Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Winds Of Change



Winds of Change


I recently returned from a supplier sales meeting at the Hotel W in Barcelona, Spain, which I attended with a few of my colleagues.  From there I went on to meetings in Switzerland and Germany with another key supplier.


emailbannerDanfoss DrivesAt both meetings, I was reminded of the tremendous opportunities and resources that we have to solve industrial application problems with the excellent product lines that we represent and I was especially impressed by the passion, professionalism and product knowledge of the people representing those products.  Good products and good people are an unbeatable combination.  The recurring one-word message at both meetings was ‘Passion’, and the importance of this one essential attribute was reinforced by every contact I made during my meetings.

I find my periodic visits to progressive and innovative supplier facilities and industry association meetings to be energising and inspirational, mainly because of the people I meet.  I get to see how others are organized to succeed and to draw some comparisons to how we are managing similar challenges.  I usually come away with good ideas for things that we might do to improve.  One constant that never changes is the team building challenge of finding and keeping good people. 


Unleashing and amplifying human creativity, passion and resourcefulness must be one of our primary corporate obsessions.  If we are to grow, we must win more than we lose.  To do this, we must be defined by our commitment to a set of ideas, resources and strategies that have the power to reshape our sense of what’s possible; and we must reinforce the notion that work is personal, values rule and nobody wins unless everybody wins; Supplier / Davis / Customer and Employee.  Everyone on our staff has an important job to do, and it is essential that every one of us is held accountable and that we have no weak links.  With this in mind, we held internal meetings recently to highlight our intention and determination to develop and/or upgrade our ability to provide application services whenever we see an opportunity to improve.  We have ambitious goals and in order to realize these objectives, we must depend on enthusiastic, experienced and inspired team players. 

As a footnote, we had a very serious windstorm in our neighbourhood on May 04, 2018 that took down one of the 30 foot tall Blue Spruce trees in our backyard.  The tree came out, roots and all as if it were a twig and left a 5’ hole in the ground.


I planted this tree and the one beside it in 2003 to commemorate our 2nd generation management team of Paul Grenfell and Bill Montgomery and at the time, I fully expected these trees to stand for 100 years.  After all, they were in an ideal location with lots of room to grow.


Before the storm, the trees appeared to be strong and stable and I was proud of them.  They made a good impression and by all indications, were making a useful contribution to our outward appearance.  When the sun was shining and the winds were calm, there was no indication of a weak and shallow foundation.  Now that I know differently, it’s time to plant a new tree with the hope and expectation that it will take root, blossom and grow.

But I digress.  Change is in the wind on several fronts.  During the last three months, we have systematically intensified our efforts to increase the level of support we provide Customers and Partners by expanding and strengthening our field sales coverage across the country.  Our new team members bring new energy and enthusiasm along with years of industry and application experience, and their addition to an already strong nucleus of seasoned professionals is producing   impressive results.  We are still eight months away from our fiscal year-end but so far, all indications are that Davis Controls Ltd. is on track to have our best year ever.

 

Thursday, 31 May 2018

#DavisControls would like to thank everyone who came out to visit us at the DEX 2018 and CPECN 2018 trade shows


#DavisControls would like to thank everyone who came out to visit us at:


DEX Design Engineering EXPO Moncton
MAY 29, 2018


and


Nova Scotia Process & Automation Show
MAY 30, 2018


Come out and see us at our next show:
FABTECH Canada
Toronto Congress Centre (South Building)
650 Dixon Road
Etobicoke, ON, M9W1J1
Tel: 416 245-5000
JUNE 12-14, 2018

Monday, 14 May 2018

#DavisControls would like to thank everyone who came out to visit the Davis Controls booth - CPECN Southern Ontario - May 10, 2018 - Ian Hegi from Davis Controls and Stephen Kalau from ABB pictured.
Our next show will be the DEX Design Engineering EXPO Moncton on May 29, 2018 - for more info go to: https://www.dexexpo.com/attend/





Friday, 29 July 2016

Davis Controls Ltd. - What’s New In The Neighborhood In 2016?

