My whole team and I where in Vegas a couple weeks ago. We did some work for our friends at “Park Place” who just moved into that market from Dallas (Great car guys… not many like them with a true passion for our Industry left).
Our team also had a kick off meeting for our new, interactive, virtual, trackable Service Advisor Training. It’s on a multi million dollar platform and will be like nothing ever offered in our industry.
Can’t wait to show it off soon.
My favorite restaurant in Vegas is Mesa Grill. It’s owned by Bobby Flay the celebrity Chef.
The food is really spicy and when in town I always try to sneak in there and have the Chile Rellenos or the Coffee Chipotle Rubbed Steak… Writing this is making me hungry.
Most of my Vegas nights have started there…
There is no mistake to why Bobby runs such a great operation.
While sitting at the bar I noticed a cool quote taped to a refrigerator next to the bar. Every time someone would open the refrigerator door, I could see it.
I convinced the bartender to sneak around the corner and take a picture of it for me.
I know there are some “Urban Legend” Stories about me and Vegas. One I even had in the original version of “The Irreplaceable Service Manager”. I ended up cutting that and about 100 more pages out at the last minute, in an attempt to make it easier to read and more just pure content.
Now most of the Vegas stories about me are exaggerated and blown way out of proportion…
But, a couple are true and all started at the Mesa Grill (Please Might Be Good Luck?)
For example, while attending a meeting for a well-known German Car Company earlier this year at the Encore, my team and a bunch of friends such as Mr. X and a few other Secret Service Society Members, won big at craps.
I was rolling the dice and rolled the “Features” which is a bet available only at the Wynn & Encore. If you hit it, it pays 176/1 or something like that…
Everyone in our group was on that bet and between the 7 of us we won over $125,000 in a 45-minute period.
We had a huge crowd at the end watching to see if I could roll it… The way it works is you have to roll every number without rolling a 7. I had rolled everything but a 12.
Also in the crowd was Gary Dell”abante from the Howard Stern Show.
I didn’t know he was watching at the time, because I was trying to focus and trying really hard to ignore the crowd and roll a 12.
The dealer to my right even tried to rattle me and throw me off. Didn’t work…
I finally did roll a 12 – the crowd and our group- went nuts!! It was really fun. Later while we where attempting to cash out, not easy… Gary came up and shook my hand and was asking me questions about the bet.
The next week he talked about it on the Wrap Up Show. Mentioned that he saw a 27 year-old girl (Nina) win $80k at the craps table.
Not the real story… But hey Nina was mentioned on Howard Stern…
So what I want to emphasis with my Vegas story is that like Bobby Flay, we have to realize that the thing that sets our Service Departments apart is how we define and deliver hospitality and how we make our customer’s feel…
I have a favorite quote about this by Maya Angelou:
“People will forget what you say, people will forget what you do, but they will never forget how you made them feel”
So it’s not about fancy digital inspection sheets or having the nicest customer lounge, it’s how we, our advisors, connect with customers and the feelings and experience they have with us.
That’s where the customer retention and high Fixed Absorption lies.. That’s our long term success…
P.S. This months “Service Manager Liberation” Webcast is going to be on “Packaging Menu Services For Higher ELR And Volume”. That and whatever shenanigans Mario and Nina think up.
Preview of the last webcast here
If you missed last months “Service Manager Libration Webcast” you didn’t see me call my friend Joe and settle up our bet.
My bet was that if he doubled his alignment prices he would sell 40 more alignments…
Don’t bet against me…
Watch me call him live on the webcast in the preview above!
To watch the whole thing and join in on my monthly webcasts sign up at link below:
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I have been holed away for the most part working on my new book geared at Service Advisors.
The working title is “The Millionaire Service Advisor – My Life Story.”
The premise of the book is how the good old fashion art of collecting customers, pays for your house, cars, kids college education and so one. It’s all about customer retention…
Our industry mostly sells a commodity and advisors need to understand that selling themselves in the only way to success.
Your competition and independent shops sell the same commodity for the most part. We need to differentiate ourselves by connection on a different level. Petting The Dog!
I read the first couple chapters to my team and they got excited. It’s hard to top the first chapter of “The Irreplaceable Service manager” the one written by Mr. X.
We sold 1000 copies of the first run of that book, and I must have had 200 Service managers tell my in person, or by email, that they felt like that chapter was about them.
Even had a couple tell me they where almost in tears. I know almost… Haha… it’s ok to get choked up… It’s a real story about a real Service Manager. I have been there myself.
