Quantcast
Jump to content


Drank the ATI cool-aid


Recommended Posts

I'm 8 month's into the program and have made gains in many areas. Having said that I'm frustrated with all that I've learned, changed and tried, I feel more and more like the gerbil in the wheel going in circles. One month up and the next down over and over. Although our ARO is increasing, our car count is decreasing. Also I've noticed we've lost some regular customers possibly due to our increased prices and labor rates. While we are making more with less cars going through the shop, I'm concerned about the downward trend of defecting clients. Anyone else involved with ATI experienced the same?

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

How much did you increase your prices, and in what time span? Are you charging fair rates for the level of service you provide (like a dumpy shop charging $90/hr vs a nice shop charging the same)?

Also, do you do follow up calls to your recent customers to ask them about their experience?

How about follow up calls to your "regular" customers that you don't see anymore? Maybe that will shed some light on the situation?

 

Increasing ARO and decreasing car count will generally lead you to higher profitability, as long as you are still filling the bays.

If car count has dropped so much that your techs are not working all day, then you have problems.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Bob K, I can not comment about the things you are learning from ATI however coming from the perspective of someone who has taken control of their automotive management and shop owner education into their own hands as well as the help of a consultation company coach I would like to pose to you the question of really looking at the factors as to why you are feeling the negative effects of Down business. If you are up one month and down the other you have to look into your marketing efforts both new customer and CRM. when speaking about profitability with higher ARO and a deceased car count well that is a natural occurrence. You have a finite amount of labor hours to sell so by nature if you are selling more hours per car you will have to have a decrease in car count since those sold hours are concentrated on a smaller number of cars opposed to being spread out. Also losing customers due to a price increase, that's a tricky one. In my experience I have increased prices dramatically and not felt any detrimental effects. You have #1 match the value to your price. You have to make it worth it for your customers to be paying a higher price. Also the ones you lose due to price increases may no longer fit in your mould as an ideal customer any longer. Price and money are a matter of perception. The great majority if your clientele have money to spend. I often say this to my own staff, you can spend $5 and feel like you got ripped off or spend $5000 and feel great like you got your money's worth. It all comes down to a matter of perception. The ultimate goal is to make your customers perceive that they are getting tremendous value from their purchase/investment with you. That is the golden answer.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Don't feel bad if a lower quality customer leaves! Lower car count with higher ARO will reduce the stress of the staff, increase profits and continue to bring in better new customers. We look at our bottom 20% from time to time and decide if they need to be fired. By paying more attention to the top 20% (the quiet ones) you'll have a better run and more profitable shop.

  • 80% of a company's profits come from 20% of its customers (Top 20)
  • 80% of a company's complaints come from 20% of its customers (bottom20)
  • 80% of a company's profits come from 20% of the time its staff spend
  • 80% of a company's sales come from 20% of its products
  • 80% of a company's sales are made by 20% of its sales staff[7]

 

 

Read this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pareto_principle

Edited by benzfxr
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

That principle is true in theory, not in practical real life. I am fully aware of the 80/20 rules, but say you fire 20% of your problem customers, now a new 20% will form from the new group. It always ends up the same until there's nobody left to get rid of. If you are in a large city with endless people and little competition by all means filter out the problem cases. If competition is tight or you're in a small town you'll be the next garage for rent if you are too selective. If anyone has succeeded in getting only A+ customers let me know.

 

I'm kind of playing devils advocate here.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

That principle is true in theory, not in practical real life. I am fully aware of the 80/20 rules, but say you fire 20% of your problem customers, now a new 20% will form from the new group. It always ends up the same until there's nobody left to get rid of. If you are in a large city with endless people and little competition by all means filter out the problem cases. If competition is tight or you're in a small town you'll be the next garage for rent if you are too selective. If anyone has succeeded in getting only A+ customers let me know.

 

I'm kind of playing devils advocate here.

