805 E. Howard St. Pontiac, IL 61764 Phone: 815-842-1149 Pontiac
29987 N. 300 East Rd. Streator, IL 61364 815-673-4320 Streator
1501 5th St. Lacon, IL 61540 309-246-2645 Lacon
BUILDING UNIQUE, LASTING CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIPS Why I Love Working at the Dealership
I ’m thankful to be where I am. Very, very thankful. Sure, I have my days of frustration on the job just like anyone, but I am convinced there are not many jobs that provide the variety of activity and personal relationships that I experience. From customers I’ve known for years to a homeowner who’s never owned a John Deere before, each day brings a set of fresh faces and different and interesting personalities that all have various reasons for coming to the store. One minute you’ll be selling a small lawn mower, and the next you’ll turn around and sell a $400,000 4WD tractor. But beyond the variety of my job, I take a lot of satisfaction in the long-lasting relationships we form with the people we serve. The repeat customers we have, and the mutual trust we share as we do business, make up one of the two greatest parts about what I do for a living. I get to deal with down-to-earth Midwestern homeowners — multi- generational farming operations. Many who have dealt with my dad and grandfather. How many people are fortunate enough to say that today? Then (and I’ll admit I’m biased here) to be able to live in the best place in the world to raise corn and soybeans and to sell the best products to do it with? Yep … I’m truly blessed. Growing up, I had little interest in being a part of the Sauder Implement. As a kid, I watched my dad put in those long hours and Saturdays and thought, “No way.” In high school and college, I’d come up to the store and wash combines, plant trees (the windbreak I thought was ridiculous as I planted it in the early to mid-‘90s, I now really appreciate!), deliver mowers, then leave as soon as I could. I never saw myself doing this for a living. I’d get a degree, marry my high school sweetheart, get a job, and figure it out. Out of college, I did corporate insurance life for a few years as my wife and I lived in Normal. It was a comfortable life, paid decently, with no Saturdays and no stress, but on Sunday nights, I had a sense of dread. I was bored out of my mind. It just wasn’t for me. I saw my future when I looked at co-workers in their 40s and knew I had to get out of there. I
wanted to get into sales and had a few options I was considering. Once, while talking with my dad, he said, “Dick Nevin (a long-time salesman) is going to retire soon. If there was ever a time to give the John Deere
Zack, his wife Caesy, and their children Luke, Shea, and Reese
business a shot, it would be now.” Then he followed up with, “But I’d be careful, it’s awful tough right now.” Not exactly a ringing endorsement from your old man to switch careers! But in my mid-20s with no kids, I figured if I didn’t try it now, I’d always wonder “What if?” Eighteen years later, here I am. I n the top paragraph, I mentioned two great parts of what I do for a living, customers being one. The other, and probably the most important for me, is the quality people I get to work with every day. No business succeeds without quality people making it happen. And folks, I work with some Grade A, top-of-the-line folks each day. Absolute top-shelf. As we celebrate 15 years as KSR this July, I also marvel at how our partnership has flourished. It’s quality partners who make that happen. I’m humbled to be a part of an organization where leadership is in the trenches every day, in touch with our customers and employees, personally maintaining those relationships that span decades. There are not many John Deere groups left today with hands-on ownership active at the ground level. As for me, being front and center in the store every day is my way to connect with the two things I enjoy the most about my job: my customers and my co-workers.
Yep, it’s safe to say I’m glad I “gave the John Deere business a shot” 18 years ago.
–Zack Sauder ksrequipment.com | P1
May - June 2018
3 CAMPING TIPS For Your Best Adventure Yet
with a few ready-made meals and some nonperishable items. Dutch oven meals and hot dogs roasted over the campfire are great options, and snacks such as trail mix and fruit are easy to store. Think about the meals you normally cook at home, then decide which are adaptable for the campsite. Once you’ve decided on the meals — which could be a fun opportunity for the kids to get involved in the preparation — make a list and head to the grocery store. As you pack, make sure you have proper storage options for perishable and nonperishable items. If bears are a concern, think ahead about how you’ll safely store your food. PLAN ACTIVITIES — AND A FEW BACKUPS If it rains during the trip, don’t let the weather ruin your whole weekend. You may have to save fishing and hiking for another day, but there are still some activities you can enjoy in a sheltered area or a cozy tent. Bring along a few indoor activities, such as a deck of cards or games like Boggle, which require little equipment and can easily be stored in a backpack. To keep kids engaged outside, bring some picture books listing the plants and animals native to the area where you’re camping. You could even use the picture books to set up a nature scavenger hunt along a trail, which is a great way to motivate reluctant hikers. A few games can prevent the most dreaded words a parent will ever hear: “I’m bored.” What Our Customers Are Saying
Camping season is upon us. We all like to enjoy the scenery and adventure of the great outdoors with our families, but sometimes “roughing it” can be, well, rough. Luckily, a little prep goes a long way and can make camping more enjoyable for everyone. These three simple tips will let you spend more time soaking in the natural beauty around you and less time stressing about who brought the trail mix. DO YOUR RESEARCH Triple-checking your packing list won’t do you much good if you arrive at your destination and find it’s lacking some of the necessities you were counting on, such as water or restrooms. Campsites offer different amenities, and some can be quite meager. With a little research, you can find a spot that fits your family’s needs. Don’t want to pack in all your water? Find a site that has a pump. Are you bringing your dog? Look for a site that’s pet-friendly. Prefer a cabin or yurt over pitching a tent? Plenty of locations have these options. Most U.S. Forest Service websites and state and national park resources include these details. By doing your homework, you can find and reserve the place that fits your priorities. PLAN A SIMPLE, TASTY MENU Nothing ends a camping trip as quickly as realizing you didn’t bring enough food. To avoid this, plan your menu Jerry Kaisner Employee Highlight:
Mike, his wife Jill, and their daughters Haidyn and Harper
Jerry Kaisner is the service manager at Pontiac. He started here as a service technician in 1984 and became service manager in 1996.
