Employee Spotlight: 9 Questions with Daniel Bernuy
Daniel, how long have you worked at Nelson Motors and Equipment?
I’ve been here 29 years. Not all have been for Nelson Motors and Equipment, though. I started here when it was owned by Kosior Tractor, and when the Nelson family bought the business, they got to keep me too. (laughing)
What does your job entail?
I took the pre-employment course in Brandon, Manitoba, almost right out of high school, at the Assiniboia Community College. I did my apprenticeship training in Saskatoon a couple of years later. In short, I fix agriculture equipment; anything from combines to balers. But I guess I don’t just fix them; I also build them—even customize them for our customers.
Why did you choose Agriculture as an industry and not another field such as a heavy-duty mechanic?
I knew a little about the sector and was familiar and comfortable with the work. I knew what I would be getting into and had a clear vision of what I wanted to do for work. Agriculture is always going to be here. There are highs and lows, but nothing like oil and gas or trucking or anything like that.
What do you like most about your job?
I love the work because it isn’t monotonous. We are always learning; when John Deere brings new models out, we get trained on the equipment even before we have them on the lot. I love seeing the equipment change with technology and enjoy learning. In many other dealerships, a technician works on one task; here, we get to do it all.
You can do your job anywhere across the prairies; why here in southeast Saskatchewan?
I enjoy living in a smaller community. Originally I wanted to live close enough to our family farm; so I could help if needed but far enough away to gain some independence. Now, looking back, I am happy to have made that choice. I love the community of Oxbow. The river is right here; I kayak and golf and spend a fair bit of time at Moose Creek Regional Park. In the winter, I snowmobile on the local trails and belong to the Lions Club, where we volunteer at Big 6 Hockey games. I like belonging to the community and making it a better place to live.
You like community; how do you participate in yours?
I love the connection with the community. I see our customers in the grocery store, and we say hello, talk about farming, and how their operation is doing. They are board members at the rink, of which I am a part. We talk shop and life and genuinely care about each other. That feels good to be a part of.
What is the rest of your team like?
We have a great crew; some of us on the team are close. We hang out outside of work, go for wings, and play in golf tournaments. We even have a Nelson Motors and Equipment curling team in the winter. And last year, some of us travelled to Las Vegas to watch the national rodeo competition and hit a hockey game. That was a blast.
What’s it like working for a family-owned and operated organization?
I like that it is a family-run business. Some of these other dealerships are big corporations, and you get lost as an employee. The owners are down-to-earth and approachable. I know that I can go to them if I need to.
What’s life like in Oxbow?
I know that because I live in Oxbow, I can afford to travel, which I love. I’m not house-poor like I would be in other larger centres. I know many people are struggling right now with inflation and the rise in housing, and that’s not the case here. You can buy a really great house here in Oxbow, make a decent living and enjoy life to the fullest.