After a four-year absence, the anticipation surrounding the return of DR Horton’s purchasing tradeshow was palpable. The event, which typically fills the calendar every two years, has always been a crucial touchstone in strengthening the DR Horton community – from enhancing interdivisional communication to solidifying relationships with vendors and manufacturers and inspiring employees about their pivotal role in America’s largest home-building enterprise.
At first glance, it may seem unusual for a titan like DR Horton, the nation’s premier home builder, to operate in a highly decentralized manner. “We’re building in 33 states in 90 major markets across the country,” explains Brad Conlon, VP and Director of National Accounts at DR Horton. “Some of our folks who might be focused in Greenville, Sarasota in FL, or St. George in Utah tend to be very focused on their own market.” This unique tradeshow pulls these diverse threads into a coherent, vibrant tapestry, illuminating the company’s collective strength and size.
Of course, orchestrating an event of this magnitude doesn’t come without a hefty price tag. But DR Horton sees it as an investment that pays dividends far beyond cost efficiency. “It’s a significant investment for the company,” Conlon concedes, “but if you look at what it would take to travel to all 90 of our divisions across the country, it’s a real small investment for the company to make.”
The benefits, however, extend beyond mere economics. For Conlon, the magic of the tradeshow lies in the connections it forges and strengthens. He explains, “Our goal is to facilitate connections, not just between vendors and distribution partners, but also among our divisions, encouraging a healthy cross-pollination of ideas and relationships.”
DR Horton’s corporate event became more important after Covid
The significance of the tradeshow gained new dimensions in the aftermath of Covid. With the pandemic disrupting the planned 2020 event, the return of the tradeshow in 2022 held even more importance. “When we last got together in 2018, unable to get together in 2020, we had 57 booths. Today we have 81,” Conlon states, highlighting the event’s role in supporting the company’s growth, especially in onboarding new hires and employees transitioning into new roles.
This year’s tradeshow also responded to the rapid growth and changing times by focusing on the technological advancements that improve communication between vendors and purchasing managers. DR Horton’s agenda was clear: to streamline processes, tackle inflation, and ensure affordable housing, particularly for first-time homeowners.
DR Horton’s corporate event brings America’s builders together
The DR Horton Purchasing Tradeshow, in essence, is a grand reunion of America’s builders. It brings together a diverse cross-section of attendees, from CEOs to field workers. As Conlon emphasizes, “The owners are here. The CEOs understand the importance of this event. It’s a key event, and they want to be there to nurture those relationships.” And nurture them they will, as they all come together to shape the future of American home building.
At The Trade Group, we’re ready to help you make a similar impact. If you’re contemplating your next corporate event, let’s discuss how we can turn it into a defining moment for your company.
The Trade Group is a full-service tradeshow and event marketing company. We work with you to create an exhibit or event that brings in leads and helps you achieve your business goals. Contact us here or give us a call at 972-734-8585