Tough Subjects…

There are two things in the car business I’ve always found painful to deal with and that’s pay plans and advertising. Advertising is the great mystery. If you could write a book on the “Mystery of Advertising,” and actually solve it you would have a number one best seller.

And then there are pay plans. How to make them work for the company? How to make them work for the staff? Those are tough balancing acts. One of the great challenges of the day is to become more efficient. With grosses becoming more and more challenging and expenses going up and up, it becomes that much harder to achieve a strong bottom line.

As we move forward we need to rethink who we are paying and how much. There’s a disconnect when it comes to paying high achievers, the real producers, and those average and below average players enjoying the ride.

There are some we need to pay more and some we need to pay less. If the ones we pay less feel slighted and can’t handle it, then we need to let them move on. The sooner the better. They are stealing from you and your top producers because you’re paying mediocre people who are doing below average work far more than they deserve.

Ownership is often trying to solve the problem on the high end when the real problem may be in the middle and lower end. Oh, don’t get confused by that statement. There are plenty of over achieving under paid people throughout an organization regardless of the position in the chain of command. The problem is ownership identifies what they think is the quick fix, rather than the right fix.

Average people don’t deserve average pay. They deserve less than average. Top people don’t deserve top pay. They deserve over the top pay. They are the ones who are leading and making it happen.

I cannot tell you the number of times I’ve seen dealers want to cut a top performer’s pay when the reality is they are more than earning it. It’s the low performers who are killing you. It’s often a top GM or a GM of a group of stores who the owner wants to cut…that’s the very guy or gal that’s making sure the others are actually producing.

While I’m discussing performance let me share another tidbit with you. For the most part people need to be challenged about every 3 years or less. If you want to up performance and productivity move your people around from management position to management position and from store to store. It’s very seldom someone can perform well in the same job year after year.

We all need to be challenged. Dealers challenge themselves by buying additional stores and/or other businesses. It’s no different for the management team. So, if you want to increase performance and productivity challenge your team and pay your top people more and average performers less. I’ve said enough about pay and that’s all I’m gonna say, Tommy Gibbs