Improving Dealership Image Begins at the Dealership


The Prob­lem at Most Dealerships:

Car deal­er­ships often start with a bad rep­u­ta­tion in a shopper’s mind – par­tic­u­larly if the cus­tomer is unfa­mil­iar with your deal­er­ship, sta­tis­ti­cally they just assume the deal­er­ship can’t be trusted.

Ways to Moti­vate Your Employ­ees as Deal­er­ship Ambassadors:

1.  Plan for Suc­cess: Hold weekly and monthly meet­ings for plan for suc­cess and go over what goals have been achieved and what you are still reach­ing for. Stay focused and ask your team to write down their ideas and sug­ges­tions for a “Cre­ative Meet­ing” to go over the growth of the com­pany. Before your meet­ings be sure to have an out­line sent to every­one that will be in atten­dance at least two hours before­hand and encour­age your team to be pre­pared for brainstorming.

2.  Know Your Employ­ees’ Strengths: When hir­ing an employee, do a per­son­al­ity and strengths pro­file. This is impor­tant because you can learn what posi­tion they are best suited for and how they com­mu­ni­cate. When imple­ment­ing a new strat­egy or idea for your com­pany or depart­ment, hold a strat­egy meet­ing and go over what you are plan­ning to do with your com­pany or depart­ment. Then ask your team to write down who they think would be best suited for the new task or posi­tion and ask them to explain why. Your team works with one another on a weekly, daily and hourly basis; they know each other’s strengths in much more detail than you will.

3.  Have Clear Processes in Place: If you do not have a clear process for every task that needs to be done, there will be incon­sis­tency and fail­ure. So set your team up for suc­cess, and make sure to always antic­i­pate any­thing that may come up. Have some­one cre­ate a man­ual for each posi­tion and have processes in place so each employee will be able to be self-sufficient and con­fi­dent about their position.

4.  Be Proud of Your Employ­ees: Set goals for your indi­vid­ual employ­ees and your team. Have prizes and bonuses in place that let them know that you are proud of what they have accom­plished. Encour­age them to be self-starters, and thank them when they have stepped out of the box to help grow the divi­sion or company.

5.  Turn Mis­takes into Learn­ing Expe­ri­ences: When a mis­take hap­pens, take the time to deter­mine what caused it, how it can be fixed and how it can be pre­vented in the future. Cre­ate a process write-up and hold a train­ing meet­ing to use the mis­take as an exam­ple to improve your depart­ment or divi­sion. Don’t focus on the employee; turn every mis­take into a learn­ing oppor­tu­nity for your team.

What You Need to Teach Your Employ­ees Today:

  • Every action your employ­ees take is a reflec­tion of your business.
  • Set forth expec­ta­tions for your employ­ees act­ing as brand ambassadors.
  • Empower your employ­ees to make judg­ment calls and take action to avoid a neg­a­tive cus­tomer experience.
  • Reward them for these acts of inter­ven­tion when appropriate.

Mike Gorun is Man­ag­ing Part­ner and CEO of Per­for­mance Loy­alty Group, a divi­sion of Media Trac. Learn more when you read the two arti­cles that per­tain to Rep­u­ta­tion Man­age­ment and Employee Engage­ment here.