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Exclusive: Hebdon sets Cemco stall out

David Hebdon, md of builders merchant John Nicholls, opened the Cemco lightside conference with a look at what the group has done in the past year and why it was important to hold the event.

What I wanted to say to the audience is that yes, we know the economic times we have been through have been bad but the worst of it is behind us know. We can now get our heads down and get on with things,” he told buildersmerchantsjournal.net afterwards.

In the past year Cemco has refocused on its role as a members’ organisation, “run by members, for members” and Hebdon believes this is what works best for the merchants and the suppliers.

“There is now a major opportunity for us all to jump forwards by thinking in a different way – outside the box if you like – about how we work together.”

The group also went through some operational changes in the last year, with the board focusing purely on strategy and an operations group taking that strategy, looking at its feasibility and communicating it to the membership.

“The pace of change has picked up and those companies that are prepared and can react fast and change fast where necessary will be the ones that succeed. The ones that aren’t fast enough may not be around much longer.”

Cemco have also moved on in terms of information technology, with the intranet site now giving all members both an individual and group view of performance against targets on deals. “All members can see where they are in terms of the bigger picture; it’s a measurable indicator of performance.”

About Fiona Russell-Horne

Group Managing Editor across the BMJ portfolio.

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