The Aspray National 2013 Conference was, according to all the feedback, the best ever, the location in Harrogate and the Majestic Hotel venue were appreciated by all.
Day 1 kicked off with our MD James, presenting the results of Aspray’s business performance and explained the current structure of the network. He went on to discuss the developments of the corporate strategy plans such as new staff in Head Office filling key roles, a new franchisee recruitment process ensuring we get the best people for the job, new websites and digital marketing plans. In addition he unveiled the plan for Head Office to undertake more local marketing. He rounded off with targets for the coming year which are geared to “working hard, enjoying life and making money.”
Louise O’Connor presented on what is essentially the core of our business – Customer Care. This was encapsulated in her parting quote “people forget what you say, they forget what you do, but the don’t forget how you made them feel!”
Alan Barker, Aspray Derby, gave insight into why he had had his ‘best year yet!’.
Julie Gelder provided an overview of our corporate work and highlighted things we are doing very well and those that need to be improved to ensure customer satisfaction for this important part of our business. She reminded everyone of how to work with non-mandated jobs and the importance of satisfaction notes and suggested a few key points to consider when working with corporate clients.
Training was a key element of the conference and CPDs were awarded by Ecompli after Suzanne advised delegates on advertising compliantly and explained the new face of regulation – FCA. Also, throughout the conference OpenCRM were on hand giving one-to-one help and IT Brains helped everyone to get up and running on their phones and laptops with the new email system.
On the afternoon of day 1 we were all fired up by Team Academy, taking some of us out of our comfort zones, but rewarding all with a thoroughly worthwhile and enjoyable afternoon of team building. People worked with others they had not even met before and formed bonds and relationships which will far exceed the 2 days of the conference. This team building exercise had been kept a closely guarded secret prior to the event so many were very curious as to what to expect. We could not have anticipated it would have gone any better and everyone agreed that more of this type of activity would be of huge benefit to them in the future.
No respite was awarded on day 2 following a very late night at the awards dinner and sing song in the bar for some after. There were a number of tired people and a few sore heads but our resident Loss Adjuster quickly livened things up at 9am with advice on handling a business interruption claim, understanding insurance policies and, very importantly, how to work well with loss adjusters.
Finally, BDMA Director, John Thompson, talked on one of the growing areas of concern in our industry, Mould, and Edge/Correventa showed us the very latest in new drying technologies.
James Whittle says “This conference which was at the beginning of our eighth year was without doubt the best yet, the venue was fantastic and social side was great fun but most of all, delegates and Aspray staff gained so much knowledge from meeting other franchisees and participating in all the training sessions, a big thank you to all the participants, delegates, training and organisers”.