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ALWAYS LISTEN TO THE CUSTOMER !


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We all have the good, the bad, the liar, and honest customer. This customer brings me in his personal 2006 Hummer H2. Looks at me hands me a dozen Titleist Pro V golf balls and says fix my truck . We chit chat a few and he says I took the vehicle to SO & SO to have a leak in the top light fixed and carpet dried out, I opened the door and this thing smelled like a dead animal in there for days. He says that is not the problems crank it up and watch what happens, out pf his mouth he says it has gremlins in it. The gauges go off all lights go off windows up and down , RPM gauge works. Then bam it goes to normal. I feel underneath carpet still wet , the guy had charged to take out and dry this. I said Bill I am going to have to dry this out. As I said Bill is the both honest and good customer, He says Dave I do not care what it cost , he actually does own a large bank here, fix it or Ill go find a new one. This is one of those "Center Of Influence" customers I have, his friends are the people you want for customers. I have others say yeah old so and so was telling me about you in the Country Club how good and honest you are. He things I hung the moon and can fix anything. OK, heats on right out of gate I pick up the Hummer at the bank drive to office and never once did it happen. I get to work, yank out seats ,pull carpet up and yank out padding and threw it in garbage it stunk bad. I am sorta PEE-OD at the guys that charged him 611.00 already and hosed a good guy . I put fans under both sides of carpet and dry it out all night . Put new padding in it rehooked all plugs and redid the 2 small grounds on floor , remember, he always said this happened when those guys did the previous work. I actually called the shop up that did the work and spoke to the owner and ask him how much water was in it and if they unplugged anything , he denies all other than we dried it out and took the seats out. I keep the high road and said thank you. Heck wasn't my money, it still sorta ticks me off when I see charges for something that is so easy to repair correctly, the previous shop was a Auto Trim Shop, heck he should have cut the wet pad out he new dry mat in stock . He had the seats out he acknowledged that earlier. He says we dried it out and did not do anything to the computers. I drive car home , 13 miles home ,13 miles back. Bill comes to pick up Hummer it is running like a dream , no gauge issues or smell. I charge him 500.00 he shakes my hand , says your the best David, dont know what I would do without you. I am still a little concerned and told him nothing hit me in the head as the previous gauge issue . I saw one right door connector wire that was not altogether , I also reset all grounds. We shake hands again and out the door he goes , then the worst thing ever happens I look at my phone on the other line is one of my best Customers who just left, not mad , he just says David this thing has gone crazy windows rolling down radio lights off all gauge lights on , weird stuff . Like a BCM. I said Bill you gotta bring it back in the morning Sat. I am going to be out Tue and Wed. He pulls up , great customer and guy and says It never did this until I took to Auto Trim Shop. Call me when it is done. Game on. I am like dang, so I yank dash covers off go to Mitchell print all my circuits, get out my power probe and scanner and here we go. I am getting very erratic numbers from the DLC ground wire , it was killing my scanner when it would go into this mode. I worked on it for 3 hard hours trying to make it happen it was on and off. I finally was done with it yesterday call my brother who I think could be Einstein of electricity, he pops off , I guarantee you I can tell what is wrong with it. I said ok big boy I am right around the corner, Sunday at 2.00 PM . I pull up give him run down , he reads schematics and says this and that at 5 o'clock he says I don't think it is ground issue I think computer. I come home and making plans who to take to this morning . I said to my wife at 8 PM last night i am gonna get my bright light and go look at this truck , I will redo grounds real quick. I come running in house come help me , she is 5'2' tall I said get that flashlight tell me what I am pushing with my foot under the dash it is triggering the dash issue, "Finally Something", I Love Her To Death, 25 years, she is blonde. I am saying put your finger on what my left big toe is touching. Finally I get down there she gets in seat and I start wiggling gas pedal mount , nothing, I smartly say go back inside I get in truck stretch out and put my toe of my shoe in a area under dash stretched out and as I tap with my foot the GREMLINS go nuts. I go to hop out off this Hummer and I feel new fake leather on the side of seat. When I was moving over edge of seat the gremlins started I put foot back under dash and start moving my rear end around in seat. I hop out go underneath backseat unplugged the electrical connector to the controls. BINGO. The guy had resewn a piece of fake leather onside of seat when they had it there. When the kid put the seat back together he just let the main harness hang it got wedged in between 2 bars inside the seat I took side control panel off seat. When I started doing it one screw was different by about 3 inches longer and had penetrated the harness also. I took pictures of it. I did a lot of work because a kid, i hope,did not take the time and do the job right. The sew looks good he just crammed the harness back inside the seat and ran a screw threw it because he did not put the plastic clips back in the holes that they were in. My guys will have a lesson on quality and control this morning. ""I GUESS I SHOULD HAVE LISTENED""

WHEN THE CUSTOMER SAID IT DID NOT DO IT UNTIL THEY TOOK THE SEATS OUT, DRIED IT OUT AND FIXED THE WATER LEAK IN ROOF LIGHTS. He was right. If people only new what we go through working on these new vehicles. So how was your weekend. :)

 

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Great Tire Deal

IM , I got a little carried away, sorry about the poor grammar and punctuation. I was a little excited about this repair, I was also in a hurry. Again , sorry about that. I will keep my post shorter next time. I actually have to wonder if I went the wrong way to the diagnosis of that one little wire.. I guess I will live and learn. Have a good week.

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This is one of those "Center Of Influence" customers I have, his friends are the people you want for customers. I have others say yeah old so and so was telling me about you in the Country Club how good and honest you are. He things I hung the moon and can fix anything.

 

tirengolf,

 

I really liked reading your story! You are quite a story-teller

because I felt I was right there following along with how it unfolded.

 

This is a great reminder that servicing today's vehicles requires

an effort between the shop and the customer.

 

The customer doesn't know what information is important but listening

to what they say and/or being a detective is an invaluable skill that

goes a long way in helping to solve tricky issues, as you have described.

 

The other thing I took away from this is: every customer is a "Center

Of Influence" customer. Some just have a bigger center of influence

than others.

 

Great job getting to the bottom of it! It's hard to say what the payoff

will be because this guy could tell everyone in your town that YOUR

shop is the only one they should use for their vehicle needs.

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  • 2 months later...

I've seen so many repairs such as this especially from certain install shops in Atlanta that seem to screw up more cars than they actually fix yet they are one of the busiest shops out there just because they exists.

I can only Imagine how many heated discussions take place by irate customers there given the complaints we see from this one shop in particular.

Customers sometimes get bored when I ask so many questions while trying to collect information about the gremlins and recent repairs or customizations.

They sometimes have the attitude that they just don't care about the details, don't want bothered with questions and just want it fixed.

This usually means calling up the shop that did it and dealing with even more stonewalling, denial and attitude.

Yes people don't know what we have to go through to fix these things and a little help up front goes a long way.

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  • 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.
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