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Oh Customers, Why So Clueless?


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So it seems I keep running into this same conversation (especially with company vehicles) and I'm wondering if it frustrates anyone else. I'll lay out an example of a real conversation.

 

cust: My van doesn't run right, it has no power.

me (after I scan it): There are a dozen codes stored in the vehicle, how long has the check engine light been on?

cust: A year or so

me: Well since so many sensors and parts have failed its going to be $950 to fix everything

cust: WOW WHY SO MUCH?

me: Because you have negleted the vehicle for over a year, if you would have brought it in when the light first came on we could have fixed the issues that caused more issues

cust: I just never have time

me: ...............okie dokie

 

 

And as you all know it can be a nightmare to troubleshoot a misfire when you have 7 codes that can directly cause the misfire. And the best is when some customers just want the misfire fixed and don't care about the codes and when you replace the first part and it doesn't fix the misfire they get all bent out of shape like it's my fault.

 

Charles

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  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

         5 comments
      I recently spoke with a friend of mine who owns a large general repair shop in the Midwest. His father founded the business in 1975. He was telling me that although he’s busy, he’s also very frustrated. When I probed him more about his frustrations, he said that it’s hard to find qualified technicians. My friend employs four technicians and is looking to hire two more. I then asked him, “How long does a technician last working for you.” He looked puzzled and replied, “I never really thought about that, but I can tell that except for one tech, most technicians don’t last working for me longer than a few years.”
      Judging from personal experience as a shop owner and from what I know about the auto repair industry, I can tell you that other than a few exceptions, the turnover rate for technicians in our industry is too high. This makes me think, do we have a technician shortage or a retention problem? Have we done the best we can over the decades to provide great pay plans, benefits packages, great work environments, and the right culture to ensure that the techs we have stay with us?
      Finding and hiring qualified automotive technicians is not a new phenomenon. This problem has been around for as long as I can remember. While we do need to attract people to our industry and provide the necessary training and mentorship, we also need to focus on retention. Having a revolving door and needing to hire techs every few years or so costs your company money. Big money! And that revolving door may be a sign of an even bigger issue: poor leadership, and poor employee management skills.
      Here’s one more thing to consider, for the most part, technicians don’t leave one job to start a new career, they leave one shop as a technician to become a technician at another shop. The reasons why they leave can be debated, but there is one fact that we cannot deny, people don’t quit the company they work for, they usually leave because of the boss or manager they work for.
      Put yourselves in the shoes of your employees. Do you have a workplace that communicates, “We appreciate you and want you to stay!”
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