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  1. 4 points
    Ladies and gentlemen, Another year comes to a close, I hope 2017 has been generous to you as it has been to my team and I. We started the year with a simple premise of making 5 calls to customers everyday, and that snowballed into a sales breaking record for us. These are very simple things we learned and helped us prosper: 1. Learn to communicate with your team, set the expectations and hold them accountable. 2. Always, always, always be respectful, courteous, attentive, and mindful of your customers, you don't know what they have been through, yes, some have deep financial issues but the majority are looking for honest, knowledgeable, and professional people, earn their trust and give them great value, they will reward you with their continued business. 3. Treat your employees well, charge what they are worth and reward them accordingly, if you skimp on fair wages they will know and look for greener pastures. Many joined us while their competing shops closed, we have pick of the litter. 4. Be honest, do the right thing and get rid of toxic, unreliable, and unethical people. If you have a bad apple in your team, deal with it quickly, else they will poison your team and create systemic problems that will be even harder to deal with later. 5. Always use the best tools you can afford, if you have to redo work for lack proper tools and equipment it will cost you 3x as much, and the customer aggravation and inconvenience will be reflected on your bottom line. Well, that's it for me. I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy And Prosperous New Year 2018! All is possible by the Grace of God, and according to His will! -Harry
  2. 3 points
    Happy Thanksgiving Simon! ASO members are the best! Happy Thanksgiving to all but especially Alex, Joe, and Gonzo.
  3. 2 points
    Not sure what to think. A few bad apples do spoil the bunch. Sensationalized journalism doesn't make it better.
  4. 2 points
    Here is a link to a question on Quora that I supplied an answer to and so far it has gotten over 3,700 views and 75 upvotes. Thought that you might be interested in reading it. https://www.quora.com/Is-it-dangerous-to-fall-asleep-in-a-parked-car-with-the-engine-on-if-the-car-is-parked-outside/answer/G-Frank-May?srid=ht1dc
  5. 2 points
    All I can say is two (2) good men starting down different highways. My advice is have fun and realize none of us are getting out of this alive so enjoy the ride. Don’t sweat the small stuff.
  6. 2 points
    12 Days of Christmas at an Automotive Repair Shop You know the song, so just sing along with me in the holiday spirit. On the 1st day of Christmas a customer sent to me: A cartridge for my grease gun. On the 2nd day Christmas a customer sent to me: 2 Latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 3rd day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 3 Wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 4th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 4 Wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 5th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 5 Piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 6th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 6 Brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 7th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 7 Dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 8th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 8 Engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 9th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 9 Coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 10th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 10 Headlights blinking, 9 coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 11th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 11 Gears a-grinding, 10 headlights blinking, 9 coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 12th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 12 Trannys slipping, 11 gears a-grinding, 10 headlights blinking, 9 coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. Have a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. View full article
  7. 2 points
    Well, Jeff... ya beat me to it. But not by much. Dec. 8th/2017 my shop officially changes hands. Yep, I've sold out myself. Now, I'm teaching at a small technical college as well as doing all my usual writing. It's a bitter sweet time, but overall I'm so glad that I was able to sell the shop. Now, I can pursue new adventures in the automotive world. Good luck Jeff!
  8. 2 points
    National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, also referred to as Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day or Pearl Harbor Day, is observed annually in the United States on December 7, to remember and honor the 2,403 citizens of the United States who were killed in the Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii on December 7, 1941. Let us never forget!
  9. 2 points
    After years of work to get to this point, we are finally opening the doors to my new shop on Monday. I did a small friends and family test on Friday. We stubbed our toes on all procedures but the actual shop work. It was horrible, but a great learning experience. Most issues were procedural in nature, so this weekend was procedure repair. We really weren't ready to open, but it needed to happen. Still not ready on all fronts. My website is built, but awaiting my detailed review to go online. It'll happen in the next day or so. We're still buying shop tools. Many are in, but I wanted to let my staff be part of the tool choices. (Yes, we're going to have to pare back some of their big wish list). Hiring is still ongoing. I had my 3 critical positions covered for a while now, but I still have more left to hire. I chose Protractor as my SMS. I'm mostly happy with this decision. My biggest gripe is that the software is unforgiving of mistakes and new users make many mistakes. I now need to learn how to undo my mistakes so that the accounting part remains accurate. Today, my entire computer network went down and it took us over 2 hours to get it back online. Next on the list is to practice recovery procedures. One of my major marketing spend items was to be on a busy corner. It appears that this may indeed work out for us. We serviced about 9 cars on Friday and turned away about 15 drive-up customers. Have 1 appointment booked for tomorrow. Wish me luck!
