The Automotive Industries Association of Canada played host at Mohawk College in Hamilton, Ontario, for the annual Lindertech North training event and trade show in April.
The event, which for the last few years has attracted mostly local technicians, this year was widely promoted as a broad-based event for serious and experienced service providers. In fact, the numbers from this year’s edition show an obvious focus on the service provider. Out of a total attendance of 168, there were a 111 service provider personnel representing some 80 locations. According to the numbers, the remaining 57 were from manufacturers, trainers/instructors, and other affiliated industry personnel.
Previously, the event had been hosted by Toronto jobber Cochrane Automotive. It was taken over by AIA this year.
“The event is always well received, but it takes a lot of resources, and so [they were] struggling with all of the logistics,” says Deborah Moynes-Keshen, AIA Canada’s vice-president. “We were looking this year to provide some outreach and build on the foundations already established.”
Moynes-Keshen says the overall event was a success, despite falling shy of projected attendance numbers. “The event went really well, with lots of younger technicians in attendance from all across the country, and not just in the local market,” she says. “Training is crucial for the industry, and we really need this kind of event. It’s not just about the networking; it’s about learning something that can really be taken away from the sessions.” In fact, that focus on take-away knowledge was prominent throughout the survey results, with comments like, “Best yet! I am taking away information I will use every day,” “Good presentation, information I can use in the real world,” and “No nonsense, a lot of good information for Ford Diesel repair/service, lots of useful information,” being par for the course.
With this year’s edition now behind them, Moynes-Keshen says the team is already hard at work planning for next year’s event. “We learned a lot for this year, and in looking through the survey responses, there was some very positive feedback,” she says. “For next year, we’re looking at a few different dates in April, and also trying to communicate with technicians to find out what the best time for them is, to make this kind of commitment away from the shop. It’s a big chunk of time,” she says.
While a location has not yet been established, Moyes-Keshen says Hamilton, Guelph, and London are all possible candidates, and also hints that a western Canadian version of the show could also make its debut.
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