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On Distribution Talk, we dive into the stories, struggles and solutions from interesting characters who have chosen to make a career in the distribution industry. My goal is to entertain, educate and inspire you through these brief conversations.  Thank you for visiting.  If you like what you hear, come visit us often. -Jason

Jun 30, 2021

It goes without saying that Mike Adelizzi, CEO of American Supply Association, hopes to never again face a test like the COVID-19 pandemic. Still, the crisis thrust distribution into the spotlight; Mike’s not about to let all that attention go to waste. 

Jason chats with this innovative association exec about serving the plumbing and PVF distribution community through advocacy, education, and planning. The pair also discuss D.Next, the organization’s ambitious program for solving supply chain issues and recruiting the brightest talent into industry careers.

“You can’t out-Amazon Amazon. We don’t have the budgets,” Mike laughs. But the obvious assessment doesn’t signal defeat. Instead, the market’s heaviest hitters - including Home Depot - act as catalysts, driving ASA to think more strategically to protect its members and propel the industry forward. “Amazon actually doesn't scare us. We feel we can compete with Amazon. What scares us is what's coming down the pipe,” he says, “what's the next Amazon?”  

While no one could’ve predicted a 15-month worldwide shutdown, ASA does have an excellent track record for spotting impending disturbances within the industry –– and getting proactive. The association has long worked to organize its membership around issues, think: national lobbying, and local grassroots activities like letter writing campaigns and voting strategies. 

The future of association advocacy, however, demands a modern approach. ASA has entered the 21st century with D.Next, their state-of-the-art research and innovation lab at University of Illinois Research Park. D.Next is a big initiative that attracts big thinkers. Mike’s passionate about the program’s recruitment potential and considers it one of his most important acts of advocacy. 

“Younger folks today, they don't want to go to meetings, you know? And that's what charged us years ago to start thinking about, well, what can the association do to support them where they would see value?” Under Mike’s visionary leadership, the answers lie in D.Next’s robust plans for analyzing business intelligence and developing the next-gen of industry solutions. 






Distribution Talk is produced by The Distribution Team, a consulting services firm dedicated to helping wholesale distribution clients remove barriers to profitability, generate wealth and achieve personal goals.   

This episode was edited & mixed by The Creative Impostor Studios.

Special thanks to our sponsor for this episode: INxSQL Distribution Software, integrated distribution ERP software designed for the wholesale and distribution industry.