  10. 2 points
    Where’s That Machine? Even in this age of electronic gadgets, voice recognition systems, and cell phones, there are still a few things that require the dexterity of a human being. For some skilled and unskilled jobs the physical work or mental intuitiveness hasn’t been entirely replaced by machines, microprocessors and LED’s, just yet. Automotive diagnostics and repair is one of those fields. The modern mechanic is still very much a part of the repair equation. But, go to any repair shop in this country, and you’ll probably hear somebody at the service counter ask the service writer, “You guys do have one of those machines that tells you what’s wrong, don’t ya?” Yeah, we have one of those machines. It’s that guy in the service bay leaning over your car right now. You know, the mechanic. Oh, you know who they are. They’re usually the guy you spot in the elevator or at the supermarket who has more than a few grease spots on his clothes, scuffed up shoes, a pocket screwdriver, rough calloused hands, and wearing a shirt with his own name on it. He’s generally not a college graduate, probably doesn’t know the difference between Harvard and Yale, and probably doesn’t care either, but intelligent just the same. Yes, a machine all right. A walking, talking, hardworking, diagnostic and mechanically inclined individual who uses tools and equipment to solve your car problems. Look how the tools of the modern mechanic have changed over the years, such as scanners and meters. They are an aide, a machine, a tool if you will, but they don’t give out answers. Although, these tools can do so much in the way of diagnosing a problem in the hands of an expert mechanic. They show the technician a code or information in regards to the internal aspects of the vehicle. Code numbers and definitions are a strategic direction for the repair. This allows a trained technician to know which pathway to take in making the repair. To put it in other words: the real machine that finds out what’s wrong with your car is those two hands and brain of the very guy with his name imprinted on his shirt. Not some box of transistors and relays, but people still ask about and believe there is this magical mystery machine that does all the work. The automotive field isn’t what those reality TV shows portray it to be, either. Most of these shows highlight the automotive industry as a place for stupid, filthy, disorganized-knuckle dragging fools who can’t read or write, and wouldn't know a dentist office if they stumbled in one. It’s just one more reason why it’s so hard to find sharp, young talent to take up the trade. Car technology changes so fast these knuckle draggers can’t keep up with the true professional mechanic field and what goes on in a real repair facility, but for some reason somebody at these networks think reality shows of guys taking old non-computerized cars apart is what we want to watch on television. I for one would rather watch something useful like reflashing a GM than what it takes to weld in a new quarter panel. You want to get the next generation interested in the field…show em’ something of interest in the way of a modern computer driven vehicle. The vast number of computer systems, hydraulics, electrical, radar/navigation systems and mechanical aspects of the modern car are constantly changing. This means continual education is a must for the professional mechanic. A modern mechanic is more like a surgeon than a brick layer is to one. Even though both are considered laborer trades, one is more artistic in nature while the other is more technology driven. For some people, the mere thought that somebody out there knows more about their car than they do is quite disturbing to them. They seem to think they are far more intelligent than the engineers, designers, and the mechanics combined. In their interpretation of the automotive repair world, the mechanic has to be an idiot to even think they can make a living fixing this stuff when it’s just as easy to fix it yourself at home in the garage. I’ve been told more than once by an irate customer that it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to fix a car, so it shouldn’t cost that much. So, why would these types of people even want to talk with this guy who has his name tattooed on his shirt? Why not bypass him altogether and go right to the mechanized technical wonder they can’t seem to find at the local part store. You know, that machine. That thing-a-mabob that tells those dimwitted Neanderthal mechanics what part to change and how to make their car all better. As far as they are concerned, diagnostics are not needed, because following a path laid out in a diagnostic chart isn’t a skill that’s required when making a repair. Just read the results on the scanner, order the part, stick it on, and then get back to their own lives with as little interruption as possible. All they want to pay for is what they consider the main reason for going to the mechanic in the first place. You know, let them get greasy, change some widget and make their car run like new without costing them a fortune, and if it doesn’t… blame the mechanic, and not that dime store diagnostic machine they relied on. Where the idea of a machine that can answer every type of automotive problem by simply plugging it into the car is beyond me. I suppose, some of it comes from growing up with the TV and watching sci-fi shows, but reality doesn’t come across as real with a portion of the driving public. They’re still stuck with the notion that Mr. Spock will break out his Tri-corder and inform them about the composition of material making up their engine block, and the exact cause of their engine misfire. Seriously people, get a grip on reality. The idea that this perfect machine actually exists is simply absurd, but the mystery of it all still lingers in the minds of those tried and true believers of all this technical wizardry of which they don’t understand. In their minds that “machine” is real, and any mechanic that doesn’t know about one is a fool. In the near future, even this mythical, magical machine may actually be more fiction than myth. Telematics and remote diagnostics may make the vision of a “one machine can fix-all” far more real than we can imagine. Not that I believe there really will be a “fix-all” machine capable of re-gapping a worn out spark plug, but I do believe a lot of systems will be diagnosed, and possibly electronically repaired by remote intervention. Although, those tough diagnostics that can’t be sorted out will still require the skill of a good diagnostic mechanic to accomplish them. Maintenance and wearable item repairs will most likely be the commonplace activities at a repair shop in the future. Needless to say, the days of a home mechanic with a set of tools picked up at a garage sale may soon be a thing of the past or left up to the hobbyist working on antique vehicles. The modern technically advanced vehicle of the future may become too far advanced for anyone except for the skilled mechanic. We may be in a technically advanced computer age, and there’s no doubt there are further advancements to be made, but the trained mechanic is still a big part of the future. So, the next time someone asks, “Where’s that machine?” tell them it’s where it’s always been, in the service bay, and you’ve been talking to it all this time… your mechanic.
