President's Message

Help Keep the Trees and Brush Away From Our Fields

In keeping with the theme of “Sell More Bonds,” I participated in our annual NASBP Legislative Fly-in held in our nation's capital. Every year that I participate, I am impressed and amazed at our Association’s footprint, relationships, and involvement with our U.S. House of Representatives and Senators who run the country and so greatly impact our industry. During the Fly-in, we had a panel comprised of the chair and ranking members of the U.S. House Small Business Committee.

Each member on that Committee stated that as an Association, we are fortunate to have Larry LeClair, NASBP Director of Government Relations, working with us and working the Hill. In a meeting with one of my Members of Congress, I was asked how Larry was. They know who we are! The importance of that cannot be understated. As we go about our daily activities and working for our customers, our employees, and our businesses, there are others with competing agendas doing their thing, such as working at increasing the threshold of the federal and state Miller Acts or not requiring surety bonds on federal P3 projects. It is imperative that we advocate for our industry and for our product, because if we don’t, no one else will.

For recreation and a sense of accomplishment, I have some fields I mow and adjacent woods that I keep cleaned up and cut back. If I slack off, the woods begin to encroach on my fields. All of a sudden small trees and brush are three feet into my field and looking to take over. They want to take control. That is not acceptable! Please consider coming with us during the NASBP Legislative Fly-in that will be June 5 to 6, 2019 in our nation’s capital and help us to keep the surety field cleaned up and cut back. We need you there to educate your Representatives and Senators. We need you to remind them of the importance of surety and what it is that we do for businesses, big and small. We need you to tell them about the protection the surety product provides business, suppliers, and employees. Your voice will help us “Sell More Bonds.” Let’s not give the trees and brush a clear and easy path to our fields.

I look forward to seeing you on my next NASBP Road Shows - Bonding With Bob held November 13, in Des Moines, IA, and November 15, in Kansas City/Overland Park. Registration for these will open in the near future.   

Be sure to read Corban Enns' insightful comments below providing the sales nugget of advice for this issue of Pipeline.

I hope you are having a wicked good summah!

The Sales Nugget Provided by Corban Enns, President of Surety Solutions of Salem, OR

Corban_Enns.jpgI can share only my own experiences, which are limited.They are as follows. Learn from others and own it. That’s my first nugget. The second is something that I’ve learned from folks more successful than myself, and it is this: sales is a process, not a goal. A goal is a current state of failure that you have not yet achieved. A process is a system in which you learn and refine. Find the system that works for you. Own it, refine it, and continue to improve your process. I don’t have sales goals. I have systems that create greater success year over year.

Register for the NASBP Sales Workshop, October 2 and 3 in New Orleans, LA, held immediately before the NASBP Regions 4, 5, 6 & 7 Meeting. The NASBP Sales Workshop will be delivered by Bond Producers Larry McMahon and Chad Martin along with consultant Johnathon Paul. Sign-up and learn how to Sell More Bonds!!! 


As the year progresses, I encourage you and your staff to participate in the NASBP social media posts announcing our pride in being part of this great organization. Join those who have already shared their photo on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn and remember to use the hashtag #wearenasbp and include @nasbp. We’ve had a great response so far to this social media initiative. It’s fun to see the faces of our membership, keep up the good work! See some of these photos in the article in this issue of Pipeline and the article in the May/June issue of Pipeline.

Robert E. Shaw is President of Skillings Shaw & Associates, Inc. in Lewiston, ME . He can be reached at and 207.753.7300.