Rent-to-own employees are the backbone of the industry. As such, APRO likes to feature rent-to-own employees out there in the field that have been a part of the rent-to-own family helping build the industry. This article features RNR’s Matt King from St. Petersburg, Florida.
Matt started out as a RNR wheel technician 15 years ago and has worked up to Operations Manager of 7 RNR corporate locations and part owner of three in Florida.
Matt entered the business with a passion for cars that started out when Matt was young as cars were something he and father shared a common bond. As he states, “I love automotive so much, it felt like it would be a fun career to have.”
He understands that rent-to-own wheels and tires and RNR are a different business than traditional wheel and tire stores and in the automotive industry in general.
“We sell customer service first and tires and wheels second. And our customers are great! They are the mom’s and dad’s that need safe tires on their vehicles to the car enthusiast that want to look good cruising down the road.”
He proclaims one of the best parts of his job is working with the best employees and traveling to the different RNR locations learning new ideas that he can share with everyone. One of which came from an employee who recommended they offer six months same as cash versus the four months.
They now promote it in all stores and their advertising. His response to the new idea was, “why didn’t I think that. lol”.
His customer service-first mentality shows in helping thousands of customers through the years but one that stands out is Sam Brown. Sam has been a customer since 2001 and has purchased many sets with RNR and referring friends and families to his shop. But Matt says it’s the personal relationship he enjoys the most from Sam and his many other customers.
Matt has been married for seven years to wife and best friend Heather who spend all of their spare time together. He enjoys riding his bike, Sea Doo-ing, shooting at the range and rooting for the Tampa Bay Rays.
Kudos to you, Matt, for all you do to help the rent-to-own industry thrive in the marketplace and serve customers throughout the nation.
Rent-A-Center Franchising International, Inc. (RACFI), the nation’s first franchisor of independently owned-and-operated rent-to-own stores, is hosting its annual Summer Retreat from June 21-25, at the Atlantis Resort in Paradise Island, Bahamas, giving franchisees, corporate personnel, and vendor partners a chance to relax, reconnect, and plan key initiatives for the rest of the year. We are excited to have seven of our vendors join us this year as our Summer Retreat sponsors, including top supporters Ashley Furniture®, Whirlpool®, and Sealy®.
Opening day events on Wednesday included a Vendor Appreciation Reception at the resort’s Royal Tower Overlook, and a Welcome Reception and Dinner sponsored by Whirlpool®, held in the resort’s Athletic Garden Center.
At today’s General Session, corporate personnel will update franchisees on operational topics, marketing and advertising, purchasing, and franchise development. Our vendor partners will present an exciting buying show with some sizzling hot deals to end the morning. An owner roundtable discussion will start the afternoon, and a special onsite dinner tonight at the Royal Tower Deck will honor Eagle Club members who have achieved the RACFI’s prestigious “Franchisee of the Year” award.
“Each year, we’re able to share best practices with our franchisees and them amongst themselves. The ability to do so while having fun with our families makes the Summer Retreat unique,” says RACFI Senior Vice President Cathy Skula. “I can’t think of a more relaxing place to do it than Paradise Island, Bahamas, and greatly appreciate our key vendors for help making it possible.”
Tomorrow, attendees can enjoy a day of leisure in nearby Nassau or on Atlantis’ breathtaking grounds. Following a relaxing day at the beach, the Retreat will conclude Saturday night with a Farewell Reception and Dinner sponsored by Ashley Furniture® that includes live music and dancing at the Ripples Pool Deck.
RNR Tire Express and Custom Wheels Franchise continues to expand throughout North America at accelerated pace. The newest store belongs to franchisees Larry Carrico and Richard Bergman who have been in the RNR Franchise system for 10 years and continue to open new locations. The Poplar Bluff store marks the sixth location for the Carrico and Bergman.
“We are looking always looking for great communities and locations where the RNR Brand could expand”. Said Carrico. “The opportunity has expanded dramatically over the past three years with the companies focus on offering tires to customers and providing a number of ways to pay for them”.
