Inaugural Midwest Collision Repair Show a Huge Success

The inaugural Midwest Collision Repair Trade Show and Conference, held April 1-2 at the Overland Park Convention Center in Overland Park, Kansas, was a great success.

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Mike Anderson, founder of Collision Advice, told a packed house of “grow your team, grow your business and change the way you compete” in 2022.

Body associations from Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri and South Dakota joined forces to create and host the event. The expected number of attendees was met and exceeded, the booth space was sold out and the available sponsorships were also sold out.

“The actual attendance was almost triple what we had set as a goal for an inaugural event,” said Gina Cotton, co-coordinator of the event and executive director of the Nebraska, Missouri and Kansas associations. “We were delighted with the turnout and the feedback we received from exhibitors was also very good. We sincerely thank everyone involved, including our event sponsors.

Janet Chaney, co-coordinator of the event and executive director of the Iowa Collision Repair Association, added, “The training sessions were also a great success. Each classroom session was nearly full and extra chairs had to be brought in for a few of the sessions. The presenters worked hard to create valuable workshops, and attendees were very pleased with the material presented.

Mike Anderson, founder of Collision Advice, was the keynote speaker at the Saturday April 2 luncheon. In his state of the industry address, Anderson told the 300 people in attendance that his theme for 2022 is “Grow your team, grow your business and change the way you compete. He pointed out that most stores let lots of money on the table when writing estimates. He shared strategies for solving this problem, sources of procedural documents as well as the average repair order by state.

Anderson also focused on workforce development. He said our industry will need 80,000 technicians by 2024, but the demand significantly outstrips the steadily dwindling supply of post-secondary collision technicians. He showcased a pilot automotive crash engineering program that is powered by a joint venture between the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation and Ranken Technical College. This program is designed to attract and develop entry-level talent to fill critical collision repair roles and improve the retention and advancement of collision repair technicians. The other pilot sites are the College of Lake County in Illinois, Contra Costa College in California and Texas State Technical College.

Cotton and Chaney are working to secure a date and location for the Midwest Collision Repair Trade Show and Conference for 2023. For more information, visit midwesttradeshow.org or call Janet Chaney at (480) 720-2565 or Gina Cotton at (402) 304-2140.