Service Professional Series

RR 352: Rocky Khamenian. Uniting The Industry’s Great Divide!

Rocky Khamenian. Uniting The Industry’s Great Divide!

Rocky Khamenian is the owner/operator of Bimmer & Benz Specialists in Costa Mesa, located in south Orange County, CA. He is an active member of both Chapters 48 and 50 of the Automotive Service Councils of California and has served on the Board of Directors for both.

Throughout his 32-year career, Rocky has continually increased his education to maintain the highest possible level of professionalism. He’s achieved the status of Master Technician through ASE and he has completed a wide variety of technical classes on the repair and maintenance of BMW and Mercedes Benz vehicles through WTI. At the present time, he is in the process of being certified as a Bosch Master Technician.

Rocky is the current president of ASCCA Automotive Service Councils of California. He gives some life lessons for every shop owners, shares the importance of association membership and gives us a glimpse of the new ASCCA Degree program at Cuyamaca College in El Cajon, California.

The new ASCCA Degree program that has been in the works for years that has just been approved at Cuyamaca College in El Cajon, California 92019. You’ll start to hear more of this groundbreaking program soon on the podcast and through ASCCA. This state-approved credit course will create paid internships for ASCCA shops. This is a post-secondary program like the OE programs but strictly for independents and will help solve the need for entry-level technicians for independent shops.

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THA 079: What Drives Your Parts Buying Decisions?

What Drives Your Parts Buying Decision?

This Town Hall Academy summit features Keith Williamson, owner of Williamson’s Repair and Tire in Bondurant, IA, John Long partner in Schertz Auto Service in Schertz, TX, and Keith Katz, owner of Quality Service Center in York, PA.

The panel covers part quality, service, availability, training, price, and warranty. We also get into credits and returns, their salesperson, volume rebates, e-commerce, and labor claims. There is a consensus on the value their supplier brings to their business.

Compare your supplier needs and relationship to what this panel has to say about their parts buying decisions.

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THA 078: Low Hanging Financial Fruit That Will Increase Your Profits

Low Hanging Financial Fruit That Will Improve Your Profits

The cost of doing business rises each year. Net profits that are necessary to move your business forward are challenged each day.

Our panel talks about the value of inspections on your sales, association membership, and billing for all parts and fluids used on a repair. We get into some cost savings ideas and using the power of a company credit card to help with training costs.

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RR 348: Vinnie and Anthony Lucido from CoAuto – Community Conscious Car Care

Community Conscious Car Care

Vinnie and Anthony Lucido started CoAuto in 2014 at Reno, Nevada. The brothers are both ASE Master Technicians with Anthony holding 15 ASE Certifications.

Their shop CoAuto which stands for Community Conscious Car Care ran Veteran car giveaway every year, Local art display in waiting room which shop doesn’t take commission from sales, High school internship program, Reverse carbon footprint which Partnered with Arbor day foundation and have tree planted with every oil service and Women’s Car Care Clinic.

The brothers are taking a step back from business, letting employees learn by themselves and not micromanaging the company. They remained motivated from seeing the previous employer working to the bone as the owner who couldn’t let go of control and knew they didn’t want to be that type of owner. Both Anthony and Vinnie on a 5-year plan to have the shop run by itself.

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RR 347: Jonathan Ortiz of Foreign Affairs Auto – From Used Cars to Full Service

A Family Affair

Jonathan Ortiz is the General Manager at Foreign Affairs Auto, West Palm Beach, Florida finished his MBA at Northeastern in Boston. Since he joined the family business, he played a key role, with his Dad, in the transition from a used car dealership to full-service repair. He embodied a people first culture and took the entire shop to Worldpac this year.

He’s changed the way he approaches new hires because of losing past hires before they are set to arrive. Jonathan shares the changes he’s made to his hiring practices because of the impact no-shows has had.

Foreign Affairs Auto’s service pledge is same day service. Their client base is mostly European and has come to accept repairs to take more than one day. Making repairs in one day brings differentiation in the market.

