With the new car audio season upon us, we had our first writers’ meeting of 2016 at our local office. During the meeting, my daughter brought me an old envelope that I had stored on my desk. It had a large pack of “iron-on patches” in it. I admit I had forgotten about these. They were Team Gates patches; I opened the envelope and found the “Welcome to Team Gates” letter. It made me remember this amazing lady and her co-pilot called “Cowboy.”
I met Alma in 2006 on her farewell tour, and she was a fantastic lady. She was a multiple world champion in all sanctioning bodies in SQ and SPL. She had appeared on more television spots, including Ripley’s Believe It or Not, CD covers, and manufacturer’s marketing material than any other competitor in history. And she was incredibly humble…
She had a contagious love for our industry, and we could never ask for a better ambassador. The manufacturer JBL sponsored her farewell tour, and she had stopped in two cities in British Columbia, Canada. I spent six days with her, and over a few beers, listened to her stories about her journey in our industry. She genuinely loved her time in the “car audio” culture. It was an absolute pleasure getting to know her, but besides her accomplishments, she wanted to spread an idea for our industry called “Team Gates.” This is taken directly from the “Welcome to Team Gates” letter ( I will add a copy to this blog).
“The Team Gates decal is more than just a logo. It is a banner of pride, promotion, and respect for others.”
- Promoted your products
- Promote your organization(s)
- Promote the Industry
- NO PRODUCT BASHING
- Make a conscious effort to operate your system in a non-obtrusive manner.
- Respect the rights of others
- Vehicle open at shows
- Willingness to talk to people
- Willingness to help others
- Have fun
I also enjoyed attending MERA last year in Dallas, Texas, where I participated in a marketing seminar (I am sorry, I do not remember the instructor). The mission statement #4 for Team Gates was being discussed.
The gentleman teaching the course asked everyone in the room, “What are you doing to promote the industry?”. Not “What are you doing to promoted your business/self.” This hit home for me. The internet is an amazing invention which is filled with self-promotion of ourselves or our businesses. But not with Alma; she always promoted our “car audio culture.” She represented “us.”
I admit I had forgotten about Alma and Team Gates, my career and family seem to have taken over my life, but we are all busy. Then by chance, my one-year-old daughter was “exploring” my desk when my back was turned and handed me my “Welcome to Team Gates” letter.
Ask yourself, “What are you doing to promote the industry”? I started this blog shortly after the training at MERA. But then I remembered Alma; I admit by chance, she never talked to me about market trends, margins, niche markets, or competitor’s products. She just took the time to talk to me about our industry. Please take the time to “google” Alma Gate; I couldn’t believe the amount of press coverage and videos dedicated to her. Let’s try and keep the ideals of “Team Gates” going.
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