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A ride to the Mall with my wife today (yes, I went to the Mall, got a problem?) gave me assurance that things are really getting back to normal. The stores were full, the roads were packed and expect for the masks people are wearing, you would think it's just another ordinary summer weekend! 

 

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    • By Joe Marconi
      Do customers really have clear expectations when they arrive at your shop?  Think about it.  Who is responsible for setting clear expectations?  Consumers may have a preconceived idea about what to expect, but when it comes down to what or who sets the expectation, it's the shop's responsibility. 
      Great customer service is created by the shop and its people. The consumer will judge that experience, but they don't create it, you do. 
      We may think that the consumer will tell us what they expect from us.  I think it's the opposite. 
      Henry Ford once said: “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.”
       
       
    • By carmcapriotto
      Doug Grills from AutoStream Car Care Center is a chain of 7 family-owned, automotive service facilities that deliver honest and professional automotive repair and maintenance services to customers in the Greater Baltimore/Washington, DC area. Doug along with his partner Rick Levitan has been around the service station business for over 25 years and has built their reputation by offering best-in-class service to their customers. All AutoStrem Car Care technicians are ASE Certified and the shops are AAA approved. Listen to Doug’s previous episodes HERE.
      Mike DelaCruz- National Sales Manager, Auto at Broadly
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      Key Talking Points
      Being On Time Responsibility and create an environment you want to be in and be on time Avoid anxiety when rushing Be early to be on time for your customers Being late affects ourselves and other people Making an Effort Showing effort and giving 100% is showing commitment, demonstrating to everyone else on team Be focused on your work, lead by example, don’t miss things you’re required to do Being High Energy Doesn't mean coffee or energy drinks, its having an internal flame People are drawn to others with high level energy Introvert- quietly stir the flame, be intentional, choose enthusiasm Stress kills energy- humor, exercise, sleep etc Create work life harmony- life outside of work that stirs your passion will reenergize you Having a Positive Attitude Take a hard look at the impact you have on people and business You don’t know what is going on in other peoples lives- words and attitude are powerful Do you want to have a positive or negative impact on others? Leave your problems at the door and be kind Failures and disappointments happen- vent upward not downward Being Passionate Passion involves feeling and emotion and is infectious Smile when answering the phone- “feel the smile” Sales- the transference of feelings Using Good Body Language First impressions are everything- made within 7 seconds of contact Positive non verbal cues- engaged, approachable Eye contact, smiling, posture, arms and hands (cross arms, hands in pockets =not engaged) Non verbal cues must match your verbal cues! Being Coachable No ego when coming together to achieve a common goal- build together  Allow yourself to be coachable- be humble and open to learning/new ideas Doing a Little Extra Be willing to go above and beyond Price of entry- doing what you’re required to do. Living the job description Push yourself and take initiative  Being Prepared 100% effort- proactive to be prepared Cant serve others when ill prepared  Essential and not optional when it comes to reducing stress Success doesn't come from what you do occasionally, it comes from what you do consistently  Having a Strong Work Ethic Always building a reputation- invest in yourself, team and company Work hard and generate results Chick fil-A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2v0RhvZ3lvY
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      Mobile Listening APP’s HERE
      Join the Ecosystem – Subscribe to the INSIDER NEWSLETTER HERE.
      Buy Carm a Cup of Coffee 

      This episode is brought to you by Shop-Ware Shop Management. It’s time to run your business at its fullest potential with the industry’s leading technology. Shop-Ware Shop Management will increase your efficiency with lightning-fast workflows, help your staff capture more sales every day, and create very happy customers who promote your business. Shops running Shop-Ware have More Time and generate More Profit—join them! Schedule a free live demonstration and find out how 30 minutes can transform your shop at getshopware.com

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    • By Joe Marconi
      It's hard to believe that it's almost a year since COVID-19 hit.  And for many businesses, and repair shops, it's been a challenge.  While many areas around the country have not seen a downturn, there are other areas that have been harshly impacted.
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      I urge everyone to focus on people: Your family, your employees, your customers, and the community.
      With regard to your customers, they will remember you and their experience long after the water pump or mass air filter you replaced in their car.  
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      Barry’s energy is contagious no matter if he is in a session with a client, giving a keynote address, or rolling up his sleeves in a workshop. Barry is a business coach with his positive mental attitude, incredible work ethic, and determination for excellence, his results-oriented approach is matchless.
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      Got your attention? Please read on...
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      January 2020 started without a hitch. We hit our sales and profit goals in textbook fashion. However, by the end of February, it was obvious that something wasn’t right. Sales for the month dipped by more than 30 percent. It was devastating. What we didn’t realize was that this was just the beginning of even greater losses. By the time Governor Cuomo of New York issued the stay-at-home order on March 22, sales had dropped 75 percent. With most of the country in lock-down, I didn’t know what to fear more—the coronavirus or the impending financial disaster the world was about to endure.  
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      Before we go on, it’s important that we all remember those that have lost their lives due to COVID-19.  As in any crisis, there will be suffering. However, as a society, we must not dwell on it or let the crisis beat us. We must find a way to fight it and succeed.  
      When the impact of the virus first hit, emotions filled my mind every waking moment, mostly due to the uncertainty of the situation. Then, reality set in and all I could think about was my obligation to others. As an essential part of the community and the nation, it was my obligation to keep the doors open and be there to make sure that those that needed to get to work, could. If we were to win, survive and thrive, we had to create a winning environment. That meant that I had to elevate my leadership to a new level, put the health and welfare of my staff before anything else and realign my goals. In the coming days and weeks, I would get a working man’s PhD on how to win in times of crisis. 
      The first lesson learned in all this is to have the right mindset. We can’t look backward in time or wait around for a return to what we perceived was once normal. Looking forward and building a new future is all that matters. If you tell yourself, “the sky is falling.” It will.  Negativity spreads like a virus and infects everyone around you. Your mind shuts down in panic mode, clouding your judgment and mentally and physically paralyzing you. You must remain mentally strong and positive, even when you know the brutal facts of the situation. This is crucial. You, the leader of your shop, cannot lead others if you show fear and negativity. Be human, show emotions, but have the mental fortitude and show your team that we will get through this crisis. 
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      My hope is that by the time you read this article, COVID-19 will be well under control.  Human interaction is crucial to our overall well-being. We need not only, the emotional touch of another person, but also the physical touch of others.  While Facetime and Zoom will get us through, it will never replace a good old fashion handshake and a hug. 
      This story was originally published by Joe Marconi in Ratchet+Wrench on June 5th, 2020

    • By Joe Marconi
      Due to COVID-19, many repair shops experienced a severe economic downturn, some with a drop in sales over 50%.  Without a strong cash reserve and/or SBA funding help, many shops would have gone under. 
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      We will get through this together.

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