Did you see the movie Forrest Gump? Forrest Gump was not projected as a really smart person, but he certainly made some very smart quotes such as “stupid is as stupid does.”
Sometimes, we in the automobile business think our business is totally different than other types of businesses. I really kind of doubt it. We sell products and services. We excel when we provide the customer with a good product and excellent service.
One of the things I’ve noticed about the automobile business over the years is that dealers make the most money when they are coming off of hard times. They get back to fundamentals and then as business starts to get better the bottom line rocks. But, the better and better business gets the sloppier and sloppier dealers tend to get.
Right now a lot of dealers are seeing an improvement in sales and profits. Many dealers have learned hard lessons about what I would refer to as “stupid spending” and “stupid thinking.”
Since things are getting better now, dealers will be tempted to add staff and advertising expense. People like my parents, who lived through the great depression were in one way or another marked for life. I’m hopeful that dealers have learned some valuable lessons through these tough times and never go back to those old stupid ways of spend, spend, spend.
Dealers who are learning to effectively use the Internet and Social Media are going to be the big winners. Dealers who can fight the temptation to go back to their old ways will be the ones with the big bottom lines. Never forget that temptation is your enemy.
- never again will you let your expenses get out of control
- never again will you go back to your old ways
- never again will you carry inventory you don’t need
- never again will you let used cars get out of control
- never again will you keep people you should not keep
- never again will you let ups leave without a TO
- never again will you not require sales people to log all customers
- never again will you not require your sales staff to follow the road to the sale
- never again will you keep used cars over 45 days.
So, once “again” I want to remind you of things that are “never again.”
“Smart is as smart does.” Be smart! That’s all I’m gonna say. Tommy Gibbs