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.Listen and view episode notes
Do You Have Control of Your Business Intelligence Data?
Data is king. It is ok to share your data if you know who you are sharing it with? If and when you share your customer database with vendors; what do you want them to do with it and how should you expect them to treat it thereafter?
These topics and many more are covered in the lively and wide-ranging discussion and debate over data and what happens to your data once you sign an End Users License Agreement (EULA).
Guests include Karim Morsli, Winkler Automotive Service Center, Bill Nalu, Interstate Auto Care in Madison Heights, MI, Chris Cloutier, owner of Golden Rule Auto Care in Dallas, TX and president of Autotext.me and Greg Buckley, Buckley’s Personalized Auto Care in Wilmington, DE.Listen and view episode notes
Workplace Organization: Waste. Clutter. Standardize. Improved Efficiency.
5S came from the Japanese and the concept of Kaizen, continuous improvement. 5S is a method to improve workplace organization. The 5S’s are Sort, Set in Order, Shine, Standardize and Sustain. The benefits of 5S helps you eliminate waste, and in many cases reduces your steps, minimizes injuries, and removes clutter.
Start by finding the simplest task. Perfect it and move on to the more complicated.
This panel has the expertise and experience to help you on the process of improving your workplace organization. Pat Brown retired from Cooper Tire and learned lean and took the manufacture training to translate 5S into shop management working with Twenty Groups for DSP (Dealer Strategic Planning) Twenty Group, Keith Tucker form Triple ‘T’ Tire in Dyersburg, TN and Brad & Ryan Goff from Rogers Tire in Caldwell and Meridian, ID.
Learn about 5S and how these shop owners translated the method into improve processes where they saw a measurable difference in their operation including the generation of more revenue.Listen and view episode notes
The Dreaded Come Back: The Keys To Prevention.
Comeback prevention starts at the front door. It is all about communication. Writing enough information to the technician the better he/she can handle the diagnosis.
To improve the end product and to reduce comebacks, you must build quality into the repair process. Quality control checklists at the end of the repair can only do so much. Quality, not quota, is the strategy you need to adopt to reduce comebacks. You should always be looking to improve. Your processes will drive a well-managed quality program.
The quality of parts today is in question and you need to pay attention to comebacks so your costs and reputation are managed. Tracking every comeback is a necessity if you are going to reduce your comebacks.Listen and view episode notes
Shop Owners Must Do’s: Daily Actions that Matter: Why Routine Matters.
We had a very deep discussion on critical daily actions that will keep your business compliant and running smoothly. You’ll walk away with a strong sense of discipline in building a daily task list that you stick with. Without proper planning and a strong checklist, that you are accountable for (or that you delegate), too many slips through the cracks and eventually crashes into your well-intentioned routine.
Bambi Crozier wife and co-owner with Neil Crozier, of Car Clinic in Lowell, AR, Mark Goldsmith Mark’s Independent Service in Chatsworth, CA and Rick White Rick is President and Lead Coach for 180BIZ bring their great insights on the importance of planning to be a strong business leader and watchdog.Listen and view episode notes
The Power Center of your Business is in the Back Office PART 2
Amy Mattinat, Jacquie Walter Hower, Maryann Croce and Kim Auernheimer discuss Human Resources and Marketing. Two very important responsibilities of the CEO and back office team.
Highlights: The legal document called an employee handbook, hire slow-fire fast, know your candidate’s personality and hire for a culture fit.
Track your marketing efforts, never shoot in the dark you may not be spending your money wisely. Have a good referral program for your advocate customer and your brand’s image needs to be consistent and must match the face you put in the web and social media. This group also shares some great marketing ideas.Listen and view episode notes
How To Sell Diagnostics at a Profit?
This is not an easy question to answer. Service professionals must be paid for their expertise because the cost of doing diagnostics is the most expensive service you have in your building.
It is time to move from diagnostics to testing and analyzing. Every shop needs to build a premium product around testing and analyzing. You need to be known as the ‘we can fix anything right the first time shop’. Your motto: “We have the best technicians.” Your shops testing and analyzing skills is the premium product you sell and are known for in your marketplace. No need to go anywhere else. We do the research, test, analyze and discover what is wrong. We present the solution then you decide.
