The McDonald Group, Inc. Institute for Dealer Development


The Executive Program in Machinery Dealer Management

By Walter McDonald, Founder, The Institute for Dealer Development

TWO TRACKS ARE NOW AVAILABLE-- Dealer Management Track and OEM Regional Manager Track

Private Distance-Learning Program with Walter J. McDonald

  • Customized distance learning for the needs of each member of your Equipment Dealership Management Team: Parts, Service, New and Used Equipment Sales, Rentals, Information Technology, Finance and Accounting Managers, Customer Service.
  • Program Benefits for the Dealership:

    • Quantitatively Benchmark Operations against High-Profit Dealers

    • Qualitatively Audit Best Practices in Each Revenue Center

    • Strengthen Machinery Sales, Margins, Deal Visibility and Closure Rates

    • Improve Dealer Profitability, Cash Flow, Return on Assets

    • Sharpen Teamwork, Build Management Problem-Solving Skills

    • Build Momentum Required to Achieve Aggressive Aftermarket Service and Parts Sales, Gross Profit Margin Targets and 100% Absorption Rate.

    • Create a Roadmap for Building a High-performance Dealer Organization

  • Assess Utilization of Information Technology as a Competitive Weapon

Program Highlights...

  • Audit each Revenue Center’s operations against our detailed high-performance dealer BEST PRACTICES checklist.
  • Identify and discuss the critical success factors for each Revenue Center that contribute to enhanced cash flow, profitability and improved market share, especially After-Sales Operations.
  • Develop ACTION PLANS to improve sales, profitability and growth in each Revenue Center. Build performance improvement plans critical to your success.

The 16 module Distance Learning and private, personalized development program designed for machinery distribution executives and managers. A Certificate in Machinery Dealer Development will be awarded upon successful completion of all course and study requirements. Mr. McDonald will work personally with each participant on assignments, discussion sessions and study projects in each module.

2022 Curriculum  - DEALER TRACK

1.  Step One: Establishing Personal Learning Objectives

2. Building the Dealer Development Portfolio of All Dealer Locations
Assessing 10 dealer performance strengths against 10 market attractiveness attributes for each dealer location. An essential first step in understanding the big picture.

3. Importance of Quants
The role of quantitative assessments in building dealer profitability, market share and customer retention. Review critical revenue center management tools and operations performance metrics that enable you to best control the business.

4. Customer Service and Retention
How to build value delivery in every customer interaction. Examine best practices and premiere dealer metrics. Identify performance standards and tools essential to manage customer expectations and maintain high levels of customer retention. Investigate how to best monitor dealer performance, listen to the voice of the customer and how to develop the employee customer retention team.

5. Product Support as a Competitive Weapon
The big differentiator today in machinery distribution is product support. How to determine a competitor’s aftermarket vulnerability. How to leverage this advantage. Discuss how to significantly increase the value delivery in your aftermarket product support business.

6. Parts Operations
Examine best practices and premiere dealer metrics. Examine why Off-Shelf Parts Fill Rate to Service is the single most important performance measurement in a machinery dealership. Discuss how obsolescence impacts parts fill rate and inventory turns. Review best approaches to improve Parts Fill Rate, Parts Warehouse Management, Parts Inventory Management, Parts Business Management and Parts Employee Development

7. Service Operations
Examine dealer best practices and premiere dealer metrics. Project current real cash loss of low current technician productivity.  Identify drivers of individual technician productivity, and shop recovery rate. Discuss benefits of tracking technician efficiency and how to structure standard times in every shop environment. Review best approaches to Service Operation and Work Order Management, Service Supervisory Management, Service Labor Productivity Management, Service Business Management and Service Employee Development.

8. Aftermarket Marketing Tools and Techniques
How to optimize aftermarket market penetration to achieve high levels of Absorption Rate. How to project market size and share for your primary product line. Analytical tools that clearly identify high potential accounts for incremental business. Promotional tools and techniques that yield best results.

9. Personal Hot Topics (Part 1)
Private assistance from your Coach on your personal challenges related to dealer development. Topics could be how to build better relationships with dealer owners or how to improve sales rep demonstration skills.

10. Rentals and Used Machinery Sales and Operations
Examine dealer best practices and premiere dealer metrics. How to Conduct a Rental Market Assessment, utilize a Rental Rate Calculator, establish Rental Revenue and Profit Controls, structure proper Rental Business Policy, and potential for Long Term Rentals.  Create a Used Machinery Market Development Strategy, structure proper Used Machinery Inventory Controls and study the Eight AXIOMS for Used Machinery Success.

11. New Machinery Sales and Sales Management
Examine dealer best practices and premiere dealer metrics. Create a comprehensive Market Development Strategy. Build an effective Key Account Development Strategy. See how team selling with Product Support gives you a strong competitive edge. Discuss best approaches to Machinery Sales Rep Development, Sales Supervision and Sales Management.

12. Key Account Management
See how to best utilize the Key Account Management Profile. Review how to avoid the 10 biggest mistakes in Key Account Management. Learn how to assess customer roles, rating buyer support and degree of influence and getting up to higher levels in the account. See how to assess the prospect’s fear level. And, examine the Key Account Management checklist.

13. Financial Value of Optimizing Dealer Performance
Develop the incremental value of achieving high-profit dealer performance targets in each revenue center. Document where you are today. Project financial value of optimizing dealer performance in Service, Parts, Used Machinery and Rentals based on your current machinery unit sales levels .

14. Personal Hot Topics (Part 2)
Private assistance from your Coach on your personal challenges related to dealer development. A topic could be what are the minimum management information systems a machinery dealer should support.

