Have you ever found a great technician for your shop, only to hear, “It's just not the right time for me?” It’s frustrating and a huge let down. And you know what this means? Back to the drawing board to start the search all over again. Don’t give up so fast! In marketing there is a concept known as “ripening” or “warming up” leads. At any given time there is only a small percentage of potential customers who will want or need to purchase your product or service. That’s life. So instead of throwing away all of the leads that their marketing system has generated, smart business people stay in touch with those leads until they are ripe and ready to buy. It works the same way with employees. There are tons of reasons why candidates don’t move forward. Here are a few: - Timing is off (kids in school, spouse out of work, other family/life issues, etc.) - The pain of their current situation hasn’t reached a breaking point (they don’t love their current shop but it’s not bad enough to do anything about it…yet) - Your offer isn’t attractive enough (down the road you may add additional benefits and be able to sweeten the offer) As the old saying goes, the only humans that like change are babies with wet diapers! So how do you stay top of mind so that when a tech is ripe and ready to make the change they think of you? 1. Regular Check-ins: This doesn't mean pestering them every week. Instead, set up monthly or quarterly casual coffee chats or quick calls. This keeps the line of communication open and allows you to discuss industry trends, provide updates about your shop, or just catch up. It keeps you in their mind without being pushy. 2. Networking Events: Invite them to industry events, trade shows, or training sessions. Even if they can't attend, the gesture of invitation portrays that you value their presence and consider them part of the industry's community. 3. Newsletters: If your shop has a newsletter or weekly email, make sure they're on the list. Share stories of successful repairs, new certifications, team events, or updates on equipment and tools. It not only keeps them in the loop but also showcases the growth and positive culture of your shop. 4. Social Media Engagement: Connect with them on social media platforms or other industry-specific networks. Share, comment on, or like their posts. It's a subtle way of staying visible in their network. Additionally, regularly update your own profiles with achievements, updates, or vacancies, ensuring they see the progress and environment of your shop. 5. Celebrations & Events: Whether it's the shop's anniversary, holiday parties, or an informal BBQ, extending an invite to them can help them feel connected. It offers a glimpse into the work culture and camaraderie of your team, making your shop an even more appealing place to consider in the future.
After running thousands of ads over the past five years for auto and diesel repair shops, here's what I've learned... NOBODY reads an ad all the way through on the first pass. It doesn't matter if the ad is long or short. The simple truth is that an ad is never too long, it’s too boring! Everyone scans an ad on the first pass and what they are looking for is what is important to them. If something catches their eye, they will slow down and read more. Sometimes if they are really interested, they will go back and start from the beginning. And if they don't see anything that interests them? They don't click and they don't apply. So how do we know what's important to a technician reading the ad? We don't know. That's why we don't post a random selection of bullet points and hope that we strike a nerve. We need to include a broad range of potential hot buttons in each ad. These hot buttons include headlines, bullet points, pain points, bold sections, ALL CAPS, short paragraphs, emotional appeals, calls to action, social proof, credibility, etc. Now when I say "hot buttons" I don't mean gimmicks, exaggerations or lies. I mean honest to goodness benefits of your shop and what you offer that makes you unique and worthy of a technician's time and attention. I've done lots of training on how I write ads (format, structure, psychology, etc.) and you can find all of it in the Technician Find Community if you are interested. The point is to get technicians to reach out or to head over to your landing/application page. If your ad doesn’t do that, it doesn’t matter how long or short it is.🌟🔧
Ever felt the weight of a disrupted workflow when a new team member can't seem to respect time? It's that unsettling moment when the clock ticks past the start time and the bay or desk remains empty…again. The workload piles up, customers get restless, and the rhythm of the day gets thrown off. Not to mention the blow to team morale. Before things escalate, it's critical to approach the situation head-on. Having a candid conversation can clear the air and set expectations quickly. Here’s how to do it… This excellent 7-step framework for having a tough conversation is shared in the book “Fierce Conversations” by Susan Scott. 1. Name the issue. 2. Select a specific example that illustrates the behavior or situation you want to change. 3. Describe your emotions about this issue. 4. Clarify what is at stake. 5. Identify your contribution to this problem. 6. Indicate your wish to resolve the issue. 7. Invite your partner to respond. You have sixty seconds to do it all. This powerful opening statement will set the stage for an open and honest discussion about work expectations. A smooth-running shop relies on everyone being on time so don’t shy away from potentially difficult conversations like this.
Do you have employees that consistently experience more month at the end of their money? You’re not alone, I’ve heard this complaint from lots of shop owners. Here’s what some top shops did to solve it: 1️⃣ Purchase Dave Ramsey’s Smart Dollar Program and go through it as a team. 2️⃣ Invite the financial advisor that manages the retirement plan to come in and do a quarterly presentation and stay to answer personal questions. 3️⃣ Read financial books together, implement the exercises and provide accountability during their regular 1-on-1 meetings (start a book club). I’ve heard amazing stories about shops that have implemented these strategies including techs that went from asking for weekly advances to buying houses and cleaning up their credit for good. If you are consistent, your team will build powerful financial muscles using these strategies and the days of being the piggy bank will be over.
