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Joe Marconi

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Joe Marconi last won the day on March 30

Joe Marconi had the most liked content!

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About Joe Marconi

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    ASO Staff Member

Business Information

  • Business Name
    Osceola Garage
  • Business Address
    44 New York 118, Baldwin Place, New York, 10505
  • Type of Business
    Auto Repair
  • Your Current Position
    Shop Owner
  • Automotive Franchise
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  1. Yes Frank. I agree. I have been in business 40 years. Never before have I asked for helped or expected it. This is different. When Churches are closed, you know these are different times. Stay safe.
  2. Contact your Accountant and bank. FInd out about the Payroll Protection Program and the SBA Disaster Relief Fund.
  3. Whatever your normal advertising and marketing strategy is, now is the time to tone down call to action advertising and promotions and communicate your brand to your community. In times of crisis, it’s crucial that your customers and community know what you stand for and there to help if at all possible. Contact your customers by phone, email, text, etc. Not to sell them anything, but to ask if they are ok. Let them know that you are thinking about them. Connect with them emotionally, like a friend or family member would. For many shops across this great nation, there will be significant sales drops. With the new financial package, there will be help on the way. Contact your accountant, payroll company, financial advisor, bank rep and find out about the help that is coming your way. We will get through this together.
  4. I am hearing this story over and over, and not just from our industry. I spoke to the local deli owner yesterday. Business for him is down 95%. He is working alone, and has one employee working 2 hours a day. He cannot pay his rent or his bills. The only thing that I can say is that this will pass. Right now is seems like the worst of times, and being in business for 40 years, and in New York, I can tell you that I am never seen anything like this. But, we will prevail. Talk to your banker, accountant, financial advisory. Get the help you need and make those hard decisions. You need to save the business first, then rebuild when things begin to get better. I know it may sound fruitless at this point, but maintain a positive and strong attitude. This will help your mind find ways to get through this. It will not be easy, but we will succeed.
  5. You are not alone. I am in New York, ground zero and we are suffering too. We are all in this together. Speak to your accountant, your financial advsior and your banker. Get their help to create a plan. There will be assistance for us, this time. This is not our fault. Also apply online for the SBA Disaster Relief fund. Call all the vendors and other companies you owe money and negotiate a deal. Call all your customers to let them know you are thinking about them and offer to pick up and deliver, if that is something you want to do. Talk yo you employees. You may have to cut hours or lay off temporarily. This will pass, it will not be pretty, but we will get through this.
  6. No one knows what will come next. Where we are in New York, it's the hardest hit state in the country. Things change by the hour and we are making adjustments as needed. We do not plan on shutting down, but we will adjust hours and staff as needed. Hang in there everyone, this is not our fault, we will get throught this.
  7. I have been contacted by many shop owners about the decision to close or not. In most cases across the nation, Auto Repair Professionals are considered essential workers. Which means that we can stay open for business. However, even though we are essential, I personally will not demand my employees to come to work. If business fails because of this virus, it will fail in the short term. We will all eventually find a way to come back and rebuild our businesses. Things are changing by the hour, and that makes our decisions as leaders even more difficult. I don’t want to get sucked into panic, but I don’t want to turn a blind eye to the fact that we are in uncharted territories and that we are all learning from this crisis together. The decision to close your business is yours. There is no wrong or right decision here. The safety and well-being of our families are our number one concern. If it makes it any easier, make your next decisions from the heart, not from a business standpoint. Be strong, be a leader, and know that we will get though this. When the dust begins to settle, we will have learned a lot about business and even more about who we are are as a culture and a society. I cannot tell you what I am doing tomorrow. I plan on having a meeting with my staff, and a decision will be made to stay open, cut staff, cut hours or perhaps another scenario will surface. I will keep you updated and try to bring a little sanity to everyone during these crazy times. You are all leaders; you are automotive shop owners. You are the toughest of the toughest. I know you and I will prevail through these troubling times and I look forward to the future when we can all look back and say…”We may it through, and we’re better off for it.”