  11. 2 points
    Shop Boss and Shop Ware sound like good fits. They are both going under a lot of improvements at this time, however. Bolt on has toyed around with some mobile stuff, but I'm not familiar with it. I don't think it would be entirely what you're looking for though.
  12. 2 points
    Two turkeys sitting on a fence. They look up and see a jet zipping by with it's after-burners on. The one turkey says to the other, "I'd fly that fast too, if my ass was on fire." HAPPY THANKSGIVING ! ! !
  13. 2 points
    Bad Day to be a Turkey. From the barn yard to leftovers. Let's see, first you're plucked from the barn yard and decapitated, then all your feathers are yanked out by the roots while someone else rips all your guts out. Now if you weren't dead enough already, they continue their assault on what's left of you by throwing your carcass in a freezer until you're as hard as concrete. Oh wait, it's not over yet. Now they thaw you out for round two and drown you in a pool of herbs and spices long enough to be sure you weren't holding your breath the whole time. If that wasn't bad enough, now some little old lady starts violating you in ways you never dreamed of by jamming things up inside you with the same vigor of a pile driver. Luckily, you're not going back into that cold cold freezer again. Oh no... it's the hot hot oven for you this time. After a few hours of scorching heat and constant water torture from this guy with a ladle your suddenly thrust out into the world completely spent. It's off to the carving table where you're cut up into small pieces slowly and methodically while being served to the smiling cannibalistic creatures that seem to only come by once a year just to enjoy the final end to this previous barn yard creature. Slowly, but surely, the day ends with football and hockey games and the occasional nap on the couch. While for the turkey or what's left of him, is suffocated inside sealed containers for another round of degradation at a later date and time. I look forward to the smells and smiles the holidays bring especially at Thanksgiving time. A perfect day to get together with relatives and friends and give thanks to one and all. That is, as long as you're not the turkey. Happy Thanksgiving !
  14. 1 point
    The story still holds true today as the economy still stinks! Happy holidays
  15. 1 point
    Ode to Santa and the Economy There goes Santa, running for his sleigh; He’s gotta run fast, to get away. You see, the economy has struck the North Pole as well; The elves are on strike, and his wife is givin' em' hell. These days when Santa appears at the local department store; It’s not just for fun or photos, but for gifts he needs to score. He'll check the store layout and make a quick dash; Why even Santa max'd out his credit card and is low on cash. So off he goes, into the night; To find those gifts, and get out of sight. Now, he’s not going to make a whole lot of stops; ‘Cause look out Santa… here comes the cops. Santa leaps to his sleigh and flys far into the night; Carrying all those gifts, on his yearly flight. Way into the morning, the police search high and low; Only to find a few tracks left in the snow. You'll hear all the alarms blaring, late into the night; But old Saint Nick will be long gone, and clean out of sight. Santa has to be quick, to have it done by Christmas Eve; So many gifts, and so many places to be… The presents will be wrapped, and the tags will be off; Cause old Santa is very careful, not to get caught. So check your presents, early on Christmas day; (Keep it hush-hush if they're from Santa, OK...?) Now, I don’t know if Old Saint Nick, stopped at your house or not; But If he did … … … … … .....THOSE GIFTS ARE . . . HOT ! ! PEACE ON EARTH, GOOD WILL TO ALL MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! ! ! View full article
  16. 1 point
    I'll just leave this link here: https://www.ratchetandwrench.com/articles/4444-six-steps-for-a-better-closing-ratio
  17. 1 point
    I am my advisor. I am sure If I hired an advisor numbers would go down during the learning curve. I assumed OP was selling his own RO's. Through my marketing and customer pre qualification I keep my shop filled with the right customers and close them properly. I orked at Circuiit City before they closed as a salesman in the video department. One night at sales meeting the manager said we needed to sell the Monstar Cable power strip at $250 a pop. Everyone at meeting frowned, who will buy $250 power strip. I sold 2 that night. It is about psychology and sales techniques. I know you an Eskimo but do you really want the same ice you used to build your house in your 12yo scotch. My ice is purified and infused with minerals that will boost your health and keep your scotch tasting authentic.
