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Garry House

Garry House President-owner

Exclusive Blog Posts

How Servicing Fleets Should Be Different

How Servicing Fleets Should Be Different

A large local construction company truck pulls into the service drive. The lone occupant hops out of the driver’s seat, already scrolling through…

Are You Ready For Monday? DSES Best Idea Contest, 2019!

Are You Ready For Monday? DSES Best Idea Contest, 2019!

One of my favorite events at the Driving Sales Executive Summit is the Best Idea Contest. Each year participants enter their respective ideas. For those wh…

Who are Cybercriminals?

Who are Cybercriminals?

Remember the movie “War Games?” A teenager hacked into a computer and unwittingly almost started a nuclear war. In the late 60s, a famous phone…

Digital Finance SOS – Is Digital Retailing the Answer? (Part 2)

Digital Finance SOS – Is Digital Retailing the Answer? (Part 2)

Part Two: Why Aren’t Dealers Adopting Digital Retailing?   By now everyone knows about digital retailing. There are enough automotive tech…

Digital Retailing: 10% Technology, 90% Process

Digital Retailing: 10% Technology, 90% Process

Digital Retailing is a big deal in the automotive industry these days. The emergence of companies like Carvana, Vroom, and Tesla has rapidly changed custom…

Does Your Culture Need a Makeover?

Recent discussions I’ve had with potential clients suggest that one of the biggest road blocks to maximizing retail automotive success is the dealership (or department) culture. I decided it was again an opportune time to tackle this thorny issue. “Culture” can be defined as the shared values and practices of the company’s (or department’s) employees, and it’s important because it can make or break your dealership. Business cultures change over time, primarily as a result of employees leaving and joining the company. These changes may be positive, or not…they may be intended, or not…they may be major changes, or not.

In assessing your culture, you probably need to ask yourself some hard questions. Here’s a few starters:

  • Do you accept mediocre performance?
  • Do you tolerate negative behavior?
  • Do your employees understand your expectations, and are they committed to them?
  • Do you inspect what you expect?
  • As a leader, do you continually set a good example?

If you like the way the culture looks and feels at your dealership as a whole (and in each of your operating departments) then all you need to do is focus on supporting and sustaining your current values and practices. On the other hand, if you believe your culture needs to change…and you wish to implement that change…you probably have some painful days ahead. Your first step must be to alter the attitudes and behavior of (or de-hire) the “granfalloons” in your organization. “Granfalloons” -- isn’t that a great word? It was first penned by Kurt Vonnegut in 1988 when he wrote Cat’s Cradle. The word means “a group of people who claim to have a shared identity or purpose, but whose mutual association is essentially meaningless.”

What are the characteristics of the type of culture we see in a highly successful dealership, or department thereof? The list may include, but is certainly not limited to, the following:

  • Clarity of Company Mission
  • Employee Commitment
  • High Integrity Workplace
  • Highly Effective Leadership
  • Effective, Well-Executed Processes
  • High Accountability Standards
  • Customer-Focused Initiatives
  • Absence of Departmental Silos
  • Commitment to Learning and Skill Development
  • Commitment to Recruiting and Retaining Outstanding Employees
  • Performance-Based Compensation
  • Support for Innovation and Change

Warmest regards,

Garry House

gha4you@gmail.com


RELATED: 10 Warning Signs Your Dealership's Culture is Toxic

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