It’s Thanksgiving and time to give thanks. If you’re like me for sure you have a lot to be thankful for. Among many things I’m thankful for are your friendship and support.
Thanksgiving also starts the close out of the year. It centers around Black Friday and rolls through the last week of the year. Like it or not, 2017 is already here. I’ve listed some very basic ideas you need to take into consideration that will help you finish strong and get ready for your best year ever.
A. Re-commit yourself- and your thinking towards being the very best you can be. Take stock of all those great ideas running around in your head. Write them down and make a commitment to get them done by certain dates. Post it on the wall in several places that you will see frequently. If you have a private restroom, put it on the mirror.
B. Re-evaluate-the appearance of your inventory. Let’s do a little checklist:
1. Look at your inventory online. Are they all there? 40 + pictures & prices posted?
2. Take a lot walk. Are the vehicles in straight lines?
3. When was the last time the entire lot was rotated?
4. Are you using angles to display your inventory?
5. Do you have hang tags? If so, do they all have hang tags?
6. Are they nasty, dirty on the outside?
C. Refocus-To be successful in the used car business (or any business) you have to be focused and be totally committed. Your entire management team has to understand your commitment to the business. Make sure a weekly lot walk is part of your routine. Every car in your inventory must be touched. If it’s in service, touch it. If it’s in prep, touch it. If it’s in the budget center, touch it. Everybody touches it.
D. Re-Recon-Take every unit over 30 days old back through a recon process. (You’ve already missed your best window of opportunity to make gross; that would be the first 20 days.)
E. Re-Invest-in yourself and your management team. Do something to gain some knowledge. Hire me, visit CarMax, or visit a dealer friend in another state that does a good job in used. Attend a workshop. Join a Twenty Group. Join a Used Car Twenty Group. (Hire me!) Do something besides sitting there and waiting for something to happen.
F. Re-think- your management team. Do you have the right person running your used car operation? Yes, that person may have been with you for years. Loyalty sometimes equals mediocrity. Maybe they have some great skills, but the fact is that you may not be making the best use of their talents. Used car managers today have to be “Asset Managers.”
The dealers with the most successful used car operations are those who have taken ownership of the used car department. The more involved you get, the more success your dealership will have.
I’m thankful for lots of things this holiday season and I’m especially thankful that you’ve taken the time to read my little Zingers. That’s all I’m gonna say, Tommy Gibbs