The store General Manager is Eric Simmons and he has assembled a talented team to serve the community. “We are so excited to be opened in Poplar Bluff and are overwhelmed by the support of the locals in the community who have come down to the store and who joined us for our Grand Opening early this month”. Said Simmons. RNR has a wide selection of tires and wheels provide affordable payment options to the community.
“The Grand Opening was a blast and we had the opportunity to have a lot of people learn more about RNR”. Said Bergman. “The event was sponsored by the local Chamber of Commerce and we ever gave away a new set of 33” XCOMP MT Tires installed”. RNR started franchising in 2003, and currently has 96 locations opened across 21 states with several locations currently under construction.
Larry Sutton, Founder and President of RNR Tire Express and Custom Wheels had this to say: “Larry and Richard are experienced operators in our system and have plans to open 6 more stores in the next few years. This is an ideal market for our product and we would expert that Eric and his team will be one of the busiest stores in our system in no time”.
The RNR Experience
RNR customers are provided a program that allows them to pay for tires and wheels in easy weekly, bi-weekly or monthly installments with no credit hassles. In addition, customers are offered the lowest cash prices on products and have a huge selection of both new and previously rented merchandise. RNR carries every major brand in the custom wheel and tire industry. For Information on RNR, contact our Corporate Offices at 813.977.9800.
About RNR Franchise
Headquartered in Tampa, Florida, RNR Custom Wheel and Tire Express operates tires and wheels stores and has become a dominant force in the wheel and tire industry by offering retail, rent-to-own and other payment options to those who want to own custom wheels and quality tires. Our innovative approach combines 40+ years of rent-to-own experience with extensive knowledge of the wheel and tire industry. RNR currently operates franchise locations in 21 states and has twelve affiliate stores in Central Florida. For additional information on franchising, contact John Armatas at 855.844.8377 or visit our franchise website at http://www.rnrfranchise.com.
TAMPA, FLORIDA (PRWEB) JUNE 22, 2017
Source: PR Web
The Tennessee Rental Dealers Association has just wrapped up another successful Golf Tournament and Business meeting in Nashville at the Millennium Maxwell House Hotel. The event was well attended by both member companies and industry vendors who helped sponsor the two-day event.
First place in the golf tournament was taken by team Colortyme-Hogan on Tuesday, June 20th..
The business meeting kicked off on Wednesday, June 21st where the membership elected Carl Coble of Colortyme to fill the board seat vacated by Brownie Calvin who chose not to run again. Trent Agin of Rent One was re-elected for two year terms.
The business meeting was interesting and informative with presentations from the Creditor Law Center, Nick Robards of Robards Pest Control, APRO General Counsel Ed Winn III and Trent Agin of Rent One.
“We had a great meeting and I think everyone took a lot away from it. Our vendors really stepped it up this year with both attendance and sponsorship,” shared TRDA President Chris Bolin.
Marc Bitzer and Kevin Nolan assume new CEO roles
The CEOs of two of the world’s largest major appliance manufacturers are handing off the reins.
In back-to-back announcements, Whirlpool’s Jeff Fettig and GE Appliances’ Chip Blankenship said they are stepping down from their corner-office roles.
Fettig will continue in his role as Whirlpool chairman, but will pass the chief executive baton to president/COO Marc Bitzer, effective Oct. 1.
Blankenship, a former GE scientist and jet engine VP, ran the appliance business for the last five-and-a-half years — arguably the division’s most turbulent period, as it was actively shopped by GE, nearly acquired by Electrolux, and eventually purchased by Qingdao Haier.
He was succeeded, effective today, by former VP/chief technology officer Kevin Nolan, a 27-year GE veteran with 23 patent awards under his belt, who was given the new title of president/CEO.
GE cited an interview with the local Louisville Business First, in which Blankenship said the decision to step down was entirely his, and was made over the objections of Haier.
