When travelling around the dealerships of the UK, it fascinates me how differently they all run and it is almost always the busy happy ones that are the most successful. It may seem obvious but smiling happy personnel who actually look like they enjoy being there can make the world of difference, especially in tougher times like now.
I was in conversation with a senior sales manager recently who has decided that, even though his showroom footfall is down and he is not selling as many cars, he is determined to deliver a great service to all his potential and actual customers in the belief that even if they don’t buy a car from him they could well recommend his business to their friends. Of course this approach is not rocket science but being able to look in the mirror and be confident that you are doing your best is not easy for some.
Facing the reality of the situation and understanding what is required of you are essential quality’s for leaders who have to motivate their sales team when that team have had it fairly easy for some time and will now have to use all the tools at their disposal to convert far fewer customers.
Let’s be realistic, there are far worse jobs on Gods planet than sitting in a warm, modern, comfortable showroom sipping gourmet coffee, driving new cars about and getting paid for it. I know there is much more to it than that but when I look out at the road works in the latest traffic jam and see those guys toiling (most of the time) in the freezing cold I thank my lucky stars it’s not me.
Car buyers can buy from anywhere and making the choice can depend on something as simple as the first impressions and how good the coffee was. If dealers and their staff do not adapt to current conditions and meet the customer challenge I fear we will be looking at far less dealers in the not too distant future.
If the people who work in these dealers do not feel the passion for their job and a desire to delight their customers they may well find that working in less comfortable surroundings may be just around the corner.