host a panel of SPA Fluid Power industry clients who will share their experiences and advice on how they SET optimal prices and GET improved profit margins through more effective price tools and strategies.

Fluid Power companies make millions of decisions each day and the goal is to maximize their goals and objectives with each decision. The decision, which is usually made more than any other, is how to price a product for each customer.

Often times the only variables which are included in making this pricing decision are – cost and a targeted margin percentage. Thus there is a huge opportunity to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of these pricing decisions.

Click here to learn more about what SPA has to offer Fluid Power companies and to download our “Top Strategic Pricing Opportunities in Fluid PowerWhite Paper.

 

Webcast Description

Tuesday, May 16, 2017 @ 2:00 PM Eastern

Click here to register

Attendees of this customer panel moderated by Distribution industry expert Frank E. Hurtte Jr. will learn how to:

  • Properly price products to capture the value of your services such as assembling components into finished goods.
  • Optimize prices in your manufacturer mandated price ranges product segments.
  • Price optimally as different customers have different cost-to-serve, you can stop your sales people needlessly giving away margin on some orders.

For example, the Strategic Pricing team at Livingston & shared with SPA an example of the power of implementing a strategic pricing tool has on controlling exception pricing follows:

“Prior to applying the SPA process, exception pricing – deviating from the system standard – was over 67% of our business and we only counted price drops greater than 10Prior to applying the SPA process, exception pricing – deviating from the system standard – was over 67% of our business and we only counted price drops greater than 10%.

This created issues with consistency and really complicated the job of our inside sales team. Today this practice has dropped to nearly zero. The system does not allow downward pricing adjustments, the inside sales team can only adjust upwards.”

Webinar panelists include Joe Strausbaugh (Kaman Fluid Power) and Todd Kesler (AirHydro Power). They will share how they introduced new tools and strategies in their businesses to drive margin improvement and grow their Fluid Power businesses profitably.

Join us for this informative webinar where you will learn about the top benefits of adopting a Strategic Pricing initiative in Fluid Power such as.

  • Creates volume lift opportunities
  • Fuels profitable growth
  • Identify margin lift opportunities
  • Adapt to the competitive threats
  • Leverages your market strengths and value differentiators

 

Other SPA Events

Set You and Your Team Up to Win Better Agreements at Battle For Margin

Your organization’s profits depend on the individual and collective negotiation skill of your employees – from sales to purchasing. The Battle for Margin negotiation intensive is a rare opportunity to dive deeper into negotiation strategy that will immediately drive for more profitable agreements. Don’t you and your team deserve to be set up for success?

Don’t miss the Battle for Margin – it will be held June 8-9 at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Las Vegas.

 

Follow SPA

To easily keep up with the latest SPA announcements, events and resources you can subscribe to our Strategic Pricing Pays blog or follow us on LinkedIn or on the following major social media channels and file sharing platforms: Twitter, Google+, Facebook, SlideShare, and YouTube.

We also encourage you to join the Strategic Pricing discussions in our LinkedIn group and to sign up to receive our Strategic Pricing Newsletter by clicking here.