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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 26, 2019

“If you live by that example, those around you will do the same and the more people live that philosophy, the stronger your team becomes. And the stronger the team is, the stronger your business becomes.” ~Cameron Overacker

When it comes to the family business, there’s the clan you’re born into and the people that you surround yourself with. Jason talks with Cameron Overacker, president of Canadian flooring distributor Primco, to learn how DiSC assessment has helped his company get the very best from both.

It’s not easy to step into a family business. But, as Cam points out, many of the challenges that second or third generation leaders face come from self-doubt rather than external forces. “You always felt like you were being measured...because you were in the family business. Everybody expected you to be perfect.”

In truth, however, Cam says that he was probably harder on himself than anyone within the company. “That’s not the way most people were thinking [about you]. And those that were probably didn’t have good intentions for the relationship they had with you anyway.”

Still, he didn’t take the easy road back into his father’s company. He credits manual labor work for the oil and gas pipelines as well as the year he spent back-packing around the South Pacific for providing invaluable life lessons. The years he spent outside of Primco helped him develop his leadership style.

“Different people mature at different ages,” he says. And life experience has a lot to do with what someone brings to their role. “I don’t have a post-secondary degree. My father quit school at grade eleven yet he was very successful in setting up this company.”

Cam built upon his father’s success by facing challenges with honesty and humility. “The biggest thing is to surround yourself with good people and ensure that those people have your back and you have their backs.” But it can be tricky blending old-guard employees, those that have the experience in years, with fresh hires.

An executive coach has helped him better utilize the unique talents of each group by asking him to evaluate his own behaviors first. DiSC assessment helped Cam recognize his strengths and weaknesses and the effect they had on Primco’s culture. The exercise had such a profound effect on him that now everyone in the organization, not just the sales team, takes the assessment.

The DiSC profile doesn’t just highlight weaknesses. The questionnaire also helps participants understand how their skill set fits within the team dynamic and to appreciate the unique contributions of their fellow employees. “Always be humble and willing to learn from anybody and everybody, at any level of an organization,” Cam says. It’s a strategy that’s worked well for Primco.


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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.  

Edited & mixed by The Creative Impostor Studios.

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