 

 

I believe the idea is really not to achieve 100% pure top tier customers that give you no problems and pay what you want. It certainly would be nice but that would be fantasy land talk. The real take away is to always try to achieve a goal and work towards it. If the principle is in place and you know what you have to do which is in this case fire your bottom 20%, you will eventually get a lot closer to that 100% awesome customer base. Worse case scenario you fire your bottom 20% and you fill in with another set of mediocre clients however hopefully by then you will have put system in place to filter out the worse of the bunch and the new 20% will be better than your last 20! I have learned from experience there absolutely nothing wrong with firing crappy customers.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You need a good Service Writer who customers like and can communicate with easily and freely. That schedules appointments, follows up with appointments, and calls customers for after repair quality assurance , makes future recommendations, and has no cosiderations on presenting high dollar amounts. I had the same issue of ups and downs in numbers till I hired a good Service Writer that stabilized the front. You'll know a service writer is good when there is an increase in appointments and profits. I had some real losers that made the shop tank, so it really makes a difference. You do not want just another body in place that leaches income from the business. I had one guy who only had to stand in the shop and phones would stop ringing. Not kidding!! I'd send him home early phones would ring. I'd give him the day off and business would pick up. On his last day before he was fired, the shop made $43.45. The morning I fired him the shop made $10,000. by the end of the day with no sales that he created. This may seem bazaar but I've experienced it time and time again in the last 20 years I've been at the shop.

 

As for labor rate, in 2009 my labor rate was $95.00 an hour. 2010 $115.00 per hour. 2015 $125.00 per hour. Every year our net profits have gone up since 2009 from the initial labor rate increase. The car count is important but the net profits are the key indicator year after year if a decision to change your operating basis was correct. I had a one bay shop in 2009 and now have an 8 bay shop in 2015.

As far as losing customers I have lost many along the way, the lowest price seekers are probably the first to go. It bothered me at first because I wanted to be the customers go to guy for automotive work. I've also lost customers who wanted to see me stay small, strange at that may seem, there are those people who want to see you operate small time. I've lost those who wanted to play the victim, they tell you everything you did wrong to them and how it's all your fault there cars are not running right. With every loss there's a gain and sometimes that gain will be your sanity. As many business owners I'm in business to do a great job AND MAKE A PROFIT! So if that means less cars for more profit, day after day, year after year, I'm still headed in in the right direction.

 

You must know your numbers in business and not worry about a situation of lower car count if there is an increase in net income. As a shop gets more organized administratively and adds technicians the car count and income will increase. It's much easier to increase car count with lower prices but only the most vanity driven shop owner would like it to look more busy to the public out there and make less money. I've been there.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lol, thanks. We did meet. I liked that event. No matter what event or class I take I always learn something. I signed up for both ATI and Management Success. I invest alot in training and education. Both ATI and Management Success both cost a pretty penny but it's what I made of the education that was the real difference. If I made no changes in my business operations, both schools would have been just another bill to pay and a total waste of time and money. Both companies have you keep numerical graphs to see whether you are making gains or dropping the ball somewhere. I can complain and find faults in everything I've ever attended or spent money on but I'd also have to look at the improvements I've made. I expanded to an 8 bay shop from a one bay shop and have offers made on 3 local shops for sale in the area that I'd like to buy. I have spent over $100,000. on education and training in management and have out produced the previous years income consistently.

Point being every action I've taken

has a reaction including the action of no action. But the ongoing result is improvement and greater income. Both schools have changed my life in different ways,on a simple level with ATI I set the labor rate to be more profitable and eliminated my greatest liability customers which was mostly wholesale work. With Management Success I set the shop up administratively and with the proper personnel to function without my daily attendance. In the last three weeks I have worked one complete day as a fill in mechanic. I could have made improvements faster if I followed the programs more stringently.

I don't want people to get the wrong idea by the previous statement that was made that it was the worst event you ever attended. That's at the same level of someone insulting your shop but they never did business with you, they just came in for an estimate and didn't like you. As a client of both companies, both are what you make of them. But most importantly an individual and his/her company are a creation and reflection of their personal knowledge, control and responsibility for themselves and that company. The best investment I've made to date is toward my own personal knowledge and how to handle my money making machine.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Andre i respect your opinion on Management Success but what I left out of my comments about Management Success was that they did actually personally insult me during their one on one consultation. It was very demeaning and i care not to repeat my experience however lets just say it left such a bad taste in my mouth that i left without finishing the 2nd day and I called threatening to charge back my card. Thry eventually refunded me the weekend cost and apologized for their representatives action but it will still stand as one of the worst experiences i have ever dealt with. I am now working with Elite and hsve made great changes to my business. In closing i do stand by my experience as the Management Success experience was the worst class ive ever attended.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Available Subscriptions

