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Richard Holland

Richard Holland Managing Director

Richard Holland Blog Posts

Service Departments Need Tune-Ups Too

Service Departments Need Tune-Ups Too

The service department tends to be the busiest place in a dealership, and service managers must stay in tune with what’s going on. While meetings and d…

The Pursuit of Happiness: Creating Engaged Employees

The Pursuit of Happiness: Creating Engaged Employees

Today's market dictates that to succeed as a dealer, you have to create a great customer experience. You have to provide value and give the customer a re…

Service Dilemmas: What Would You Do? The Results

Service Dilemmas: What Would You Do? The Results

In a previous article, I provided two very real scenarios that occurred right before Memorial Day weekend and asked readers how they would have handled t…

Car Buying Trends Show Service Is the Future of Dealerships

Car Buying Trends Show Service Is the Future of Dealerships

No one doubts the average age of vehicles on the road has gone up. The current average vehicle is 11 years old and trends in consumer purchases indicate …

Service Dilemmas: What Would You Do?

Service Dilemmas: What Would You Do?

Every dealership has seen this customer—the one who demands to be reimbursed for damage they claim happened while the car was in the dealership’s car…

Why Technicians and Service Advisors Need Marriage Counseling

Why Technicians and Service Advisors Need Marriage Counseling

Life in the retail automotive industry is taxing. Managers and employees work long hours and, in many cases, are with their co-workers more than they are…

Overcoming Resistance To New Technology

Overcoming Resistance To New Technology

As part of doing business in today’s fast-paced world, inevitably we all have to adopt new technology to make things run more efficiently.  Whether it…

Offer Value Above a Paycheck To Increase Employee Retention

Offer Value Above a Paycheck To Increase Employee Retention

Automotive News recently reported that FCA will offer free college tuition to all FCA dealership employees. It will begin immediately in the southeast re…

Who Owns Your Cars? Automakers Say They Do

Who Owns Your Cars? Automakers Say They Do

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act is a law enacted in 1998, enforced and administrated by the U.S. Copyright Office. Every three years, the U.S. Copyr…

FCA US Dealers: Service Revenue Just Got A Lot More Important

FCA US Dealers: Service Revenue Just Got A Lot More Important

FCA US CEO, Sergio Marchionne, recently announced plans to reduce the profit on new cars sold within the FCA brands by increasing the invoice prices, whi…

Amazon Enters the Auto Repair Business… Sort Of

Amazon Enters the Auto Repair Business… Sort Of

At the end of March, Amazon announced the launch of what they’re calling “Amazon Home Services.” This new service by Amazon enables customers to or…

GM Warranty Cuts: The Good and Bad News

GM Warranty Cuts: The Good and Bad News

An article last month in USA Today, revealed that General Motors plans to dramatically cut the warranty coverage on Chevrolet and GMC vehicles beginning …

How Customer Training Leads To Retention

How Customer Training Leads To Retention

With almost everything consumers purchase, there’s an owner’s manual or set of instructions for them to use.  For decades, car manufacturers have in…

What Does Cheating Teach Your Employees?

What Does Cheating Teach Your Employees?

DrivingSales News recently carried a story about a lawsuit filed by Subaru of America against one of their franchisees. The lawsuit accuses a Southern Ca…

The Four Buckets of Customers

The Four Buckets of Customers

We all have a myriad of contacts that we consciously (or subconsciously) place into separate categories in our relationships. These categories include fa…

Season of Change?

Season of Change?

With a steadily improving economy and declining unemployment rates, the automobile industry is geared up to experience another year of expansion and progre…

Is Going Above & Beyond Really the Path to Customer Loyalty?

Is Going Above & Beyond Really the Path to Customer Loyalty?

Most executives believe that providing an excellent customer experience will increase customer loyalty. Many companies are known for it and stand out as …

Time Isn’t of the Essence

Time Isn’t of the Essence

Imagine a customer that is in for a routine oil change at your dealership. As part of the complimentary inspection your store provides, it is discovered …

Will Service Technicians Need Computer Development Skills Soon?

Will Service Technicians Need Computer Development Skills Soon?

