Killer Bees

Back when Jimbo Fisher, was the head football coach at FSU and had some success, he was asked how he kept his team focused on the next game. He said it’s about managing the clutter that goes on around him and the team.

Clutter for him means the media and the distractions that keep things stirred up as they go about the task of getting ready for their next opponent. Managing clutter is one of your biggest challenges as you go through your day.

There are things coming at you from left and right. At times, you feel like you are being attacked by a swarm of bees.

Your ability to swat those bees one by one will often determine your progress and results on any given day. You cannot let the clutter get you off your progressive track. The more you can do to control clutter the better.

Clutter is just a bunch of little stuff that slows you down, moves you off your center, gets you off track, discombobulates you, and messes up your entire day. You cannot let clutter control your production and performance.

Clutter is best dealt with by making sure you take a few minutes at the end of the day or first thing in the morning to map out your major tasks for that day. Swatting those little bees one by one and having an attitude of “next” will keep you on task and moving forward.

Staying on task and swatting the “clutter bees” at the same time is what separates the “bee killers” from the “killer bees.”Start swatting. That’s all I’m gonna say. Tommy Gibbs.


“The two hardest things to handle in life are failure and success.” Anonymous 

Car A

Have you ever noticed that when some people get behind the wheel of a car, truck or SUV that they lose their minds? It’s not unusual to see someone driving really nutty, doing something really stupid and you pull up beside them and they look like normal people. They don’t have two heads, fangs, or horns sticking out of their heads.  

What is it with people when they get behind the wheel of a car? They sorta lose their minds. Good people, nice people seem to go a bit postal.  As I’ve mentioned in the past at one time I drove race cars. I always found it interesting that some of the nicest guys outside of a race car were nuts once they got in the car.

It was as if their helmets squeezed their brains until stupid flowed out. I’m not excluding myself from that equation, as I was no different than the rest when I strapped mine on.  I believe it’s the power of the engine that makes them go off the deep end.

I see the same thing in business every day. Someone gets promoted and whamo, they get the “king of the hill” mentality. “I’m ‘da king, you ‘da peasants, and you will do as I say.” That type of mentality will soon be their downfall.

One of my father’s favorite sayings is, “Be nice to people on the way to the top because you never know who you will meet on your way down.”

That’s all I’m gonna say, Tommy Gibbs

What Are Your Intentions?

There are a lot of common problems when it comes to the used car operations for new car dealers.

But of all the problems and challenges that dealers face, the number one problem is that dealers trade or buy a unit and have a lack of “intent.”

Most would say, “Of course I have intent. I intend to sell this unit and make some money.” That makes total sense, but the problem is, it’s far too general.

That’s like saying you’re going to drive from NY to LA without a plan on how you intend to get there.

How many of you have ever heard the saying, “Every used car has to stand on its own?” If you’ve been around long enough you understand the term and can probably agree with the statement.

That being true, how can you give them all the same shelf life?

How can you not have a specific intent for each unit?

Most managers don’t think, “What’s my intent,” when a unit comes into their inventory. They paint them all with the same broad brush, which doesn’t make a lot of sense.Intent starts with the appraisal and is finalized during the trade walk, where the “final intent” is determined.

If dealership managers would look at each unit and clearly state their intent, they would have fewer inventory problems, turn would improve, and average gross, volume and ROI would go up.

I’m not going to go into the details here in this newsletter, but my life cycle management process gives you the disciplines to determine and carry out your “intent.”

My intent with this article is not to try to sell you something. My intent is to get you to think harder about what your own intent happens to be when you bring units into your inventory.That’s all I’m gonna say, Tommy Gibbs.

What Day Is It?

In sports, you often hear about how powerful momentum and intensity can be. The last two minutes of a football game will frequently determine the outcome.

You will often see players and coaches ’ greatness shine through in the most helter-skelter moments.

There’s a good chance the last two minutes of the Super Bowl this weekend will determine the outcome.
In the automobile business, the last day of the month is like the two-minute drill of a football game.

I have some “what ifs” for you:

What if you approached the 15th of the month as if it were the last day of the month?
What if you approached every Friday and Saturday as if they were the last two days of the month?
What if you approached every Wednesday and Thursday as if they were the last two days of the month?
What if you approached every Monday and Tuesday as if they were the last two days of the month?
What if you approached every day as if it were the last day of the month?
What day is it? It’s the last day of the month. It’s always the last day of the month.

The clock is ticking. You’re running out of time-outs. Pick it up. Let’s go. That’s all I’m gonna say, Tommy Gibbs.


Everyone has problem cars from time to time. You know the ones I’m talking about.

The ones that want to stick around forever.

The ones you haven’t yet found a buyer for.

The ones you overpaid for and now scratching your head over.

But where did they come from? How did they all of a sudden end up on your lot? Did they just fall out of the sky?

Can you imagine how much better off you would be if you could identify problem cars on day 1 vs. day 61?

Suppose you had a strategy in place to deal with them sooner rather than later?

The number one problem I see in the industry is we just don’t pay attention.
We don’t pay attention soon enough.

By the time we realize we have a problem, it’s too late.

Take the time to do a “trade-walk” which includes all purchase units, and be blatantly honest about what you’re staring at.

Then put a strategic plan in place to deal with the more problematic units.

If you did nothing more than that, you’d have a lot fewer units falling from the sky, hitting you in the head and giving you a headache.

And, you would have a lot better bottom line. That’s all I’m gonna say, Tommy Gibbs.