Learning on the Fly! Rally Champ, Drifter, Lawyer Turned Auto Entrepreneur with Andrew Comrie-Picard

Learning on the Fly! Rally Champ, Drifter, Lawyer Turned Auto Entrepreneur with Andrew Comrie-Picard

In the auto industry, your career path can go in so many different directions. Sometimes, it doesn’t even look like a “path” at all and the twists and turns don’t make total sense when you’re taking them, but looking back, it all does. That’s definitely the case for my latest guest on Service Drive Revolution, Andrew Comrie-Picard, also known as ACP. ACP is a former high-profile lawyer, pro rally car racing champion, Hollywood stunt coordinator, pro drifter, and founder of ZipTire. This guy’s won a lot of races and awards, and I mean a lot: Canadian Rally national champion, North American rally champion, Baja 1000 class winner, Pikes Peak record holder, Formula DRIFT pro drifter, and BFGoodrich official spokesperson, to name a few. I think we could all learn at least a thing or two from him.

ACP’s obsession with cars started at age seven, when his dad owned a trucking and moving company in Canada. At age seven, his job was to back the cars and trucks they were working on into the yard, lining them up like soldiers. ACP ended up rolling one of the trucks and when he told his dad about it, he pointed him in the direction of the welder and told him he better figure out how to fix it…so he did just that. He drove his first semi at the age of eight or nine. The bottom line is…he started to build his expertise really, really early. It’s no surprise that he’s pretty shocked that so many 16-year-olds don’t even want to get their licenses or learn to drive a standard these days (though he drives an automatic in LA, like the rest of us). 

Growing up in Canada had a big impact on ACP’s interests. He chose to become a rally driver and an off-road driver because in the Canadian tundra, he was forced to drive in slippery, frozen conditions. He calls this “kinetic friction”–sliding on a road rather than actually driving–and it was the perfect primer for a career in drifting and racing. Living in a rural area, ACP also grew up valuing collaboration and community. The mentality in his town was that everyone lends a hand to one another. It was more communal and less competitive. He’s not sure that’s still the case these days, though he definitely has some strong opinions about Tim Horton’s, which I won’t get into here…you’ll have to listen to the episode for that.

Another important piece of the puzzle for ACP is that his mother was an academic, which was not typical for the farming lifestyle. She was a professor who really valued schooling, so while ACP was learning to fix cars, he was also crushing it academically. He ended up getting five university degrees, including one from Oxford, and eventually landed as an attorney in New York City. All the while, he was racing cars on the side in an amateur capacity. We talked about his experience and came up with some key takeaways for you:

  • Always read the contract, no matter how long and boring it is.
  • You should have 3 lawyers: One who’s a friend who gives you a lower rate and helps you with most of the smaller things, one that specializes, and another that strikes fear in the opposition, should you ever need that to happen. 

ACP also got a graduate degree in Political Economy from Oxford, which he says has given him a certain level of cred in every industry he’s worked in. Sometimes, you’ll make a career move that doesn’t directly relate to your end goal, but if you spin it the right way, it can still make a difference. When it comes down to it, it’s all about branding.

Before he started his work as a lawyer, ACP had a $2000 racecar. Once he started raking in the big bucks, he invested in a $40,000 car. He was racing every weekend and then heading back to New York to hustle as an attorney, working 60 or 70 hours a week, sleeping under his desk, and climbing the ladder. At a certain point, it hit him that the racing was going well enough that he could do it full time. He could feel himself caring less about work and knew that his heart was half in it at most. 

ACP realized that he wasn’t looking for work-life balance. If you ask me, there’s really no such thing as work-life balance for people that are obsessed with accomplishing something. He was looking to do what he loved and was good at day in and day out…and that was racing. So he quit his job as a lawyer and became a full-time racecar driver. 

