Like father, like son

March 5, 2018
David Prime Jr. is creating his own success after joining the family business.

Following in his father’s footsteps, David Prime Jr. became a Mac Tools distributor in 2014. By the end of 2017, he had followed another step in his father’s path and become a multi-route distributor. The 27-year-old based in Albany, New York is on a roll, and he doesn’t show any signs of slowing down.

Everyone has to start somewhere, however, and Prime started a long way off from the tool trade.

“I actually worked for the coroner in West Palm Beach, Florida, picking up any unnatural deaths,” he says. “So it’s kind of your total opposite scale from this business.”

Having grown up watching his father’s success as a tool distributor Prime eventually decided to become one himself, though.

“It’s something I always loved, [knowing he was a successful distributor], and I wanted to be in control of my own money and my own outcome,” he says.

Prime has worked hard and says he’s developed a good relationship with his customers. This seems to be working well for him, considering he has been a member of the Mac Tools President’s Club since his first full year as a distributor.

“Being in the President’s Club consists of being in the top 150 distributors at Mac Tools,” Prime explains. “Right now I am placed at number 40 in the company.”

Forming connections with his customers has been a large part of his success. To do this, Prime goes the extra step to make himself memorable.

“I make custom Mac Tools shirts with my name and [phone] number on it for Christmas presents,” he says. “This is something that separates me from the other trucks. I’ve found that everybody hands out calendars, so I have been doing shirts for the past three years now and everybody loves them.”

Another reason Prime may be popular with his customers is his friendly demeanor and positive way of facing obstacles.

“Somebody once told me that problems are just puzzles,” Prime says. “As soon as you get the ‘problem’ word out of your mouth and think of it as a puzzle, life gets a lot easier.”

One such puzzle that he faced was getting the hang of offering credit to new customers.

“My biggest [challenge] I’d have to say was … figuring out within one or two transactions who’s gonna be a good customer or not,” says Prime.

Once he had figured that out and become successful with one truck, the next step for Prime was to add a second truck and route, bringing his brother-in-law onboard to drive it. So far, it has worked out well for both of them.

“They say not to mix family and business, but we have a very good understanding of both,” Prime says. “Business is business and family is family. I’m very lucky because he’s very independent and he’s not afraid to go above and beyond. He doesn’t look for my help all the time, he just does things. He’s here on the weekend without me asking him to be. He takes care of things as if it was his own truck. So, I’m very grateful.”

It seems safe to say that Prime is happy being a distributor. He is successful, has a relationship with his customers and is expanding his opportunities.

“I love it,” Prime says of his business. “I genuinely look forward to going to work every day. It’s a lifestyle, it’s not a job. I am Mac Tools, this is what I do.”

About the Author

David Brierley | Editor | Fleet Maintenance

David Brierley is the editor of Fleet Maintenance magazine.

Brierley’s education and career have been based in the publishing industry. He is an award-winning writer and comes from a background in automotive, trucking, and heavy equipment. Brierley joined the Endeavor Business Media vehicle repair group in 2017 as managing editor for Fleet Maintenance, PTEN, and Professional Distributor magazines, as well as VehicleServicePros.com. In his current role, he writes for and oversees production of Fleet Maintenance magazine. He has worked in the publishing industry since 2011.

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