Auto Shop Coaching Blog

Profit First in Your Automotive Repair Shop

In the book Profit First by Mike Michalowicz, he calls your business “an out-of-control cash-eating monster.” Unfortunately, that is all too true for most automotive repair shop owners. Time and time again, we see business owners come to ATI not because they have a failing business but the opposite — they have an outwardly successful shop, a shop that has served their community for years, but the owner is living paycheck to paycheck.

In the book, he writes, “Without enough money, we cannot take our message, our products, or our services to the world. Without enough money, we are slaves to the businesses we launched.”

Ideas to grow your businessNon-ATI Members: Discover more valuable tips and strategies to increase your bottom-line ATI’s shop owner events. Register at

The Burden

Do you ever feel enslaved by your auto repair shop? As a shop owner, you carry the responsibility of not only your own income but that of your team. You manage, lead, mentor, and teach others while being the face of your business. Shouldn’t you get paid well for that responsibility?

As a previous shop owner myself, I know what it is like to hold onto your own paycheck a few extra days because you aren’t sure if your employees’ paychecks will go through. I’ve been the one on the receiving end of a big tax bill that needed to be paid right now. And I was also confused at my tax return, wondering how I made so much money and had nothing in the bank to show for it.

The Solution

Today we can change that. Along with proven strategies we teach shop owners to be profitable and provide exceptional customer service, I also teach shop owners how to implement Profit First principles, so they don’t need to worry about paying their bills, paying their taxes, and paying their team. You don’t have to keep wondering if there will be enough money at the end of the month — as an independent auto repair shop owner, you shouldn’t have to.

Are you wondering if you’ll be able to pay your team nice holiday bonuses this December? Or what you’ll do when the holiday slowdown begins? Now is the time to look toward your future. Do you want 2022 to have the same worries that you’ve had year-over-year since you opened — or are you ready to make changes that will guarantee you can take your Profit First?!

At ATI, we teach shop owners how to achieve their dreams by implementing best practices in their shop. Want to learn more? Start with a shop owner event at

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Charlene is an Executive Coach at ATI, a Certified Profit First Professional, a former shop owner, and has been coaching since 2014. Charlene helps clients find the right solutions to their challenges and encourages them to make the changes that result in having the life they dreamed about when they got into business ownership.