What’s New In the Neighborhood In 2016 ?


Exactly one year ago today, I posted a blog about the construction of a new engineering office building across the street and I recall wondering then, who our new neighbours might be.  Today, one year later, the construction is complete, the parking lot is paved and lined, trees and shrubs have been planted and the irrigation system has been running non-stop during our recent heat wave….and we are still wondering who our new neighbours will be.  The lights are on, but there is nobody home?
              

One Year Ago
Today
                                                                                                               
                                               Here is a sample of the price of admission:
                                              -  Est. Monthly Rent: $82,368
                                              -  Floor: 7
                                              -  Size 27,648 SF
                                              -  Gross Rent $35.75/SF
                                              -  Base Rent $24.00/SF
                                              -  Additional Rent $11.75/SF
                                              -  Availability Now


Hopefully this new complex has been designed with an upscale cafeteria that will give DCL / Oakville employees one more dining option for lunch.  Not that there is a shortage of dining options already.  In addition to the dozen or so fast food outlets within a 5 minute drive, we already have several dining (fine and otherwise) choices within a 5 minute walk.  The 24 cinema theatre complex just around the corner is surrounded by no less than 12 eateries ranging from elegant to unsophisticated.  





 

In this same complex, they are currently renovating the building that used to house LA Fitness.  This facility will soon become the new home of Dave & Busters. 
Billed as the ONLY place to Eat, Drink, Play & Watch Sports all under one roof, at Dave & Buster's visitors can play hundreds of the hottest new arcade games in the Million Dollar Midway. AND, there will be even more places to eat, from wings to steaks, as well as a premium bar featuring innovative cocktails, an impressive wine selection and more than 20 selections of beer.  Sounds like my kind of place!  You will soon be able to watch your team on one of the massive HDTVs with epic stadium sound that will surround you from every direction in the sports bar.


Our little corner of Winston Churchill Business Park is quickly becoming a major center of Leading edge Technology, Engineered Solutions, Fine Dining, After Hours Clubs and Entertainment.




Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Davis Controls Ltd. - So much to do…so little time.

So much to do…so little time.

Brent O'Connor and Neil Montgomery at Danfoss Drives Conference - March 2016 - New Orleans
For three days, March 13 – 15, 2016, the city of New Orleans played host to ‘The Danfoss Drives Conference’, billed as the world’s largest Drives conference, with more than 50 speakers, 80 breakout sessions and 600 VFD experts in attendance.  One of the main objectives of the conference was to present the ‘New’ Danfoss Drives organization and extended portfolio created through the acquisition of Vacon.  In addition to new product launch announcements, business news and highlights, AC drive application case studies and success stories, discussions about current megatrends and insights into the AC drives future, attendees were encouraged to embrace the Jazz club / gangster / speak-easy look of New Orleans in the 1930’s.  Thankfully there was no prohibition this week and Brent O’Connor and I did our best to blend in.

The event was so successful that Danfoss decided to take the show on the road and from June 8 – 10, 2016, hosted a similar but smaller Canadian forum at the Four Points by Sheraton, Niagara Falls Fallsview in Niagara Falls, Ontario.  Davis Controls took full advantage of this local Canadian conference by sending 15 of our own sales reps, who in turn each invited VFD customers from their respective sales territories.  The event was a huge success and Danfoss plans to continue this initiative with other sales and customer events in the future.





For the Ontario sales reps, the training didn’t end with Danfoss.  On June 21, Naas DeJager from ABB Measurement Products conducted an Actuator & Positioner portfolio overview as well as sales and technical training on the TZIDC / EDP300 products, including Programming & Diagnostics.  Then on the second day, the four Product Managers of the Pressure, Temperature, Analytical, Recording & Control and Flow portfolios presented an overview with highlights of their products, complete with sales success stories and helpful selling tips.


