February '19

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FEBRUARY 2019 THE SHOP 53 We live in the Midwest, and when we get snow, we clean the cars and make sure there's plenty of windshield washer fluid and snow scrapers readily available. Aside from the snow, we try to keep our vehicles clean year-round, and if a driver says a vehicle needs to be cleaned out, we will listen and take care of it over the weekend. From listening and actively making changes to help our drivers and other employees have a better experience, they in return have a better attitude, which makes it more likely they'll have better conversations while at the dealership. Several weeks ago, one of my drivers came back from a dealership with a per- sonal message from the service director. "We did the vehicle walk-around and he absolutely loved the look of the two- tone leather." The service director gave our driver a coffee and cupcake while he waited for the purchase order. This isn't the first time this dealer has given our staff cookies or cupcakes. All communication is good commu- nication, even if there's an issue with a vehicle. Your driver may likely play the middleman, even if it's not officially a part of his job while picking up and delivering cars. If your driver or technician has a good relationship with the dealership, it's more likely they will work together to make sure the message is relayed back to the shop properly, instead of handing off the keys and playing guessing games once the vehicle arrives at the shop. Think of it as a working wheel. What makes each of your customers' experiences a positive one correlates with the people of your company. Sure, it starts with a likeable salesperson, selling their charm and your products that may bring you to the opportunity to gain the dealership as a possible account. But once you're in, the faces of your com- pany appearing inside those dealerships represent the organization equally. COURTNEY LEIGH PAHLKE and her brother are second- generation partners of their father's 43-year-old company, Top Coverage. Their locations service nearly 350 dealerships in Chicago and throughout Illinois, where they work hard to grow their father's empire. Learn more at Happy, organized drivers serve as a great face for your company. What's in it for you? 9In-depth industry coverage 9Best business practices 9Trends, tips and new profit centers Get EVERY issue If you're reading this… FREE! of THE SHOP for *For professionals in the industry. Make THE SHOP YOUR go-to INDUSTRY resource! Visit

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