At that point, he realized that if this was going to be his full-time gig and livelihood, he really had to commit 100%. That’s where it all came together. Even though making the transition from being an attorney to become a racecar driver might not make sense on its head, it all lines up in ACP’s story. Being an attorney gave him the funds he needed to invest in racing and then, once he started doing it full-time, he brought a lot of his skills with him. He knew how to negotiate his own contracts, he could talk about cars in an elevated way, and he understood the business side of things, which differentiated him from his peers. Here’s how he put it:

“I’d like to think I am the best rally racer in North America, but I’m probably one of 10, 20, 50, 100 guys that are really good drivers. But of those guys, how many of them can also talk about what’s going on or deal with the business [side of things]? That’s a lot fewer guys, so once you take two different areas, disparate areas, and melt them together, then you’re more weaponized, to use the analogy again, but you’re able to get further.”

ACP started competing in the X-Games when it opened in 2006 and went on to compete five times. It was a coveted position to be in–the X-Games only invited 12 drivers to participate and in the first five, which ACP calls “the dream days” it was him, Travis Pastrana, Ken Block, and Tanner Foust. They were doing rally racing and rally cross and the course escalated every year. His stories are pretty epic, out there head-to-head on the course with the best of the best, doing crossover jumps and tricks. He learned how to do a backflip on a motorcycle from Travis, who he considers to be a good friend and who is practically the inventor of backflipping a dirt bike. To do it, you really have to go for it full throttle–you can’t hold back. According to ACP, Travis is missing a “self-preservation gene” that allows him to really go for it on the course. ACP isn’t missing that gene himself, so Travis was able to give him the push that he needed to do the backflip. The story is pretty epic–listen to the episode to hear it in its entirety and get a play-by-play for how it’s done. It was an epic time for racecar driving and ACP’s tales about what the culture was like and being a champion rally pro are well worth a listen.

So, at this point you know that ACP is an award-winning racecar driver, a lawyer, and an all-around badass. But there’s more to his story–he’s also a well-known TV host. It started in 2004 in Canada, when he saw an ad for a reality TV show where guys had to compete to build a car in three days and other similar challenges. He pitched a team of mechanics he knew who’d been crushing it for a long time and when he was in talks with producers, they started to talk about who could host it. ACP himself was an obvious choice, since he wasn’t just a talented racecar driver, but also knew how to talk about cars in a way that was smart and compelling. He auditioned, got the gig, and started as a host on Global TV called on a show called War of the Wheels. He continued to race, got better and better, and was eventually cast on a Discovery show and it all blew up from there. Through that experience, he met the producers of Top Gear. He drove a car with Charlize Theron in the passenger seat in Atomic Blonde, and when she went on to produce a show on Netflix called Hyperdrive, she brought him on as the stunt coordinator.

Would you believe me if I said there’s even more to ACP’s story? Cause there is. He’s the founder of ZipTire, a mobile tire business that comes to you rather than the other way around. The idea came to him after he’d been sent Michelin tires and BFGoodrich tires and realized he’d have to go into a shop to get them put on his car. The idea came to him that there should be a company that comes to you to change your tires. He did some research and found that there were a few companies out there using Sprinters to get tires out to people immediately and he knew that he could use his expertise to build a company that would do it even better. Today, ZipTire is a preferred installer for Tire Rack and they’re working on scaling the business. 

Hungry for more of ACP’s story? Makes sense…he’s an interesting and incredibly successful guy. You’ll learn more on his episode of Service Drive Revolution, such as which poem he’s carried in his wallet since age 12 and which dealership ACP thinks of as “the only game in town”? Is it Mitsubishi? Ford? Toyota? Subaru? Place your bets and then listen to the episode to find out. 

And one more thing before you go…have you entered the $50,000 Service Manager Challenge yet? In this contest, you’ll literally compete against yourself for the chance to win a fully loaded 2020 Jeep Gladiator. Find out the details are here and get your name in the game before it’s too late. 

 

googled852b66742c86d24.html

10 Reasons Why Service Advisors Fail

10 Reasons Why Service Advisors Fail

Ever wondered why it is that some service advisors hit (and exceed) their goals, just crush the competition, while others can’t seem to get there? The automotive industry can be a tough game, but just like in any other industry, there are things you can do to push ahead of the competition…and other things that will pretty much guarantee failure. 

