In our 2022 Distribution Preview in the January issue of AMN/Counterman, aftermarket leaders talk about some of the key issues affecting the industry, and discuss their plans, goals and expectations for the year ahead.
This year, we added several fun “Lightning Round” questions that you won’t want to miss.
Here’s our Q&A with JC Washbish, vice president of sales and marketing for the Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance.
AMN/CM: What did your organization accomplish in 2021 that you are most proud of?
JW: 2021 was another fantastic year for Auto Value and Bumper to Bumper! We made a transition from our virtual meetings back to live events. We hosted a Sales & Marketing Forum in September that saw over 150 folks from our warehouse-distributor members and valued channel partners gather in San Antonio.
We hosted our Technician of the Year program in October. And, finally, the Alliance Winter Shareholder Meeting in Aventura, Florida, in December was a massive success. Over 450 Alliance personnel and channel partners rounded out the year with a great week’s worth of meetings, networking, activities and an awards banquet.
AMN/CM: What do you feel is the greatest threat facing the automotive aftermarket right now?
JW: Allow me to answer this by quoting two presidents of the 1900s. First, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Why should we fear anything in this industry that we cannot control, change or adapt to that would put us on our heels?
The greatest threat we face is our own lack of action. That leads me to the second quote: “Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.” If we, as individuals, think someone else is going to control, change or adapt for us – then we are blinded by fear. Each individual needs to be active, needs to be an advocate and needs to be a voice for the aftermarket.
AMN/CM: What do you feel is the greatest opportunity in the automotive aftermarket right now?
JW: America is moving again! Car count and average age are up. Demand is high. New-vehicle manufacturers are facing some headwinds, which will continue to increase our aftermarket business.
AMN/CM: What phrase describes your “words to live by?”
JW: Life is short; tell a joke.
AMN/CM: What is your best icebreaker at a networking reception?
JW: Do you know how much a polar bear weighs? Enough to break the ice.
AMN/CM: What is your dream car, or favorite vehicle you’ve owned?
JW: Fully loaded Ford Transit with all the cool features for the wife and six kids!