"The way our business is, with so many of our people out in the field, first and foremost we wanted to hold a conference for everybody to meet and get to know each other," said Employing Broker Scott McNally. "We've got all this talent here, so we wanted to bring it together and get new ideas."
The four-year-old company has seen a great deal of growth in its short existence, which Licensed Director for IT and Marketing Nick Owens attributes to its dynamic ability to adjust to constant demands and growth.
"We’re a very agile and adaptable company," Owens said. "We have three times as many people at this conference than we had last year. So we want to get everyone on the same page and identify areas for improvement."
The conference began Friday, July 20, with a look at where the company has been, its timeline and future plans, McNally said. Awards were presented, including recognition of the company's highest-grossing regional sales executive, Marino Andreoli, from Delray Beach, Fla. Andreoli pointed to the recent advancements in POP Yachts' shipping and closing departments as essential developments for the company's current and future success.
"We needed all of that," he said. "Those things have helped me a lot and taken those worries off my plate."
One of the newest members to the POP Yachts team is shipping manager, Robert Tobey, an entrepreneur who came on board in April to head up and revamp the shipping department from a one-man show to a four-person operation by summer's end.
"I want to be a one-stop shop for our clients to go to for anything," said Tobey of the department that is responsible for shipping vessels both domestically and around the world, with Australia being its No. 1 international destination. "And we're building more relationships with other companies ... and building a new relationship and bridging the gap between sales and shipping."
The synergy continued with Saturday's conference sessions that included team-building exercises, identifying areas for improvement and a keynote presentation by Butch Phelps, a management consultant, Toastmasters International trainer and owner of the Muscle Repair Shop, who spoke about emotional purchasing, building trust and developing skilled communication techniques.
"Our confidence is at an all-time high," McNally said at the end of Saturday's sessions. "Every month we set records in every category. We've got a whole new culture now that is busy and upbeat. We've got a lot of new faces and our leads are through the roof."
Sunday's meeting focused on solutions, and in POP Yachts tradition, the days were rounded out with a beach party, a dinner at Marina Jack's and taking in downtown Sarasota's nightlife, where the discussions always turned to boats and opportunities.
"We’ve come a long way," said Nicole Underhill, a licensed regional sales executive from Islamorada, Fla., who has been with POP Yachts since January. "People love this company and they care about the work they’re doing. They like talking to people all over the world, and that’s what they’re passionate about."