I talked to service pro Jeremy O’Neal about why some service advisors fail, so you can avoid making their mistakes. 

Before we get into that, though…

If you haven’t entered the $50,000 Service Manager Challenge yet, what are you even doing? Service Drive Revolution. The big prize is a fully loaded 2020 Jeep Gladiator and the only competition is yourself. What do I mean? All of the details are here, so check it out and get moving.  

Back to why service advisors fail or, as Jeremy would put it, “unsucceed” because according to him, you only FAIL if you give up. If you ask me, a service advisor who doesn’t meet his goals at one shop and then moves on to the next to do the same thing again isn’t “unsuccessful”…they’re a straight up failure at their job. But you can call it whatever you want–either way, why do some service advisors fail?

1. They beg for a Customer Service Index (CSI)

Listen, both Jeremy and I know that CSI is important to dealerships and therefore, to service advisors. It often dictates how much your paycheck will be and whether or not you’re going to move up the ladder. But when you’re a service advisor and you’re begging your customers to fill out the survey and give you a good score, that’s a bad look. If you want someone to give you a good score, perform in such a way that they’ll want to do it without you asking. Don’t slack on customer service and then pop up and ask them to take the time to fill out your CSI and give you a solid score. What kind of sense does that make? It’s not only annoying to the customer, but it’s also a pretty strong indicator that you haven’t been doing a good enough job to warrant the score you want. Instead, kill it at customer service, then let the customer know that if something goes wrong with their car when they get it home, you want to hear about it directly so you can take care of it. Tell them that they’ll be getting a survey, which is important for your business, but that you would much rather hear about any issues directly so you can take care of them as efficiently as possible. This also builds rapport and keeps them coming back to you. Jeremy’s got a good story about CSI–give the episode a listen to hear it.

2. They don’t have a system

You know those people who rely on their good looks and charm to succeed? And it’s all well and good until they run out of looks and charm because they don’t have anything to back it up? It happens in the auto industry all the time. So many of the service advisors I’ve seen fail have relied on luck or charm or whatever else they naturally have going for them that have allowed them to avoid creating a scalable structure. They pet the dog, their customers love them, and all is well and good in the short-term. But every single time, there’s a cap that comes along with this approach that causes these advisors to plateau or even start to trend downward when their charm fades. It’s not a long-term strategy. So even if this is your approach right now, watch the other service advisors around you who have been successful for a long time and develop a plan that will continue to work over time. I talk about my system more in the episode if you’re looking for some guidance. I call it the Chris Collins Circle of Trust.

3. They don’t have a pregame

More often than not, failing service advisors are in reaction mode. They start off their day in such a way that they’re not prepared to run the game the way they want to and they don’t even realize how big of an impact it’s having on their performance. The same is true for every position in every industry, whether you’re a service advisor, service manager, dealership principal, gym owner, entrepreneur, or solopreneur, you need a routine that sets you up for success. 

Jeremy calls his pregame strategy his “Golden Hour of Power”. Whether he’s at his shop, working at a dealership, or doing an on-site training, he gets there in the morning and has a routine before he gets started. Here’s what he does:

A couple things I do is I never work on administrative tasks during game time. Game time is from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. That’s where I’m writing tickets out, consulting with customers, petting the dog, making sales presentations, going through all that. I can’t do administrative stuff during that time. So, I do my administrative stuff either in the morning or in the afternoon. And then I also get my log book out and set my goals. Car count goals, sales goals. And then I look at my slow day plan. So, now I’m prepared for what I want to do. I’ve got my mind set right. I do some reading, I might listen to one of your podcasts, all that stuff. And then I would look at the appointments that are coming in. Make sure I have everything prepared and that I’m ready to go. So, that hour in the morning sets you up. So, it’s the golden hour of power and you’ve got to have a pregame ritual to get yourself set up for success.