Each year OEMs add more and more advanced technology to their vehicles. As a result, the skill set demanded of today’s technician has transitioned from…

Volvo Boldly Goes Where No One Dares Go

Volvo Boldly Goes Where No One Dares Go

While most businesses analyze budgets and shift money towards digital advertising, video and branding, Volvo has taken an interesting strategy: to decrea…

Video Games: Using Employee Interests To Train

Video Games: Using Employee Interests To Train

Despite the many tools available and the best of intentions, many dealerships struggle with providing ongoing professional development for their staff. W…

WestJet: A No Holds Barred Customer Loyalty Strategy

WestJet: A No Holds Barred Customer Loyalty Strategy

Last year, WestJet pulled off an elaborate scheme whereby flight passengers met with a virtual Santa at the gate to share any Christmas wishes. Upon arri…

Reach Out and Touch Someone

Reach Out and Touch Someone

Do you remember the AT&T ad slogan “Reach Out and Touch Someone” from the early 1980s?  It may have been thirty years since that slogan reached …

Starbucks Is Playing Offense and What Dealers Can Learn From It

Starbucks Is Playing Offense and What Dealers Can Learn From It

Starbucks recently announced plans to roll out a delivery service in some key major markets. This follows on the heels of an initiative which allows cust…

When An Apology Isn’t An Apology

When An Apology Isn’t An Apology

Regardless of how hard you work to ensure that your customers have an excellent experience, mistakes happen. No doubt you’ve had customers complain abo…

Tired of Damage Complaints in Service? Here’s a Solution.

Tired of Damage Complaints in Service? Here’s a Solution.

I doubt that a dealership service department exists that hasn’t had to deal with a customer claim that their vehicle was damaged while being serviced. …

What Have you Done for Me Lately?

What Have you Done for Me Lately?

A few years ago, car dealers across the nation were caught in the net of a struggling economy. Fewer sales compounded by budget conscious customers cause…

Using Data to Increase Service Revenue

Using Data to Increase Service Revenue

One of the most valuable assets you have at your dealership is your customer database. However, frequently dealers fail to effectively use this informati…

There’s Always Time to Do It Right!

There’s Always Time to Do It Right!

You don’t have to live in a bustling city to see that people are in a hurry. Compared to even ten years ago, it seems that everyone is in a rush to get…

Training: Mercedes puts its Money Where its Mouth Is

Training: Mercedes puts its Money Where its Mouth Is

I’ve written many times about the value of training and professional development to employee retention.  Training, in combination with a company cultu…

When the Economy Is Good Is When We Must Shine!

When the Economy Is Good Is When We Must Shine!

A recent article on Science20.com, explains how customers will be less focused on price and will emphasize the customer service experience when the econo…

Empowered Employees Bring Higher Levels of Customer Service

Empowered Employees Bring Higher Levels of Customer Service

“The customer is always right” has been the trademark phrase used by businesses in the United States for decades.  By and large, most reputable busi…

The Trick to Increased Service Revenue Is Keeping Your Bays Full

The Trick to Increased Service Revenue Is Keeping Your Bays Full

Many auto dealerships have technology in place that allows sales managers to monitor what’s going on in their departments. CRMs and phone call recordin…

Are You Prepared For More Service Business?

Are You Prepared For More Service Business?

Auto dealers know how important their service business is to the bottom line. There’s no doubt that service absorption is vital to the health and livel…

How Job Hopping Became Acceptable and How You Can Change It

How Job Hopping Became Acceptable and How You Can Change It

When developing an employee retention strategy, a business must ultimately consider salaries. There’s no doubt that a long-term employee will feel slig…

How Simply Getting the Job Done Can Be a Bad Thing

How Simply Getting the Job Done Can Be a Bad Thing

Working at a car dealership often takes its toll on employees. The demands of a fifty, sixty or seventy hour work week often leaves the employee exhauste…

Random Acts of Generosity Can Build Loyalty

Random Acts of Generosity Can Build Loyalty

Finding a lost earring in the jewelry box, discovering the old autographed Tom Seaver baseball card when you clean out the attic, and learning that the s…

Is Instant Customer Feedback In Your Future?

Is Instant Customer Feedback In Your Future?

