T. Somerville: Importing from the USA is barrier to international trade, not only because of the logistics but also because of the personalized customer service. Posi Lock wants our customers and distributors to know/realize that we are “here” to support them and build a closer relationship.
T. Somerville: Brussels is the “center of Europe” and a solid travel, economic and transport hub. And then there’s the famous chocolate, great food and some dear friends. The choice was very obvious.
T. Somerville: Pullers are used to remove gears, bearings, pulleys, sprockets, wheels and other press fit parts from a shaft. Posi Lock is the only puller on the market with the Safety Cage® design. The patented feature locks the pulling jaws firmly in place and prevents the jaws from slipping off the work surface and snapping back at the user. The T-handle opens and closes the jaws for a one-person operation. This substantially increases productivity, tool life and safety for the technician. Over the past 40 years, we have not amended the design as till date it remains relevant and quite “revolutionary”, but we have introduced new materials, new products and applications, and offered customized engineering services for our end-users. Our products are now used by more than 100 different industries, and that’s remarkable for a small-sized enterprise that grew out of the USA.
T. Somerville: Posi Lock markets and sells products globally via a distribution network. The European warehouse and showroom will enable us to offer our existing and potential new distributors, and end-users, an opportunity to for a “hands-on / live” experience with our product. Our customers can visit the showroom to see our full product line of mechanical and hydraulic pullers. And with prior appointments, they can operate our world-famous 3-jaw, 100-ton hydraulic puller. We can also offer safety training to interested companies.
T. Somerville: Every day, we read some new clever headline about barriers to trade internationally – as many leading world powers seem to be looking increasingly inwards. Personally and professionally, this strikes me as a sad step backwards.
We face so many global challenges in the world today, I believe the best way that we can make real progress - and protect our very precious planet - is by pulling together and becoming more, not less, international.
I am an international business. I do not let politics interfere with my business goals. Our company manufactures a product that’s recognized, appreciated and sold worldwide and we will continue to be where our customers are. And also be proud of our origins – Made in the USA.
Yes, tariffs, can be an obstacle for USA companies exporting to Europe and worldwide. However, I am determined to overcome and find a way to make our products available to the world. Europe is just the beginning of our global expansion plans!
T. Somerville: We are very proud of being a “family business”. And this family goes beyond a bloodline. We have a number of employees who have been with us for 15+ years. Our employees take great pride in the quality of product that we produce and are extremely proud of what we have achieved and what we are set out to achieve more, starting with our European hub.
Not one puller will leave our facility unless it has been approved and inspected and passed our “Positively Perfect” scorecard. North Dakota has a very low unemployment rate, so it is difficult to find and recruit new talent. Fortunately, Posi Lock has a great reputation as a “family oriented” employer which helps to recruit and retain our teams for a long time.
T. Somerville: One of my most memorable moments in my career was when I was in Washington DC being recognized as one of the top 100 women in manufacturing. This was truly a turning point in my career as I realized that it was not only “my family” that understood what milestone I was about to accomplish – it was my peers! It was also the moment that I realized what this could do for the future generations of female engineers and entrepreneurs.
Exporting is hard work! Living in North Dakota is hard work! Business travel across 5 continents, some 100 flights a year is hard work! Being a woman in industry is even harder work! There are so many excuses and reasons to give up. But there’s just one that keeps me going – If not me, then who? If not now, then when?
My one message to all future leaders – female and male – Never Give Up. The world is a big place and you need to find “Your Perfect Sweet Spot’’!
T. Somerville: It’s not our first time at Hannover Messe. I have exhibited here before and recognize the advantages of partnering with the world’s largest industrial fairs. This year, the “industry’s global hotspot” as defined by Deutsche Messe, is featuring some 6,500 exhibitors, organizing more than 1,400 events and expecting to facilitate some 6.5 million business contacts between its 220,000 expected visitors. I suppose it’s a perfect sweet spot for us to reveal the details of our new European hub, and we have a few more things up our sleeves to announce at the Messe.
T. Somerville: You will just have to wait till 1st April – this is not an ordinary fool’s day!