  18. 1 point
    I signed up in April with them, they have been great, they saved me over 1200 a month compared to my old processor.
  19. 1 point
    Anyone have any experience with the new Mitchell 1st Mile program? Looks intriguing.
  20. 1 point
    Well, I think thats great. Sorry I influenced your decision, or maybe I should say, your welcome. Lol
  21. 1 point
    The new job is a local company that manufactures bucket lifts, man lifts, etc. Welding, installing hydraulics, wiring controls and the such. I am looking for a smaller shop closer to the house so I can still get my hands dirty. Been wanting to build a chop top low rider for a while, maybe a late sixties 2 door Electra 225, as well as a custom bike. I have a very loyal following that has told me they would work around my schedule if I would still maintain their vehicles. I will be "closing" Dec. 22 and start the new job Jan. 2. And like I stated before if it dont work out thru the probation period I will be back guns blazing!! I really stressed this...hated to close. Now I am stressing over what to do with all my equipment..lol. And Gonzo for what it's worth your heart attack was a factor in my decision. Got me really thinking about what I want outta life. Last 15 years I have run my shop and worried about everyone else...now ol dad is gonna take care of me and mine!
  22. 1 point
    I read this article. Most of their recommendations are made on mileage.
  23. 1 point
    Looking for an hourly plan with incentives for production. The problem is half the work we do has no flat rate hours. The Jeep is an example. Cut off at the firewall, tube chassis fabricated, 1 ton axle swap and coil over suspension. We may go from a Kia water pump to a custom bumper on a Raptor. Other than a feel for how long it should take It is near impossible to track productivity. Any Idea's folks?
  24. 1 point
    now all we need is a magical little elf who stays all year long in the shop to keep the techs and customers inline
  25. 1 point
    Thanks so much Alex. This is a group of really great users who GENUINELY want the very best for this industry. I've never been a part of something so powerful to date. I've seen the folks in this group go to unbelievable lengths to help one another and I'm sure they'd love to participate here as well! Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
  26. 1 point
  27. 1 point
    The Magical Elf There’s a Christmas tradition in our family involving a little magical elf. This elf lives in a box all year until December 1st. Then he magically comes to life. At night he gets into all kinds of mischief, and just before the little ones get up in the morning, he freezes motionless, wherever or whatever he was doing at that very moment. He’s been known to spill flour on the kitchen counters and make snow angels, sometimes he can be found sitting on the toothpaste tube, one night he even wrapped the big screen TV like a huge present with a large bow on top! He could be anywhere, you just never know what he’ll be into next, and he seems to stay busy getting into things all night long. But, even when he is motionless he’s actually working… watching and listening to all the children in the house. His job is to report back to the north pole so Santa can be sure to have every little boy and girl is on the right list. You know, that “Naughty or Nice list” you've heard about. Yep, now you know, Santa has his own spies, and that little elf doesn’t miss a thing. My oldest daughter Katie, is continuing the tradition with her own magical elf with her kids. Let me introduce you to my three adorable granddaughters; Kelsie is 12, she’s the nonbeliever. She doesn’t think Santa is real at all… that’s kid stuff… she’s all grown up, you know. Kaitlyn is 9, she’s the talker… even if she’s a part of whatever trouble has been brewing up, she can't help but to spill the beans sooner or later. She’s still a big fan of the guy in the big red suit. Now, ask her if he brings presents she'll tell you, "Only one, but the rest are from mom and dad." Then there's little Audrey, she’s 6. Now Audrey…well, she and Santa go way back. (Too cute for words the way she tells her stories about Santa.) She’s all about decorating the tree, and making sure the milk and cookies are set out in perfect arrangement for Santa on his big day, and of course writing letters to the big guy as often as possible. With these little munchkins, you can count on one thing for sure, there’s always something about to unfold at the house, especially around the holidays. This story is a special one, this is about the first year for Katie's magical elf. As the grand-kids will later tell me, "Pappa, he came in his own little elf box, all decorated like a little house and everything!" There are even holes on the sides for him to breathe, cause ya know, ya gotta keep him comfortable and all. The house rules about the magic elf are simple. No one is allowed near the box, no touching, no looking, no poking, and most certainly no encouraging your sister into