  8. We are holding at a 50% decline in business the last 4 weeks. However, looking at the numbers, something was going on since mid January. Numbers were down about 20% in January and worse in February. I thought it was the lack of a tough winter in the North East, but now I know that it was more than that.
  9. Frank, you are lucky. Please be prepared. Have a plan. If nothing affects your area, you will still benefit.
  10. Alex, we have seen a 40% drop in business the last three weeks. The worst drop in business in my 40 years. I made a post, by the way, under Joe's Tip. Here's is our plan: We have daily meetings with emoloyees to maintain our aim to keep oursleves clean and our customer's car clean We wipe down customer's cars before we get into them. The areas we are in contact with. We launched more radio spots to let people know that we are taking precautions, we will santize your car before and after we work on it. We are also promoting that we will pick up and deliver your car if you wish not to come out of your house We are offering a Deep Cleaning of the HVAC system at cost, $39.95...Usingb BG Kits. We purchased cases of small hand sanitizer and are gvivng them out to our customers No overtime and we may need to cut hours. No non-essential spending I have advised my employees to also not to spend any money now, unless necessary I have some employees take vacations now, We need them when business returns Don't panic Stay postive PRAY! Let's share our ideas and beat this thing!!!
  11. My Thoughts on the Coronavirus and Business In my 40 years in business, I have lived through many economic downturns. From the stock market crash of the late 1980’s, the housing bust of 1990’s, the tragic event of 911 and the great recession of 2008. This is different. The fears and the realities of the coronavirus has affected us all. And some areas of the country have been hit harder than others. In all other situations, I fought like hell to make a difference and beat the circumstances. Again, this is different. I am not an alarmist, not a defeatist and I do not get sucked into the sensationalism of the press. Just today, I heard a sports announcer on a talk radio show advise her listeners to stay at home, don’t go to work, don’t go to the movies, don’t go out of the house and isolate yourself from other people. Is this rational? I can’t do that. I am an automotive shop owner. What I do matters to my family and the community. I…WE….need to be there to ensure that the doctors, nurses, police, public officials and everyone else has their transportation ready to perform. Stay home? Us? Is that an option? But again…this is different. This afternoon, I was getting ready to go to Church; 4:00pm Mass, when my wife got an alert that Church as been canceled. Wait; let me say this again real slow…Church… has…. been…canceled. Fear has a way of eating at the fabric of our rational being. I fully understand the reality of what is happening. This virus will take people’s lives. But, do we run away in the face of a threat? Is this who we are? What do we do? Close our businesses for a few weeks? A month or two? How many of us can afford that? We all know the answer to that question. As automotive shop owners, technicians, service advisors and all the other valuable employees of this great profession, we need to take the proper precautions. Do all you can to protect yourself and your family. If you decide to continue to operate your shop during this challenging time, have a meeting with all your employees. Take the proper steps to protect yourself, your employees and your customers. Business may get ugly for some. My company has taken a 40% drop in business the past three weeks, directly contributed to the coronavirus outbreak. I write this to tell you how I feel; not to decide for anyone what to do. I will not force my employees to do anything they feel would put themselves or their families in harm’s way. For me, I intend to fight. I will take care of myself, take care of my family. But there are too many people depending on what I do, and way too may years behind me to hunker down and wait this out. Stay safe, stay healthy. Take this situation serious. But please don’t give up. We will prevail and we will get through this together. We are the hardest working, most resilient, toughest people on the planet. Let’s show the world and this virus who we are!
  12. One thing to consider, more and more jobs these days are jobs that have no parts included. Take all the labor time your dad spends testing, with no labor dollars brought into the shop. The auto repair and service world has changed and we need to change with it. While I agree with you that we need to bring a higher level benchmark into this industy, the fact remains that we are behind when it comes to labor. The future is here and to remain in business will require a financial demand the likes we have never seen before. And the only way to invest in our future is to ensure we are getting paid the labor we deserve and work so hard for.

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