Indeed, Qingdao Haier chairman Liang Haishan praised Blankenship for surpassing initial internal forecasts following the acquisition last year. “The business’s performance and leadership team under Chip’s direction has exceeded our expectations during our first year together,” he said in a statement.
Blakenship said his goal had been to stabilize the company under its new ownership, and felt this was a good time to make a break as GE prepares a strategic growth plan for the next five years. He will remain with the company through year’s end to assist in the management transition, and then may pursue a career in nonprofits or academia, he told the Louisville paper.
In his new role, Nolan will be assisted by senior execs Melanie Cook and Rick Hasselbeck in a newly created management triumvirate called the GEA [GE Appliances] Executive Council.
Cook, formerly sourcing VP, was promoted to COO, and Hasselbeck, who joined the company last October from Covergirl, was named chief commercial officer.
Whirlpool’s Blitzer, a former Boston Consulting Group VP, joined the majap maker’s European division in 1999 as a VP and within six years was running the unit as president. He variously ran the company’s U.S. and North American operations from 2009 until 2013, when he was named vice chairman, and became president/COO in 2015.
“I want to thank the Whirlpool board of directors and especially Jeff Fettig for their confidence in appointing me to this position,” Bitzer said.
Fettig leaves his day-to-day management duties after 36 years of Whirlpool service, including the last 13 as CEO. “We have achieved significant milestones during this time through the great work of Whirlpool people throughout the world,” he said in a statement. “Going forward, I believe we have more opportunities than ever before in our 106-year history. I know Marc and our Whirlpool leadership team will continue to achieve great things for our company in the years ahead.”
ARCADIA, Wis. — Ashley Furniture has begun construction on what it says is the largest ever expansion at its operations here with the construction of a $30 million, 500,000-square-foot e-commerce fulfillment and distribution center.
The company held a groundbreaking ceremony on Monday attended by Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and other state and local government and community officials.
The $30 million investment that the company is making in the facility includes building costs, computer and other electronics equipment and a racking system for the warehousing of product. The company said the facility is slated to open in February 2018 and will store additional furniture on site to more quickly fill e-commerce orders around the country.
“Ashley’s commitment to meeting the needs of our customers comes in many forms,” said Todd Wanek, president and CEO of Ashley Furniture Inds. “Our latest investment involving this 500,000-square-foot expansion is a prime example of reinvesting in the future of our Wisconsin facilities. The expansion will allow processes to expand, improve capital asset utilization and allow for additional space to service our customer base in a timelier fashion.”
“Wisconsin is working,” Governor Walker said. “Our unemployment rate has dropped to 3.1% – down again from last month and the lowest it’s been since 1999. And Ashley Furniture recognizes that this is a great time to invest in Wisconsin.
“Its expansion project here in Arcadia is a win-win, allowing Ashley to better serve its customers throughout the state, the nation and the world, while also investing in and enhancing the local economy.”
Source: Furniture Today
Nearly 900 attendees and some 90 vendors are expected to be on hand for this year’s D&H Mid-Atlantic Summer Technology Trade Show, which returns to the Hershey Lodge and Convention Center in Hershey, Pa.
D&H Distributing will return to the Hershey Lodge and Convention Center in where else but Hershey, Pa., for its annual Mid-Atlantic Summer Technology Trade Show on June 29.
This year’s event will feature an enhanced floorplan with premier booths from Cisco, Lenovo, HP, HPE/Aruba, Brother, Intel, and Microsoft, along with first-time exhibitors Monster Digital (sports and action video cameras), Mophie (wireless power solutions) and SureCall (cellular signal boosters).
Other participating manufacturers will include Acer, Asus, Casio, Creative, D-Link, Linksys, Logitech, Netgear, Plantronics, Seagate, Samsung, Ricoh, and TrendNet, among other vendors.
