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save $440 NOW. 

LAST CHANCE EARLY BIRD PRICING THROUGH SEPT. 5.

Sept. 17-19

 

THE WESTIN LOMBARD
CHICAGO, IL

 
 

about the event

SEPT. 17–19
THE WESTIN LOMBARD
CHICAGO, IL


Take your collision repair shop to the next level Sept. 17–19 by discovering practical, proven strategies and trends from some of the best shop operators in the industry. 

This year's FenderBender Management Conference will have brand new business-building insight and will be more personalized and in-depth than ever before.
 

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20+
Strategy Sessions

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SUPERCHARGED
Networking and Fun
 

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UNLIMITED
Opportunities For Growth

BONUS: When you register this year, you will also be given access to our Facebook Group where you can continue networking and continue the discussion.

 

WHO CAN ATTEND

All collision repair shop decision makers—from owners and managers to estimators and CSRs—no matter the size of the operation.

 

Who should attend

Single- and multiple-location independent and dealership body shop decision makers who are looking to grow and improve their businesses and employees.

AGENDA

Get ready for a life- and business-changing experience. This year’s agenda has more content than ever before, keeping you engaged and energized throughout the conference. You’ll learn effective strategies from successful body shop managers and connect with other operators and managers in the collision repair industry. The conference also features fun networking activities, and a workshop led by four of the brightest minds in the industry.

“Training and getting outside our bubble is important. This is the easiest and most effective conference that I can get my managers to.” - Jesse Jacobson, Vice President of Heppner's Auto Body

 


DAY ONE: MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 17


8:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Attendee Registration & Badge Pickup


12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

OPENING KEYNOTE - Jason Boggs, How I Did It +

Jason Boggs, owner, Boggs Auto Collision Rebuilders

To kick off Day 1 of the 2018 FenderBender Management Conference, FB columnist and shop operator Jason Boggs gives the opening “How I Did It” keynote, the first piece in a series that carries over throughout the event’s FenderBender Talks. The “How I Did It” series is an introspective look at the success stories of some of the industry’s top operators. Boggs’ motivating journey through the ranks of the industry—from 3M service rep to operator of his family’s repair business and student of lean manufacturing, Theory of Constraints and Six Sigma—serves as a powerful message as to the opportunity this field can provide—and a clear pathway for others to follow.

This keynote is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

1:00 PM - 1:30 pm

Networking Break


1:30 PM - 2:15 pm

WORKFLOW Effective Estimating +

Matthew McDonnell, owner, Big Sky Collision

A poor estimating system is the basis for a repair process riddled with issues and delays. Learn the can’t-miss steps to an effective estimating process from a shop owner with a six-day cycle time.

You will learn:

  • The biggest mistakes made during the estimating process and how to avoid them
  • How to create a thorough, accurate estimating process that identifies problems up front and avoids creating delays on the back end

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

TECH Integrating Technology into Your Workflow +

Randy Sattler, collision manager, Rydell Collision Center

Since joining Rydell Collision Center, Randy Sattler has helped the shop consistently grow each year in volume due to a willingness to experiment with creative business models and emerging technology. Learn how your shop can do the same from a forward-thinking industry leader.

You will learn:

  • How to balance unique business methods while keeping relationship building in mind
  • How to identify the technology that could make an impact in your shop—and how to easily implement it into your workflow

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

2:30 PM - 3:15 pm

CUSTOMERS Secrets to Small Market Success +

Mark Probst, owner, Probst Auto Body

Big business doesn’t have to mean a big market. Mark Probst has built a million-dollar business with a loyal customer base and stellar cycle time in a 600-person town.

You will learn:

  • How to look beyond the confines of your market and identify unique market opportunities
  • How to maximize your customer service and marketing to ensure a steady flow of loyal customers

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops

WORKFLOWLEAD FenderBender Talk: Life After John Eagle +

An insider’s guide to the lessons learned and strategies to implement following the industry’s most-publicized case.

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

3:30 PM - 4:15 PM

LEAD How to Gain Your Team’s Respect +

DJ Mitchell, director of operations, Car Guys Automotive

Whether you’re a long-time owner or a new leader in a transition period, becoming the leader your business needs you to be is a constant work in progress. As the young leader of a quickly growing MSO, DJ Mitchell has become adept at getting teams on board and gaining their respect.

You will learn:

  • The secrets to gaining your team’s unconditional trust
  • How to ensure your team will follow you upon implementing new ideas

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

TEAM How to Indoctrinate New Hires Into a Culture +

Kevin Rains, owner, Rains CARSTAR Group

Veteran shop owner Kevin Rains’ business underwent dramatic growth in 2017—requiring him to quickly get new teams on board and engage those new hires into his well established culture. Here’s how he quickly got those employees up to speed.