You've placed ads, and waited, but the applications are trickling in or not coming at all. THE REAL ISSUE… Potential candidates might not trust what you're offering. Many folks in this industry have been burned by shops with a slick story and pie in the sky promises. So, by the time they come to your ad, you have to assume that they are skeptical from the start. HOW TO BUILD TRUST FAST… Embed a link right in your job ad that leads to your most glowing customer reviews. Let candidates hear directly from satisfied customers about the excellent service you provide and the strong leadership position you project out into the community. Third party validation from happy customers sharing their positive experiences can do more to boost your shop’s credibility in 30 seconds than your bragging could do in 3 days! Your repair shop's future is in the stories your customers tell.
Ever felt like your employees are just clocking in and out, missing the bigger picture of your auto shop's story? When your team doesn’t see how they fit into the grand scheme of things, motivation wanes, and work becomes just another job. Imagine the untapped potential when everyone pulls together, understanding and passionate about the bigger goal. Here’s the magic trick: 🔧Find your WHY: Define your shop's mission, vision, core values, and purpose. Why does your shop exist, and why does it matter? 🔧Share the Story: Show each team member how their daily tasks align with the shop's bigger story. 🔧Value their Contribution: Remind them frequently that their role is crucial. They aren’t just fixing cars; they’re a vital part of a story, a community, a mission. When employees see their role in the bigger story, work becomes more than just tasks. It becomes a shared journey, boosting morale, dedication, and service quality. Incorporate this approach and watch your shop thrive!
You know what’s ironic about this? They probably wish you cared more about them than the bottom line. It's not about blame. In fact, as shop owners, you likely care deeply about your team. But there's a big difference between feeling and showing that you care. When employees don't feel appreciated, it affects morale, productivity, and loyalty. Cue the revolving door. Joey Coleman, in his insightful book "Never Lose An Employee Again," explains these problems perfectly and goes on to suggest solutions. It's not that you don't care, but your employees might not know it. Coleman pinpoints three reasons for this disconnect: 1. Lack of understanding. Do you truly know what drives your employees or what challenges they face? 2. Lack of demonstrated appreciation. When was the last time you showed genuine gratitude for their contributions? 3. Lack of connection. How often do you genuinely connect, beyond work conversations? By addressing these gaps, you can transform your workplace into an environment where employees not only know they're valued but reciprocate by giving their best to the business. Embrace the power of understanding, appreciation, and connection. Make these principles foundational in your shop culture, and you'll not only retain top talent but foster a workplace where everyone is invested in mutual success.
Ever had an employee whose actions disturbed the workplace balance? One of our clients had a technician who wanted to open carry a firearm at work, causing unease and potential liability. This isn't just about a single incident. It's about workplace safety, team morale, and maintaining a professional working environment. When a situation like this arises, you're faced with a hard decision. But what if letting them go leaves a gaping hole in your operations? Our client faced this dilemma. And after prioritizing safety and harmony, they had to let the technician go. The lesson learned? Always be prepared. Ensure you have a deep bench you can call on or a way to generate consistent flow of applications on demand. By having a 'deep bench', you're not held hostage by one employee's actions. Instead, you empower your business, ensuring smooth operations regardless of individual staff changes. Don't wait for a crisis to realize the importance of a continuous talent pipeline. Start building a strong bullpen today.
Stings doesn’t it? Everything is going along fine in the shop (or so you thought) and one Friday afternoon, out of the blue, they drop the bad news on you. Buddy, that’s one loooong weekend! Here's the hard truth… In this tight labor market, if a tech feels stagnant or under-appreciated, they can easily jump ship. It's not just about the next paycheck; it’s about feeling respected and valued. Let’s put it into perspective: Imagine your best technician. Now imagine them with improved life skills, navigating both their professional and personal challenges with ease. How much more invested would they be in their job? But here’s the kicker… Professional training alone won't seal the deal. Life skills make the difference. This dual toolset can be the game changer for technician loyalty and job satisfaction. So, what’s the solution? My good friend and diesel repair shop owner, Eddie Lawrence recognized this gap in his own life and the lives of his team. That’s why he created the 'Life Calibration' - a hands-on workshop aimed at helping shop owners and their employees gain more fulfillment, clarity and perspective in life. Big corporations have long recognized the importance of holistic employee development. They know it's not just about the job; it's about creating well-rounded individuals. Take a page from their playbook: Invest in a program like 'Life Calibration' for your entire team and show them that you care that their life works inside and outside of the shop.