Marketing this premium product requires a strong testing/analyzing process that both the service advisor and technician are totally in agreement with. The benefits allow the SA to confidently sell testing and analyzing.
The diagnostician knows that the SA will sell the value and benefits to the customer because the process dictates the work to be done. A very strong discussion and powerful take-a-ways that will arrest the black hole in your business of profitable diagnostic time.Listen and view episode notes
Building a strong business culture can be one of the hardest things a business owner can do yet the most rewarding.
It is one of the key principles in the business that you cannot touch. It’s the soft stuff. For many, it is tough to get your hands around it. This academy panel does a great job explaining culture and shows you many ways to implement and lead it.
The power of a strong business culture can be one of your biggest differentiators as a business and a strong reason you attract top talent.Listen and view episode notes
The Power Center of your Business is in the Back Office.
In this Part One Amy Mattinat, Jacquie Walter Hower, Maryann Croce and Kim Auernheimer discuss controls, operations and accounting/finance.
Highlights: Cash accountability, bank statements, trust and verify. The three stages of a business and the power of communication. With good systems, you can find where any breakdown occurred. Also discussed is team buy-in, QuickBooks, keeping good records, budgeting and cash flow.Listen and view episode notes
The Power of Performing a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunity, Threats) Review of Your Business.
Join Maryann Croce, Greg Bunch and Murray Voth for a wide-open discussion on the power and value doing a SWOT on your business. These three aftermarket professionals know the worth and outcome of a well-done SWOT.
Involve your team, assign priorities to the outcome and create a timeline to do the things discovered in this exercise. You are creating a strategic plan to best prepare your company for doing business in today’s market and into the future.
Go to the show notes page for this Academy episode #40 to download support tools.Listen and view episode notes
Are You In Compliance with Credit Card Regulations As It Relates to Chip Cards?
Steve Ciabattoni from 360 Payments explains the regulations for EMV, the chip cards. We also discuss contracts, processing fees and who makes the real money in credit card processing.
An important episode to help evaluate your relationship and what to look for in a processor. Steve gives a tip on the best fee structure, equipment leasing and the future of credit card processing. He also is outspoken on the link between the chip reader and your SMS.Listen and view episode notes
Industry outsider used his business acumen and detailed, process-based, management philosophy to grow his business.
Brian Sump is not your typical shop owner. A former professional athlete, Sump had never turned a wrench in a shop before starting Denver-based Avalon Motorsports in 2007.
Recognized with multiple industry and business awards, Brian Sump is an entrepreneur who runs six different organizations and he explains why you need to network-up and network-down.
This industry awarded shop owner brings his wisdom to the premier aftermarket podcast.Listen and view episode notes
Why Great Quality Controls Matters for Customer Retention and Shop Reputation.
A top lesson from three aftermarket colleagues who understand the value and need for a great quality control process. They leave no doubt why you need to adopt and improve your quality controls.
Tough love discussion that covers the importance of measuring your QC to help reduce mistakes (we are human we all make them) and how QC brings accountability to your overall processes. Investing in your QC program is as good as getting a five start on-line review. If you don’t you may be wiping up a two-star review.
Most shops do a great job fixing cars. That is not good enough anymore. Many more great take-a-ways that will fill up a yellow pad.Listen and view episode notes
A commitment to Lean Process Improvement will yield a better customer experience.
Lean processes minimize technician activity outside of their work bay, creates uniformity in all communication pieces between service writers and technicians, can benefit the shop by hiring alternative staff for cleaning needs throughout the shop.
Lean also help you realize the value in the placement of equipment throughout the shop space and why it makes for a more efficient operation. Be sure to match the correct technician to every job when possible, play to their strengths … and so much more.Listen and view episode notes
Is Your Customer Service Exceptional? Need to Lead in Your Market?
The Academy panel discusses a commitment to customer service that must start from a quality business culture or code of conduct. Learn about certain tactics that will make your shop stand at the top of the list as you show your customer uncompromising differentiation.Listen and view episode notes