Racing to Connect: WIN Conference 2018
The Women’s Industry Network (WIN) held its annual Educational Conference earlier this month in Indianapolis: Racing to Connect. WIN is dedicated to encouraging, developing, and cultivating opportunities to attract women to collision repair.
Over the span of three days, 200+ conference attendees from across the country engaged with a strong lineup of relevant industry speakers, while networking with fellow women (and a few men). We took a minute to chat with some of our team members who attended the conference and get their perspective.
The conference kicked off with Dr. Eric Goldstein from the Paul Hertz Group talking about “PRINT personality profiles.” This discussion focused on how to better understand our own and others’ behavior by looking at what drives each of our beliefs, thoughts, emotions, and actions along with exploring the things that trigger us to not act as our best selves.
Megan Gummer, Project Manager for National Sales at, said Dr. Goldstein was her favorite part of the conference because he provided deeper insight into what makes her co-workers, vendor partners, customers, and even herself tick.
For many women, the opportunity to network with other women of the industry was the most valuable part of the conference.
“I was able to meet so many wonderful strong women and realize they are experiencing or have experienced the same road blocks I am. I learned a lot by listening to their challenges and hearing what they are doing to resolve them,” said Charlotte Land, Operations Manager in Texas.
Another crowd favorite was keynote speaker, Dr. Lois Frankel, who delivered an empowering message titled “Leadership is a Woman’s Art.” She addressed the question of why women should pursue leadership and why now is the perfect time.
Many women were recognized for their passion and dedication to the industry at the Tuesday evening Gala. WIN introduced their scholarship winners, many of whom were attending the conference. Also announced were the Most Influential Women award winners, women who have enriched the collision industry with their leadership, vision, and commitment to excellence. Michelle Sullivan, Regional VP of Sales for our Southeast Region, was announced as the 2018-19 WIN Chair by the 2017-18 Chair, Petra Schroeder.
Michelle is excited about the many opportunities this role will provide her. Specifically, she is looking forward to offering more benefits to WIN members and sponsors.
“We piloted our regional networks in 2017 and there will be more opportunities in 2018. This gives us networking opportunities outside of the annual conference in key markets around the country,” she said.
One of the challenges Michelle sees within the industry is the difficulty of recruiting and retaining talent, both of which she believes the WIN conference helps resolve.
“I have heard from people that were considering leaving the industry and attending the WIN annual conference changed their perspective.”
Throughout the years, WIN has continued to grow and include members from every segment of the collision repair industry. As they strive to support and attract more women to the industry, the annual WIN Educational Conference is vital to this mission.
“WIN gives everyone, men and women, a chance to come together and see how far the industry has progressed. It is important because for our field to grow and improve, we have to embrace and encourage all the talented professionals out there,” said FinishMaster Marketing Assistant, Tori Severyn.
For more information about WIN, visit www.womensindustrynetwork.com.