Whether you want to emulate Jeremy’s pre-game or come up with your own is your call. I’ve got my own pregame that looks a little different. All that matters is that you have one that works for you.

4. They don’t pet the dog

If you’ve been following along with anything in the world of Chris Collins, you know what it means to pet the dog. If you’re new here, watch this video to get caught up. No BS, no rushing, but making time to provide them with the kind of service they’re looking for an deserve. When service advisors fail, a big part of it is often that they’ve made the mistake of allowing being “too busy” to get in the way of taking care of their customers. They start acting like the car is the commodity, rather than the customer and are surprised when that customer doesn’t come back. That means that they’re constantly trying to find new business instead of nurturing existing and loyal customer relationships.

5. They prejudge people

Some service advisors will look at a new customer, look at their car, and decide right then and there what they’re going to spend with them and how they’ll make decisions about their car. Time and time again, that’s a huge mistake. To give you an example, when I first started, many of my best customers were young college girls with old Volkswagens that my colleagues assumed wouldn’t pay a dime to keep them up or that if they told them their repairs would cost more than the car is worth, they’d walk away. They were dead wrong. Even when I told these girls the truth about the situation, they decided to repair their cars. Listen to the episode to hear how. The moral of the story is to keep an open mind and don’t assume anything about your customers before you have more information about them and their car. Treat everyone with respect off the bat, no matter what.

6. They diagnose in the service drive

Sometimes, service advisors try to be experts and diagnose what’s going on in the drive. A lot of times this happens to technicians that become advisors. They sabotage themselves because they presume that they can diagnose what’s going on, when their job is actually to get all the information, put it on the repair order, and let the technician diagnose it. Not only isn’t it their job, but it can also be an incorrect diagnosis that leads the customer to distrust you. You don’t have to be the hero for the customer and fix the car in the drive. There’s no magic wand that’s going to go out there and fix it. The system works, so use it if you want to succeed at your job.

7. They offer discounts as a rule, not an exception

For some service advisors, discounts are the tool they use to close the sale every time. what they don’t understand is they’re diminishing their value right out of the gate. The customer isn’t even asking for a discount and the advisor is just assuming that it’ll sweeten the deal, when really it just looks like the work might not actually be worth the full price. It shows a lack of confidence. Instead, offer your best pricing out of the gate instead of overcharging and then offering a discount. 

8. They don’t like people

When it comes down to it, being a successful service advisor is all about people–knowing how to treat them, how to make them feel, what they’re looking for (and not looking for), how to keep them coming back. It’s unreal how many service advisors I’ve met who just straight up don’t really like people. They’re grumpy, miserable, and don’t smile at people. They’re just there because they needed to get a job and somehow they made it past the manager and got the job. If you don’t like people, you’re going to fail in this role and you won’t last. Trust me on that. 

9. They’re not consistent 

For service advisors, consistency is EVERYTHING. I can’t stress this enough. Sometimes, especially in independent repair shops, they’ll pull out all the stops for the big sales and then when someone comes in for an oil change, it’s basic, low-level service. What they don’t realize is that if you pull out all the stops–or at least some of them–for every sale, you’re setting yourself up for that person to come back and spend more on bigger ticket repairs and maintenance. Consistency in customer service is critical too. Pet the dog for every customer, every time they come in, and you’ll build a loyal customer base before you know it. 

10. They aren’t pros

This one seems obvious, but I think you’d be surprised at the number of service advisors who just aren’t pros at what they do. Jeremy told a story on the podcast that really hits the nail on the head as to what I mean by this. I won’t steal his thunder here…go listen to the podcast. 

So, there you have it. If you want to be a successful service advisor, don’t do these things. Jeremy and I will be coming back to you soon to tell you how to run a shop. Service advisor training for independent shops is his area of expertise, so we’re planning a collaboration that we’ll share with you soon. Stay tuned. And don’t forget to enter the Service Manager Challenge Jeep Gladiator Giveaway. It’s you versus yourself…what do you have to lose?