Within the last 30 days, our Business Development Managers have been out to work with our people in Vancouver and Saskatchewan, manning trade shows in Dartmouth NS and making joint calls with our team in Montreal.  On July 12, we are off to Los Alamitos, California to visit our friends at Flowline and learn all about their next generation of products and soon we will be in Winnipeg and then Vancouver again to make more joint calls with our people there.  There is a lot going on right now and while we can’t be everywhere, we are doing our best to be where we are needed when it counts. 


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Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Davis Controls Ltd. - The Neighbourhood is Changing

The Neighbourhood is Changing

For twenty seven years, our view looking out from Davis Controls across the street toward Winston Churchill Blvd. has been that of a few acres of vacant field covered with weeds and scrub.  This all began to change early this year when the land was cleared for what will soon become 869 parking spaces surrounding a new seven story engineering building, which is now well under way and should be glassed in by the end of July.  This property was one of the few remaining undeveloped properties in the park and while the new building partially blocks our early morning view of the rising sun, we welcome the change of scenery and look forward to meeting our new neighbours.  Having 869 additional cars spilling out onto Bristol Circle every night might complicate the drive home, but on a positive note, we will be able to walk to these sales calls.


(Before)
While we’ve been watching the construction project across the street, we became aware that the front corner garden, planted when our building was built in 1989, has matured, and in the case of the sprawling junipers, has become overgrown.  The oak trees are now well established and provide a nice canopy over the entire front corner, but the original garden underneath was in need of a makeover.  With a little bit of TLC, we have transformed the front corner so that it no longer hides our main entrance and once again exposes our front door, sign and lobby.


(After)
I recall that when we were looking for a place to move to from 4251 Dundas St. W, one of the things we liked best about this property was that it was strategically located at one of the main entrances to the business park.  It would be a shame to allow this prestigious location to become untidy or unkempt.  Cosmetic upgrades like these are necessary from time to time to maintain a clean, fresh and colourful appearance and this was a transformation whose time had come.  I’m sure that they will install some attractive landscaping across the street and we want to be sure to look just as good as they do.              

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Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Davis Controls Ltd. - 2014 in Review

2014 in Review

This year marked our 25th Anniversary at 2200 Bristol Circle in Oakville.  Our Twenty Fifth year in our ‘new’ building (I really must stop calling it that) has been one of those generational milestone years where everything original is wearing out:

• The phenolic foam roof needed to be replaced

• The HVAC system is nearing the end of its life

• The foundation plants that were part of our original landscape plan are either just starting to develop into beautiful mature trees ... or … have just reached the end of their life expectancy and have started to die

• The IT infrastructure that was state–of–the–art twenty five years ago has already been replaced FIVE times

• The fluorescent lights and fixtures throughout our office and warehouse are old and inefficient and replacement energy-hungry tubes will soon be hard to find

• The parking lot needs resurfacing – again

• The office d├ęcor is in need of a makeover


I don’t mean to sound like the Grinch who stole Christmas.  This list might actually become my Christmas gift list.  In fact, these maintenance benchmarks are not problems.  They are the naturally occurring scars and blemishes of a corporate veteran that has survived most of the material things used to conduct business long enough to even have this anniversary.

The really important things however are not wearing out. As we head into 2015, we are even more enthusiastic, more positive and more prepared for growth than ever before.

• Davis Controls Ltd has been in business in Canada for 81 years

• This year we are surpassing our previous sales record year by more than 20%

• We continue to add new Products and Technologies and people to support them

• New lines, new people and new R&D developments from established suppliers continue to breathe new life into our applications scope and solution capabilities


In many ways, 2014 was a year of positioning and investment in an even more promising future that begins with 2015.

From all of us here at Davis Controls Ltd. to our valued client and provider partners, we wish you all a Very Merry Christmas and a safe and prosperous New Year.


                                             


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