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RR 345: Leon Martin from Auto Tech Services – The Importance of Soap-Paint and Light

The Importance of Soap-Paint-Light

Leon Martin started his shop on a 60×40 oat-field, in a community with a population no less than 2,200. He started it with pure guts and determination despite detractors that told him that he can’t do it. When Auto Tech was open in Rochester, Washington for appointments, he appealed to the emotion of his customers.

Starting a business has a lot of challenges especially on the financial side of things. Leon shares some tips on how to make a wise financial decision, getting a business coach, advocating shop cleanliness and the deeper value of customer service. He shares his cleanliness, colors and bright days and nights in Soap-Paint-Light.

He always tells his customers Maintenance is easy to schedule, breakdowns are not. His customers will nod in approval while he and his crew extract a smile and a simple ‘what can I do to make your day better’ will work wonders on any given situations.

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RR 343: Shop Talk: John Constantin, Mike Shultz, and Jim Fleischman

Shop Talk: Time Management and Digital Inspections

Shop talk with three shop owners; John Constantin, Jim Fleishman and Mike Schultz talk time management and digital inspections.
Systems for time management will either make our lives easier or without them, our stress level could be at Defcon 2. You may use post-it notes or digital software to stay on track and more organized.

This episode was recorded live and was an ‘open mic’ format. You enjoy the dialogue between these shop owners from the Western New York area near Buffalo.

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THA 074: Can David Beat Goliath?

Can David Beat Goliath?

The Academy panel dives into the dichotomy of David and Goliath. David, quick nimble and did not perceive that he was an underdog. The panel considers that larger industry players can be Goliath-like … complacent, too structured, weighed down with rules and inflexible. It doesn’t mean that it is bad, but they say small and nimble is better than big and sluggish. They are quick to point out that we can learn a lot from Goliath’s as it pertains to systems and processes.

Ironically we did discuss that having a Goliath mentality may be good for a David. We talked about business models, being able to adapt to changes in the marketplace and consumers habits. A great example in the discussion was that Starbucks is a Goliath but they hire Davids. A very potent strategy for success. We also talk customer loyalty and what we can learn from the Goliaths of the aftermarket.

The Panel: Bambi Crozier, from Car Clinic in Lowel, AR, Jeremy O’Neal, Freedom Automotive, Freedom Automotive in Hesperia, CA and President and Lead Sales Trainer at AdvisorFix and Scott Pelava, Lonsdale Auto Works in Lonsdale, MN

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RR 341: Mark Bergasse, Carlo Sabucco, Glenn Colling, Todd Sarson. Friends First-Competitors Second.

Friends To The Rescue.

Mark Bergasse from Marks Auto Service in Oakville, ON, had a life-changing medical condition. A heart attack that precipitated a quadruple bypass. His wife Sandy called their friends Glenn Colling of Eastside Auto Service, Todd Sarson of Stop N Go Automotive, and Carlo Sabucco of Sils Complete Auto Care Centre. They share their story of support to Mark and Sandy.

This story is about friendship, caring and the power of humanity. Are you prepared for a possible business or life-changing moment? Is your network in place? Are your friends or competitors ready to step up. Mark, Todd, Carlo and Glenn share the backstory on the value of friendship first, competitor second.

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RR 340: Seth Thorson Creates $25,000 Scholarship Endowment

Ready To Create Your Own Scholarship Endowment for Automotive Tech Students?

Seth Thorson from Eurotech Auto Service, New Brighton, MN, has specialized in the service of European automobiles since 1999.
Seth made a bold move this year and created a $25,000 endowment scholarship to Century College. The Thorson Automotive Scholarship which is sponsored by Eurotech is an eye opener for the entire industry.

Seth points out that parents and students need to view an automotive career as a valuable and viable career opportunity. We need to reach out to help students afford college through scholarship programs.

Recruiting into our automotive tech colleges starts with talking to school boards, meeting with school superintendents, joining advisory boards and creating endowments.

