Have you ever been to the beach or maybe sat around at a swimming pool and observed how people enter the water? Some will walk in about ankle deep at first. Then they move a little further up to the calf area, then the thighs, finally up to their waist…from that point on it’s 50/50 if they ever take the full plunge. Then there are others who don’t mess around with that ankle stuff, they just dive right in.
Some swimmers are totally committed, others not so sure. Some of this is confidence or a learned skill. The person who jumps right in has probably been doing it since they were a little kid and it’s second nature. For those who don’t take the plunge there could be a multitude of reasons why they don’t.
This concept happens in personal relationships, life and certainly business. Depending upon the situation taking the plunge can be good or bad.
There are many in business who jump in, get after it knowing that if it doesn’t work out they will fix it and move on. They know “it” whatever “it” might be is a moving target so they have a mindset of “just do it.” They know doing something is better than sitting on their hands waiting for something to happen. These people are leading from the front. Others in the business observe from the rear and question themselves “is this the right thing to do?” Thus, they do nothing.
I often ask 20 group members, “Do you remember when you first got in a 20 group? You would go to a 20 group meeting get some great ideas, get all jacked up, and when you returned to the store shove a bunch of stuff down people’s throats and make ‘em eat it if they liked it or not.”
Over the course of time you begin to feel the vibes that your staff members hated it when they knew you were going to a 20 group meeting. They feared you were coming back with a bunch of crazy stuff to shove down their throats. Over time you changed your strategy to coming back from the meeting and laying low for 30 days and then implemented those ideas in a soft and easy manner. What actually happened is you ended up doing nothing. I always suggest to 20 group members if you get some good ideas from your 20 group meeting go back and start shoving it right away.
Being “all in” is the most important thing you can do when implementing change. I recently did some training and consulting for a dealer who has 3 new car dealerships that are doing very well. Prior to being a new car dealer he was a very, very successful used car dealer. Though he’s made good money with his new car deal his used car business hasn’t reached its full potential.
There have been some issues from the service department side that needed to be addressed among other things. He’s had a $2500 pack on his used cars which in the past has served him well, but has contributed to not being price competitive and thus a lot of overage used cars. His Internet strategy has not served him well and the list goes on. With his permission I’m sharing an email he sent me this past week:
“Ok Tommy Gibbs, my stores are all in with your program. Service managers have bonuses based on keeping average cost of repair orders down, Service managers have volume bonuses to keep their speed up, Salespeople are on a flat pay plan.
We are buying the right used cars (I am doing all the buying) we have our 10 C.A.R. list being done with me every week and putting our "last chance stickers on them" pulled up in front of dealership, Analyzing anything in stock at 20 days and putting "EWR" stickers on those, All price buckets are being updated daily.
We have signs up at all the dealership with our "value pricing” philosophy, All cars are tagged with prices on our "value pricing” window tags, We are not charging any fees, The price they see is the price they pay and we are doing everything right. So yes we changed our whole business model on your advice.
ALL I CAN SAY IS THIS BETTER WORK!!!!! And so far it has. Been running full speed for about 2 weeks now and so far, I repeat so far it looks like we are on track to DOUBLE our used car volume in all our stores. I’ll keep you posted.”
I’d say he and I are both all in. Does he have a perfect plan? Probably not. Will he have some evaporation and need to make some adjustments? Probably yes. But here’s the deal: He has a plan and he’s all in and that’s all I’m gonna say, Tommy Gibbs