I have a unique story as a coach here at ATI. I started out on the other side of the process as an auto repair shop owner with a “leg up” – my background included over 10 years in small business operations (customer service, marketing, accounting, etc.). With a great technician as my partner in business, I thought we had all the knowledge and experience we needed to have a successful shop. And we did! For about 6 years. For those 6 years, our overhead was extremely low; we had a tiny crew to manage and pay. Word-of-mouth brought just enough customers in the door that we were slightly profitable.
Then things started to slow down. Fewer calls, fewer cars, and our overhead was increasing year after year. I knew we needed to make changes, but I had no clue what those changes should be. I was at the end of my knowledge and experience. Right around this time, I attended an ATI Owners event. It was the best thing I ever did for my shop.
As someone who has been on both sides of the auto repair shop coaching experience, here are my top 5 reasons that every automotive repair shop owner needs a coach:
1. Accountability and Partnership
This alone is the reason you should have a coach, and it becomes the most valuable part of the coaching experience for the majority of shop owners. Owning a business brings challenges that your friends and family don’t understand. It can be lonely and stressful making decisions in areas that you have no knowledge or experience. And making changes, even ones you know are necessary, can be difficult. A great coach helps you hold yourself accountable to your goals and what you want to achieve. They provide the kick in the pants – and the encouragement to keep moving forward.
Want more tips for how to improve your leadership skills, increase your bottom-line, and grow your business? Discover valuable, easy-to-implement ideas and strategies in ATI’s shop owner events. Register today at atievent.com.
2. Learn a proven Strategic Process
A great coach isn’t “winging it.” We are teaching and guiding you through a process that has been tested over and over to give you the maximum possibility of success. We help you identify the necessary and custom steps you need to guarantee that your auto repair shop is sustainable and profitable long-term, to secure your financial and personal freedom.
3. Identify and Use Key Performance Indicators
A great coach will teach you how to collect, track and use your own data to identify your shop’s strengths and weaknesses in order to make the changes necessary for you to experience more sales, higher profits and continuing growth.
4. Leadership Development
The number one reason good employees leave is because of poor leadership and management. With the demand going up and the pool of quality automotive technicians going down, having strong leadership skills and a positive work environment are more important than ever. No one is born with leadership skills. A great coach will help you develop the skills to inspire and motivate your employees to be productive, efficient and loyal.
5. Marketing That Works
I jokingly ask my members “how many of you started your shop with a degree in marketing?” Very few shop owners have sufficient knowledge of best practices for using the internet to find and be found by prospective customers and applicants. A great coach will help you make the shift from being dependent on haphazard personal referrals and expensive yellow pages to find new customers. Reach your potential customers and get them in the door buying – giving you the financial freedom you desire.
For more tips on how to grow your business, join one of ATI’s shop owner events. At ATI, we help our members identify what is holding their auto shop back from the level of success they want to achieve. We offer proven methods and best practices to get maximum performance results.