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Success....what is success? Is it getting the sale? Is it making a huge gross on someone? Is it making the customer happy? Is it treating the customer right even though you may not get the sale? What is success?
According to Webster, success is "the achievement of something desired, planned, or attempted."
As I sit and watch paint dry at a city swim meet, I look at success as baby steps. Yes, I want my kids and the team to succeed and win, but what is success to them? Yes, they want to win, but if they are improving their times, they are being successful in my eyes. Their view of success may be different than mine. I know they want to win, if they don't, they feel like they may have failed because I am such a competitive person and have passed it on to them and they don't want to fail. When they get out of the pool and look at the board and see their times, they are either elated, or they are instantly in the dumps because of their time either being better or worse than their seed time. Another thing that they do is practice. Two a days at the age of 10 and 12 to get to the level of success they need to be at and want to be at. This brings another question to the table. Are there different levels of success and how do we get there?
There are three key ingredients to success; processes, people, and execution.
We all want to dominate the market and be successful. We have to make baby steps to get there and make that happen. It won't happen overnight after putting one process in place or get one product that will change the world and make you dominate. We have to look at our processes and make sure that they are successful in every step and we are making one more step toward the sale and making a new customer.
I know when I see another vehicle driving down the road with a temporary tag in the window with another dealers' logos all over the backend, I feel like we have failed and take it personal. I look at it like we weren't successful in our marketing efforts to that person. We have to look at the whole sales process and Internet processes. Do we have the right amount of contact set up in our CRM? Are they quality tasks that we expect our teams to do? Get insight from your internet salespeople and have them involved. If they aren't quality tasks and they are 'faking them out,' change them or get rid of them all together.
We have to surround ourselves with good people. We have to make sure that we have employees that are wanting to be at their place of work and retire from there. If they don't want to retire from the place they currently work, you may have to step back and make sure that they are a right fit for the dealership. I have let someone go that was a top performer for the store, but he wasn't a team player and was out for #1.
This all comes down to the management teams. We have to inspect what we are expecting. We as managers have to make sure that the salespeople are doing their jobs in their follow up and accomplishing the tasks set forth in the CRM to make them successful.
The other part of the execution is practice. I think back on when I got in the car business and had to sit in a back room and watch one tape after another of Joe Verde. The one thing that I have retained after all these years in the business is "practice, drill and rehearse." Just like athletes, have to practice the what if situations with each other so we can be smooth when we are in the steps of the sale (the competition). When we don't stumble, we will be smooth with the customer and we will be more believable to the customer.
When we have all of these items in place, you will see the success that you want to see. That success will change over time to take you to the next level. Set the goals, achieve them, and raise the bar even higher to go for it and get that success that you are looking for.
"Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm." -Winston Churchill