  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

         0 comments
      It always amazes me when I hear about a technician who quits one repair shop to go work at another shop for less money. I know you have heard of this too, and you’ve probably asked yourself, “Can this be true? And Why?” The answer rests within the culture of the company. More specifically, the boss, manager, or a toxic work environment literally pushed the technician out the door.
      While money and benefits tend to attract people to a company, it won’t keep them there. When a technician begins to look over the fence for greener grass, that is usually a sign that something is wrong within the workplace. It also means that his or her heart is probably already gone. If the issue is not resolved, no amount of money will keep that technician for the long term. The heart is always the first to leave. The last thing that leaves is the technician’s toolbox.
      Shop owners: Focus more on employee retention than acquisition. This is not to say that you should not be constantly recruiting. You should. What it does means is that once you hire someone, your job isn’t over, that’s when it begins. Get to know your technicians. Build strong relationships. Have frequent one-on-ones. Engage in meaningful conversation. Find what truly motivates your technicians. You may be surprised that while money is a motivator, it’s usually not the prime motivator.
      One last thing; the cost of technician turnover can be financially devastating. It also affects shop morale. Do all you can to create a workplace where technicians feel they are respected, recognized, and know that their work contributes to the overall success of the company. This will lead to improved morale and team spirit. Remember, when you see a technician’s toolbox rolling out of the bay on its way to another shop, the heart was most likely gone long before that.
  • Similar Topics