We also did our first “Service Manager Liberation” webcast last month… It was on “Time Management” …you can see a tease of the first 10 minutes here:
Just a tease… after watching it you subscribe here to get the whole thing.
This Wednesday we are broadcasting again with:
Hope you join us and thank everyone for their support and kind emails… We are dedicated to Increasing Your Fixed Op’s Profits and Customer Retention.
P.S. The Cartoon Intro to “Service Manager Liberation” was Nina’s idea. She wanted to be a cartoon version of herself in the shop in a cat suit holding a wrench. Not that she spends much time in the shop anymore, but she was a technician at one time, so it’s where her heart is I guess. Turned out really good…
Late Saturday afternoon I was home watching Talladega Nights with Murphy and Christina my two bulldogs. Then I got the messages… Check these out! These are actual screenshots from my phone:
Better than sexting is getting a text from one of my clients that they set a new record. It such an amazing feeling than when one of my managers hits it out of the park. It’s gotta feel like having your kid hit a game winning homerun or one of your closest friends gets that promotion they have been working for so hard.
Now it looks like five of my kids hit game winning home runs because five of my clients hit all time record breaking CP and gross profit months last month. I am going to be handing out a few Babe Ruth Badges (Coveted medals our managers earn for calling out a record they want to break and then going on to break it that month.)
This reminds me of a story a mentor told me when I was struggling as the newly appointed GM at Crevier BMW. I don’t remember it word for word but it went something like this:
Take a cage and put in five monkeys.
Inside the cage, hang a banana on a string and place a set of stairs under it.
Before long, a monkey will go to the stairs and start to climb towards the banana.
As soon as he touches the stairs, spray all of the monkeys with cold water.
After a while, another monkey makes an attempt with the same result – all the monkeys are sprayed with cold water.
Pretty soon, when another monkey tries to climb the stairs, the other monkeys will attack it.
Now, turn off the cold water.
Remove one monkey from the cage and replace it with a new one.
The new monkey sees the banana and wants to climb the stairs. To his shock and horror, all of the other monkeys attack him.
After another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs, he will be mauled.
Next, remove another of the original five monkeys and replace it with a new one.
The newcomer goes to the stairs and is attacked.
The previous newcomer takes part in the punishment with enthusiasm.
Again, replace a third original monkey with a new one.
The new one makes it to the stairs and is attacked as well.
Two of the four monkeys that beat him have no idea why they were not allowed to climb the stairs, or why they are participating in the beating of the newest monkey.
After replacing the fourth and fifth original monkeys, all the monkeys that have been sprayed with cold water have been replaced.
Nevertheless, no monkey ever again approaches the stairs.
Because as far as they know that’s the way it’s always been around here.
And that’s how a lot of us operate and never reach our full potential…
I remember these same clients struggling to reach their potential and I am so thankful to help them get there. I wish I could take full credit for their success, but although I gave them the tools, they helped eachother to succeed.
As part of my coaching group, my managers not only share and learn from each other but they also keep setting the bar and then constantly exceeding it.
These managers are equipped with the tools and skills to get around being attacked by other monkeys or being sprayed with cold water. These managers are getting that banana month in and month out…
You can too… If your not driving your business and setting sales, CP, and net profit records in Fixed Op’s, you need to quickly get yourself into my coaching group and get those tools…
If you’ve read my book The Irreplaceable Service Manager already, stop standing on the outside looking in, lets get this party started!
Email Nina and she will get you started on the path to setting your own records!
It’s no secret that successful people read a ton of books, so I wasn’t surprised to read this interesting fact in an article on Bill Gates, written by copyrighting guru Dan Kennedy:
“[Bill Gates] has a photographic memory. He’s not a trained speed-reader but he speed reads. I asked him how many books he read on his vacation and he said 30. He writes up notes in the margins and sends them back to the author.”
There is an ocean of business books on the market and it is often hard to weed out the good ones from the junk, so being that I have likely read the majority of business books out there, I have compiled my list of the 17 best business books I have ever read.
Even if you have read these books, they are definitely worth re-reading and adding to your personal library.
Every year I take my “Top Dog” Service Advisors away for a weekend workshop. These are the best of the best in C/P sales, C.S.I, and Total Sales… The Advisors invited came out from New York to Los Angeles. This year the event was in Vegas, and although I was a bit nervous about it getting out of hand, it ended up being a blast and better than I ever imagined!
