YATCO’s Broker of the Month series examines the influences and catalysts that brought these brokers into the wonderful world of yachting, who influenced them, and what they seek to change in the industry. Here, we interview Herb Postma of Postma Yacht Group. Read more below on what influenced him to become a yacht broker.
Everything You Need to Know About YATCO’s Broker of the Month Herb Postma:
How did you get your start in yachting?
I enjoyed family boating from my early experiences in Michigan and I believed there was a real business opportunity in helping the conservative hardworking Midwesterners make the life-changing choice of family boating. I thrived on the joyful responses of the customers.
My personal philosophy and business commitment from that time on has always been, what can I do to enhance the boating experience for our customers, their family, and friends. My team and I always found a way to deliver the “Ultimate Yachting Experience” by creating better “mouse trap” features and benefits.
In 30 plus years of applying those principles we built Grand Isle Marine Group into the largest marine sales and service operations in the Midwest and Hatteras of Lauderdale the world’s largest Hatteras dealer, as well as Westship/Westport one of the world’s largest selling yachts.
Is there anyone in particular who influences you – someone in the industry that you look up to, and why?
Early on I certainly admired the visionary leaders who transitioned their businesses and the industry from its earliest stage designs, materials, technologies and sales and service Innovations.
I was fortunate many became friends, such as, Richard Bertram/BERTRAM, Willis Slane/HATTERAS, Carlo Riva/RIVA, Bob Rodi/RODI CHRIS CRAFT, Leon Slikkers/SLICKCRAFT/TIARA, Kit Dennison/BROWARD, The BENETTI family and many others. Also, many of my client yachtsmen and women, whom I’ve learned so much from and who advanced my career with their early support and the joyful privilege of sharing the yachting experience with such as: Rich DeVos/SEAQUEST, Jim Moran/GALLANT LADY, Eugene & Christine Linn/NORWEGIAN QUEEN, Jimmy Dean/BIG BAD JOHN, René Angélil & Celine Dion/FEELINGS, Mike Baker/TAHITI, and many others.
Today I marvel at the amazing results of the innovators, like Steve Myers, Bob Denison, Frank Grzeszczak, Mark Elliot and others and their teams who’re using expanded builder relationships and targeted technology and social media to tell the yachting story, and the joys of yachting to more past, present, and future yacht buyers, than ever possible in the past!
What do you enjoy most about the yachting industry – and what do you wish you could change?
I enjoy the camaraderie of yachting and the people in the industry, which is built on camaraderie. It’s also a business where one’s age doesn’t exclude you from participating, it’s just the opposite.
Yachting respects and celebrates its older associates, patrons, yachtsmen, leaders, and legends. That said…changes, like regrets, a few, too few to mention.
Tell us about your greatest accomplishments.
The success of Grand Isle Marina, Hatteras of Lauderdale (largest in-door 16th St. yacht showroom), Westship/Westport Yachts. These were exciting events in my life, the lives of our people, which stimulated development in the industry.
However, our greatest accomplishment in the yachting industry was and is providing life changing opportunities and enhancing the lives of thousands of people and their families in the yachting industry, our customers, our employees, our brokers, our crew members, our vendors, our competitors, our manufacturers, and builders.
What are some of the challenges you come across at work, and how do you approach them?
Over the last few years, I’ve been approaching the industry in a much less intense way, so my challenges have been fewer.
However, I would say adapting to current branding & marketing trends and technology effectively, so it’s my current focus.
Herb Postma can be reached at email@example.com.