Driving Change: Women’s Influence in the Automotive World [THA 361]

Nichole Bennecoff and Tenise Chapman are steering the automotive conversation toward new horizons. We’re shifting gears to talk about the power of female presence in the industry, from technicians to service advisors, and the impact it has on businesses and customers alike. Nichole shares her success in creating a team dynamic that’s as inclusive as it is efficient. She’s proving that leadership knows no gender, and her approach is magnetizing more women to the field. Tenise drives home the importance of visibility. She’s out there in a rural setting, changing the landscape and inspiring the youth to dream of a career in automotive with Camp Drive, a two-day camp for kids ages 12-15. 

We also touch on the art of customer service, crafting spaces that make everyone feel welcome, and the quest to bring more female technicians into the fold. 
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Remarkable Customer Service Stories from Red Rock Repair [RR 912]

Danielle Vila discusses the importance of customer service in the industry and shares her strategies for quality control, the benefits of a reliable shop management system, and the significance of standing behind services and parts. The conversation also covers unique marketing strategies, the value of maintenance, community involvement, and the impact of these on business growth and customer trust.
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Give Me 10 Update: Collaboration with Education [AW 186]

“Give Me 10 Mission: To provide a work-based learning model that any industry can utilize to bridge the skills gap. Combining classroom instruction with on the job work based learning opportunities. This program integrates the classroom with employers to create an introduction to a career path of the student’s choice. 

The program simplifies the relationship between an industry lead business and vocational education that can lead into a career path. We ask for no money. Our “ask” is for your time. Time to integrate a student into your business to create a career fit. It starts with 10 hours and can grow into a new employee. Can you “Give Me Ten?”

Sue Dixon, the creator of the “Give Me Ten” program, discusses the importance of collaboration between the automotive industry and education. The “Give Me Ten” program, which exposes students to the automotive industry and helps them explore potential career paths, is highlighted. The discussion also covers the need for updated curriculums, industry involvement, and the success of the “Give Me Ten” program in providing work-based learning experiences.
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Becoming a Shop Owner with Meg Richards [AW 185]

Carm and Meg discuss the shop’s transition to a four-day workweek to promote work-life balance, the challenges of finding and retaining skilled technicians. Meg shares her experience as a female technician. They also discuss the need to change the perception of the automotive industry and attract more women. The episode concludes with a discussion on succession planning and the shop’s community involvement. remarkableresults.biz/aw185

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OK, I Raised My Labor Rate: Now What?! [THA 355]

Raising labor rates is not just about increasing prices. It’s about finding more value in the industry and positioning ourselves as professionals. 

Join our panel as they highlight the need for understanding the concept of effective labor rate, ensuring services are charged appropriately, viewing the business as a professional entity, providing a positive customer experience and addressing core business problems before raising labor rates. Our panelists encourage shop owners to take a comprehensive approach to their business strategy, considering all factors and not just focusing on raising labor rates. 
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Congressional Testimony: Right to Repair Update [RR 902]

Recorded Live at AAPEX 2023, our panel dives into the progress of the Right to Repair bill that could potentially reshape our industry. Without the Right to Repair Act, our industry could face a staggering $93 billion hit by 2035. Kathleen Callahan, who testified in front of Congress, shared her experience and the momentum it created for the bill. It’s crucial for industry professionals to understand the bill, advocate for it, and engage with their communities and legislators. 
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Who is Your Customer Experience Officer (CXO)? [AW 173]

Nichole Bennecoff discusses the importance of customer experience in the automotive industry. Nicole shares her company’s focus on customer experience and introduces Taylor, a client success representative who manages communication between clients and the company. Taylor’s responsibilities include monitoring client communication, arranging loaner vehicles, supporting service advisors and providing excellent customer service. Nicole and Carm also touch on setting client expectations, appearance, and the importance of listening to service advisor calls. 
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The First Breast Cancer Vaccine Trial Recipient: Jennifer Davis [CC 111]

The Brakes for Breasts campaign, every October, supports breast cancer vaccine research at the Cleveland Clinic. The co-founders of the campaign, Leigh Anne Best and Laura Frank, discuss the importance of finding a cause that aligns with their values and the challenges of funding vaccine research. They discuss the initiative and how it raises funds for breast cancer research by offering free brake pads to customers in October. Dr. Justin Johnson from the Cleveland Clinic talks about the importance of a vaccine trial for triple negative breast cancer. Jennifer Davis, the first recipient of the vaccine trial, shares her experience. Our panel emphasizes the importance of community support and the potential of the vaccine trial to revolutionize cancer treatment. 

We are challenging the industry to reach a goal of $369,000 or even $400,000 for this year and to involve at least 500 shops. This is a simple and effective program to offer to your customer and to anyone involved to tour the lab and see the impact of their contributions.
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Rachel Spencer’s ‘Rachelisms’ for Auto Repair [AW 169]

What are some of Rachel Spencer’s “Rachelisms?” The Power of Consistency: Rachel emphasizes the importance of consistency and communication in her operations. She believes in creating habits, holding each other accountable, and striving for perfection while acknowledging that mistakes can happen. Customer Communication is Key: Rachel’s approach to customer service is all about overcommunication. You must provide customers with as much information as possible upfront, offering financing options, and sending vehicle health and safety reports via text. Rachel also shares her experiences with recruiting technicians including reaching out to institutes with automotive programs.
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From Mom and Pop to Multi Shop Owners [RR 671]

Recorded Live at the 2023 Institute Summit in St Petersburg, Florida, Jeannie and David Light, the dynamic duo behind Lighthouse Auto Repair in Manteo, North Carolina, discuss their business, challenges they face, and their recent expansion to a second shop. They also share their experience with joining a coaching program. The coaching program had a significant impact on their sales, with their revenue nearly doubling in the year after joining. Find out how they transitioned from a ‘mom and pop’ shop to successful multi shop owners. 
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Breaking the Mold: How a Staffing Agency Can Help You Build a Winning Team [THA 338]

“There isn’t a technician shortage,” Said no one ever. 