    • By carmcapriotto
      Thanks to our Partners, NAPA TRACS, AutoFix Auto Shop Coaching, and Today's Class Tenise and Weston Chapman, owners of Black Hills Tire in Rapid City, South Dakota, discuss their initiative, Camp Drive. This hands-on camp introduces young people to the automotive industry through engaging activities like brake and alignment modules, electrical scans, and engine performance sessions. The Chapmans discuss the Camp's positive impact on participants, support from local schools and businesses, and plans for expansion. They highlight the importance of inspiring the next generation of automotive professionals and the enthusiastic feedback from both kids and parents. Tenise and Weston Chapman, Black Hills Tire, Rapid City, SD. Listen to previous episodes HERE Show Notes
      Camp Drive Concept (00:01:50) Introduction to Camp Drive initiative, its purpose, and the importance of skilled trades for young people. Camp Drive Activities (00:03:08) Description of the activities and sessions at Camp Drive, including the waiting list for participation. Engaging the Participants (00:05:19) Discussion on the hands-on activities and the excitement of the participants during the camp. Parent and Community Feedback (00:08:31) Feedback from parents and the community regarding the impact of Camp Drive on the participants. Support and Sponsorship (00:11:02) Support from aftermarket suppliers, tool companies, and businesses, as well as the non-profit status of the initiative. Expanding Camp Drive (00:12:14) Expansion of Camp Drive to include more stations and activities, including welding and HVAC modules. Logistics and Community Support (00:14:01) Management of time and community involvement in providing additional experiences for the participants. Engagement and Participation (00:15:02) The engagement of participants and the approach to ensuring their focus and involvement during the camp activities. The smiling and excited kids (00:15:42) A discussion about a young participant's enthusiasm and transformation during the camp. Interviewing students and industry encouragement (00:19:13) The importance of encouraging young people to pursue careers in the automotive industry. Dane's experience and career aspirations (00:24:28) An interview with a student, Dane, who shares his experience at the camp and expresses his career aspirations in the automotive industry. Savannah's interest in welding and automotive technology (00:31:44) An interview with Savannah, who shares her interest in welding and her experience at the camp. The competition (00:33:22) Discussion about an upcoming competition and the number of teams participating. Exploring different stations (00:33:39)The various stations at the camp, including HVAC, alignment, scanning, engines, welding, changing tires, and changing oil. Learning about automotive skills (00:34:10) The participant talks about learning to change oil, spark plugs, and brakes, and gaining knowledge about suspensions and spark plugs. Impact of the Camp (00:35:24) A participant shares their positive experience at the camp and how they learned about it through radio advertising. Career prospects (00:36:27) Discussion about the potential career opportunities in the automotive industry and the high-tech nature of the field. Experience of a 12-year-old participant (00:38:09) An interview with a 12-year-old participant who shares their excitement about welding and other activities at the camp. Engagement and hands-on learning (00:42:49) A station leader discusses the engagement and excitement of the young participants and the hands-on learning approach at the camp. Community involvement and career prospects (00:45:17) Discussion about the importance of community involvement and events like Camp Drive to introduce young people to the automotive industry as a high-tech career option. Success of the Camp and future plans (00:46:30) Reflection on the success of the camp, the engagement of the young participants, and plans for future editions, including potential additions like a plasma cutter. The importance of engaging young people (00:49:42) Discussion on the need for the automotive industry to engage with young people to secure its future workforce. Thanks to our Partner, NAPA TRACS NAPA TRACS will move your shop into the SMS fast lane with onsite training and six days a week of support and local representation. Find NAPA TRACS on the Web at http://napatracs.com/ Thanks to our Partner, Auto-Fix Auto Shop Coaching Proven Auto Shop Coaching with Results. Over 61 Million in ROI with an Average ROI of 9x. Find Coach Chris Cotton at AutoFix Auto Shop Coaching on the Web at https://autoshopcoaching.com/ Thanks to our Partner, Today's Class Optimize training with Today's Class: In just 5 minutes daily, boost knowledge retention and improve team performance. Find Today's Class on the web at https://www.todaysclass.com/ Connect with the Podcast: -Follow on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RemarkableResultsRadioPodcast/ -Join Our Private Facebook Community: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1734687266778976 -Subscribe on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/carmcapriotto -Follow on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/carmcapriotto/ -Follow on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/remarkableresultsradiopodcast/ -Follow on X (Twitter): https://twitter.com/RResultsBiz -Visit the Website: https://remarkableresults.biz/ -Join our Insider List: https://remarkableresults.biz/insider -All books mentioned on our podcasts: https://remarkableresults.biz/books -Our Classroom page for personal or team learning: https://remarkableresults.biz/classroom -Buy Me a Coffee: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/carm -The Aftermarket Radio Network: https://aftermarketradionetwork.com -Special episode collections: https://remarkableresults.biz/collections                                  
      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio
    • By carmcapriotto
      The Weekly Blitz is brought to you by our friends over at Shop Marketing Pros. If you want to take your shop to the next level, you need great marketing. Shop Marketing Pros does top-tier marketing for top-tier shops.
      Click here to learn more about Top Tier Marketing by Shop Marketing Pros and schedule a demo:https://shopmarketingpros.com/chris/
      Check out their podcast here: https://autorepairmarketing.captivate.fm/
      If you would like to join their private Facebook group go here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/autorepairmarketingmastermind
      In this podcast episode, Chris Cotton from Auto Fix Auto Shop Coaching offers valuable insights for auto repair shop owners. He emphasizes the importance of reflecting on the first half of the year and preparing for a successful second half by recognizing achievements and overcoming hurdles. Chris provides actionable steps such as revamping marketing strategies, investing in team training, and enhancing customer experience. He stresses the significance of setting clear goals, implementing strategic changes, and maintaining accountability. The episode concludes with gratitude to listeners and a reminder to stay positive and proactive in business endeavors.
       
      Supercharge Your Auto Repair Business (00:00:01) Introduction to the podcast episode and a brief overview of what to expect. Mid-Year Reflection (00:01:06) Reflecting on the first half of the year for auto repair shop owners and setting the stage for the second half. Assessing First Half Performance (00:02:11) Reviewing achievements and setbacks in the first half of the year for auto repair shops. Overcoming Personal Roadblocks (00:03:15) Identifying and addressing internal barriers that may have held back the shop's performance. Setting Clear Goals (00:05:23) Discussing the importance of setting ambitious and measurable goals for the second half of the year. Actionable Steps for Improvement (00:07:21) Providing eight actionable steps for auto repair shop owners to consider for business growth and improvement. Accountability and Monitoring (00:13:01) Emphasizing the importance of tracking progress, reviewing key performance indicators, and holding oneself and the team accountable. Seeking Support for Business Growth (00:15:01) Highlighting the value of seeking support, collaboration, and learning from a network of like-minded individuals for business success.  
      Connect with Chris:
       
      [email protected]
      Phone: 940.400.1008
      www.autoshopcoaching.com
      Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/
      AutoFixAutoShopCoachingYoutube: https://bit.ly/3ClX0ae
       
