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Jared Hamilton
From: Jared Hamilton
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Gary May

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From time to time, even with the best plans, strategy, resources and more, it becomes painfully clear that you're not going to make it. Unfortunately, some people experience this state of being for far too long. In automotive retail, there are even those that are paralyzed by it for, well, eons. In sports if you have two false starts you're gone. Why does 1,479 false starts constitute holding on to a process or salesperson at a dealership?

One of the many benefits of calling on dealers all over the country is the face time with some great people. Hearing many clearly defined business and action plans is inspiring and creates hope that things continue to look up. Having dealerships that used to track leads in archaic software, or even Excel, switching to advanced CRMs is inspiring. Chopping off the top salespeople or totally turning your sales department upside down and starting over? Now that can make even the greatest skeptic smile!

There is no question that times are changing for our retailers. About five years late. Some of the areas of greatest discussion recently (not counting social media) are how we keep the best and brightest, or attract them, and compensate them, how to incorporate tools that should help us but ultimately cost too much or don't do what they are supposed to, how to cut costs and how to stop giving up gross.

We don't claim to have the answers but have some thoughts to mitigate the typical course of (1) I can't change things so I won't even try, (2) I don't know where/how to start, (3) I tried before and failed, or (4) fill in the excuse you use: take risks in small doses in the right direction, ask for help because there is a lot of good, free advice (especially in the online automotive forums), start creating more buy-in with top management before you try to 'sell it' and simply convince yourself that the goals you envision are worth achieving!

Many times turning heads and making waves is actually less of a risk that doing the same things over and over and expecting a different result. We've all seen or known people who were burned out that we had pegged as being a superstar.

For most of us, the greatest help we can receive in avoiding 'hitting the wall' is common sense, some outside counsel and a firm dedication to what we know will work. Remember, we're here to (clap) pump...you up!

Best Practices: Professional Insight, Powerful Results


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