Please welcome our panel of guests to discuss the topic of recruiting talent with a staffing agency in the automotive industry. Shop owners Kathleen Callahan and Michelle Tansey share their experiences and challenges in finding skilled technicians and how partnering with Promotive, a full-service staffing agency, has been a game-changer for them.  Joelle Pollak and Amy Gerardi, Cofounders of Promotive, discuss the process of understanding individual shop needs, sourcing candidates, and the importance of communication and partnership between the agency and shop owners.

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Brakes For Breasts – 2023 Update & Challenge [CC 110]

Brakes For Breasts – 2023 Update & Challenge Breast Cancer Vaccine Trials at the Cleveland Clinic and a Challenge for Participation for the 2023 October Initiative which supports breast cancer vaccine research at the Cleveland Clinic. The co-founders of the campaign, Leanne Best and Laura Frank, discuss the importance of finding a cause that aligns with their values and the challenges of funding vaccine research. We discuss the success of the campaign and their goals for the future, encouraging independent repair shops to participate and donate 10% of labor and parts for brake jobs.

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Personalized Customer Service and Marketing Strategies [AW 160]

If you’re in the automotive industry, you know it’s not just about fixing cars; it’s about providing exceptional customer service, too. Leigh Anne Best and Bill Hill, owners of Mighty Auto Pro, discuss their marketing strategies that have helped attract and retain customers. They’ve created a customer-friendly environment, providing loaner vehicles, shuttle services, and free towing up to $50.

But it’s not just about the extras. Mighty Auto Pro also emphasizes continuous learning and growth, requiring a minimum of 40 hours of training per year for their technicians. They encourage their employees to pursue their interests and hobbies, even if they are not related to auto repair. This culture of training has grown beyond anything Leigh Anne and Bill could have imagined, with technicians pushing each other to attend classes and improve their skills.

So, what can you learn from Mighty Auto Pro’s marketing strategy? Personalization, exceptional customer service, and a culture of continuous learning and growth can go a long way in retaining and attracting customers. Make everything effortless for the customer, and they’ll keep coming back.
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Cheers to Success: Building a Thriving Business and a Craft Brewery [RR 851]

Are you a fan of craft beer? Then you won’t want to miss this interview with Kimberly and Andrew Taylor, owners of Titan Auto and the upcoming Hidden Wit Brewing Company in Mosley, Virginia. In this episode, they share their passion for brewing and their exciting plans for their 10,000 square foot facility. With a brewmaster who is an award-winning home brewer, they plan to offer 12 beers on tap and eventually expand to 18, including flagship beers and special releases.

But their success doesn’t stop at brewing. They also discuss their entrepreneurialism and the expansion of their auto shop business, which includes maintaining a consistent culture across all their locations and finding creative solutions to adapt to changes in the industry and world.
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Turbo Tim’s Garage: From Core Values to Cats, How to Build a Unique Brand [RR 848]

Are you looking for inspiration on how to have fun in your business while building a unique brand? In this episode, co-owners Tim Suggs and Rachel Grewell share their approach to core values and how they recently held a leadership retreat to refine those values. They also discuss the role of cats in their branding and marketing efforts, employee management and training, and community involvement. Tim says, “Being true to yourself and your team is the key to success.” So, let’s all take a page out of their book and strive to be different and true to ourselves in our businesses and lives.
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Streamlining Workflow: Shop-Ware’s New TechApp for Technicians [RR 843]

Recorded Live at Vision 2023, this episode features Carolyn Coquillette, CEO of Shop-Ware, discussing the release of their new mobile application, TechApp, designed to help technicians manage their work more efficiently. The app allows technicians to view a list of current jobs, track their time on individual services, and easily document findings and results, including inspections. The episode also touches on the challenges of building software for the automotive industry and the importance of customer feedback in the development process.
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Why Dressing Professionally Matters in the Shop and Beyond [THA 324]

As a customer, have you ever walked into a business and been put off by the unkempt appearance of the employees or the disarray of the business? If so, you’re not alone. Join our panel as they discuss the importance of professionalism in the automotive industry and how it can impact customer trust, employee morale, and overall success. We should expect nothing less than a professional appearance and attitude from those in the automotive industry, and we should continue to project that image to the public.
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Will You Give 10 Hours to an Auto Tech Student? [RR 823]

How can 10 hours bridge the gap between the classroom and the workplace? Sue Dickson created an internship program called ‘Give Me 10’ that provides 10 hours at a local shop spread out over 5 days. It allows both the shop owner and student to see if the automotive industry is the right career path. This program currently serves 75 students and has collected over 458K in grants. It starts with an idea and passion for connecting students to the automotive industry. 
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Behind the Scenes: Hudson Family Trifecta Awards [RR 797]

Get a behind the scenes interview with Kristi and Donnie Hudson on their trifecta award winning year in 2022 as the NAPA AutoCare Shop Owner of the Year, Women in Auto Care Female Shop Owner of the Year and AAPEX Shop Owner of the Year. Jason Rainey and Joelle Pollak from NAPA AutoCare also join the conversation. 
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