Automotive & HD Business Management Articles.
Bob Greenwood. January 24, 2013. ( over 5 years ago ) 762 views
Independent shop owners and managers truly do hold an important responsibility today when it comes to creating the image of their company. The following are some “tips” that management should practice daily to maximize their company’s image and enhance the public’s perception:
1. Put a “Face” to your company: Get out there and meet the public—people like to identify with other people, and as a quality Independent Service Centre, this gives a sense of familiarity to your shop.
2. Relationships are your #1 function: It takes a long time and it takes one person at a time, but it is so important in building strength to a company. Relationships create clients, and clients create bottom-line profits for the company.
3. Control the stories being told: A great entrepreneur once said “You learned all you needed to know to run a business at your mother’s knee – if you were listening”. You don’t lie to people. You don’t cheat them. You treat them the way you want to be treated. What makes the difference in the functioning of a business is not what you do in a single encounter, but what you do over a period of time in dealing with that client.
4. Start a conversation and you start a relationship: don’t be shy. You may be at a sporting event or just standing in line for a coffee, but make an effort to start a conversation with one new individual a day. Depending on the circumstances, you create the lead-in. In business you are going to be dealing with different people, so it is important to feel comfortable starting conversations. Always carry business cards.
5. Find out what the “customer/client” wants: Ask what they like and what they don’t like about their experience with your business. Ask for continuous feedback. Relay those messages to your staff – the good, the bad and the ugly. Now everyone in the shop can be on a mission, and don’t forget to throw in a little perk for the staff when the feedback comes back positive.
The real competition today is aggressive and they’re trying hard to capture the clients from an Independent shop. Focus on the basics of your business, such as the tips above, and you will get noticed by the people you would like to retain for a “lifetime”. The Independent sector is a service and quality business. It’s also a “people” business and there is no sector of our industry that can beat the individual talent, when focused, than an Independent shop owner on a mission.