breaking the rules. (Gotta have that rule) So on the shelf this little house sat… waiting for the right time to make his entrance. All the kids understood the rules, and they all knew the story of the magical elf. The big fear of course wasn't mom, it was that little elf, and what he would say to Santa. Well, except of course for the nonbeliever. It was December 1st, and Katie was so busy preoccupied with putting up decorations she had completely forgotten about the little elf. She had to get him out of the box and into his mischief as soon as possible. Time for a plan, a plan that would distract those little all seeing, all knowing, and all hearing little ones long enough for her to accomplish her mission. She had an idea that just might work. Get the younger two interested in decorating cookies while nonbeliever was upstairs in her room. Then, she could pop the little guy out of his box and put him somewhere for the girls to discover later. The smell of fresh baked cookies filled the house as the two younger ones raced to the kitchen to help with the decorating. The elf "de-boxing" was well on its way. Katie crept out of the kitchen unnoticed while the two were busy adding sprinkles to everything and anything that was on or near the cookies. A quick peak up the stairs to make sure the non-believer was out of sight, OK good there. Time for the little elf to get out of his resting place. As she carefully opened the box she could hear tiny footsteps coming down the hallway. The rush was on, Mom can’t be caught with the box opened, there was no turning back now. Oh no.... what’s this???? The new little elf is wire tied into his little house!!! Quick, quick, untie him and get him out of there! The footsteps grew closer as the last wire tie came loose, then with a quick fling the elf went sailing through the air and landed in the branches of the Christmas tree. His head was buried amongst all the lights and ornaments with only his butt and legs exposed… undignified yes, but no harm, no foul… the game was on. Just as the tattle-teller (Kaitlyn) rounded the corner Katie put her mom face on. You know, that typical motherly look we all know from being on the other end of the situation. Then, using her best “mom” voice she tilted the elf's little box down to show her the empty box and said, “Kaitlyn have you been in this box? Where is the elf?” (Now that's some mom quick thinking) Kaitlyn was completely surprised, “No Mommy, I know I'm not supposed to touch it. It wasn’t me… honest…ah, ah, it was… ah, Audrey.” Of course by now, that mom voice brought the youngest one running into the room carrying a half-eaten cookie while leaving a long trail of sprinkles behind her. “Where’s the elf mommy?” she asked. Katie with that stern look still on her face said to her, “Did you open the box?” Audrey, now almost in tears thinking the little elf must have ran away, “No Mommy, where did he go?” Katie wasn’t about to let up on the Mommy thing just yet, but decided to soften the blow of their now missing elf and assure them it was perfectly alright. She said, “Well, it is December 1st, he's probably somewhere in the house.” About then the nonbeliever came down from her bedroom, “What’s going on?” Kaitlyn quickly told everything (as usual), “He got out, he’s in the house, and we’ve got to go find him! Come on, let’s go!” Now Kelsie, who didn’t seem so interested, is now very interested. But, she was going to logically explain the whole thing, even though she didn't believe in all of this "magic elf" stuff she knew mom had know idea either. You know, since mom and Kelsie are both older and more more mature, mom couldn't hide anything from her. With firm conviction, Kelsie said to them, “There’s no way he could have gotten out. He was strapped in there!” (That little sneak peeker!!) Clearly she had more interest in that little elf than she let on. Kelsie, being the oldest, took charge of the situation and told the other two, “You look over there, you go over there, and I’ll look over here.” Off went the three of them, running through the house in search of one small magical elf, while mom stood by the tree still clutching the empty box. They eventually found him and screamed with joy like the little girls they are. As for Kelsie, well, the non believer, she knew mom is really Santa after all, (the hand writing on the present tags and the way the packages are wrapped are exactly like her birthday presents and Santa doesn't bring birthday presents… sorry mom, she’s figured it out.). But, anything to do with that magic elf, just ask her, "Oh he’s real grandpa… he’s very real." There’s no doubt in my mind the magic of the season is for the kid in all of us, and sometimes all it takes is a little mischievous elf to bring out. Wishing you and your family (and your little magical elves) a Very Merry Christmas. View full article
  28. 1 point
    Long Christmas story this week. Different then the old ones were used to hearing!
  29. 1 point
    It seems like we might all get rich shorting cintas stock...
