Jeff Foster, SMS Equipment Inc.
Business owners and representatives make difficult decisions every day about where to invest company dollars. In this section of Think BIG, current SHCA members sound off about the benefits of association membership.
Jeff Foster is the Saskatchewan operations manager for SMS Equipment Inc., an international dealer of construction, foresting, mining and utility equipment. This fall, he will celebrate five years with the company, which was formed in 2008 with the amalgamation of three Canadian equipment dealers: Federal Equipment, Coneco Equipment and Transwest Mining Systems.
Foster is a big believer in SHCA membership. In fact, he thinks it’s essential to belong to an organization that is the established voice of his customers. Think BIG caught up with him to hear more.
Why did your company originally decide to join SHCA?
Jeff Foster: It is important for SMS Equipment to support leading heavy construction associations, such as the Saskatchewan Heavy Construction Association. The SHCA represents a diverse group of large and small companies working together within the industry. As a supplier of heavy equipment, supporting an association that reflects our customers and workforce is essential.
In what ways do you participate in SHCA?
JF: In a typical day, I will review tender results and industry news as it is sent out. I also like to get out and attend the networking events, golf tournaments and the annual fall convention that the SHCA hosts, which bring the membership together.
Why does your company renew its SHCA membership each year?
JF: The opportunity to support and network with delegates, members and customers is highly valued. The association also provides members with current news and events, provincial updates and vital information that enables us to connect with like-minded professionals.
Can you think of anything you may have missed out on if you were never an active member of SHCA?
JF: We definitely would have missed out on all the great networking events that the SHCA hosts. They allow us the opportunity to strengthen relationships with many of the respected contractors in the industry.
Do you think that SHCA members have business advantages over non-members?
JF: The industry resources the SHCA provides its members have advantages. These include access to daily updates, industry-related articles, and tender release and award data that allow businesses to make informed decisions.
If someone in the Saskatchewan industry wasn’t participating in SHCA because they didn’t think it would benefit them, what would you say to them?
JF: I would share that the SHCA is an association committed to the heavy construction industry and advocates for businesses of all sizes. The investment is worthwhile as you can join your peers and participate in various networking opportunities.
In your opinion, what is the single greatest benefit of belonging to SHCA?
JF: No matter what type of business you are in, relationships are critical for success. The SHCA provides a platform where members can connect and enhance partnerships.