“Where Are They Now”. Clint Dudley was originally interviewed in Episode 5 in March 2015.
Clint Dudley from Shade Tree Auto in Grimes, IA is a disciplined goal setter. This is a very important update, as Clint has just completed building a brand new 13,000 SqFt service center.
Clint has won many national recognitions. He recently received the bronze Stevie Award in the Company of the Year – Retail category from International Business Awards. (See shop profile below for a list of honors bestowed on Shade Tree Auto)
He has been recognized by the US Chamber of Commerce; as the only small business in Iowa to receive the Blue Ribbon Small Business Award for 2015.
It was great to catch up with Clint and find out what is happening with him since our last interview 41 months ago.
- Clint believes in taking care of customers better than they expect; especially in an automotive repair shop.
- Regarding hiring: he had to improve his interview template to find the ‘right’ people.
- He looks for team members that have strong values so their integration into his culture is easier.
- Clint offers 4 Yr, 40,000 Mile warranty.
- Moved from a rental into his own building. He built it from the ground up.
- A 13,000 Sq Ft facility
- Asked his team for their input so it could be as efficient as possible.
- Heated floors.
- Two bays per tech.
- Tablet and laptop for each tech.
- Phones for each tech that keeps them hands-free to communicate.
- He feels his facility will help with training young technicians who want to enter the industry.
- His technicians are making close to six figures.
- To make money in a shop you have to have patience. Respect that your customer has their own life. If they don’t reply back to you immediately, there may be a good reason.
- When he got the right people on ‘the bus’ he started to run his business differently.
- Clint is getting his new ideas by observing and listening. They do not have to be from this industry to adopt new ideas.
- Great Habits:
- Get in early and get things done.
- Spend time with your children.
- Take time to relax.
- Do something non-work-related.
- He writes a daily journal.
- We will have issues with telematics, data and security in the future.
- We can have access to the same information that our customers will.
- He doubled his tire sales in the last year.
- His new location made him more convenient to his customer base.
- He is always updating his procedures.
- He took his entire team to Vision in 2017.
|Number of locations:||1|
|Years in industry:||16|
|Number of technicians:||4|
|Number of service advisers:||2|
|Number of lifts:||10|
|Number of bays:||11|
|Days open:||Mon – Fri|
|Annual estimated volume:||$1.7MM|
|Percent Repair vs Maintenance vs Other:||70% – 30%|
|Technician training hours per year:||40|
|Service adviser training hours per year:||40|
|Specialty:||4 Year – 40,000 mile warranty on parts and labor|
|Association memberships:||ASA, AAA|
|ASE Certifications:||ASE Master Technician, L1, M1, X1, Service Advisor|
|Supplier marketing program:||NAPA Car Care|
|Performing hybrid repairs:||Yes|
|Misson Statement:||Helping our customers make informed decisions regarding the safety and longevity of their vehicles|
|Entrepreneur hack:||Listen to people that have gone before you.|
|Philanthropy:||Grimes Chamber of Commerce, Urbandale Chamber of Commerce, Greater Des Moines Partnership, Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute, Grimes Kiwanis, Grimes Volunteer Support Services, Cub Scout, Community Youth Concepts, Boy Scouts of America, MS Moments|
|Anything else:||Shade Tree Auto has been the recipient of two US Chamber of Commerce Dream Big awards, Grimes Chamber Business of the Year, BBB Torch Award for Ethics, four AAA Top Shop Awards, and a 2017 International Business Award for company of the year- retail.|
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