  30. 1 point
    This is something we've dealt with and continue to deal with. A lot of factors come into play. Marketing is one, and how you market will affect what kind of customers you attract. Second is your multi-point. In the near future, we are going to stop identifying 'oil sending units leaking' and going to start find 'oil leaks' and asking for a $49.95 UV dye oil leak inspection. We've got tired of building 7 separate estimates just to have a customer decline them all. Same with coolant leaks. If they're not willing to spend $50 to know what is leaking, we're not gonna waste our time getting prices for parts and labor. I'd also look into some sales training. A service advisor who can build value in the presentation may convert more customers into doing repairs. A lot of things to look at, but hopefully some of these will help get you started in the right direction.
  31. 1 point
    While I agree that SA numbers are important, there’s more to being a good service writer than hard numbers, without the interpretation that goes with them. How are they on the phone with prospective customers? Can they convert a “price shopper” to a valued customer? Can they sell additional work on trust versus the drawn-out, value, safety, etc., pitch? Can they look out for the customer’s pocketbook, the technicians, as well as the shop's bottom line? How are his/her online reviews? Can he/she negotiate any customer/supplier issues? Or make sure they don’t happen in the first place. Do they answer the phone in a cheerful manner? Do they make the customer’s day better or worse? Having said all that, I especially like Closing Ratio, because, “Nothing happens until the customer says, “Yes”.” Is your SA fast enough getting the OK (or get’s pre-approval) so that the technician will point out additional work, versus wasting time on the rack, waiting for approval? Does your SA convey to the customer that you are the good guys in this transaction, not the bad guys finding extra work? Are your customers satisfied enough to refer people? Is your SA helpful beyond simply car repair? I hope that helps. Victor
  32. 1 point
    Had a customer ask if I have that machine that would tell me whats wrong. I told them when i begins talking they can have it and their car..I am running!! LOL
  33. 1 point
    We turned away cars for "their own good". Believe me, my heart sank with each one. Surprisingly, a fair number returned vs going somewhere else. The first day and a half was a planned soft opening to work out the bugs in the process. The bugs in the process caused large time delays. This would have made for unhappy customers. I'm running a combo quick lube and repair operation. We need the lube lanes moving quickly. With the holiday week, we were open about 5 days and serviced 63 cars with most being LOF and/or state inspection. We repaired 3 cars, wrote up repair estimates on about 10 cars and have a few repairs booked for this coming week. We could have easily handled much more repair, but the lube lanes were running almost at OUR capacity. This is due to new guys, new procedures and new software and new customers (all require data entry vs repeats). As well, we're not fully staffed yet. At the moment, the goal is slow and correct, with rechecks. We want fast and correct, but it needs to come naturally. Here's one thing that surprised me. I've already been mentioned on one of the neighborhood facebook pages. One lady came in with two young children in tow and she had already heard that I have a playroom for the kids. It has gotten more use than I really expected. (She suggested adding coloring books, but I like my walls uncolored). I've been personally greeting each person that arrives at some point in the process. I remember one guy looking real nervous as I approached. After greeting him and thanking him for coming, his eyes lit up and he seemed shocked to receive such a greeting. I think he'll be coming back. It's hard for me to get "office" work done and talk with everyone, but I can always borrow sleeping hours to catch up.
  34. 1 point
    I want to take this time at Thanksgiving to say thank you to all AutoShopOwner members. We have a lot to be thankful for and ASO would not be the great sucess if it were not for all the amazing members and the contributions you make to the forums. From the very start of the ASO, the goal was to raise the level of the auto repair industry and to help each other through the day today operations of running a repair shop. We have done that a more! And there is more to come in the future! From my family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving! Joe Marconi
  35. 1 point
  36. 1 point
  37. 1 point
    They have a demo version that you can play with. Before I do anything complex, I test it in their demo database, then do it live. And, you can always call me. I'd be happy to help if I can. The little things tripping me up have solutions as they explained today. Now, I need to go test, then fix my inventory snafu's. Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk
  38. 1 point
    Hi, Gavilan! That sounds like a great price. I bought the Hunter Hawkeye Elite w/ the RX-16 lift with all the options and it was right at $67,000. You cannot go wrong with Hunter!! Hi-Gear
  39. 1 point
    luxury is something that you can do without and in automobiles it adds to the complexity and price of automobiles. power windows even though most cars have them in my book is still luxury, even though it could be argued that it is cheaper for manufactures to just include them as standard.
  40. 1 point
    Great story! Great little model too! I like how you added in the bit about the Mechanic at the end very nice sir !
  41. 1 point
    Yea, I recognized your wooden model! You have to wonder when did the shift from practical innovations or improvements to the automobile, change to luxury type innovations that really are not needed and just add cost to the automobile. What year do you think that happened?
