Delta Management Corp. and its owner, Jim Arenovski, were honored by Shell in New York City last month at its Smiling Stars event with two awards: “Retailer of the Year” and “Gold Retailer” status.
The annual Shining Stars awards event, which brings together the top 2 percent of Shell branded retail sites from over 80 countries around the world, is a celebration of networking, learning, and fun. Approximately 1,000 people were in attendance.
This is the first year that Shell retailer IP&E participated in the event.
Delta competed against other IP&E Shell-branded sites on Saipan and Guam and other Shell licensee’s around the world in a program called “People Make the Difference Real,” which measures competitors based on volume and store sales performance, cleanliness and maintenance, and customer service through inspections and mystery customer visits.
Arenovski is no stranger to this concept. “We have always trained regularly and continue to invest in our staff about our philosophy on how to engage customers. They are the reason people choose to come back to our sites.”
Ephrem Gaangin, manager for the Delta Saipan, also earned the honor of attending this event.
“Ephrem is a key part of our organization and does a great job, especially in managing and motivating our talented staff,” said Arenovski.
Gaangin has work with Delta for over 10 years and has demonstrated his skills for managing people year after year.
“It was an honor to attend this event. Everything was great. It is hard to describe how well we were treated. We felt like VIP’s the whole time we were in New York,” said Gaangin. “Of course, our staff has a lot to do with our success and I am proud of them for the years of great work they have done. It was nice they got the opportunity to be recognized.”
Delta has operated Shell-branded gas stations in the CNMI since May of 1998, and has been a service leader in the region for years. In 2012 Delta was awarded top retailer in customer service through the mystery customer program.
Delta has also been a committed employer of since opening its first station almost 20 years ago, operating Shell Susupe, Shell Highway Express, Shell Puerto Rico, and Shell San Roque.
“We have always believed in developing staff locally and have not had a great need to seek employees from off island,” Arenovski said. “We are confident in our philosophy that we can teach most anyone the skills needed to be successful, but we cannot teach personality and attitude. We hire energetic people who are willing to commit to our way of customer engagement and we invest the time and resources to train them.”
He said, “There was the trip and a cash component; we gave the cash to our staff, but Ephrem and I took the trip. This coming year IP&E will also be eligible to send a forecourt and store service champion to the Smiling Stars and we are excited to have our staff participate, with the chance to attend and be honored at this event in 2018.”
The first night of Smiling Stars was an award event on Ellis Island in New York harbor with the Statue of Liberty in close view.
Participants were treated to a fireworks display with the New York skyline in the background with a dinner held in Immigration Hall.
The second day included business meetings followed by a New York Yankees baseball game and the final evening and awards ceremony was held at the old Brooklyn Shipyard, now a refurbished business district and were treated to pieces of various Broadway shows and entertainment.
There were also the top retailer of the year awards for single and multi-site operators as well as service champions’ awards for the best staff.
“It was an honor to get to attend this event. Our staff and Ephrem work very hard each day to deliver great service to the people of Saipan. We have a great team and I am proud of them, they are the reason for our success and they deserve such an honor,” Arenovski said. “There are not many opportunities for CNMI residents to work on a ‘world-class’ team so if you have a great attitude and are looking to learn great skills and be on a globally recognized team, stop by any DMC shell station and pick up an application…maybe you will be our next Smiling Stars service champion.”
Arenovski and Gaangin were accompanied by IP&E vice president of Marketing & Retail Bill Ada, territory manager for Saipan and Palau Bernard Valera, and company operated retail sites manager Genna Leon Guerrero. (PR)