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Would you believe that we removed this from a tire this week. The wrench end was inside the tire and the broke end was sticking out.
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As shop owners, we sometimes feel that we need to answer every question and handle every situation. While you need to be proficient as a business owner, you also need your employees to think for themselves. Empower your people to solve problem. Ask them for their opinions and don’t be too quick to jump in on every situation. The more you jump in and solve their problems, the more they will rely on you. This is not to say you don’t have their back; but a team functions best when everyone takes ownership of their position and takes responsibility to take care of problems. Will employees make mistakes? Yes. But there isn’t a shop owner on this planet that has a perfect record at making decisions. We all make mistakes. As a shop owner; teach, mentor and coach. Include your employees in on decisions that relate to their job position. When employees feel you trust them, they will begin to solve their own problems. This will set you free to work on the things that will bring you greater success.
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A few weeks back I had a problem with my refrigerator. I got a referral and called an appliance repair company. I called three times and each time I called this is what happened: "C and E appliance, please hold." I was put on hold three times for about 5 minutes. After being put on hold each time, a women would say, "What's the problem?" No engagement, no sign of interest for me the customer, no signs of caring. I gave the women a brief description of the problem and each time she told me someone would call me back. Well, no one did. So, I called for the 4th time, and as the person answered the phone I said, "DO NOT PUT ME ON HOLD." There was silence, so I continued. I explained to her that she has spoken to me three times, I left messages three times and three times you told me that someone would call me back. She replied, "You are talking to the wrong person, if you have any complaints, write a letter to my boss, after all he won't listen to me anyway." I hung up the phone and called another company. The lesson and takeaway here is simple: Who's answering your phone? The wrong people on the phone in your shop can kill your business. Have meetings with your people. Make sure you review your phone skills policy. If you don't have one, create one. Empower your people to people to handle issues. And make sure you log every phone call. If you feel you have a problem, start recording phone calls. Your phone is your lifeline to future business. So, please ask yourself....Who's answering your phone?
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How do shops handle the use of cellular phones by their technicians during work hours?
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By Ron Ipach
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By Joe Marconi
I recently made a call to my Internet provider to discuss and issue I was having. After multiple attempts at trying to explain my problem, the customer service rep on the other end of the phone had no clue how to solve my problem. She was nice, extremely polite, and had the voice of an angel. She was well-trained, but not in the art of problem solving.
Great customer service is not about being nice to people, it’s all about understanding the customer’s needs and coming up with solutions to their problems. Train your service personnel in the art of proper etiquette, but also in the art of problem solving. Empower your people to also make decisions. Set limits, but give them the authority to solve issues without every problem reaching your desk.
By [email protected]
So this year I have taken my shop towards the next level and am at a point where I need good advice and wisdom before proceeding.
I went from a one bay facility to a two bay facility and added a second lift. I am the only person working. I am looking for an employee so I can get out of the shop and start doing sales and management. I have spent a lot of money over the last years in business on tools and equipment. I need to grow because I am just way too busy and slammed with work quite frequently and staying very late at the shop to complete tasks. I have very little personal time and need to delegate. Several large ticket repairs often cause my schedule to back up. I plan to save up money to hire a good technician and to be able to start them out and have money for the hard times until I can get them up to the "speed of trust". I have worked at shops in the past and have seen employee turnover and have seen where we found a great technician but the boss couldn't pay on time for whatever reason and the tech would end up leaving. I don't want to be in that situation.
Question 1: I need to know should I be looking for a master tech or maybe a mid level tech who knows their way around??? I dont really want to take on an apprentice because I don't have time to train them and babysit them. I want someone who can hit the ground running. It would be nice to turn them loose and not have to worry about the repairs they are doing. I want to make an employee handbook and agreement for shop procedures, cleaning, showing up on time, policies, etc. so they will know up front what is expected.
Question 2: What should I expect to pay them? Salary, flat rate, bonus, a combonation of any of these? Starting pay vs normal pay?
Question 3: How did you go from a one man army to having employees and bigger successes?
I really don't need help to find one at the moment although I am open to suggestions but I want to focus on the questions at hand. I am a good tech but I am also not the fastest because I am picky and want things done right. Call it OCD or whatever but I don't like come backs. I am also a great service adviser and would rather have a tech doing the work so I can run the business. Thank you