Can Service Advising Be Automated? Quik Auto’s Jack Gardner Says Yes

Can Service Advising Be Automated? Quik Auto’s Jack Gardner Says Yes

These days, it’s more important than ever that businesses meet customers where they’re at. This means creating platforms that allow customers to engage when and where they need to rather than sticking with old school systems that don’t work anymore. That’s definitely true in the auto service industry and many service advisors–maybe even you–are looking for ways to deliver their services more effectively. 

I had Quik Auto CEO Jack Gardner join me on Service Drive Revolution to talk about how he created a platform to automate and digitize some of the work that auto customer service advisors and auto repair consultants have traditionally done. It’s started to take the automotive consulting world by storm and there’s a lot we can all learn about how it came to be and why it’s so successful in the world of automotive consulting services. 

Jack started his career as a Toyota tech and then tried sales. Turns out he was pretty good at the sales game. The problem is…he didn’t like it at first. He decided and even attempted to quit, but his manager pushed him to stay on. When he did, his mentality changed. There was less pressure and more drive to just see what he could learn and do. He describes it as “confidence that was derived from product knowledge”, and it led to a $16k paycheck in his second week alone. He also got into a fair amount of trouble and has some funny stories to tell, but I’ll let you listen to his episode to find out more about that…

Jack’s sales strategies were simple but effective. When the concept of leasing cars started to come up, he was hesitant at first because he didn’t get it. But when he saw another salesperson making bank off of fewer sales, he realized it was time to learn the game. He saw the money in it and learned everything there was to know about leasing. 

Once he had the expert knowledge about leasing, he figured out how to get that information to skeptical clients. He had a line he’d use to get them interested in learning more about it:

“Would you agree that a better decision will always be made based on all of the facts, as opposed to some of the facts?” 

Once they said yes, they were on the hook to hear his pitch about leasing…and it worked. Then his strategy was to deliver a pitch that focuses on the basic terminology and information clients would need to make a decision, instead of getting into percentages and residual rates. His goal was to help them understand this new concept and why it would be a solid option for them to consider. And people considered it…at the staggering rate of about 60%. 

From there, it was all finding the “sweet spot”. He learned early on that allowing clients’ leases to mature was a bad move. After their leases matured, clients would come in to return their cars but often put more mileage on the cars than they had agreed upon. Once the contract was up, that meant that Jack had to tell the client that they owe more money, which never went down well and took up a lot of time and energy. So he started to touch base with clients to talk about trade-in before their leases were up. The trick about the sweet spot was that there was no specific timeline around it, it just came up whenever the manufacturer needed to move a supply of cars off of the lot. So Jack would wait for those moments to come up, then call clients who were leasing and offer them a new lease on a new car for a “comparable” payment, with “comparable” being the magic word. 

Another key point Jack made was that people remember the little things. If you deliver consistently on the little things, like making sure each leased car has a full tank of gas when it leaves the lot, you’re golden. That’s what people remember. So clients would spread the word to others about leasing and the smooth process and the next thing you know, he’s got an incredibly lucrative leasing business that leads directly into a solid used car business.

From there, Jack went into finance for a few years, then started as a general manager, and moves on to start training people how to lease cars. And then…he met a guy at a bar, as he puts it. They started talking shop and eventually decided to launch Quik Video, a business that sent information on multi-point inspections to customers in a manner in which they understood it. From there, it grew well beyond videos and into texting, electronic multi-point inspection, internal chat and more and they changed the name from Quik to encompass the new services. Quik. is a digital service advisor that lets customers see what their options are, learn about them, and make decisions without an in-person advisor. Basically, they offer a solution that makes relationships between dealers and customers more honest, open and transparent.

But more than the technology itself, the key to Quik.’s success has been consistency. Jack’s strategy was built on a few pretty simple but really important rules. The first one is Toyota’s Quarter Time, meaning that the results of a multi-point inspection should be in the customer’s hands in the first 15 minutes, which leads to an 80% chance of selling the work. If it takes 39 minutes, so those first 15 plus 24 minutes of delay, that percentage falls down to 10%. So Quik. offers dealerships a way to put that video out to a customer in 15 minutes, which led to impressive sales results. It’s a tried and true rule that many automotive industry consultants know, and it was confirmed yet again through the Quik. platform. 

