Even after 35 years in business, I am still looking for that one day when things go smoothly. Yesterday, Friday, everything was going fine. We were finished up a few big jobs, the schedule was filling up for next week, the weather was absolutely beautiful and everyone (including myself), was in a good mood.
Then it happened; The Friday afternoon nightmare. Just as the clock hit 5 o’clock, things began to fall apart. A brake job, just completed, had to be redone due to defective brake rotors. A BMW which was supposed to have been checked out for safety concerns now has a brake warning light on that was not discovered earlier. And the customer was told that “Everything was ok.” There was still one more car that needed a wheel alignment. With most of my techs leaving for the day, I blew up. “Hey, this 5 o’clock drop your tools and run has to stop”, I said.
I was upset, but was I right to say what I said? What I am about to tell you is not an excuse, but it needs to be said. As a shop owner for 35 years and someone working in the auto repair industry for more than 40 years, I have been through more bad days than I care to remember. I do try to be positive. In fact, I preach this to others. But, sometimes, even the preacher sins.
This morning I am sitting here typing away thinking about my day. It’s Saturday and my wife and I are spending the day with my daughter and future son-in-law visiting wedding venues.
So, when I really think about, yesterday may have been a bad day at the shop. But today is a great day in my life.
Lesson: put things in perspective and judge your life by the good things in your life, not the bad stuff that’s part of running an auto repair business.
Let’s hope I can take my own advice.