Following one of the most outstanding years in recent history, John Deere rewarded exceptional service from the top performers in their relevant sectors
Customers do not expect products to be perfect, but they do expect manufacturers to fix things quickly when they break down. A bold statement, and a challenging one to live by, but John Deere lives and breathes by ensuring they can deliver the best parts and aftermarkets support services to their customers. The John Deere Africa Middle East branch invests extensively in parts- and aftermarket support and development to live by our promises, and to assist our customers in the shortest possible time. Likewise have our dealer outlets equipped themselves with experts in their parts and aftermarket departments. In order to ensure these investments are challenged and reviewed, John Deere test these experts on a yearly in order to measure their knowledge capabilities and level of expertise in their field.
We reveal and reward these experts at our yearly John Deere Awards Ceremony. This awards ceremony is a platform for John Deere to honor those that looks after the green and yellow equipment, but also a way to reveal to our customer that we do not stand still, we believe in growing and continually improving our customer facing specialist. The most important key players in the Agricultural and Construction Sectors were invited to partake in the glamorous and prestigious annual Dealer Awards Ceremony.
John Deere AME Dealers and support staff, including technical experts, sales managers, parts managers expert parts personnel and financial specialists all play an integral role in the success that John Deere AME has experienced in its region. In an effort to thank the dealers as well as to reward exceptional service, John Deere identifi ed the top performers in the relevant sectors who contributed to one of the most outstanding financial years in the recent history of John Deere.
The masquerade ball-themed event took place at the Radisson Hotel and Convention center in Kempton Park on 11 November 2022. Jaco Beyers, Managing Director of John Deere, thanked every attendee for their utmost support and service towards John Deere and its Customers by thinking out of the box in a very challenging year.
“I want to salute you all. If we look at all the challenges we faced: challenges with logistics, computer chips and parts that we had to fly in. But through it all, all of you pulled together, all of you supported the customer: the farmer. It was a team who came together, and tonight we are going to celebrate great teams, but also great individuals.”
Beyers said as part of his opening remarks. Janalize van Buuren, Region 1 Aftermarket and Customer Support Director, thanked each individual in parts and aftersales, for being the frontline ambassadors of the customer experience.
John Deere AME Aftermarket Sales Manager, Glenys Millingham, presented the awards in the Aftersales Division, which entailed four different categories, with two of the awards being presented in 2022 for the very first time. The Parts Sales Branch of the Year award was one of the new initiatives this year. The competition objectives included growth in total sales, alternative parts sales and also hinged upon healthy parts order ratios and the overall evaluation of a branch by the area managers on aspects such as facilities, parts availability as well as marketing initiatives. The very first winner of this award was AFGRI Polokwane.
“It was a team who came together, and tonight we are going to celebrate great teams, but also great individuals.”
Alternative parts are John Deere endorsed parts for out of warranty machines, and this year, a competition was launched specifi cally for dealer parts sales representatives for driving alternative part retail sales. Bati van Aardt from Settlers Service Station won the Alternative Parts Sales Competition. A special award was given on the evening to Jaco Wessels, who started his career in parts as a parts clerk in 1994 and worked his way up and has been the Parts Manager at the AFGRI Marquard branch for the last 21 years. Jaco was recognized for his parts expertise by winning the parts expert of the year competition for four consecutive years, by being included in the Parts Expert Wall of Fame.
Millingham said: “I want to commend you for your wealth of parts knowledge. You are really a role model to all of us. Thank you for your contribution to our parts world, as well as for being our brand ambassador.” The award for Parts Expert of the Year is a very popular competition, with 138 entries this year. The competition entailed testing of the participants’ knowledge in three different rounds and was also expanded to include a practical section on specifi cally the 8R and 6M tractors, as well as the S-series combine and the M-series self-propelled sprayers.
The prestigious award went to Morne Cloete from AFGRI Polokwane whose elation was visible after receiving the award: “For me it’s truly a proud moment that I did not expect, but it just goes to show that hard work pays off, said Morne”. Runner up Johannes Haefele, from AFGRI Frankfort, said that the competition means a lot to him.
“Competing against the best of the best, is truly something. There is no other company in the world that offers this level of competition to the guys who work with parts. I am immensely proud to be able to enjoy this evening, but I also enjoyed the competition that led up to it.”
Third place winner Deon Britz from AFGRI Malmesbury said that it was great to be able to position yourself by means of this competition, to see how you measure up in the business.
“You have to enrich yourself when partaking in a competition such as this one by doing every course possible online, as well as by being alert and by looking at things differently,” said Britz. Andre van den Berg, AFGRI North Group Parts Sales Manager, received a special mention by Glenys Millingham, who thanked him and commended his leadership in the AFGRI Group – who palmed in most of the awards on the evening.
“We want to acknowledge your leadership – as the team is just as strong as their leader. Millingham said. It was an evening of glamour, entertainment, good food and good company all to celebrate and thank the best in the industry.