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[Podcast] RR 407: Dennis Montalbano: He Survived a Heart Attack and Stroke and so Did His Business!


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Dennis Montalbano was born in San Francisco and raised in San Jose. He started his career in the service station business and operated the largest Gulf station on the west coast in volume.

Dennis then became the youngest Snap-On Tools dealer at 22 years old and then the youngest Field Manager for Snap-On at 30 years old. He moved to Fresno in 1982 with Snap-On and purchased German Auto Repair in 1989.

Dennis shares his recent major health challenge and how he and his business survived. His message is clear, you need to have a plan. We are not immortal.

A classic car collector who owns his first purchased car, a 1956 Corvette that he has owned for over 45 years. He is also a trained California certified Lemon Law arbitrator for over 16 years. Dennis currently serves on the Executive Board of Directors for the Fresno Regional Workforce Investment Board.

As  ASCCA (Automotive Service Councils of California) President in 2011 and again in 2016, his passion for the industry is what drives him to serve. Listen to Dennis’ previous episodes HERE.

 

Key Talking Points

  • Aging of industry  
    • Dennis had a health scare that changed perspective for living each day- time goes by too fast
      • The doctor that performed surgery was a customer at the shop
    • Need to have a succession plan no matter what age shop owner is- surround yourself with the right people and cannot control the entire business yourself
      • Who has passwords?
      • Who can get into the bank account?
      • Who will pay the bills?
      • Who will lead?
    • The stress of business owner
      • Health issues due to stress common with both men and women in stressful positions  
      • Stress signs- waking up at 4 AM not because of alarm but because overthinking about something  
      • Delegate responsibilities-Can’t have the mindset that you are the only one that can do job or task correctly  
      • Can your business continue to run without you for 30 days? Plan for the unexpected and don’t back yourself into a corner you cannot get out of
      • Starting in the automotive industry and staying in it- As cars are evolving the technology and equipment side of business rapidly changing
      • What are your health requirements for business?
      • Denial- it won’t happen to me

Resources:

  • Thanks to Dennis Montalbano for his contribution to the aftermarket’s premier podcast.
  • Link to the ‘BOOKS‘ page highlighting all books discussed in the podcast library HERE. Leaders are readers.
  • Leave me an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one of them.

 

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Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio

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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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