VISTA 2015-2016 registration for North America opened on 12th August. Over 300 participants have already registered within the first two weeks and interest is gathering pace with Round One fast approaching.
Canadian team Babine Truck & Equipment from Prince George, British Columbia won the VISTA North American semi-final competition in 2013. They then headed to Gothenburg, Sweden where they finished 11th out of 32 teams in the world final. The Babine team has also conquered other aftermarket competitions. Clearly this team is doing something right.
Let’s get right to it. What’s the key to creating a strong VISTA team?
Matthew: Commitment is important. If you have a group of people who want to try hard and get better at their job and provide better service for their customers, you’ll have a good team. Everyone has to know each other’s strengths and weaknesses and be able to stay focused under pressure. I’m officially the team leader, but our teamwork is so tight, I don’t have to lead anything.
What are your personal reasons for entering the VISTA competition?
Tyler: For me, it’s about doing the best I can do. That’s all it is. I want to do a good job and that’s what drives me. Just to do my best and try as hard as I can.
Dan: It’s a rare chance to learn how you stack up against other techs doing the same job in other markets, especially since our dealership location is so isolated. It’s interesting to see what––and how well––everyone else is doing.
What would you say to encourage other dealerships that are considering putting a VISTA team together?
Matthew: I’d say, go for it! It’s a great experience. You’re challenged in different areas you normally wouldn’t get to explore. Competing definitely helps you in the long run, no matter whether you place or not. Doing the exams, working through the problems, you learn something new every time.
Tyler: It’s really opened our eyes, being able to tour Volvo headquarters and get a global view of things. It’s good for our dealership because it’s pushed us to stay up to date, to stay on top of our skill set and really push to achieve peak performance.
Dan: I’m sure any dealership will benefit tremendously from the additional training VISTA provides. The more your techs know, the more skilled they’ll be at their jobs. That skill gets passed on to the customer very quickly!
In 2013 Volvo North America sent one team to the VISTA World Final. In 2016, three teams will advance, which means more chances to earn a trip to Sweden. Once again the Babine Truck & Equipment team will be in it to win it, but as we’ve seen, their priorities are in order. Learning is the main reward, followed by the fun of competing and the chance of winning. One thing is certain – they all agree that competing in VISTA is a career experience they’ll never forget.