In addition, a redesigned Gaming Experience Zone will feature the latest video gaming gear from Sony, HTC, Acer, 3dRudder, HP, Patriot Memory, Kingston, Corsair, BenQ, Cooler Master, Gigabyte Technology, Mobile Edge, PNY Technologies, Seagate, Dell, Nintendo, and Western Digitall with special focus on virtual reality (VR) solutions in the gaming space.
Six seminars will be held by Microsoft, Intel, Cisco, HP, Brother, and CompTIA, and a $100 American Express gift card will be raffled-off to one lucky attendee in each session.
In addition, a Grand Prize winner will receive a $500 American Express gift card, courtesy of Dell, that will be announced at the end of the show.
A D&H Services aisle will also be available to give resellers information on the company’s K-12 offering, plus programs like pre-sales support and partner and credit services.
Nearly 900 attendees and some 90 vendors in total are expected to be on hand this year, D&H said.
“As our trade show offerings continue to evolve, we’re excited to focus more thoroughly than ever on market opportunities, education, and customer engagement,” said D&H marketing VP Mary Campbell. “We’ll continue to deliver the tools and solutions that will help our retail and e-tail customers break through the competition in a challenging market, and differentiate their offerings.”
Headquartered in nearby Harrisburg, 99-year-old D&H is a leading IT and CE distributor serving retailers, e-tailers, dealers, integrators and resellers out of five distribution centers in Atlanta, Chicago, Fresno, Calif., Harrisburg and Brampton, Ontario, Canada.
D&H customers can register for the show by contacting their representatives at (800) 340-1007 or visiting DandH.com/midatlantic.
Source: Furniture Today
(June 16, 2017) Yesterday, Gov. Greg Abbott vetoed HB 1859, the so-called RTO “Kiosk” bill. The bill was one of only 50 to be vetoed by the Governor out of 1500+ bills passed in the regular session that ended May 29.
In his veto proclamation, which is required by law to be issued when a bill is being vetoed, Gov. Abbott stated the following:
House Bill 1859 overregulates both retailers and their customers. It would require retail stores to impose elaborate and duplicative paperwork on customers who are interested in rent-to-own agreements. The bill also favors some retailers over others. Its burdensome new requirements would apply only to stores that do not specialize in rent-to-own agreements.
TARA (Texas Association of Rental Agencies) supported the bill during the regular session, which sought to amend the Texas Rental-Purchase Agreement Act by establishing new disclosure provisions for rent-to-own transactions conducted within retail stores. The measure is not expected to become a part of the special session of the Legislature that begins July 18 in Austin.
Recruitment is a difficult, expensive, and time-consuming process, particularly for small and medium-sized businesses, which are all well aware of the consequences of making the wrong hire. With so much on the line, how can organizations ensure their hiring practices are streamlined, efficient, and reliable?
It all comes down to the interview questions you ask candidates. Certain questions can help you determine how motivated an individual is, what their work style is, how independent they are, and how they will fit in with your company.
Remember: Performance management begins with recruitment. If you get the hiring phase right, you will be rewarded with improved productivity, heightened levels of employee engagement (which leads to better employee performance), and increased staff retention.
If you want to be sure you identify the high performers among your applicants, be sure to ask the following questions during interviews:
1. Can you describe an instance where you were able to maintain interest in and passion for a project over a long period of time? How were you able to do this?
You want to hire employees with true grit and ambition. This question will help you pinpoint individuals who are able to really harness their enthusiasm for the long haul. Some projects will take longer than others, and you want someone who will tackle them with creativity and perseverance — someone who will maintain their high standards until all objectives are met.
Top performers will be able to readily provide examples to answer this question; disengaged, unenthusiastic employees will have difficulty improvising. When candidates answer this question, pay attention to their tone as much as to the content of their words. Do they sound enthusiastic and proud? You want employees with the energy to drive your company forward in the coming years.