Jerry, his wife Donna, and their family
Jerry resides in Fairbury with his
wife Donna. They have four children and 18 grandchildren. Aside from spending time with his family, Jerry loves camping, woodworking, and hunting. Jerry is one of the most positive and influential people. He is always willing to lend a helping hand at the drop of a hat. Jerry has always exemplified what it means to be a great leader, husband, father, grandfather, friend, brother, brother in Christ, and co-worker. We can’t thank him enough for all he has done for KSR as a whole.
“My dad worked for Delbert Gardner back in the 1950s, so we’ve been involved with Deere and the Pontiac store since then. The service and parts departments are phenomenal. Jerry, Joe, and their crews always do a great job. John just bent over backwards for me with the last tractor deal. My girls come in all the time with me, and they treat us like family. I’ve been a customer for 30 years already and have always had a great experience with everyone here at KSR Equipment.” –Mike Francis
P2 | ksrequipment.com
TOP 10 REASONS TO BUY FROM KSR There’s been a lot of auction activity over the past 18 months, and we’ve seen many items that are selling for more than current retail asking prices sitting on dealer lots. Most auctions are pulling in online bidders, which adds to the total number of potential buyers and increases the chance for the price to rise. That’s good for sellers and auctioneers, but it generally doesn’t translate into a “killer deal” for the buyer. Dealers are invested in making sure that their customers get the right equipment, the right service, and the right parts. That’s something you can’t buy at an auction.
Will you trade in my current unit?
Yes, along with flexible terms, payment options, and rate incentives Certified pre-owned, dealer warranties, service records, access to warranty claims, service history, PIPs Market price is based on condition of unit, hours, demand, and option codes. Yes, we have fully trained service staff with an inventory of special tools, diagnostic equipment, and appropriate facilities. Yes, we have in-stock inventory of OEM parts and accessories.
Will you finance the purchase?
No, pay immediately in full
No, pay immediately in full
What's the condition of the unit?
Unknown, at seller’s discretion to divulge
Depends on bidders, but it can exceed retail. The auctioneer’s job is to run up the price and take advantage of the competition between bidders.
What's the price of the unit?
Will you service the unit after I buy it?
Will you sell me parts that need to be replaced on it? Will you support me in season? Will you provide warranty work? Will you give me a price on a new unit so I can compare? Do you have contacts at the OEM for technical issues and questions?
Have a Cow!
Inspired by foodnetwork.com Grilled Skirt Steak With Asparagus
• 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper • Salt and pepper to taste • Grated pecorino Romano cheese
• 1 1/2 pounds skirt steak • 2 tablespoons canola oil • 1 pound asparagus
1. Heat grill to high. Season room-temperature steak with salt, pepper, and 1 tablespoon oil. Any oil with a high smoke point, such as canola, will work. 2. Trim bottom inch of asparagus. Season with salt, pepper, and remainder of oil. 3. Cut steak into four portions and grill for 3–5 minutes per side, depending on desired doneness. Skirt steak is thin and will cook quickly. 4. Let steak rest for 10 minutes. While it’s resting, grill asparagus for 6 minutes, turning once. 5. Sprinkle cheese and crushed red pepper on asparagus. Serve alongside steak.
ksrequipment.com | P3
PRST STD US POSTAGE PAID BOISE, ID PERMIT 411
805 E. Howard St. Pontiac, IL 61764
Inside This Issue Zack Sauder on His KSR Roots
Plan the Perfect Camping Trip
Meet KSR Employee Jerry Kaisner
What Our Customers Are Saying
Top 10 Reasons to Buy From KSR
Grilled Skirt Steak With Asparagus
The Key to a Memorable Vacation
Enrich Your Vacation
Buy Local When You’re Abroad
ART Just as your town probably has local artisans who produce unique and interesting work, the same is true for your vacation destination. Anyone can get a gift shop bauble that was mass-produced somewhere else. Take the time to peruse market stalls and craft fairs while you travel. It can lead you to some truly special souvenirs, and you’ll support the arts and traditions of the region! PEOPLE While you’re out sampling local restaurants and exploring local markets, you’ll meet plenty of local people. Don’t be afraid to strike up a friendly conversation. You can make new friends around the globe and learn about their unique experiences. One of the most enriching experiences in life is meeting new people and gaining new perspectives. MEMORIES Treasured memories are the best souvenir you can bring home from any vacation. So you owe it to yourself to get out and explore!
The virtues of buying locally sourced food and supporting small businesses have been widely extolled. But we rarely think to apply the same practices when we travel. Many Americans spring for all-inclusive packages when planning their next summer vacation, but doing so means they’ll miss out on some of the best aspects of the culture they’re visiting. Part of the joy of traveling is having new experiences you can’t have at home. Whether you’re in another state or another country, you owe it to yourself to seek out the unique aspects of that location. But to find the character and quirks of your destination, you’ll have to explore beyond the hotel lobby. FOOD Why have a cheeseburger from a fast-food chain when you can try a local favorite? A great way to start is by asking your taxi driver or hotel concierge about their favorite place to eat. You’ll discover new foods and flavor combinations, and the locally owned restaurant is sure to appreciate your business!
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