Although it was seven years ago when Dennis joined Cummins, he has always had a strong interest in everything mechanical. Growing up on a farm the young Dennis was never far from the farm’s equipment and admits he enjoyed poking around machinery, particularly diesel engines, to see how things worked. As it turns out, he was more interested in that side of the farming business than the animals on the property.
“Like most young people on farms there was always the opportunity to use equipment and in my case I found the machinery extremely interesting. As a lad, I would always be tinkering with machinery somewhere and had a great interest in its workings. I always wanted to know what it could do, in fact everything about it, something I still enjoy today,” Dennis says.
“Cummins is a good American company with strong values and exceptional customer focus. A lot of the principles here in Australia and the South Pacific region are the same and it is a company that is very easy to fit into,” he says.
“Customers look for two things. Firstly, a good product that will do the job while delivering performance and capability. Secondly, they seek a high level of support, which is critical. I intend to continue to ensure that Cummins customers receive the best.”
Dennis already has a good grasp of his business, with a lifetime’s interest in machinery supplemented by qualifications in engineering and marketing. He spent 17 years at his previous company, Case New Holland, beginning as an engineer before occupying a number of executive roles in product management. His time there was capped by three years in the United States as Vice-President of Global Marketing.
Since joining Cummins South Pacific in March 2003, Dennis has been engaged in many sectors of the company’s operations, including marketing, IT, business development, parts and service, and the automotive business unit. Prior to the new MD Role, he was Director of Automotive Business, looking after Cummins’s on-highway customers and truck manufacturers.
Dennis is known throughout the Transport Industry as being an affable person, possessing the unique ability of being able to combine staying popular with OEMs and road transport operators alike, yet remaining extremely focused on Cummins and the future. He admits the current economic situation presents challenges but says he can see an improvement in the future for the industry, both in economic and overall general terms.
“Certainly, there will be some difficult times ahead, but the resilience of the Road Transport Industry and its importance to Australia will present opportunities and Cummins will help our customers grow their businesses,” Dennis remarks.
He says his main aim will always be to talk to as many customers as possible across the whole South Pacific region. As one would expect he will be constantly on the move in his role and admits it is something he enjoys, allowing as it does opportunities to nurture highly valued personal contact across all areas of the company’s operations.
“I like to get out to our front line people, as they have an intimate knowledge of their customers and their requirements in the field. It is this relationship that is vitally important and Cummins has the right technology and is continually ramping-up customer support to fulfil customer requirements.
“There are great people in the Road Transport Industry who are regarded globally as the best in the business. We work closely with them to ensure our productivity and efficiency remain the world’s best.
“To achieve that it is important we find and retain the best people possible to meet those aims and Cummins is extremely successful in this regard. Good people working with good tools and a product line-up that is the best is what we offer and continuing that is what I intend to achieve. This really is a people business and we have the best people in the business,” Dennis says with conviction.
A little while ago, Cummins opened a unique support centre in Melbourne where qualified technical staff manage a helpline and Dennis was actively involved in its planning and introduction, again meeting customer needs. He explains that the company is always on the lookout for opportunities to expand its offerings, be it product or service, to meet market needs and points out that the next round of emissions legislations places Cummins at the forefront of the technology stakes.
“The introduction of ADR80/03 in 2011 will deliver great opportunities, as our product offers the same platform without a lot of change. Cummins engines have performed well and deliver reliability, performance and economy. Meeting new regulations has not been a problem for Cummins in the past and we have the product range to take us into the future,” Dennis explains.
Dennis Quinn values not only the company client base but the enduring friendships in the industry he has made along the way, including those in the Cummins fold, believing that together they hold the key to a positive future.
“As I said, it is all about people and working together to achieve goals to benefit everybody, right across the board. Times might be tough currently, but opportunities still exist and we offer solutions for those in the industry to better their businesses. It is not all doom, there is a bright future ahead. All we have to do is work towards that light.”