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Magazine Articles

With the permission of Snow Business Magazine we hope to release and post articles for you this year on our website, to increase your awareness that this industry is more than just “clearing snow” or “dropping the plow”! There are safety and liability issues that you need to consider in the equation of your selection. Below are two published articles related to this topic.

The Update--SIMA
SIMA * 2011 Peninsula Drive * Erie, PA  16506
Phone: (814) 835-3577 * Fax: (814) 835-0527

Featured in this issue for March 8, 2006...
Build Business Acumen with FranklinCovey
Sponsored by International Salt, Blizzard, and Pro-Tech
 Early Bird Pricing Extended to March 10
Building Business Acumen: Sean Frontz of FranklinCovey
Presented by SIMA

Due to the large interest and request for more time, SIMA has extended the early bird deadline for the Building Business Acumen sessions until March 10, 2006.

Still wondering what its all about? One SIMA member from Canada who attended this session last year explains it best:

"It was the greatest seminar I ever attended. A real eye opener into a lot of things I was doing wrong in my business...I owe a lot of my company success this year to that seminar. That seminar was the start of me going from a landscaper to a businessman."

Sessions will take place as follows:
April 3rd: Albany, New York
April 5th: Fort Wayne, Indiana
April 7th: Minneapolis, MN

Register by March 10th online at www.sima.org to receive early bird rates, or call 814-835-3577.
 Snow Wars 2006: Insurance in a Galaxy Far, Far Away

In the May 2006 issue of Snow Business, readers will have an opportunity to check out an article by a new SIMA member who has extensive experience in two seemingly opposing fields: snow and ice management and insurance. Here's a little primer...

Nancy Sullivan, a SIMA member since November 2005, is a unique case as far as SIMA members go. Not only does she help run Sullivan Contracting and Landscaping with her husband Michael, but she is also a Vice President at a large insurance company in Massachusetts. SIMA asked Nancy a few questions about her experience in both of these diverse fields:

How did you get into snow and ice management?
I was born into the snow and ice business!  In 1948 my father operated an excavation company and for income in the winter season, and to keep his "men" working, we plowed snow for some of the largest employers and most prestigeous companies of Worcester County.  Many of his men were family members that loved the business, and worked hard at the challenge of keeping businesses open and safe!  I dispatched, did all of the bookwork and customer relations. We have had ZERO losses or incidents in 60 years.We are proud of that factor!

How did you get into the insurance industry?
Insurance companies were large employers in Worcester, MA.  My family serviced many of them, and in those days the executives were also serviced as a perk for their own personal driveways in the winter, etc. Once I graduated, many of the vice presidents and presidents suggested to my dad that I enter the insurance industry.  Since then, I have been in the insurance business for 30 years.

From an insurance perspective, what is the best advice you can give to SIMA members who are struggling with insurance?
Find agents that are knowledgeable in contractors insurance.  Be sure they ask you enough questions to provide you with affordable coverage and be sure you are covered.  You want to disclose information to insurers.  If disclosed fully you will be given appropriate coverage in the event that an incident occurs.

How has your knowledge of insurance helped your snow removal business?
My knowledge has helped us to ensure that we have coverage that will cover losses.  Too many contractors don't disclose duties and they think just because they mow lawns that they are also covered for snow.  Not necessarily!

What are some characteristics that insurance companies don't like to see for potential clients?
Loss prevention is important to lower risk exposure. For example, as the owner of a business, are you ensuring that you rotate your drivers so they aren't falling asleep at the wheel? Do you have enough staff to manage blizzards? Are you doing corners correctly to avoid blind spots in parking lots? Loss prevention is big time...And, keeping track of everything you do is your best defense!

If you'd like more information on insurance from Nancy, read her article in the May 2006 issue of Snow Business, the only official publication of SIMA.