Quik’s software saves dealerships tons of money and can generate even more revenue from customers. Why? According to Jack, customers have a hard time believing service advisors because they view them as salespeople looking to make the most money possible. When a digital program is telling them what they need, they tend to trust it–it’s just a machine that doesn’t know how to lie or upsell. In addition, customers can learn more and do it on their own time when they’re using software to do it. So, basically, they upsell themselves to the tune of about 30%. When they’re making decisions online, they opt in for more maintenance than they would with an old school in-person advisor. 

Plus, once customers decide they want to do in terms of maintenance, a technician can then look at that as well as what they decided not to do. If the technician thinks that the service is necessary, they can explain to the customer why they should do it in an online video that goes directly from the tech to the customer. This way, as Jack describes it, the customer gets that advice directly from the “doctor”–the technician–rather than the “receptionist”–the advisor. Psychologically, this gives the customer the sense that this work is important and gives them the opportunity to understand why, so they are much more likely to go for it.

Over time, Jack has learned that automating everything is crucial to Quik.’s success. Integrating with DMS (we won’t tell you which is the worst out there), making sure all of the different systems that are part of the inspection and maintenance process are talking to one another…those automation make sure everything goes smoothly. 

Jack’s main goals have been to help dealerships increase their revenue without additional work and to build a platform that gives customers what they want and need, instead of forcing them to use an antiquated system that makes it stressful and difficult for them. In elevating the customer experience, the three things that both the dealer and the OEM are truly concerned with will fall right into place:

  1. They will sell more work, which means the manufacturer is selling more parts–more selling all around.
  2. Customer Service Index will go up, because you’ve exceeded the consumer’s expectations.
  3. Retention will go up because of the other two fell into place, so why would the customer go anywhere else?

So, service advisors…what’s your takeaway here? It’s not that your role is going to be eliminated because technology can never fully replace talented service advisors. The takeaway is to develop strategies that allow you to be CONSISTENT in what you provide and how you provide it. As Jack says, technology won’t replace people, but it will replace the weak. If you aren’t weak, technology like Quik. will only help you out. If you are, it may take you out. 

If you’re interested in learning more about Quik., give Jack Gardner’s episode on the Service Drive Revolution podcast a listen here and check out their websites: Quik. and Service Concierge.

WOMEN IN THE SERVICE DRIVE

WOMEN IN THE SERVICE DRIVE

The Auto Service Drive is male-dominated, and the car industry hasn’t made enough of an effort to understand female customers or recruit more female salespeople and advisors. We know this, but this is what you don’t know…

Personally, I employed tons of women in the service drive. Want to know why? Some of the best advisors I ever had were women. They’re good at the job. Having women around also helps keep the locker talk down.

WOMEN ARE ALSO TERRIFIC, LOYAL CUSTOMERS AND MAKE, OR INFLUENCE 85% OF ALL PURCHASING DECISIONS, INCLUDING TRADITIONAL MALE ONES LIKE…AUTOMOBILES.

 

But, yes, there are differences when dealing with female customers, AND there are different challenges for women when they work in an industry that is male-dominated. So this week we had Lindsey Glass on the show to talk about her experience as a female customer in the service drive.

Whatever you think about female customers—it doesn’t matter what you think. It’s how we make customer’s feel that’s important, so you have to pay attention because it’s a big deal. Perception is reality.

IF YOU’RE A SERVICE ADVISOR OR SERVICE MANAGER, AND YOUR FEMALE CUSTOMERS PERCEIVE YOU’RE INDIFFERENT, THAN THAT’S GOING TO AFFECT YOUR RESULTS AND YOUR CSI REGARDLESS OF WHETHER THAT WAS YOUR INTENTION.

