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Mr. X: Real-World Proof
My biggest frustration used to be monthly technician meetings. I really dreaded them. Not
surprisingly, the techs did, too. I’d come prepared with a list of things to cover that might have looked something like this:
Real-Life Service Manager
San Diego, Ca.
After I got through my list of topics, one of the techs would inevitably pull out a list of his topics. It really wasn’t his list as much as it was their list.
During the two or three days before the meeting, the techs would put together a gripe list and appoint the most brave, outspoken one to present it. There were valid issues, but they were usually based on things that happened in the last two to three days, and were all negative. Sometimes, to really top things off, the owner would sit in on the meeting.
The gripes were usually tabled, but sometimes I tried to defend them. Let me tell you, trying to defend a tech concern in a room full of sleepy, fed and “over-worked and under-paid” techs is not fun, and a complete waste of time.
The gripes were always things like: “The factory warranty time to replace water pump isn’t enough,” or “All the techs at our competing dealer across town make way more money than we do.” I decided right then that this would be the last of this type of torture.
There’s nothing quite as rousing as being fed-up to the back teeth, is there? We’ve all done it. We sit back and let things slip. And then one day, we look around and see things as they really are. We realize just how glum we have let life become.
Our epiphany may have been sparked by a telling-off from the boss, or it may be the sudden realization that our whole lives are lived in fear– fear of rejection, of loss, of change. Suddenly, we are the sort of people we swore we would never become.
When my dealership hired Chris Collins, and I began to be mentored by him, life changed for the better. I can’t tell you how thankful I am that I gave his systems a chance, and didn’t just throw it away in my self-deluded misery. I got an opportunity to start over.
He was blunt and very direct: “I will give you every opportunity, and the know-how to transform yourself into a powerful manager and turn around your service department. If you won’t do it, then you might as well go flip burgers instead!”
I kept thinking about what he said, getting madder and madder each time. I remember thinking, “Who the hell is he to tell me to go flip burgers? I’m not a loser!!” I tried to be angry at him, but really, I knew that I was just mad at myself for falling below the expectations I had set for myself.
It really felt like he was seeing right through me and saying, “Well, Mr. X, you’re not on the path you know you should be; I’m offering you all the knowledge of how to do it. Are you going to do it, or are you just going to give up for life?”
Right then and there, I made a conscious decision to change my life. Chris Collins had issued a challenge. He would teach me how to become an irreplaceable service manager, and I would do my bit by turning the department around and boosting profits through the roof. Finally, I had something concrete to focus on. I was going to crush my goals!
I quickly realized that where there’s a will, there’s a way. It may be a cliché, but all clichés have to start somewhere– and that’s usually because they tell the truth. I started seeing results immediately, and it was astounding! I was gaining my power back. There wasn’t anything I couldn’t do…
Chris Collins is the world’s foremost Fixed Ops expert and business fixer; revolutionizing businesses, and bringing fun and massive profits to industry leaders across the U.S. and Canada.
He is the author of two best-selling books, and has been featured on The Howard Stern Show, CBS, The Wall Street Journal, and in The New York Post.
From dressing in hand-me-downs and living on donated food in Tijuana, Mexico, to washing cars in a Seattle dealership, he worked his way through the the automotive industry– a hyper-competitive business– to become the General Manager of the #1 BMW dealership in the world.
His methods may be unorthodox, but normal never created change. He and his training programs help success-minded individuals from all walks of life crush their goals, multiply their earnings and portfolios, and live their dreams, enjoying every step of the way.
Chris lives in Los Angeles with his fiancee and his four beloved Bulldogs.
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