Performance & Hotrod Business - April '15

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6 n Performance & Hotrod Business n April 2015 I t seems that somewhere in the pages of every issue of Performance & Hotrod Business magazine, someone is advis- ing shop owners to keep changing. Sometimes, instead of change, the word may be adapt. Or evolve. Or reinvent. (You get the picture.) But the message is always the same: successful businesses keep moving forward. This recommendation may seem counter-intuitive to thriving companies. If it's not broken, why fix it? If I'm making money, why would I want to head in a different direction? And if I focus on a particular market niche—maybe engine building, vehicle customization of a specific era, or a certain class of racing—how much room for change is there anyway? In most cases, the point isn't to upset the apple cart, or to redirect aspects of a business that are working well. Instead, it's about minor tweaks that, when added up over time, show that your company is adaptable and progressive. This month's issue happens to have many suggestions on how small changes now could lead to bigger profits later. For instance, in the diesel market, insiders are suggesting that shops prepare for a wider range of customers, vehicles and service demands as the popularity of the niche continues to grow. "Companies large and small have to think big picture," advises Brian George, CEO of Sinister Diesel. "Shops that only offer a few specialized parts will begin to disappear, while those that stay ahead of both customer and regulatory demands will continue to grow." Meanwhile, in the hot rod dashes market, change means responding to the trend of incorporating the latest gauge technology into classic vehicle interiors. "I am always fascinated with how much this market changes," says Glenn Cohen, president of Prosport Inc., using that word again. "As the technology changes, so do the trends. Right now a lot of people are using multicolored digital electronic gauges in older hot rods, for a mix of new and old." Columnist JoAnn Bortles explains that even something as simple and straightforward as improving the lighting in your shop can be a change for the better. "I noticed the shadows when I was doing really tedious things and they were driving me nuts," explains shop owner Mike Vandevior, regarding his recent shop lighting upgrade. "I had gotten to a point of wearing a headlamp." If a certain aspect of your business is driving you nuts, then a decision to adapt, or evolve, or reinvent, is a must. After all, the professionals in this market aren't exactly known for embracing "business as usual" anyway. "It's just so much healthier, in life or in business, to be diversified," says Steve Frisbie of Steve's Auto Restorations. Another word to use instead of change is improve—improvements that benefit your customers, your employees and your bottom line. When it comes to choosing the direc- tion your business is heading, it's advisable to go with the forward flow, and not always the status quo. Forward Flow, not Status Quo n DRIveR'S Seat Publisher Kent Bradley – Associate Publisher Michael Murray – Executive Editor Jef White – Managing Editor Eddie Wieber – __________________________________ Art Director Linda Cranston – Associate Art Director Iveth Gomez – Graphic Designer Dayne Pillow – __________________________________ ADVERTISING SALES Michael Murray – SALES ASSISTANT Becca Corona – __________________________________ Advertising Production Coordinator Kristina Steiner – ___________________________________ TRADE SHOW SALES Laurie Zydonik – Trade Show Sales Coordinator Jackie Horn – ___________________________________ Technical Contributor Mike Mavrigian – Contributing Writers Timothy F. Bednarz, JoAnn Bortles, John Carollo, Doug Dwyer, Ace Eckleberry, Regis Finn, John Gunnell, John F. Katz, Ron Knoch, John Marsteller, Naseem Muaddi, Jake Rishavy, Harry Weimann __________________________________ NATIONAL BUSINESS MEDIA, INC. President & CEO Robert H. Wieber, Jr. Vice President / Integrated Media John Bennett Vice President / Publishing Dave Pomeroy Vice President / Finance Kori Gonzales, CPA Vice President, NBM Events Susan Hueg, CEM, CMP Director of Audience Development Lori Farstad Director of IT Wolf Butler Jef White Executive Editor

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