RR 359: Mike Maleski. PSK Performance – Underappreciated So He Opened His Own Shop.

Mike Maleski is the Owner of PSK Performance in Pittsburgh, PA. He started the business 5 years ago after 7 years of working for Honda and various independent shops doing everything from specialty Euro to mobile electronics installation. He holds multiple ASE, MECP, and State recognized certifications. He went to Rosedale Tech and acquired an Associates Degree in automotive technology under the wing of Paul “ScannerDanner”.  

In his (very little) free time, he likes to spend it with his family, self-educate to stay current, and brainstorming new ways to grow his business!

Key Talking Points:

  • Mike left a job at Honda dealership and started a business, PSK Performance LLC, 5 years ago working on primarily European vehicles
    • He felt disposable at the dealership and not appreciated- Shows appreciation and love to own employees every day.
    • He was nervous to leave a comfortable job.
  • Networking- Utilizing contacts from Vision as mentors and friends to ask business questions and advice.   
  • Stays connected with former college with presentations to students and is on the advisory board.
  • Makes his career in diagnostics.
  • Growth plan for facility, staff and second location.  
  • Labor rates
    • Increased by almost double than the original rate when first opened.
    • Parts margin- 45% markup.
  • Tech shortage
    • Apprentice- Grow your own tech.
    • Recently hired new tech- let the new prospect know they will be appreciated, everyone works together, customer treated properly
  • As most Mike was a tech first, now a businessman. He understands that his role is evolving and he needs to work on the business.
  • He is changing his learning curve to that of business acumen.
  • He handles the tough diag side of the business and is working to get one of his guys up to his level.
  • He met the trained by tech guys at Vision.
  • He is quick to point out that he is still a; mom and pop; shop
  • 10 -15 year plans another location
  • He is an advocate for the future.
  • Paul Danner is one of the reasons he is such a good diag.

Other Resources:

Shop Profile
Number of locations: 1
Total square feet of all facilities: 3,900
Years in industry: 12
Years of business ownership: 5
Number of technicians: 3
Number of service advisers: 1
Number of lifts: 3
Number of bays: 3
Days open: Mon-Fri
Labor rate: 95/hr – a recent increase from 80 at our 5-year mark.
Average car count: 25-30 per week. We perform larger services primarily so we do not have 40 oil changes a week.
Percent Repair vs Maintenance vs Other: 50-25-25
Technician training hours per year: 50
Service adviser training hours per year: 10
CEO training hours: Every Chance Available/Daily
Specialty: We are a specialty shop that performs not only routine repair and maintenance services such as State Safety Inspection and Alignments, but we perform vehicle tuning and modification as well.
Specialist in: Import and Euro is our target clientele. VW/ AUDI Primarily. Honda/ Acura is my dealer back background so I brought a lot of those customers with me when I left the dealership.
Personal certifications: Mike was Honda Goldstar certified when working for the dealer, MECP certified ( aftermarket mobile audio certification), Technician in the shop is Audi Master Certified.
Special accreditations: Miscellaneous General ASE certs between the technicians in the shop. I was Honda Goldstar Certified when at the dealership. Misc
Shop management system (SMS): Mitchell and Quickbooks
Website provider: Being rebuilt and restructured at this podcast release
Primary supplier: Advance/CarQuest
Performing hybrid repairs: Yes
Engaged with a supplier advisory council: Yes
Succession plan: Yes
Biggest challenges: Technician Shortage
Entrepreneur hack: NETWORKING is key to spreading the word and your reach throughout the professional community. It will reverberate out to the general public and your business demographic
Philanthropy: We support local charities and donate to our local schools. Being active alumni with Rosedale Technical College, assisting on the advisory board, presented in Paul Danner’s classroom has helped me share my experience with future technicians


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About the author, Carm Capriotto, AAP

Carm is the founder and host of the Remarkable Results Radio Podcast and the pioneer of automotive aftermarket podcasts. Carm calls on his years of experience in the aftermarket to bring engaging stories from his guests.

Listen to raw, unfiltered, honest, and sincere stories that include insights, trends, best practices, and expertise. Each interview brings an opportunity to learn one new thing through the stories of personal achievement. Many podcast guests tell their story of transformation from working in their business to working on it.

As host of over 1,000 episodes, Carm uses his enthusiasm and passion for the aftermarket especially the service sector to take his listeners on a journey showcasing successful service professionals’ paths to Remarkable Results. He also enjoys interviews with aftermarket industry thought leaders who bring their industry perspectives to his listener.

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