      #autofixautoshopcoaching #autofixbeautofixing #autoshopprofits #autoshopprofit #autoshopprofitsfirst #autoshopleadership #autoshopmanagement #autorepairshopcoaching #autorepairshopconsulting #autorepairshoptraining #autorepairshop #autorepair #serviceadvisor #serviceadvisorefficiency #autorepairshopmarketing #theweeklyblitz #autofix #shopmarketingpros #autofixautoshopcoachingbook
      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio
    • By carmcapriotto
      Thanks to our Partners, AAPEX, NAPA TRACS, and Automotive Management Network Wayne Colonna discusses the critical need for specialized transmission training, the increasing demand for remanufactured transmissions, and the technical intricacies of modern transmission diagnostics and repairs. The conversation also highlights the challenges of attracting young talent to the field and the importance of awareness about new technologies and industry changes. Wayne Colonna, President, ATSG and ETE Reman Company. Show Notes
      Transmission Training and Awareness (00:01:54) Discussion about the need for transmission training, awareness, and the challenges and changes in the transmission industry. Technical Complexities of Modern Transmissions (00:02:49) Insights into the technical complexities involved in diagnosing and repairing modern transmissions, including the impact of various factors on transmission function. Challenges of Transmission Diagnostics (00:12:26) The detective work and critical thinking required for effective transmission diagnostics, including examples of changes in transmission technology. Demand for Transmission Specialists (00:15:57) Discussion on the need for more transmission specialists in the industry and the challenges in attracting young people to the transmission business. Complexities of Modern Transmissions (00:23:11) Exploration of the technical complexities of modern transmissions, including the challenges in diagnosing and repairing them. Technical Challenges in Transmission Repair (00:23:52) Insights into the unique features and challenges of specific transmission models, such as the Jeep nine-speed transmission. GM's Tune PWN Programming (00:26:02) Explanation of GM's unique transmission programming system and the complexities involved in reprogramming transmissions. Challenges with 10-Speed Transmissions (00:29:42) Discussion of programming challenges and the impact of diesel system modifications on 10-speed transmissions. Profitability and Parts Availability in Transmission Shops (00:32:26) Insights into the profitability and operational challenges of transmission shops, including the impact of parts availability on shop efficiency. Innovative Design in GM's 8L90 Transmission (00:33:53) Explanation of the innovative binary pump and its challenges in priming and sealing, specifically in GM's 8L90 transmission. Thanks to our Partners, AAPEX, NAPA TRACS, and Automotive Management Network Set your sights on Las Vegas in 2024. Mark your calendar now … November 5th-7th, 2024. AAPEX - Now more than ever. And don’t miss the next free AAPEX webinar. Register now at http://AAPEXSHOW.COM/WEBINAR NAPA TRACS will move your shop into the SMS fast lane with onsite training and six days a week of support and local representation. Find NAPA TRACS on the Web at http://napatracs.com/ Get ready to grow your business with the Automotive Management Network: Find on the Web at http://AftermarketManagementNetwork.com for information that can help you move your business ahead and for the free and informative http://LaborRateTracker.com Connect with the Podcast: -Follow on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RemarkableResultsRadioPodcast/ -Join Our Private Facebook Community: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1734687266778976 -Subscribe on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/carmcapriotto -Follow on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/carmcapriotto/ -Follow on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/remarkableresultsradiopodcast/ -Follow on Twitter: https://twitter.com/RResultsBiz -Visit the Website: https://remarkableresults.biz/ -Join our Insider List: https://remarkableresults.biz/insider -All books mentioned on our podcasts: https://remarkableresults.biz/books -Our Classroom page for personal or team learning: https://remarkableresults.biz/classroom -Buy Me a Coffee: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/carm -The Aftermarket Radio Network: https://aftermarketradionetwork.com -Special episode collections: https://remarkableresults.biz/collections                    
      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio
    • By Silver Star
      Does anyone know a standard thickness for an alloy wheel edge where the bead seats? I have a debate going on over a wheel being to thin to use. A comparable wheel measures at 8mm thick, this one measures at 5.6mm thick. Anybody able to weigh in? I have seen other alloy wheels at 5mm thick.
    • By Changing The Industry
      Has Certification Testing Been Dumbed Down? #podcast #automotivebusiness #carrepair


  • Our Sponsors



×
×
  • Create New...