What did you learn at UMA EXPO that you will implement in 2023?


A big attraction of the UMA Motorcoach EXPO, in addition to networking and learning about new products, is the opportunity to spend time with industry experts to get information that will help them save or make money.

That’s why Cary Martin, owner of Little Rock Coaches in Little Rock, Arkansas, brought several members of his leadership team to a four-day conference earlier this month in Orlando, Florida.

It was a great way to bring these leaders, including his head of sales, foreman, and operations manager, to a quick understanding of the industry.

“They saw that Arkansas was part of the national picture and network. My foreman got to know other production managers and other mechanics. He was amazed when he visited the service roundabout and heard all the knowledge in the room. He was able to walk away with the answers to the questions he had. Previously, he did not know where to turn for some of these answers. Maintenance decoupling is perfect for this.”

Bus & Motorcoach News asked Martin and others what ideas they got from the UMA EXPO that will be implemented in 2023. Here’s what they said:

“I made a lot of notes about things to double-check in the workshop. Electronic registrars – do they work for us? taught Dan Tomlinson with the insurance company Lancer. I want to make sure we’re doing everything right and ready if the Department of Transportation (DOT) comes in and demands our records. I learned some new things and a lot of it was a good reminder. And I liked, towards the end, when the operators just chatted about things that work for them and what does not; what products they use and how they take ELD to the next level. For some, ELD is more than just a driver service system. It’s a driver management system.”

Caroline RavazzoloGreat Canadian Holidays & Coach TrailwaysCambridge, Ontario, Canada

“I’ve heard about field tax breaks, but Tracey Fickettwho taught Meet Your New Friend… US Tax Codeso well explained. I didn’t do it all these years because it didn’t seem so easy. I thought it should go through my accountant, but it doesn’t; it’s just a form that you fill out. You get 12 cents per gallon and 24.5 cents per gallon off school trips. We do a lot more school field trips, so now we can get a big check back to us. She explained in a way that was a little clearer than what I had heard before.”

Meshel HaynesJAG MotorcoachGladwin, Michigan

“I attended the session Everything you wanted to know about military transport but were afraid to ask. taught Donna Johnson, head of the US Department of Transportation bus program. “I learned more about the commanding officers in the military and how they work with agents, how this whole system works together, and the inner workings of the government contracting process. This understanding will help me in future bidding for military contracts. I think this will lead to more opportunities for military work. We are already doing military work, but now that I understand how some of the details fit together, it will help me in the future.”

Carey MartinLittle Rock CoachesLittle Rock, Arkansas

“I attended the session, Medicine & Alcohol information chamber Requirements, Part 2, led by Brian Price, with the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Administration (FMCSA). I go to the FMCSA meeting every time I come to the EXPO because the FMCSA has so many rules. I like to walk around and listen to make sure I haven’t overlooked anything and haven’t calmed down. So I take it as a refresher because it’s nice to hear the information again so that you don’t miss anything. Another reason I enjoy going to FMCSA meetings is because I enjoy listening to other people’s questions, so if I ever encounter such a scenario in the future, I’ll hear back. I love that part too.”

Kimberly StangeCompass TrainerGrand Rapids, Michigan

“I went to a session on finance, Who is your banker? headed by Dave Johnson, with Motor Coach Industries (MCI) to polish the latest and greatest in bus financing because we are looking to expand. And to complete the expansion, we will need more funds. He suggested making friends with everyone involved in finance to find the best deal.”

Louis SandersMotor Coach brand familyNew Orleans, Louisiana

“I attended some great marketing seminars which were very valuable. One was Large Staff Work per Large Employers!, led by UMA board member Paige Balsinger, with All-Around Charters. She mentioned that she always treats all of her employees as teammates because everyone is a valuable part of her team no matter their role. When she introduces someone, she doesn’t say, “That’s my driver or one of my car wash team.” She says, “That’s my teammate.” I’m going to think a little more about the terminology I use when I talk about my employees. We call ourselves a team and use this terminology regularly in our office. But I love the idea of ​​using the same recommendation, be it a teammate or whatever, for all of my employees, no matter what they do, because they are all important to our success.”

Alison ShermanKlein TransportDouglassville, Pennsylvania

“I took part in a one-day maintenance exchange coordinated by Kevin Whitworth. I learned something new about preventive maintenance schedules (PMS). I learned how every major company went from doing a PMS every 12,000 miles to about every 7,000 miles. I will include this in my PMS program to reduce breakdowns and save money. Overall, EXPO was one of the best conferences I’ve been to in terms of education.”

Fitzgerald WrightWright chartersMobile, Alabama

“I brought my operations manager to What Your Balance Sheet Really Says About You?, under the direction of Jim McCann with Spader Business Management because I wanted him to understand what I look for as a member of the Spader 20 team. I wanted him to understand what it takes to get to the next level. You need to understand the structure of your company so that you know what changes you need to make so you don’t get stuck on a plateau. If you don’t understand how your business works, then you don’t know how to develop your company. He loved it. Jim is good at explaining business strategies.”

Robert SaucedoCarreras ToursOntario, California

Read more about EXPO here.

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