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THA 073: Your Turning Point: The PIVOT(s) That Improved Your Business

Your Turning Point: The pivot that improved your business.

Have you ever thought about a big event that you could call a life pivot? A circumstance that made a change in your life or your business? Many of us can claim distinction to some monumental occurrence that could be classified as an important pivot point. This Academy is all about those pivots.

Kim Auernheimer partner with husband Rob in CS Automotive, Brentwood, TN, Patrick McHugh, shop owner, Bimmer Rescue, Richmond, VA, Alan Symmes, shop owner, Revolution Automotive Services, Norwood, MA and Cecil Bullard, CEO, The Institute for Automotive Business join in the discussion.

Listen to real examples of important pivot points from these shop owners. Hear how pivot points arrive when you put your family priorities in play. Pivots show up when you start to run your business as a business. You will have tough days so you need to have great mentors and a strong network and a business coach to support your progress.

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RR 335: Build Your Own Apprentice Program – Secretary Kelly Schulz & Dwayne Myers

The Technician Shortage: Build Your Workforce With Your Own Apprentice Program

This episode provides a solution to growing our own technicians. Dwayne Myers from multi-location Dynamic Automotive in Fredrick, MD shares his apprentice program. Also, the Secretary of Labor from the great state of Maryland, Kelly Schulz, explains how the state was instrumental in Dynamic’s apprentice program and how she is using the influence of Maryland’s Labor department to embrace college training and apprentice programs for skilled trades. You’ll be glad you listened because there are real solutions here that will help you grow your own talent.

This episode is going to demonstrate how Dwayne Myers worked with and partnered with his state’s Department of Labor and Secretary Kelly Schulz. Secretary Schulz explains the program and the positive outcomes it has been producing. Dwayne explains how he embraced the state’s programs and integrated it into his training culture.

Follow Dwayne’s passion for growing technicians through an apprentice program and consider using your state’s labor department to support your program. Growing your own talent will be the norm. Use this episode as your launch pad and start.

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RR 333: Keith Benline & Jeremy O’Neal – 10 Steps to a $1M Shop

10 Steps to Build a Profitable Million Dollar Shop

In the 2018 Vision KC Studio longtime friend of the podcast Jeremy O’Neal from Freedom Automotive and Advisor Fix and shop owner and business trainer/coach, Keith Benline.

The goal of these 10 steps is to give you the Freedom to have a stronger work-life balance and to lead your people to run your business.
Benline says working smarter not harder as business owner, being a strong leader and don’t be afraid to let go and empower your employees. He also says you need to allow mistakes to happen and use them as a coaching moment.

Find your strengths and implement while surrounding yourself with people whose strengths are your weaknesses and don’t forget it’s the people that make the business run, always treat them and respect them as people.

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RR 329: Tom Ham Part 2 – Automotive Management Network

Fundamentals, Systems, People Development and How to Work From Home

Tom Ham has been a great contributor to the podcast and with his years of experience as a shop owner and chief conductor at Automotive Management Network, he has a perspective and/or opinion on all aspects of running a successful and professional automotive service business.

We’re going to talk about basic block and tackling, the power of good systems and procedures, because if your not your dying. Also, hear about a clever idea to extract business improving ideas from your team and three questions to ask yourself to discover if you can start to walk away and work away from your business.

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RR 326: Sherri Stock from InMotion Auto Care

Five Years A Shop Owner and a Succession Plan in Place.

The secret to success, according to Sherri Stock is doing the right thing for the right reasons. No matter for your team members or your customers she is passionate to always treat people well.

Sherri Stock from InMotion Auto Care in Lincoln, NE has worked at dealerships for over 25 years and had the opportunity of a lifetime to go into business for herself. She shares some early strategies that has set up her succession plan.

We talk with the Sherri Stock, the ASA Midwest Service Facility of the Year 2017, about the power of a strong business culture, technician pay, business coaches, vendor partners and her commitment to technician training.

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