You will learn:

  • Simple, effective tools to onboarding new employees and making sure they’re a solid fit with your culture
  • A step-by-step approach to easily conveying your culture and ensuring teams are a solid fit

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

4:15 PM - 5:00 PM

Cocktails & Networking Hour +

Take a breather, grab a drink, and go back over notes from your sessions with other shop operators. This is also a great time to seek out the speakers and ask them follow-up questions.


5:00 PM - 6:30 PM

Kickoff Party +

Join us as we kickoff the conference with some fun, food and networking—Chicago-style! If you like to mix a little fun with business, you won't want to miss this party.


 


DAY TWO: TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 18


7:00 AM - 8:00 am

Networking Breakfast


CONFERENCE KEYNOTE: Jeff Butler - Attracting and Retaining Millennials +

Jeff Butler, millennial expert, public speaker

Renowned speaker and millennial expert Jeff Butler will deliver the Day 2 keynote, leading a list of presenters that includes the industry’s top shop operators. Butler’s TEDx appearances have positioned him as a new, authoritative voice on hiring, retaining and leading the younger generation of workers. He has spoken for Fortune 500 companies, and helped businesses across the country with hiring.

Utilizing his own experience as a millennial working for some of the world’s fastest-charging startups and tech companies, Butler will speak to the auto service industry’s talent crisis and what attendees can do to attract millennials into their shops.

This keynote is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

8:00 AM - 8:45 am


9:00 AM - 9:45 AM

TEAM Employee Recruitment +

Ryan Cropper, owner, Able Body Shops

Finding talent is a challenge in any area, but especially so in the limited Alaskan market. That’s why Ryan Cropper has had to get creative with finding and recruiting talent to successfully build a talent pool that matches his multi-million dollar operation.

You will learn:

  • How to think outside the box when it comes to finding talent and crafting a pitch that draws the most talented of job candidates
  • How to identify the characteristics most important to you and then recruit employees that will be a natural fit for your culture

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops

TEAM FenderBender Talk: How I Did It +

Greg Lobsiger

Needing to overhaul his facility, Greg Lobsiger set about a unique and innovative rebuild without a single stall in production. Learn how to grow, expand and innovate without disrupting your workflow or quality.

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

9:45 AM - 10:15 AM

Networking Break


10:15 AM - 11:00 AM

WORKFLOW Inside a Rapid Expansion +

Kevin Rains, owner, Rains CARSTAR Group

When his business grew exponentially in 2017, Kevin Rains had to contend with his shops’ rapid expansion. Learn from Rains on how to expand quickly and smoothly without disrupting your day-to-day work.

You will learn:

  • How to know it’s the right time to expand
  • What you need to know and have in order prior to expansion—and potential hiccups along the way

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

CUSTOMERS Master Insurance Relations—with no DRPs +

Kevin Conner owner, Conner Brothers Collision Centers

With a family-focused business model, Kevin Conner has turned Conner Brothers into the leading shop in its market—all without DRPs. His unique approach to operations and insurance relations allows him to repair vehicles correctly and efficiently without any angst with insurance partners.

You will learn:

  • How to cultivate and grow your relationships with insurance companies without DRPs
  • How to ain business, win customers and grow your business

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops

11:15 AM - 12:00PM

TECH Investing in New Efficiency +

Greg Lobsiger, owner, Loren’s Body Shop

Although many shops have adapted their businesses to keep up with evolving vehicle trends, the investment in new technology is sizable. Before you make the investment, learn from one shop owner how to invest wisely and strategically—and virtually guarantee an ROI.

You will learn:

  • How to identify the equipment and technology your shop needs
  • How to measure and track the ROI on that new technology

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

CUSTOMERS FenderBender Talk: How I Did It - Paul Amato +

Paul Amato, owner, Amato’s Auto Body Inc.

Relying on quality work, customer referrals and an Art Deco–themed facility unlike any other, Paul Amato’s 15,000-square-foot shop manages to pull in 125 cars a month and $12 million in annual revenue, with zero insurance relationships.

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops

12:15 PM - 1:00 Pm

Lunch & Learn


1:00 PM - 1:30 PM

FenderBender Awards Ceremony +

Honoring the best in the collision repair industry, the 11th annual FenderBender Awards recognize outstanding industry professionals in five categories:

• Executive
• Management
• Administrative Support
• Shop Worker
• Wild Card

The FenderBender Awards are sponsored by BASF & Kia


1:45 PM - 2:30 PM

LEAD Art of Coaching +

Jason Boggs, owner, Boggs Auto Collision Rebuilders Inc.

Change is inevitable at this point in the industry, but growth is optional. By taking the approach of coaching your team through change, one veteran shop owners says it will make growth more enjoyable and sustainable.

The coaching aspect has been very rewarding for me and produced results that everyone enjoyed being part of. We all know that change is inevitable, especially at this juncture in our industry, but growth is optional. I believe when we take the approach to coaching our team through change it will make growth more enjoyable and sustainable.

