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Gas prices came down, what happened?


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So gas prices are down, really down. Why have we not bounced back economically? Well, it's bigger than gas prices at this point. Bailouts, government interventions, and what else?

 

Where do you think this is all going and how will it affect your bussiness?

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So gas prices are down, really down. Why have we not bounced back economically? Well, it's bigger than gas prices at this point. Bailouts, government interventions, and what else?

 

Where do you think this is all going and how will it affect your bussiness?

 

Many are predicting $1 a gallon by spring. However, I doubt that free gas would cause a significant increase in service business right now. The consumer has really been frightened and that fear is not about to subside anytime soon.

 

Yet, cheap gas means one less thing against shops for the time being and should help shops do a bit better overall in the short term. A huge dam of car repair is building...at some point it will leak, if not, break. As shops and dealer close, those remaining will be a better position.

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Now is the time for all independent shops to position themselves as solvent companies in this economic downturn. Those who fight now will reap the benefits down the road. In my opinion, many shops are beginning to see positive signs that there is opportunity out there.

 

I urge all shops to continue there marketing and advertising. It will pay off.

 

During the elections, I believed that the candidate that could offer a clear solution to drive the fuel prices down, would get elected and bounce the economy back. Well...I guess they didn't figure on the mortgage collapse. Too many things happened at the right time, to make the fall of gas prices ineffective.

 

People holding on to their cars, fears of buying a new car, and economic factors...all make for a good scenario in the inidependent automotive industry.

 

Like Joe said...MARKETING! This is the best time to market your business to potential customers.

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  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

         3 comments
      Got your attention? Good. The truth is, there is no such thing as the perfect technician pay plan. There are countless ways to create any pay plan. I’ve heard all the claims and opinions, and to be honest, it’s getting a little frustrating. Claims that an hourly paid pay plan cannot motivate. That flat rate is the only way to truly get the most production from your technicians. And then there’s the hybrid performance-based pay plan that many claim is the best.
      At a recent industry event, a shop owner from the Midwest boasted about his flat-rate techs and insisted that this pay plan should be adopted by all shops across the country. When I informed him that in states like New York, you cannot pay flat-rate, he was shocked. “Then how do you motivate your techs” he asked me.
      I remember the day in 1986 when I hired the best technician who ever worked for me in my 41 years as an automotive shop owner. We’ll call him Hal. When Hal reviewed my pay plan for him, and the incentive bonus document, he stared at it for a minute, looked up, and said, “Joe, this looks good, but here’s what I want.” He then wrote on top of the document the weekly salary he wanted. It was a BIG number. He went on to say, “Joe, I need to take home a certain amount of money. I have a home, a wife, two kids, and my Harly Davidson. I will work hard and produce for you. I don’t need an incentive bonus to do my work.” And he did, for the next 30 years, until the day he retired.
      Everyone is entitled to their opinion. So, here’s mine. Money is a motivator, but not the only motivator, and not the best motivator either. We have all heard this scenario, “She quit ABC Auto Center, to get a job at XYZ Auto Repair, and she’s making less money now at XYZ!” We all know that people don’t leave companies, they leave the people they work for or work with.
      With all this said, I do believe that an incentive-based pay plan can work. However, I also believe that a technician must be paid a very good base wage that is commensurate with their ability, experience, and certifications. I also believe that in addition to money, there needs to be a great benefits package. But the icing on the cake in any pay plan is the culture, mission, and vision of the company, which takes strong leadership. And let’s not forget that motivation also comes from praise, recognition, respect, and when technicians know that their work matters.
      Rather than looking for that elusive perfect pay plan, sit down with your technician. Find out what motivates them. What their goals are. Why do they get out of bed in the morning? When you tie their goals with your goals, you will have one powerful pay plan.
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