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Mother Deere has been doing this for years. In 99 I worked for a dealership that was closed down with influence from the "Company". In 2002 it happened again. We were told that there is getting to be less small farmers and more larger ones. The trend was to follow suit with the amount of dealerships. The dealership I now work at has bought another store and is rumored to be looking at others.

I guess this is progress.
As was said, eat or be eaten
 

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Quote:Today's dealers are only interested in sharing their time as long as someone comes in with a fat wallet.


You hit that one on the head!! I have heard this quote from within the store, "Who's paying the bills?", meaning the small farmer will be negleted and large ones catered. It's all about $$$ and not friendliness or anything else.

Sad!
 

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8820, you are so right. I really valued the time spent hanging around the implement houses back in the 1970's, actually looking over the combines, buying manuals, collecting some free brochures and of course, talking about combines. I was certainly way more interested in combines than a lot of other things most teenage girls liked. While my peers wanted to spend endless hours at the malls, I lived for the weekend and a short trip just outside the core of the Metroplex, where I could find one of then many farm equipment dealers, most of whom which welcomed my visits and helped goad my growing interest.

Now think about it. A 16 year old girl entering a John Deere, Allis-Chalmers or Massey-Ferguson house! Did I miss the boutique or what!?
Well, I certainly was there on purpose, but thinking back, I sure looked like anything BUT a customer!
Still, I had no problem walking straight up to the counter, getting someone's attention and asking lots of questions about their combines. I usually ended up on the lot within minutes with either a knowledgeable salesman, service foreman or the dealer himself. I learned as much about combines within a year or so, as they knew! Later, it showed because I could hold high-level conversations with them about not only their own brand of combines, but comparisons to the "competition" as well.

The bottom line is that those old-time dealers were not just a bunch of friendly, amiable good old boys. They had essentially also became my mentors in a relatively new, but blooming hobby for me. All of them knew and understood how I wanted to be a professional custom harvester. I'll bet I was the only kid in a whole school of some 2,300 who ever thought of tht one! I can still remember at least two times coming into those stores and having one of the salesmen or the dealer direct me to just who I wanted to see the most--a real custom harvester--who had also just dropped by for a visit. Hey, living in the confines of a large city, just getting to see the occasionall combines was a real treat, equated perhaps to going to a live football or baseball game. Meeting a custom harvester, was as great a privelege as meeting a pro team player to some people, too!


Yes, indeed, those were the days! I have many fond memories to hold onto for the ret of my life, even if I never did achieve the goal of becoming a professional custom harvester. I still love combines and learn what I can of them, although dealers who handle them are so far and few between. The dealers of the past helped keep my dreams alive, though, and I'll tell you all, I don't regret one minute of ever spending all those hours alone in my room, reading and studying the stacks of collected manuals and literature. It was a good hobby, kept me off the streets, directed my interests and goals in a positive way. I never even gave a thought to drugs or stealing or even getting in trouble with a boy.
Nowadays I can also pass along that knowledge, now much of it history, but learning about the heritage of combines is important, too.

In the past 20 years, especially the last 13 or so, dealers have gone under for just the reasons stated above. Maybe we can't stop the wheels of progress, but our salesmen, knowledgeable parts people, shop/service personnel and above all, the dealer himself, need to stay on our level and again, show interest and concern for the people entering the store, whether they are men or women or young boys or girls. You never know just whom that little kid will become some day.
 
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