You will learn:

  • How the difference between coaching and teaching and why coaching is essential to being the leader your shop needs
  • Simple tactics to coach even your most stubborn employees to implement a new concept or system

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

WORKFLOW Repeatable Systemization +

DJ Mitchell, director of operations, Car Guys Collision Repair

At 14 locations and growing, DJ Mitchell is at the forefront of his operation’s challenge of quickly implementing proven systems into new shops. But before they can be implemented, you need to ensure those systems are easily repeatable without incident.

You will learn:

  • How to guarantee that the systems and procedures in place in your shop are repeatable and bulletproof
  • A step-by-step approach for creating a systems-oriented shop

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

2:45 PM - 3:30 PM

CUSTOMERS Extreme (and Easy) Marketing +

Matthew McDonnell, owner, Big Sky Collision

As an independent body shop, you have opportunities larger companies are often too big to truly capture—as long as you’re willing to connect with your community.

You will learn:

  • A repeatable guide for becoming your market’s go-to, trusted collision repair shop
  • The next-level marketing tactics that you can easily implement in your shop to drive big returns

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

WORKFLOW FenderBender Talk: How I Did It - True Expansion in a Limited Market +

Ryan Cropper, owner, Able Body Shops

Over the course of his career as a shop owner, Ryan Cropper has grown his business from one small location into four powerhouse shops that produce millions—all in Anchorage, Alaska.

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

3:30 PM - 4:00 PM

Networking Break


4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Roundtable Discussions


5:00 PM - 6:00 pM

Cocktails & Networking Hour +

Take a breather, grab a drink, and go back over notes from your sessions with other shop operators. This is also a great time to seek out the speakers and ask them follow-up questions.


6:00 pM - 8:30 pM

The Big Networking Party +

This is your time to let loose after a long day of learning! We’re taking you offsite for a night of food, fun and supercharged networking with your new friends. There will be a lot of energy and a lot of fun.

The Big Networking Party is sponsored by PPG


 


DAY THREE: WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 19


7:30 AM - 8:30 AM

Networking Breakfast


8:30 AM - 8:45 AM

Conference Jumpstart


9:00 AM - 9:45 AM

TEAM Team Building—Recruiting and Retention +

Jacob Nossaman, owner, Collision Works of Oklahoma

Your biggest asset in business is your people, which is why training and retaining those people should be of utmost importance. Jake Nossaman has grown his business from one location to seven with a purposeful focus on team building and retention. His company has consistently been ranked as one of the top Oklahoma companies to work for and he was twice awarded “Oklahoma’s Most Admired CEOs.”

You will learn:

  • How to create an open-door policy of which your employees will actually take advantage
  • Simple tips and tricks to effectively motivate employees in a number of different ways

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

LEAD Steps to Becoming an Effective Leader +

Louie Sharp, owner, Sharp Auto Body

There’s a world of a difference between being a business owner and a business leader. And for many shop operators, the latter is a difficult role to embody. Learn easy ways to stop putting out fires and instead lead your team to success.

You will learn:

  • How to empower your people to solve problems and stop looking to you to solve them
  • How to set measurable, tangible goals for your shop and then lead your team to achieve those goals

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

9:45 AM - 10:15 AM

Networking Break


10:15 AM - 11:00 AM

TECH How to Set Up Your Shop to Repair Modern Vehicles +

Steve Morris, operations director, Price Collision Centers

In today’s quickly evolving industry, it’s imperative that your shop is equipped and capable of handling the modern, tech-laden vehicles rolling off the assembly line. One shop operator that’s invested in repairing those vehicles since the beginning explains what today’s modern shop should look like.

You will learn:

  • The equipment, tools and training your shop needs to repair modern vehicles
  • How to easily implement these systems and processes into your workflow

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

CUSTOMERS True Customer Connection +

Megan Williams, marketing director, Lefler Collision & Glass Repair Centers

There are several numbers to which Megan Williams would point to prove her position’s worth—most notably her operation’s 7 percent year-over-year increase in annual revenue (which now stands at $10.6 million) since she started just two years ago. But that increase couldn’t occur until William defined the shop’s brand and conformed those the community’s expectations—which started with getting out in the community and initiative genuine conversations.

You will learn:

  • How to create engaging conversations with customers that will help you identify your brand and cement its reputation in the community
  • How to define your customer’s ideal brand and then leverage technology to reach those customers online

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

11:15 AM - 12:00 PM

WORKFLOW Keys to Increased Efficiency for Maximum Profitability +

Richard Fish, owner, Fix Auto Tustin

A no-nonsense guide to maximizing margins, pushing efficiency and setting your business up for sustained success.

