Building upon its commitment to support and help grow independent appliance retailers’ service departments, Nationwide Marketing Group today announced that it has hired industry veteran Mark Pollitz as the organization’s new director of service.
Throughout his more than 30-year appliance service career, Pollitz has worked for several appliance manufacturers – including Maytag, LG, Electrolux, GE and Samsung – as a technician, account manager, business consultant and product trainer. A former owner of a small appliance sales and service company, he has also held leadership positions at several service companies, including director of service operations, director of field operations and general manager.
“As a kid, I was always taking things apart,” Pollitz recalls. “But it wasn’t until I was hired as a greenhorn technician in 1981 that I was able to learn how to put them back together and make them work. And that’s when I realized what a wonderful industry appliance service is.”
Not only did his first job as an appliance technician spark Pollitz’s interest in machines and how to optimize them, but it also inspired him to become an entrepreneur and launch his own independent service company in 1988.
“Owning my own service company – and then adding on sales, as well, and basically servicing the products of my competitors – was a wonderful opportunity,” Pollitz says. “I learned all the successes of being an independent business owner and also the challenges of what it’s like to sink your heart and soul into a business and have a 70- or 80-hour work week, every week. It wasn’t always easy, but as hard as it was, it was an amazing experience and one that I am eternally grateful for.”
In fact, Pollitz says, the joy he found while owning and operating a service company is what led him to Nationwide Marketing Group. The newly created “Director of Service” role afforded him an opportunity to take what he had learned as both a servicing dealer and a manufacturing representative and use it to help other independent servicers improve their operations.
“The service world is so much more complex than just fixing machines or selling a product,” he explains. “There are so many tentacles and channels and avenues that you have to walk through and manage through to make your service business efficient and effective – and, ultimately, profitable. I’m excited to use what I’ve learned throughout my career to help our servicing members – and, really, servicers across the channel – grow and thrive.”
In addition to his work in the appliance service industry, Pollitz also serves as the national co-chairman of the SkillsUSA Residential & Commercial Appliance Technology, National Technical Committee. The group, which is the world’s largest educational private-industry non-profit organization, relies on its 440,000 volunteer members to help support skilled trades as a viable educational opportunity in the United States. Which is why education and training are such a passion for Pollitz – and something he’ll be focusing on heavily while at Nationwide.
“Acquiring trained technicians is an epidemic, not just for our members but for all independent servicers,” Pollitz says. “Our Service Leaders Network is helping Nationwide’s 900+ servicing dealers leverage the buying power and strength of their membership, and providing value-added, practical and tangible programs and services to our members, including new educational initiatives.”
In addition to expanded educational offerings through the Nationwide Learning Academy, Nationwide’s Service Leaders Network will hold the industry’s first virtual conference dedicated exclusively to appliance dealers with a service department, May 13-14. The event, which is free for all Nationwide Marketing Group Members, will include sessions for owners and managers geared toward efficiencies and profitability, as well as technician training from key vendor partners, including Bosch, Electrolux, Fred’s Academy, GE, Master Samurai Tech, Samsung, Speed Queen and Whirlpool. Registration information will be released soon.