2019 Educational Distribution Symposium

Tuesday, Oct. 22

To gain a competitive advantage in today's data-driven world, you need to know how to be a true partner with both customers and suppliers. Join the Distributor/Supplier Community for a discussion of challenges, partnerships, and opportunities facing channel partners.

1-1:15 pm - Welcome

Moderator: Mark Hubbard, Paragon Furniture, LLC

Mark Hubbard, EDmarket Board member and President of Paragon Furniture, will set the stage for the afternoon program with his observations on the future of distribution and how EDmarket can be a key resource for your future business success.

1:15-2:15 pm - Open More Doors, Close More Sales

Meridith Elliott Powell

Meridith Elliott Powell is an award-winning author, keynote speaker and business strategist. Meridith is the author of five books, including Winning in The Trust & Value Economy (a finalist in the USA Best Book Awards) and her latest "Own It: Redefining Responsibility - Stories of Power, Freedom & Purpose" (named Top 50 Sales Book for 2018) about how to build cultures the inspire ownership at every level to create profits at every turn.

You followed all the rules. You've read all the books. You've implemented the strategies. And still you're struggling to hit the goals. Face it - the rules have changed and selling today is different. Customers demand more. Sales cycles are longer. Competition is stronger. And getting above the white noise is damn near impossible. Sales success today means attracting, investing and powerfully adding value. Attend this session and uncover the 3 MUST have strategies to open more doors, close more sales and be the envy of your competitors!

Sponsored by: Paragon Furniture, LLC

2:15-2:30 pm - Networking Break

2:30-3:30 pm - Interior Integrators 2025: The Future of the Dealer

David Solomon, Managing Principal, Solomon Coyle

David Solomon is the Managing Principal and founder of Solomon Coyle, the leading distribution experts and management consultants to the contract furniture industry. In this role, he divides his time between serving clients, managing the Solomon Coyle team of consultants, and overseeing the firm's research and benchmarking initiatives, peer group management services, staff development programs, and consulting solutions. He founded Solomon Coyle in 2004 to help aligned dealers and manufacturers to develop and implement solutions that drive sustainable profitable growth. David has more than 30 years of industry expertise specializing in strategic planning, business process analysis, change management, sales management, dealer economics, and technology implementation.

Client expectations are putting pressure on the project delivery system, requiring everyone involved, working more effectively together. Innovative Dealers have the opportunity to position themselves as a trusted consultant and strategic partner to their clients, and a valued member of the project team. Learn how new procurement models work, how the Dealer fits into the project team dynamic, and how Dealers can move from being viewed as a vendor to taking an active role in the process. We will also discuss client expectations, project team roles, and expectations, and ways CRE, project managers, A&D and other project team members can leverage Dealer expertise.

3:30-3:45 pm - Networking Break

Brian Basanda

3:45-5:00 pm - A Road Map to Collaborative Business/School District Success

Moderator: Brian Basanda, Brezach Inc.

The final segment of the Symposium will focus on helping shape the sales response to the dramatic changes taking place in school facility procurement. A panel of purchasing officials will share the customer perspective on channel disruption and how it is affecting procurement habits, product delivery and customer engagement. Learn how to respond to the challenges of procurement in today's changing education environment with new sales approaches and discover what specific steps dealers can take to improve their chances for success.

Panel of School District Administrators:

Robert Hauser
Robert Hauser,
Superintendent of Schools,
Bridgehampton Union Free School District
Brian Basanda
Julie Jilek,
Assistant Superintendent/Chief School Business Official,
Northwest Suburban Special Education Organization
Sheila Hammond
Sheila Hammond,
École Salish Secondary School

5:00-6:00 pm - Networking Reception

Sponsored by:

Schoolhouse Products
Lone Star Furnishings, LLC
Staples Business Advantage
Schoolhouse Products
Staples Business Advantage


The Educational Distribution Symposium is open to distributors, suppliers, independent manufacturers' representatives, and service providers.


EDmarket Members - Free
Nonmembers - $75 per person

Media Sponsor: