Bad Service Managers and Broken Dreams

By Brian Canning

It does not make a dif­fer­ence how great your loca­tion is, with a bad Ser­vice Man­ag­er you will like­ly nev­er hit your goals and will in fact be lucky to sur­vive.

There is no doubt that the Ser­vice Manager’s role is a tough one but that is why we have Ser­vice Man­agers, to han­dle those crit­i­cal tasks and to take on the day to day run­ning of the busi­ness. If our Ser­vice Man­ag­er has con­sis­tent trou­ble liv­ing up to our expec­ta­tions and if he or she has a prob­lem find­ing the urgency behind the tasks that accom­pa­ny the title, my very strong rec­om­men­da­tion is start look­ing for a replace­ment today.

Being a Ser­vice Man­ag­er is a full con­tact sport and requires an indi­vid­ual who is both will­ing and anx­ious to take on that role. It is a posi­tion full of chal­lenge, uncer­tain­ty and con­stant activ­i­ty. It is a crit­i­cal posi­tion because there is nobody else in the build­ing who inter­acts so inti­mate­ly with both cus­tomers and staff and nobody else bet­ter able to assure our staff mem­bers are doing the things they need to be doing to assure our cus­tomers are hap­py, sat­is­fied and com­ing back.

A great Ser­vice Manger is focused on mak­ing all of this hap­pen and deliv­ers month after month after month. Armed with your vision for the busi­ness and your expec­ta­tions for shop per­for­mance (car count, sales, prof­itabil­i­ty, CSI), a great Ser­vice Man­ag­er is account­able and focused on not only meet­ing your expec­ta­tions but exc­ced­ing them. My very best advice is be very tough in find­ing and hir­ing the right guy or gal, do all that you can to assist him or her in mak­ing it a suc­cess and go fish­ing, take up golf or oth­er­wise get out of their way.

Ten years from now are you going to be able to walk away from the busi­ness? Or are you stuck there until your dying day. My advice would be to be to make this a top pri­or­i­ty.

If your Ser­vice Man­ag­er isn’t doing the things you need him to do, stop mak­ing excus­es for him or her and find some­body who will do the job and love the busi­ness as much as you do. He or she is out there, you just have to take the time to find them.

Bri­an Can­ning is 30 year vet­er­an of the auto­mo­tive repair indus­try who recent­ly moved to the fed­er­al sec­tor as a busi­ness ana­lyst, writ­ing for SearchAuoParts.com. Read the full arti­cle here.

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