President's note: Let’s look forward together!

Online since 08-03-2021
The year 2020 was a year we will never forget! The impact on the business was not so big overall, but the impact on our lives has been immense.
If somebody had predicted the world would be in lockdown for more than one year, we would not have believed him or her! Today, most of our lives are affected by the pandemic in one way or another. 

We have seen our way of life and work change overnight and while we first thought it would be for a short period of time, we now realise it will be there for the long run. However, the restrictions also made changes possible that otherwise would have taken years. In the 90’s, our way of working changed in a decade because of the mobile telephone and the Internet. And now, teleconferencing has managed to change our way of working in less than a year! 

We now realise more than ever, why it is important to meet people face to face. For years, we have been looking at the number of exhibitions and wondered ‘why so many…’ Today we see that our customers have no problem in keeping up with new developments in the market. Sales continue and all information can be found online. But we found that the most important part of exhibitions is communication. Knowing what is going on in the business and what the ideas of customers, dealers, advisors and manufacturers are. 

What does this mean for the future? We have seen new initiatives like online exhibitions where we have to evaluate what the potential is. We recently saw one major exhibition being postponed for almost four months while another is still scheduled for the third quarter of this year in the expectation that this will be possible. And even if customers will want to come. Big manufacturers hesitate on what to do. Some cancel participation here in Europe but join exhibitions in other parts of the world. 

We have to learn to live with the consequences of viruses being spread around the globe very easily. My expectation is that we will not get back to the situation of pre-COV¬ID-19. We have to develop platforms where the industry can communicate, learn and work. Where in an increasing individualistic world, we can fill the need to come together, digital and/or physical. 

We have been talking about telematics on machines for many years, we deliver machines that take over decisions in the field, the next big thing is autonomous machines. These are the developments we project to our customers now. We have to start looking in the mirror and project what this means for our organisations and our members. Not by looking back and trying to hold on, but by looking forward and by creating new opportunities. 

And that is exactly what CLIMMAR has been and always will be about! We will continue to develop strategies, position papers, surveys and lobby activities as a professional (lobby) organisation to represent European agricultural and garden machinery dealers. Because it is not the strongest, nor the most intelligent of the species who survive, it is those who are most adaptable to change (by Charles Darwin). 

Please have a look at what CLIMMAR is doing and maybe we can cooperate and work on it together... 

Let’s look forward together! 

Yours sincerely, 
Erik Hogervorst
President of CLIMMAR