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I know of 2 other shops that have used their consulting services in the past, and attended numerous seminars. Although I haven't personally sought out their service for my shop, I can tell you that,depending on your circumstances, it may be the best or the worst decision you make.


From the countless conversations I've had with my shop owner/friends, it depends on your expectations. For example, one person said that their first piece of advice was that if he wanted to make more money, start by raising his prices. That is either genious, or the sillyest, most expensive peiece of advice to get, depending on your own circumstance. Much of the advice, and ongoing accountability you'll experience will be driven by the very expensive nature of the relationship. Both friends of mine admitted that they often tried following their consultant's advice on every point, not because they agreed, but beccause they were paying them a lot of money, and it felt silly to do so and then NOT do everything they suggested.


Some of it worked out well for them, but on other points, they found themselves telling their consultant that they would simply NOT continue one practive or another, and the response they got was, "Well if you don't get thte results you're seeking now, it's because you didn't follow ALL of our advice." Again - this is either genius or the silliest notion.


Overall, I've seen plenty of the programs and pratices they offer, and although I haven't been privy to their one-on-one phone counseling, I think their MUST be a customized approach to each shop's success, as every shop's challenges must vary in ways that should give a professional consultant concern enough to customize the approach, right?


I think information is worth something. However, if you already know you should be selling work to land on a particular gross profit margin, you understand why we charge shop supplies, you have a grasp on the concept of technician efficiency, etc...how much is it worth for them to teach you these things all over again?


As the folks at Manageent Success ask often...do you know where the "Black Hole" is in your business? What piece of statistical data represents the biggest challenge to your own growth or sales/profitability goals? Plenty of sales, but your profit margin is too low? Have an ample car count, but find that your average repair order is lacking?


We run our own custom report each week we affectionately call our "10 Key Economic Indicators" report. It helps us see a picture of the previous week, and where OUR black hole was. When we see a pattern we don't like, it helps us to target the right department, or effort, and make th correctiong quickly. It's nice when we see 9/10 of our key indicators hitting the target more than a few weeks in a row...but as soon as something starts to slip, we're all over it...


-Just one guy's opinions

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Our family shop is currently on their program. My father in law signed up about six months before I came on in management at the shop. The first course I took at their facilities was "Service Writer School". For the first three days we used L. Ron Hubbard's material to be "calm under pressure". It was terrible.

The teachers were excellent, the student involvement was better than I have been used to, but the material was horrible.


The last two days were completely practical. These days were taught by a local shop owner named Mike Proud. He had been through every program MS offered and was extremely knowledgeable. He was matter of fact concerning MS material, what he liked and didn't like, and what worked for him. I ended up being able to eat a few meals with Mike after hours and this helped.

I am skeptical of MS. They have based most of their material off of L. Ron Hubbard's Scientology teachings. Some of the teachers and coaches are substandard. But, a lot of the program works if you work it. Much like everything else you have to devote to it 110%. When I was allowed to partner with my FIL and get involved in the coaching, management, and company leadership, I saw the benefit.


We're in the Transmission business. With two years we've raised our average RO $200 to $400 dollars, raised our gross profit percentage to an average of 55% to 60%, and we opened a second location two weeks ago. This is the best growth and prosperity that we've seen since our heyday in the late 90's early 00's.


Now my wife is involved and we are looking to grow our shop and customer service to hand down to our children when they get old enough. We're committed in a way we didn't even know was possible and it's exciting!

My advice, go to a meet up and talk to the owners that have been through or are involved in the course. It's good for some and not for others, but it mostly depends on if you're hungry for success and open to working their plan. Eat the meat, spit out the bones and it works.

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The advice given by the other two shops is great advice, I am on the ms program/ was on their program and it does have some great points and stats to track and does give you some good ways to improve yoyr business. It is however very expensive and on going. I guess it did save my marriage but I coiuld have saved a bunch of money finding and talking to other successful shop owners. Once you are on the program and almost finished with a course $5k plus, each one, they prep you for the next course and the next one, and so on.... There are pluses and minuses to all programs and I have spent tons of money searching out what works and doesn't work. MS will tell you and show you what works and how to do it their way but that gets very expensive. I became a shop owner after watching my bosses make all the money, I was a tech not a business owner so I needed the help to change my mindset, because as you know the owner does not make a ton of money, no matter what the techs think. I don't know if you can post phone #s here, so check out my website and contact me there, autoworksserviceandrepair.com. I'll help anyway I can, thanks

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  • 3 months later...
  • Alex changed the title to Management Success Seminars

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  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

         1 comment
      I am going to borrow a quote from billionaire, Warren Buffet, “The best investment you can make is in yourself,” This statement, while simplistic, speaks volumes. A shop owner is much more than a boss, a shop owner is a leader. And leaders are solely responsible for the success of their team. This means that you must work hard and commit to a life of continuous learning and improvement. It also means that if the team fails, a leader must always blame himself or herself for that failure and find ways to improve.
      For your business to flourish, you must invest your time and energy in understanding what your role is in your company. It also means that you must be committed to continually improving your level of competence. This does not mean that every task is your responsibility. However, it does mean that the buck stops with you. If your business is not where it needs to be, or you are looking for increased growth, then it is your obligation to do the hard work and set goals, have the vision, perform the research, and develop the plan to achieve your overall objectives.
      When you invest in yourself to become the best leader and the best businessperson you can be, others around you will feed off your energy and your passion. This sends a strong message to everyone on your team that you have what it takes to bring the company to the next level.
      One last thing, another obligation to your company is assembling the right team of people around you. Once you have the right people, you need to invest in them too. Find what truly motivates them, not what you believe inspires them. Be a coach to your employees and always strive to bring out the best in them. Be strong with your convictions and expectations, build strong relationships with your employees, and don’t be afraid of admitting when you drop the ball.
      While Warren Buffet is best known for making billions of dollars with his investment strategies, I want to believe that this quote has its basis in something that money cannot buy.
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