  42. 1 point
    We use test strips. Honestly though, we don't find many that fail. Not that I want to sell something that's not needed, but I'd love to find more opportunities to sell it.
  43. 1 point
    Kind of funny how whenever someone talks about a industry they are not part of profit is referred to as a "scam".
  44. 1 point
    I've been going for 25 years. As a shop owner, I feel it is necessary to be involved in your industry outside of your own environment. The opportunity to see and touch the changes going on today....give you insight to where we are all going. Network with others and learn exponentially. If I summarize going to this show or any industry conference....INSPIRATION. So this is my first post...been a lurker for a while...but time to take my own advice and.....participate! Chris
  45. 1 point
    One Penny at a Time One year I thought I’d try something to drum up some new business. I’ll try a cash discount for large jobs. Maybe this will bring in those new customers. It sounded like a good idea at the time, but as they say, “The best laid plans of mice and men….” certainly got involved on this little adventure. The cash discount was going to run for a month, just to see if it was going to work. All expectations looked promising. Jobs from a few weeks earlier had been contacted and informed of the new promotion to see if they’d like to reschedule that big job they were putting off. Almost all of them set an appointment before the promotion deadline. Soon, the shop was bustling with new activity and jobs were getting stacked up waiting for an open service bay. Unfortunately, as usual, there’s always one sourpuss who has to ruin all the fun for everyone else. Mr. Gripey came to the shop for an engine swap. He was your typical bargain hunter/never going to be a regular/always had a complaint type customer. As he put it, “I’m going to be your number 1 customer, if you can get me done on time.” I assured Mr. Gripey that everyone is our number 1 customer here and we would do everything we could to get him done, within reason, in a timely manner. It was just another Ford Ranger V6 engine swap. Nothing different from any other V6 Ranger we’ve done. That is except for Mr. Gripey, of course. His periodic snooping and interrogating questioning of the mechanic (and his mentor) about the job was relentless. It never fails, you get a snoopy-arrogant person barging in on the work the outcome is the same. It spells d-i-s-a-s-t-e-r every time something like this happens. I was prepared for the inevitable and personally took on the job of double checking every part, every fastener, and every existing blemish on the vehicle just to be sure there was nothing Mr. Gripey could question once the job was completed. The engine slipped back in place without a hitch, and every nut and bolt was torqued down to specs. Everything was going as planned, except for one small detail. The promised date of delivery. Because of the work load and the arrival of the replacement engine, we missed his scheduled time of departure from the service bay by one whole day. This was all the fodder Mr. Gripey needed to begin his wrath of expletives and insults as to how awful we’ve made the entire experience. Was I surprised? No, not at all. Now he wanted an even bigger discount than what the promotion had offered. I offered my condolences and gave a bit more off the top of the cost of the job. That wasn’t good enough. He wanted it for free now. Of course, that’s not going to happen. Now, he has decided to refuse to pay for the job. Several days passed between unanswered phone calls and messages left for Mr. Gripey to return for his vehicle. The daily reconnoitering of the service bay when his truck was being serviced came to an end too. The mechanic and his apprentice mentor were relieved to move onto the next project. Me, I was still stuck with the task of collecting the balance on the job. Which, is usually a rather pleasant experience filled with smiles and thank yous followed by a check, credit card, or cash. But, not this time. A week has gone by and Mr. Gripey hasn’t made an entrance yet. Time for one more phone call, but this time with a little added incentive. Mr. Gripey is going to be informed about storage charges for keeping his little pickup behind locked doors and that the charges would keep adding up until he showed up. He was given a grace period until the end of the week, and if we didn’t hear from him by then… the storage charges would start from the day of this phone call. It’s no surprise, Mr. Gripey managed to show up at the shop that very afternoon. “I’m here to pay my bill and get my truck out of your $&^#*!!! shop,” he said, in a very disgruntled manner. I gave him the total and said, “That’ll be cash, sir.” I wasn’t about to give this guy a chance to walk out with the keys with anything less than a paid in full with good ol' “American currency” and a completed repair singed off. Mr. Gripey turned around and went out to his car and returned with three large bank bags. He tossed the bags onto the counter and said, “Here ya go. Count it if you feel like it.” The bags were full of good old American currency alright, all of it … … … entirely pennies. “I’ll take my truck now. If you don’t mind,” Mr. Gripey said. I looked at the pile of coins starting to pour slowly out of the split open bag and looked back up at Mr. Gripey, “Uhm, sir, this is legal tender alright, but this is no way to pay your bill. But, in your case I’ll accept the payment only after it has been fully counted,” I said to him, trying to stare down his angry gaze, “So, just have a seat and I’ll get this counted and when it has been counted I’ll gladly