 

Female consumers think differently, and often want the process to be explained. In my experience, women want to know what to expect and want you to take time with them and frame the experience. Here’s my trade secret for when I handled female customers…

I’d walk up with a big smile on my face, find a way to compliment them, ask them what they were doing that day, etc. If I saw a car seat or kids stuff, I’d ask about their kids. I really appreciated my females customers because they’d give praise when we did a good job and were loyal.

FEMALE CUSTOMERS ARE ALSO WAY MORE SUSCEPTIBLE TO A MAINTENANCE PLAN. IF YOU TAKE THE TIME TO SHOW THEM WHAT’S AVAILABLE AND EXPLAIN HOW IT ALL WORKS, THEY ARE YOURS FOREVER.

 

To wrap up, let me reiterate, female customers, are loyal and spend money. And, there’s a TON of opportunity for women who want to work in the service drive, so I’ll be writing a follow-up article on how to set yourself up for success if you’re a woman in the Automotive Industry.

Read this article for more Advanced Sales Techniques.

HOW MINDSET DRIVES BUSINESS PERFORMANCE ON THE SERVICE DRIVE

HOW MINDSET DRIVES BUSINESS PERFORMANCE ON THE SERVICE DRIVE

Let me take you on a quick trip back to my band days. For those of you not familiar with “band” thinking, it’s very much like being in a gang. You must stick together, and everything is for the good of the band. So one day we’re practicing and Ian Astbury comes in and asks if there’s a drummer who wants to try out for The Cult. Well, I was the only drummer in the room so it was totally awkward. But because I was completely committed to that, “we must stick together,” band mindset I passed on the opportunity. My mistake.

But, back to mindset and being a prisoner of your own mind… Almost without fail, when we meet with new clients, whether they’re service advisors, service managers, or owners they’re stuck in an old way of thinking, often the result of bad experiences, or feelings not facts. That is no way to run a business, and I don’t want you missing out on your chance at being the drummer for The Cult. You create your own destiny. No, I haven’t just returned from Burning Man. This is real. Your mindset affects everything you do from dealing with problems to how you feel about yourself. So you have to have a mindset that is positive and informed to make smart decisions.

IF I HAD A DIME FOR EVERY TIME I ASKED A CLIENT TO RETHINK THEIR PRICING AND THEY SAID NO WITHOUT DOING ANY RESEARCH ON PRICES IN THE CURRENT ECONOMY I’D BE A BAZILLIONAIRE.

Tip 1. Do your research on current prices and see where you’re off. It’s lazy not to look at data and make assumptions about what people will or won’t spend.

Next, tip 2. Try new things and be open to new ideas. I promise that if you open your mind your brain won’t fall out.

I remember when I was always out in stores I constantly saw new things that were going on. But once I was stuck in my own shop I stopped seeing all those fresh ideas, and started to fall into the trap of creating my own ideas of what would work, or what wouldn’t. You must leave your own territory and see what other people are up to.

Tip 3. Train your employees about financials and profits. How to understand them and make pricing decisions that will help your shop make money.

It’s outdated, but we still think of technicians as grease monkeys, or somehow not skilled laborers. But with today’s technology these guys are mechanics, electricians, and in some cases almost engineers. You can’t do business without them, or their service advisors, so they all MUST learn about their numbers and financial statements too. The fact that service managers are not trained on financials is a joke.

I HAVE TO GO WALK THE DOGS BUT HERE’S YOUR QUICK RECAP ON HOW TO RESET YOUR MINDSET:

  •  Base decisions on facts over feelings.
  • Do your research and get the correct data.
  • Get outside your market and see what other business are doing.
  • Get a coach to help because we see what’s out there.
  • Get in a coaching group so you can be exposed to lots of different things and people.
  • Open your mind to new strategies and opportunities.

OK, GET TO WORK ON OPENING THAT MIND BECAUSE I PROMISE, YOUR BRAIN WON’T FALL OUT! I’LL SEE YOU NEXT WEEK WITH MORE TIPS AND TOOLS FOR BUSINESS PERFORMANCE.