You will learn:

  • How to measure productivity and efficiency and how to make business decisions based on those two critical KPIs
  • How to fix a drop in efficiency and identify the root cause of the issue

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

WORKFLOW FenderBender Talk: Panel - Insurance Reimbursement +

Bob McSherry, owner, North Haven Auto Body

Elissa Larremore, owner, CBS 1 Collision

As certain repair procedures, such as those dictated by the OEM and pre- and post-repair scans, become more prevalent, some shops have experienced challenges when it comes to insurance reimbursement. Two shop operators known for their ability to work with insurers break down their tactics.

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

12:15 PM - 1:00 PM

Networking Lunch & Sponsor Giveaway


WORKFLOW Break Through Your Bottlenecks +

Attendees will have their choice of four renowned industry experts—Jason Boggs, Matthew McDonnell, Kevin Rains and Randy Sattler—to help them identify their businesses’ largest bottlenecks and formulate processes and action plans to correct these issues.

“Break Through Your Bottlenecks” is a two-hour, hands-on, in-depth workshop that will wrap up the FenderBender Management Conference and provide tangible tools to implement the lessons learned from the previous three days.

You will learn:

  • The top marketing strategies and how to fix lackluster marketing campaigns that don’t yield a significant return from Matthew McDonnell
  • How to become a more effective leader that can coach and effectively motivate your employees to success from Jason Boggs
  • How to recruit and retain a team of employees that not only buys into your culture, but also helps promote it from Kevin Rains
  • How to maximize your facility, identify its constraints and implement a workflow system that will have more work flowing through your shop from Randy Sattler

This session is great for:

  • Independent shops
  • Dealership body shops
  • MSOs

1:15 PM - 3:15 PM


3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

Cocktails & Networking Hour +

It’s been an action-packed three days. You’ve learned valuable insights and made new connections. Sit back, relax, and enjoy a drink before you head home to implement these strategies in your shop.


Happenings

In addition to the 20+ strategy sessions, there will be an unlimited number of opportunities to kick back and connect with other shop operators (including the speakers). Here are some core events that will get you started.

 

PRE-CONFERENCE MEET & GREET
SEPTEMBER 16, 6:30 PM–8:30 PM

If you arrive early and have some free time Sunday evening, come say hello to the FenderBender team. We’ll be hanging out in the bar area of Harry Caray’s at the conference hotel.
 

KICKOFF PARTY
SEPTEMBER 17, 5:00 PM–6:30 PM

Join us as we kickoff the conference with some fun, food and networking—Chicago-style! If you like to mix a little fun with business, you won't want to miss this party.

FENDERBENDER AWARDS CEREMONY
SEPTEMBER 18, 1:00 PM - 1:30 PM

Honoring the best in the collision repair industry, the 11th annual FenderBender Awards recognize outstanding industry professionals in five categories:
• Executive
• Management
• Administrative Support
• Shop Worker
• Wild Card

The FenderBender Awards are sponsored by BASF & Kia

 

THE BIG NETWORKING PARTY
SEPTEMBER 18, 6:00 PM–8:30 PM

This is your time to let loose after a long day of learning, courtesy of PPG. We'll celebrate FenderBender's 20th anniversary with brewery tours, Chicago's best food trucks, drinks, games and more at Alter Brewing Company!

The Big Networking Party is sponsored by PPG

 

COCKTAIL & NETWORKING HOURS
SEPTEMBER 17–19, TIMES VARY

Take a breather, grab a drink, and go back over notes from your sessions with other shop operators. This is also a great time to seek out the speakers and ask them follow-up questions. Here's to the next step!

 

PRESENTATION THEATER
SEPTEMBER 17-19, TIMES VARY

Located right in the Networking Plaza, you'll have the opportunity to see, first-hand, some of the latest and greatest in products and services in action. This year lineup includes:

Speakers

 

Learn collision repair strategies directly from real shop operators who have achieved real success in this industry. More like mentors than speakers, they are part of the entire event, so you can not only learn from them, but also connect with them one-on-one. 

 
 

register

Register today to get the best deal. Some tickets close to selling out.

ALL ACCESS
$1,399 $949

  • All conference sessions
  • Kickoff and Awards Party
  • Big Networking Party
  • Meals throughout the event
  • Online community for more discussion
  • Videos of every session
GENERAL ADMISSION
$1,224 $824
  • All conference sessions
  • Kickoff and Awards Party
  • Big Networking Party
  • Meals throughout the event
  • Online community for more discussion

SPOUSE PASS
$229

  • Kickoff and Awards Party
  • Big Networking Party
 

SPONSORS

 
 

 

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hotel information

The conference will take place at the 4-star Westin Lombard Yorktown Center hotel. We have a limited number of discounted rooms, so register early and reserve your room for the biggest savings. Rooms will sell out.

 

 
 



The Westin Lombard
70 Yorktown Shopping Center
Lombard, IL 60148
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