Welcome/ Editor's Insight -- July - August 2020


by Clair Urbain, Editor-Publisher, Pro Contractor Rentals magazine

Clair Urbain
Clair Urbain

“You can’t hear with your mouth flappin’,” my dad would say. He had several one-liners that I am sure were handed down through the family that are apt for this crazy time. Another one was, “The emptiest wagon rattles the most!”

This year brings a trifecta of challenges. The pandemic made our leaders require sheltering in place and social distancing an effort to flatten the curve. It also quickly tied one of the economy’s hands behind its back. As of this writing, it has been moderately successful when compared with initial infection and mortality estimates.

Then, in late May, civil unrest broke out in the name of decrying police brutality and racial injustice. While greater awareness and action are needed to create a sea-change of sorts, the noise created by those who are genuine in their quest vs. those aiming for political or social gain is downright deafening and confusing.

We have an election coming in November and our lawmakers are showing their true stripes. It’s a shame those stripes look more like a skunk stripe than anything else. Sorting through the rhetoric and alleged facts is dizzying; picking leaders at all levels of government, in most cases, leaves a bad taste in my mouth and makes me wonder, “Is this the best we can do?”

So where am I going with this? Now, more than ever, listening skills are our greatest opportunity to succeed as a country, economy and a business. First, listen to ourselves. Are we part of the problem, adding to the din with parroted rhetoric?

Then, listen to others closely and sort through their words to uncover the real message. Keep asking, “Why?” to get to the real reason. That will work with family, customers, friends and politicians.

Our cover story this issue, Peachtree Equipment, has taken listening skills to a new level and identified equipment their customers needed but didn’t know existed. Adding rotating telehandlers to its fleet has turned into a game changer for the organization, helping it differentiate from its competitors and solve some difficult customer problems.

Let’s all listen better to more fully understand each others’ needs.

This originally appeared in the July-August 2020 issue of Pro Contractor Rentals magazine. ©2020 Urbain Communications LLC. All rights reserved.