By Diane M. Calabrese / Published July 2023
Reconnect, refresh, and relax. That sounds good.
Better than good, given that PowerClean® 2023 will take place October 11–14 in Glendale, AZ, and it offers the opportunity to experience the best of the “three Rs” in a single place. The venue for the annual meeting and tradeshow is the Renaissance Glendale Hotel & Spa.
CETA will be co-locating with PWNA as it has done so successfully in past years. Both organizations are committed with full force to a unifying philosophy: Two teams. One Vision. Advancing the industry forward. An annual opportunity to reconnect fortifies the vital interaction among distributors, manufacturers, suppliers, and the end users they serve (in contracting and industry). This is the fourth time CETA and PWNA are co-locating.
Two already strong organizations with more than three decades of engagement, CETA (33 years) and PWNA (31 years) look to keep building on success. PowerClean® allows attendees to explore all the possibilities and challenges of the future.
For CETA members, the greater the challenge, the more promising the possibilities inherent in meeting it. From exacting standards in equipment design to innovation that gets high marks from regulators—and draws a positive response from end users—members of the Cleaning Equipment Trade Association are committed to their industry.
Like CETA, PWNA is all about getting it done right. From minimizing water and chemical use, consensus about best practices guides methods.
It has been six years since Power-Clean® attendees gathered in the U.S. West. Glendale lies just nine miles northwest of Phoenix. It’s an easy destination to reach, and one that promises splendid weather in mid-October. In fact, some equipment demonstrations will be outdoors.
Refresh through learning, discussing, and listening. The choices are many and varied. Seminars will be offered in hazmat, water reclamation, benchmarking, digital marketing, technical updates, and CARB [California Air Resources Board]/SORE [small off-road engines]. Industry roundtable topics include website development, service department structure, sales coaching and compensation, and growing sources of revenue.
There will also be plenty of opportunities to learn through the spontaneous discussions naturally sparked during the opening reception, the business meeting, or the special gathering of Women of CETA. For many attendees nothing will match interaction at the tradeshow, where a distributor can hear from a contractor.
Distributors and manufacturers talking one-on-one with contractors gain insight into wish lists. They are the very lists that inform innovation.
Arizona in October is almost synonymous with a relaxed environment, but there will be some structured ways to relax, too. Sandy Hackett, the actor, comedian, producer, and author, who is the son of Buddy Hackett, will be a keynote speaker. The PowerClean® 2023 Golf Tournament will award prizes for first and second flight teams as well as longest drive and longest putt.
“The digital age has made communication easier and more accessible than ever before,” says Scott Hansen, president of Alkota Cleaning Systems in Alcester, SD. “However, there is still the highest value in holding in-person meetings within our industry.”
Hansen explains that in-person meetings make it “much easier to strengthen relationships that are crucial for the success” of the industry. “I value the relationships I have gained through PowerClean®.”
What makes the person-to-person, real-time, and in-place connection so significant? Troy McCall, national sales director at American Honda Motor Company Inc. in Alpharetta, GA, reflects on that. “Over the last couple of years, our capacity to meet and work virtually has grown,” says McCall. He adds that virtual links are great for flexibility and efficiency, but in-person meetings continue to have real value for collaboration.
Make that “collaboration among a more diverse group of business associates,” says McCall. “Typically, when you are in person, you are more engaged in the conversation, which leads to more suggestions and questions,” he comments.
The immediacy of the interaction adds vitality to it, explains McCall. When ideas flow and as reactions occur quickly, it adds value to the information shared.
That information flow includes the new, the tried and true, and the yet-to-be realized just waiting for some kindling. Recent entrants to the industry, veteran members of the industry, and everyone in between mixes and mingles.
“I value the networking aspect the most,” says Ryan Lindaman, industrial sales manager at Hydra-Flex Inc. in Savage, MN. “It’s an opportunity to keep up with all the new changes in our industry.”
Seeing new technology on display at the tradeshow is one of the many dimensions of PowerClean® that Lindaman enjoys. Another is the “opportunity to get away from the ‘busy-ness’ of your business to learn about new ways your business can grow,” he explains.
That growth may be “through a new product or implementing new best practices,” says Lindaman. The multiple sessions at PowerClean® encompass possibilities of all sorts.
One of the possibilities, too, is just the deeper understanding that derives from a conversation with a peer. “In my opinion, the most significant advantage of attending an in-person meeting with industry members is building personal relationships that are not possible through other modes of communication such as text, phone, email, or zoom,” says David Presley, former president of Hydro-Chem Systems Inc. in Caledonia, MI.
“Meeting people in person allows us to forge stronger bonds and connect on a deeper level,” explains Presley. “It also makes it easier to build trust, which is essential in any business relationship.”
Presley says that the ability to discover “shared interests and experiences with colleagues, competitors, and clients and make strong connections with people only just met is a very positive experience. It was truly inspiring to see how everyone came together to learn and grow together.”
Al Bonifas, the former owner of All-Spray and a 40-plus year veteran of the industry, says the “personal interaction with like-minded people with similar interests cannot be duplicated any other way.” He adds that “it’s hard to shake hands” across digital modes of communication.
The serendipity of PowerClean® cannot be overstated, says Bonifas. He says he often learns something very useful in life or business that he did not even set out to find. And there are the relationships built that he will always cherish .
Karl Loeffelholz, distributor division manager at Mi-T-M Corporation in Peosta, IA, says the component of PowerClean® he values most is building and keeping relationships strong. The setting provides a great way to discover ways to be of more assistance to customers.
“Equipment dealers enjoy seeing, getting familiar with, and checking out what’s new and innovative in the industry,” says Loeffelholz “It is a great place to meet and share your products, programs, and story with existing and new potential customers.”
The networking atmosphere at PowerClean® catalyzes building and improving relationships, says Loeffelholz. “Relationships create partnerships that you have for years to come; it’s what makes everything worthwhile,” he remarks.
Finally, let’s go back to reconnect, refresh, and relax, and add the chance to reminisce. “I met some of the greatest people at PowerClean® that I will remember for a lifetime,” says Loeffelholz. “My wife Kim and I to this day enjoy getting together with a number or our customers and just kicking back for drinks and dinner and just reminiscing.”
Make October 2023 a memorable month. Attend PowerClean®.