LP Gas

2017 LP Gas Rising Leader: Allegra Pacheco

Vitals: Age 38; COO at Pecos Propane Inc. in Pecos, New Mexico

Years in the propane industry: 12

Please describe your role and responsibility, as well as your vision, in growing your company and connecting with propane customers of today: To ensure that direction is given as far as operations are concerned. I am responsible for human resources, event planning, marketing, customer retention, cylinder filling and various other aspects involved in running a business. My vision is that Pecos Propane will continue to provide high-quality personalized service while keeping our prices reasonable as we grow and expand into other markets and areas.

Propane industry opportunities and threats: The greatest opportunities are those that have always been there in residential and commercial markets. For us, it is building relationships with our customers that last for years. Autogas is an exciting new opportunity, as well. … The biggest threat is the expansion of natural gas lines into the areas currently serviced by our industry. The lack of dealers involved in large volumes in the fight against this battle is a threat. Some marketers may feel like they are too busy to speak to their state and local representatives. As LP gas dealers, we need to make our voices heard or we will not be busy at all. We will not have a business as our source of income, and our employees will not, either. Our elected officials need to hear our story. They need to get to know our businesses and who we truly are.

How then can the propane industry prosper in the coming years? By uniting and educating our state and local representatives about propane, the propane industry, our businesses and the challenges we face.

What does your generation offer to the propane industry that previous generations did not? My generation offers a fresh perspective as far as new ways of doing things that have not been done in the past. A new way to connect to our customers is with the introduction of technology. Platforms such as social media have made connecting with our customers on a larger scale easier. Today versus in the previous generations, loyalty to a dealer is not as important as price. Routing and delivery are much easier due to all of the software programs available today.

What technologies are you using (or plan to use) to support business operations? We use several social media platforms, software programs, routing programs, GPS and email versus snail mail.