Creating Goals and Relationships for a Successful Auto Shop
When you’re running a business, it’s easy to get caught up in the numbers. You’ll check your gross profit parts Optimizer and streamline as much as you can by using your auto repair shop management software.
However, the heart of a successful auto shop is the relationships you have with your auto shop’s customers so they trust you and return to you, while their referring friends.
Kick off the new year with a brainstorm on how to make your shop more profitable in 2022. You can set larger aspirations and use your people skills to reach them.
Last month, our sales manager, Monique Mondragon, talked with Lucas Underwood, shop owner and host of the ASOG podcast, about creating goals and fostering relationships within auto care.
Check out our summary below which covers the main points to help you chart your next steps.
“You have to make friends with some of your customers so you can truly understand what’s going on, how you improve and what you’re delivering,” Monique says.
“We all have to focus on numbers to some point, but when you really become friends, I learn from you about what we could do better and that’s really important.”
Caring beyond the auto shop walls
Lucas: Some salespeople are pushy, calling and emailing all the time. With Shop-Ware, it’s never been like that. Yet you, Monique, follow our vision of what our industry is supposed to be.
Monique: We make sure that we understand the person that we’re talking to and their process. We’re people so we can’t treat shop owners like they’re just a number, then move on to the next one. You have to really understand what drives them and it’s not always just the shop itself. Sometimes, they want to be home with their families and they don’t have enough time to do that. They would love to not work every single night or on the weekends in order to have a successful auto shop.
Leveraging smart shop management software
Lucas: What one piece of advice do you give shop owners?
Monique: From a technological perspective, we need to bring the auto industry into today’s age but a lot of shop owners are used to things happening one way for God knows how many years. They want everything to continue that way but they know that it’s not working for their auto shop’s customers. If you want different results – better results — we have to do it differently. If we don’t, we’re not evolving and we’re not going to meet self-driving cars or all of these different types of evolutions that are happening in the industry.
Lucas: You’re right. If it was going to work, it would have already worked. If you want to take off to go somewhere, it takes action first. It can’t start with somebody else coming in and doing it for you.
Monique: You don’t look for a new shop management system because you want all the same functionality as those old systems. You’re looking because you need something new and different to run a successful auto shop. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be interested in looking at something else.
Creating advocates out of your auto shop’s customers
Lucas: You have real relationships with people. When I signed on with Shop-Ware, I knew if I needed someone that you would be there to support me.
Monique: I’m equally concerned about the success of your business as you are. After all, our customers are our biggest advocates. It’s really important to make them happy and it’s really important to make sure that they are successful in using our program. If they’re only using a portion of it or not using it correctly then they’re not going to get the most value out of it. Then you’re not delivering on what you told them initially and that’s really important to follow through on what you promised. It’s really sad when someone has to close their doors or they’re not making money from their auto shop’s customers.
Lucas: What legacy do you hope to leave behind?
Monique: More successful shop owners. If you can help by making them more efficient — giving them back more time to go spend either on their business or with their family — money will just fall into place. The multi shops who run our platform don’t have just one or two locations. They’re now buying four, five, six, seven-plus locations. Helping them achieve whatever goals they have and making that possible with our system would be phenomenal. Really, my legacy will be how people remember me.
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