15. Final Action Plans, Tools and Strategies for Successful Implementation
What are the three to five management actions that must be taken in each area to improve overall dealer performance. Project financial impact of proposed Action Plans. Examine how to ensure successful implementation. Many great plans never get executed because of the rush of day-to-day business. These implementation tools will help ensure your success.

16. Personal Action Plans for Continued Self-Development
In addition to a recommended reading list and future study program, I am available to coach each participant on structuring a year-long self-Development plan. This will be private assistance from your Coach on your personal challenges related to dealer development. A topic could be what are the minimum management information systems a machinery dealer should support. This can either be a small team project or individual special study effort, depending on your wishes.

Required Texts:  8 Volume “Master’s Program in Dealer Management” by Walter J. McDonald. Many of the exercises, readings and program activities are in these essential textbooks. You must have a set in order to participate in this training activity.

Additional Recommended Texts:

  • Collaborative Selling by Tony Alessandra. Used in three Assignments
  • The 4 Disciplines of Execution by McChesney and Covey. Used Major Action Plans

Tuition for DEALER Track

Executive Program in Dealer Management –  Distance Learning with Private Tutoring by  Walter J. McDonald
(Including 8 Required Textbooks)

Tuition for 16 module personalized, private distance learning dealer management training program including the 8 volume Master’s Program in Dealer Management book set by Walter McDonald. US $1,295.00


Tuition for OEM Track 2022 Curriculum

Executive Program in Dealer Management - Distance Learing with Private Tutoring by Walter J. McDonald
(Including 9 Required Textbooks)

Tuition for 16-module personalized, private distance learning OEM management training program including the 8 volume Master’s Program in Dealer Management book set  plus the newly released 507 page  Dealer Development: The OEM Regional (Sales and Product Support) Management Guide  by Walter McDonald,  US $1,495.00.


Click  here to see full OEM Executive Program Curriculum

“The completion of  Walter's dealer management training program will be like adding ten years of experiential knowledge to your middle management team. There will be a significant increase in dealer financial performance when these practices are put into play.”
--Walter Clark, General Manager, C.I. Walker/Whayne Supply

"These are the only independent dealer operations manuals dedicated specifically to the materials handling lift truck industry we are aware of.  Walt has collected over forty years of dealership ‘best practices’ and assembled them into a series of easy-to-follow workbooks.”
--Bill Ryan, former President LiftOne LLC, Industry Advisor

About Your Instructor


Walter McDonald - The McDonald Group, Inc

Walter J. McDonald, CMC, is founder of The McDonald Group, Inc., a private consulting firm focusing on distributor operations improvement, marketing and business strategies, executive education and development. Walter is a highly respected material handling, construction equipment, mining equipment, fire apparatus, machine tool, GPS machine control, forestry equipment, heavy duty truck/trailer industries and industrial equipment dealer management seminar leader. In addition, he has worked on numerous business consulting engagements for manufacturers and distributors helping improve manufacturer distributor relations, distributor operations, market share and profitability. 

Walter has authored and created more than 60 articles, publications and workshop programs. His work is frequently seen in Construction Equipment Distribution, Successful Dealer, The MHEDA Journal and Material Handling Business. He has been a Guest Lecturer at the American Management Association, Humber College (Toronto), Associated Equipment Distributors, Material Handling Equipment Distributors Association, Equipment Manufacturers Institute, and the American Rental Association.  And, he specializes in customized in-company dealer management development workshops .

Walter’s highly acclaimed eight-volume Master’s Program in Dealer Management is now available. Significant discounts available on  individual titles  and  two popular sets .

Since 1975, Walter has conducted over 2,650 management seminars and workshops throughout North America, Europe and the Far East. His construction and forestry equipment industry clients include Caterpillar, Caterpillar Compact Equipment, Trimble/SITECH, Komatsu, Komatsu Indonesia, Volvo CE, CNH, Ditch Witch, Vermeer, Vermeer S.E. Asia, Vermeer Australia, Astec Underground, Ingersoll-Rand, JCB, LBX-Link Belt, Pettibone, Bobcat, Bobcat Europe, Bobcat Far East, Deere CE and Timberjack.

Material handling, heavy duty truck, fire apparatus and industrial equipment dealer management training clients include Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America (MCFA), Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift Europe (MCFE), PON North America, Hyster, Toyota Industrial Truck, Nissan/UniCarriers, Clark Equipment, Kenworth, Peterbilt, Freightliner, Mack Trucks, Volvo Trucks, Thermo-King, Pierce Fire Trucks, E-One Fire Trucks, Kohler Generator, Heil Trailer International, Elgin Sweeper, Schwarze Industries, Karcher Industrial Cleaning Equipment, Jacobsen-Textron and Valmont/Valley Irrigation, as well as numerous independent distributors.

Much of Walter and his team’s dealer management and operations development experience is captured in the McDonald Group Research Report,  The Manufacturer’s Guide to Distributor Development  . Please contact Walter for additional details.

Prior to his professional management-consulting career, Walter held several industrial sales, marketing and general management positions at the senior level including Vice President and General Manager of a $160 million electronics distribution company.

Walter received his Management Consultant Certification (CMC) from the Institute of Management Consultants in New York. He graduated Cum Laude from Louisiana State University, attended M.I.T.'s Sloan School of Management and pursued graduate studies in marketing and finance at the University of Chicago's Graduate School of Business and he is a Special Projects Consultant to the Boston Consulting Group. Walter is a veteran of the United States Navy.

Walter is happy to discuss any aspects of his publications and work with you. Just contact Walter at .