Our TOP DOG Advisors were not shy to share their secrets and they had a ton of fun masterminding ideas, sharing their techniques, and learning from each other. One of the best parts was the surprise guest speaker. I managed to get the top casino host from the Hard Rock Casino. The advisors immediately pummeled him with great questions and we learned that attracting and pleasing “the big casino whales” is very similar to what our top Service Advisors do in their service drives. When pressed on what the weirdest thing a big whale guest has ever asked for was, our host finally caved and revealed it was midget strippers! Hilarious… and in true “Top Dog” form, he delivered for the guest… midget strippers!
My top 3 take aways from the event: #1 - The Top Dogs spend most of their time building rapport with their customers. The bulk of the conversation revolves around personal stuff like kids, work, gossip, TV… the point was made that they spend 90% of their time building rapport and 10% of the time selling. They all agreed that selling is really easy when you focus on the personal connection. It’s really true and since that meeting I have had a couple (Chihuahua) advisors complain about bad CSI and customers not buying. In both situations I asked the advisors where the customer worked, how many kids they had, what their plans were for the day. You can guess in both situations the Chihuahuas didn’t know anything about the customer. The easiest path to becoming a high performer is developing the ability to genuinely connect and bond with people and make them feel like they are friends and family.
# 2 – Top Dogs are great at leveraging “props” to bond with their customers. Awards and letters from other happy customers are great for building credibility. Pictures of family or hobbies help break the ice and build common ground with customers. A particular Top Dog I know has letters raving about her great service covering the wall on one side of her desk and awards for customer satisfaction covering the other wall, eye catching photos of her doing fun things with her family are strategically placed on her desk, along with interesting books and puzzles as conversation starters and entertainment. I have watched customers that she has never helped walk by every other desk and wait for her to help them. It works like a charm…
#3 – This is just an observation and should be taken with a grain of salt, but I’m always trying to figure out the DNA of the top performers.It always surprises me that advisors that put up huge numbers are so unassuming. You would think that Advisors writing $350,000+ and $95,000+ in CP sales, and have consistently amazing customer satisfaction scores would be cocky, flashy, or have some sort of edge to them. Not the case in my experience… it ends up that all of the Top Dogs are really humble, easy going, reliable, and family oriented types. They consistently perform at a higher level without any drama or customer heat. They are out there and I am getting pretty good at identifying these Top Dogs (more on those secrets later). Being able to recruit this type of Top Performer affords Managers the ability to focus their attention not on putting out fires and petty issues, but on what really matters… Increasing that bottom line. Chris Collins P.S. Can you pick the best Advisor bark? Check out the vid!
As you can see from the video, our Top Dog Advisors had a blast at last year’s Top Dog Event. I took them to the Hard Rock in San Diego for the weekend and we had them Mastermind and share ideas. Our theme was “You’re the Managers of the Future,” and they were really into it when we taught them about financials and what discounting does to the bottom line.
This year I am taking them to Las Vegas! Our event will be this weekend and I am expecting to have the best workshop yet. I have a whole agenda for them and they will Mastermind and learn from each other as well as teaching us things too.
I hope Vegas is ready for us!
I did a case study of what pulls better, direct mail or email marketing. We had two Car Doctor Service Clinics at the same time. One we promoted through direct mail and the other we promoted through email only.
With one we did over $120,000 in c/p parts and labor sales, and sold three cars.
The other one didn’t pull as well. The results might surprise you.
I had the idea for the “Circle Of Trust” on a flight back from the east coast. I had been talking to some service advisors and was explaining how to think about the customer relationship long term. Explaining that the real success as a service advisor is in following the same system and thinking long term.
So on my flight I drew it out on my note pad. I later added “Good Beside Manner” before I recorded the video.
The “New Employee/Quick Start” module in “Service Advisor Sales Breakthrough” breaks this down in more detail. Right now its nine videos of each aspect of the system.
Its really about how you can stop selling and become a trusted friend to your customers.
When you become a trusted friend, they will ask you for the sale.
From the Fockers “We are starting our own Circle Of Trust”
This is a really funny video Mr. X and I shot in Vegas….
Trekkies are really loyal fans ….They verge on crazy fans….
So when they love something, they are all in…loyal to the end
William Shatner could do just about anything and not lose the loyalty of his Trek fans.
For example, he could star in a bad tv show like “Stupid Stuff My Dad Says” and…They still love him!
I can’t wait till next years Star Trek Convention!
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