Whilst it’s important to constantly appeal to the motor trade in general to reform and continuously improve, we sometimes forget that there are people, from all walks of life covering all aspects of the business who are first class professionals and who really do come to work every day to try and make a positive difference.
During my travels up and down the country at dealerships, auctions and garages I witness superb examples of customer care where people really do go way beyond their call of duty and job description in order to provide value for money and positive experiences. From the friendly girl on reception who makes you a coffee while you wait to the seasoned service advisor who makes sure that your car is cleaned before you drive it away.
For every blot on the landscape in the trade who couldn’t care less that you have spent hard earned savings, or won’t help your daughter out when she has just conked out in her new car, there are 10 great servants who will appreciate you and understand. This is especially true when you are paying for a car to be fixed as it’s a distress purchase which can never bring pleasure, but they will try and ease the burden by making it as painless as possible.
My point? Spare a thought for these people in the coming weeks as I know for a fact that a good deal of them will probably lose their jobs or have their hours cut. In the current climate, and especially in this form of retailing, the first members of staff to be discarded to cut costs and ensure on-going survival are what we call “non producers” i.e. they don’t sell a car for profit or fix a car to sell hours. They are though the “face” and “personality” of the business, the first impression if you like, and are very difficult to replace. All I hope (apart from these stars being recognised by another employer) is that the staff left to cover these posts understand the need to carry on this good work and ensure that the sacrifices are worth it.