2. Would you describe yourself as ‘independent’?
Companies shouldn’t hire employees who require constant micromanagement. If you need to always be looking over your employee’s shoulder to ensure they are completing work to standard and on time, you are wasting valuable time and energy that would be better spent elsewhere.
Increasingly, employers are putting more faith in their employees and giving them more control over their careers. Many organizations choose to let employees determine their own SMART goals so they have more ownership over them. Other companies, such as Netflix, grant tremendous autonomy in terms of work schedules. Flexibility and independence are the way of the future, and autonomy is important for workplace satisfaction. Ask this interview question to be sure you’re hiring real adults who won’t need supervision to achieve their goals.
3. If you were struggling with a project, would you soldier on or approach a manager for feedback and assistance?
Although you certainly want independent employees, you don’t want to recruit individuals who are too proud to ask for help when they need it. A reluctance to seek assistance leads to a serious waste of time, and there is no shame in soliciting feedback from peers and supervisors.
Recently, many companies have been shifting away from annual performance reviews toward continuous performance management and regular check-ins. These meetings are great opportunities for employees to get feedback and help from their managers. Such meetings also allow employees and managers to develop trusting relationships and open dialogues. Make it clear during the interview that you encourage the exchange of feedback and would rather employees ask questions than struggle.
4. What skills and strengths are you hoping to improve over the next five years?
This is a different way of asking the dreaded “What is your greatest weakness?” question. It allows your candidates to honestly discuss what skills are important to them, which ones they are most passionate about improving, and why. Top performers are aware that personal development is a lifelong process. Nobody is perfect, and the greatest employees are always looking for ways to improve. If the candidate in question has a detailed plan in place regarding their skill development over the next five years, this is a good indicator that they are self-aware and proactive.
5. How do you prioritize your tasks?
No two people work in exactly the same way. Asking this question will help you get an understanding of how each candidate’s mind works and how they deal with multitasking. Employees who have experience with juggling urgent and time-sensitive tasks will have a process for dealing with their workload. The details don’t matter nearly as much as the fact that they are diligent, hard-working, and they have put some thought into organizing their work.
6. How do you focus in an active, busy office environment?
Whoever you hire, it is likely that they have had experience with busy offices — the ringing of phones, the near-constant conversation, etc. Top performers will have ways of dealing with this busyness. They might shut the world out for a time and put in a pair of headphones. They might compose detailed to-do lists to keep themselves on task. They might take regular breaks. Whatever a candidate’s routine is, you want to make sure they have some system in place to stay productive no matter what is going on around them.
7. How do you manage a good work/life balance?
Most managers know that workaholics are bad for business. Perfectionists are prone to burning out, which is a huge problem for every organization as it usually results in high levels of absenteeism and turnover.
You want an employee who can work hard but is also able to step away and refresh when needed. If a candidate answers this question by discussing their passions outside of work, such as hobbies, spending time with family members, and charity commitments, it is likely they are capable of managing their time and achieving a healthy work/life balance.
The Ohio Rental Dealers have announced this year’s Midwest RTO Training Expo dates. Save the dates for Tuesday, September 12th and Wednesday, September 13th. This year’s expo will be held at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Columbus-Worthington. The hotel reservation deadline is August 1st and early reservations are encouraged. Book through Hotel directly under “ORDA block”.
The Midwest RTO Training Expo, one of the industry’s premier events, grew out of an idea to create a regional vendor show because of the growth of state trade associations. At its largest, the Expo broke all records – 50 vendor companies and 230 dealer attendees from 9 states representing 29 companies, for a combined attendance of 320. The conference center was nearly filled to capacity in what could only be described as the most exciting Expo ever…except that every year continues the energy and excitement!
A note to RTO owners and executives…bring your store managers and other key employees to the Expo, where vendors are focused on providing information on their products and services to help front line employees sell better.
A note to RTO vendors…this is not a buying show. You may not write as many orders as other shows, but you will never have such an opportunity to help so many people in one day!
Detailed information to come. Stay tuned for registration information!