Serious sewer master ready as a DM rear lantern

Frank Thorup Hansen is a contractor consultant at AO - took the sewer master's exam to better understand the customers' daily challenges. Now he is running for the DM in Kloak. 

It can be fun and serious at the same time. Frank Thorup Hansen thinks so. He is a contractor consultant at the building materials wholesaler AO, and it is not too much to say that he specializes in equipment and material for the sewage industry. When he drives around and visits companies in the Viborg-Skive-Holstebro-Herning area, it turns into conversations between sewer master and sewer master.

Three years ago, Frank Thorup Hansen took the sewer master exam. Not because he intends to piss off his customers and do the sewer work himself. But because both he and his employer found it beneficial for all parties if salesman Frank spoke and understood the same language as the customers.

Two days at the end of January, he leaves his usual territory in central Jutland and moves to Fredericia. He is going to the Kloakmessen – The Danish Sewer and Drainage Fairn 2024 in Messe C to participate in the trade association Danske Kloakmestre - The biggest sewer and drainage trade association in Denmark's fight for the DM title in sewer work. The selling sewer master takes the task seriously. Therefore, he spends three days beforehand in Horsens, where he attends a training camp at the Learnmark vocational school.

Different dialogue

It has been several years since AO began offering the salespeople training as pipelayers, precisely to achieve optimal dialogue with customers in the sewerage industry. There are now close to 40 plumbers in AO's sales staff, and some of them can also write "sewer master" on their business card. Among them Frank Thorup Hansen.

In advance, a couple of the company's sales consultants were already trained sewer masters, and it was clear that they were better at sparring with customers, both about daily tasks and about larger projects.

"It provides a completely different dialogue when you, as a salesperson, have tried things yourself in practice. In the past, I often didn't know what was up and down when I saw sewer drawings and talked to the sewer masters. Now I understand the drawings and know what we are talking about", says Frank Thorup Hansen.

With the exam diploma came the approval as professional manager at the Danish Safety Agency and also a rat control course. Frank Thorup Hansen does not need the authorization since, as mentioned, he has no plans to convert. He remains a sales consultant in AO's contractor division and will not practice as a sewer master.

He is sure of that

The exception then comes in one of the sandboxes at DM in Kloak for the Kloakmessen - The Danish Sewer and Drainage Fairn 2024 in Fredericia. Frank Thorup Hansen is certain of two things in advance:

“I'm sure it will be fun. And I'm sure I won't win anyway. On the contrary, I am prepared to act as a beacon in a field of tremendously skilled sewer masters. It does not matter. After all, I am not at all seasoned in sewer work, and I will definitely lean towards the sidemen in the other sandboxes and soak up the learning. I probably have to use some tricks to get there a little faster", assesses the selling sewer master from Viborg.

Some of the sewer colleagues have actually already helped Frank Thorup Hansen on his way.

The customers helped

"When I had to take the sewer master's exam, I quickly found out that it was really difficult for a salesperson like me. I wasn't used to being out in reality. But I had good customers who helped me when there was something I didn't understand. We were two AO people taking the sewer master at the same time, and we agreed that it shouldn't be just for fun. We wanted something out of it. That's why we were very serious about the tasks and sat at home and spent a really long time on the project", says Frank Thorup Hansen.

On 25 and 26 January, he is ready to invite "the real" sewer masters to dance at DM. The distinguished title is at stake MESSE C, and Frank Thorup Hansen knows very well that he will not come near it. But he is looking forward to getting banked in the sandbox and fighting against skilled sewer masters who are both customers and colleagues.

It is the trade association Danske Kloakmestre - The biggest sewer and drainage trade association in Denmark, which runs DM in Sewer at Kloakmessen - The Danish Sewer and Drainage Fairn, which is expected to have around 160 exhibitors. The fair is organized every other year in collaboration between Danske Kloakmestre - The biggest sewer and drainage trade association in Denmark and MESSE C.