hand the keys over to you.” Mr. Gripey hadn’t planned his little caper out as well as he had thought. He thought I was just going to hand the keys over and I’d be stuck with several hours of counting pennies while he was long gone with a smirk on his face thinking he just pulled a fast one on a repair shop. The fact is, he wasn't getting the keys until I had every last penny was counted. With some help from the crew, we sat in the front office counting each and every penny one after another. And no, I wasn’t about to give the guy the satisfaction of taking the bags to the bank and have them counted. I wanted him to sit there waiting the hours it took to have it all hand counted. It was by far the best bonding time I had with the crew. As we counted we talked about jobs in the shop, what was coming up next, tools, where we wanted to be in the next few years, our families, kids, and pastimes. Indirectly, Mr. Gripey did us all a huge favor by allowing us all to have a few hours of time together away from the wrenches. We kept at it until we finished and never once did we remain quiet or stop for breaks. By the time the last penny was counted we were all tired of stacking pennies. We could finally get up from our chore and get Mr. Gripey out the door with his truck and warranty paper work. His warranty has expired a long time ago and if it was no surprise, he never did come back for even an oil change. I’ve been paid with all kinds of things over the years. From a stack of Susan B Anthony coins to a case of beer. But, this was the first time anyone paid for an entire job with sacks full of pennies. Just for the record, if there is a next time… I’m not counting all those pennies again. I’ll let the bank to do it and make the guy come back the next day. Just don’t tell Mr. Gripey that. He still may need another lesson or two on how to act civil at a repair shop. Even if it is one penny at a time.
  46. 1 point
    A SPANISH Teacher was explaining to her class that in Spanish, unlike English, nouns are designated as either masculine or feminine. 'House' for instance, is feminine: 'la casa.' 'Pencil,' however, is masculine: 'el lapiz.' A student asked, 'What gender is 'computer'?' Instead of giving the answer, the teacher split the class into two groups, male and female, and asked them to decide for themselves whether computer' should be a masculine or a feminine noun. Each group was asked to give four reasons for its recommendation. The men's group decided that 'computer' should definitely be of the feminine gender ('la computadora'), because: 1. No one but their creator understands their internal logic; 2. The native language they use to communicate with other computers is incomprehensible to everyone else; 3. Even the smallest mistakes are stored in long term memory for possible later retrieval; and 4. As soon as you make a commitment to one, you find yourself spending half your paycheck on accessories for it. (THIS GETS BETTER!) The women's group, however, concluded that computers should be Masculine ('el computador'), because: 1. In order to do anything with them, you have to turn them on; 2. They have a lot of data but still can't think for themselves; 3. They are supposed to help you solve problems, but half the time they ARE the problem; and 4. As soon as you commit to one, you realize that if you had waited a little longer, you could have gotten a better model. The women won. Send this to all the smart women you know .....and all the men that have a sense of humor.
  47. 1 point
    I keep saying that I'm going to go, then I let an annual sailing trip get in the way. I'm curious how beneficial it is to attend and if I should reschedule the annual trip. What do you get out of it?
  48. 1 point
    We have been using Mitchell TeamWorks for about 2 years now. And I have absolutely no complaint. I feel some of their add-on service are a little bit expensive. But I'm happy with everything I have. Definitely cheaper than RO writer and AllData Manage Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  49. 1 point
    Self-driving cars have been getting a lot of buzz recently. Self-driving cars if they become the dominant kind of automobile will have an impact that goes far beyond disruption to changing the whole way life is organized, just like regular automobiles, air travel and steam engines changed everything. So saying that self-driving cars will hurt the cabdriver profession is like saying the steam engine affected buggy whip makers. True, but not really an important consequence. Here's a list of inescapable facts for anyone who thinks self driving cars will replace vehicle ownership: 1. A lot of people like to drive. 2. A lot of people live in areas where car sharing will not be practical or economic. 3. A lot of people have kids, pets, a big family, other unique needs, etc. and they can't rely on taxis. Driverless cars will have to prove their merits in use over a reasonable period of time to win public approval. So the notion that driverless cars will be "disruptive" in the sense of transforming industries in fundamental ways within a decade is dubious. Car body dent Repair
  50. 1 point
    I am a new member and stumbled across this site while looking for information / complaints on Automotive Payment Club because I had received some information on them and I am currently evaluating all of our phone, cell, internet, cable TV and CC processing services. I appreciate the posts and it pretty much helped me make my decision to not pursue wasting anymore time with APC. The great thing is I found a forum for Shop Owners, so this turned into a good use of my time.


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