There’s no doubt that customer satisfaction is important to all car dealerships. Whether a dealership actually cares about making the customer happy, o…

Fix the Affliction

Fix the Affliction

The adage “two brains are better than one” has long been used to think through matters and solve problems.  And to take it even further, excluding t…

Fixed Ops: The Scramble for Technicians Begins

Fixed Ops: The Scramble for Technicians Begins

In May I wrote a blog article explaining how employee retention in service will become increasingly important due to many factors. Apparently, that’s be…

Sometimes It’s Better To Cut Your Losses

Sometimes It’s Better To Cut Your Losses

I am sure many of you have heard about the recent customer service debacle involving Comcast over the past week. In case you aren’t familiar with what …

The Key to Increased Service Absorption Is Efficiency

The Key to Increased Service Absorption Is Efficiency

Last week, Automotive News highlighted Redlands Auto Plaza, a Southern California dealership that is doing some pretty creative things within their servi…

Give Your Customers a Red Carpet Experience

Give Your Customers a Red Carpet Experience

​Automotive News recently reported about a New Jersey dealership that has a VIP lounge for some of its customers – akin to the exclusive airline club l…

Audi Wants To Supervise Your Technicians… With Robots

Audi Wants To Supervise Your Technicians… With Robots

Last week, Wired magazine featured an article describing Audi’s ambitious plans for robots in local dealerships. A remote technician at Audi headquarte…

For Used Vehicle Acquisition, There’s No Place Like Home

For Used Vehicle Acquisition, There’s No Place Like Home

One of the pain points I frequently hear from dealers is how to acquire frontline pre-owned vehicles for their stores. Having an available solid inventor…

For Employees, Recognition Trumps Money

For Employees, Recognition Trumps Money

In case you weren’t aware, this week is Automotive Service Professionals week. Established in 2001 by the National Institute for Automotive Service Exc…

Volvo Announces In Car Service Appointment Scheduling: What That Means For Dealers

Volvo Announces In Car Service Appointment Scheduling: What That Means For Dealers

Every day automotive manufacturers announce new technology they plan to introduce into their vehicles. Tuesday, Volvo announced that their XC90 will not …

5 Reasons Video Can Help Increase Service Revenue

5 Reasons Video Can Help Increase Service Revenue

In our modern world of technology and instant information, consumers are increasingly seeking answers to their questions online rather than asking a busi…

Why Employee Retention in Service Is More Important Than Ever

Why Employee Retention in Service Is More Important Than Ever

A recent Automotive News article covered the decrease in trained automotive service technicians graduating from vocational schools. Not only are the voca…

Are Service Customers Defecting Due to Trust and Price Transparency?

Are Service Customers Defecting Due to Trust and Price Transparency?

A recently released white paper based on a collaborative study between Cars.com and GFK, reported that consumers are leaving dealership service in favor …

Dealer Service & Loyalty Boost Highlights Importance of Customer Experience

Dealer Service & Loyalty Boost Highlights Importance of Customer Experience

The recently released J.D. Power 2014 U.S. Customer Service Index Study produced some interesting, and very promising, results. The report concluded that…

Fallon Chooses Ford amongst Controversy & Salespeople Humiliation

Fallon Chooses Ford amongst Controversy & Salespeople Humiliation

Last month, I wrote an article on how Jimmy Fallon announced during “The Tonight Show” that he was in the market for a truck. Manufacturers immediate…

What Happened to Customer Service?

What Happened to Customer Service?

A recent event held by Edmunds named “Hackomotive” brought together some of the brightest technology innovators in the automotive industry. The purpo…

Why Steve Jobs Hated Branding and Marketing

Why Steve Jobs Hated Branding and Marketing

A recent interview with former Apple VP of Worldwide Marketing, Allison Johnson, offered up some interesting insights into the legendary businessman Stev…

Overwhelmed Employees Affect Engagement

Overwhelmed Employees Affect Engagement

An interesting article on the Forbes website shared the results of a recent study by Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends. The study was the result of an…

Who Wants A Truck? Jimmy Fallon Does!

Who Wants A Truck? Jimmy Fallon Does!

Last week, the newly appointed host of “The Tonight Show” mentioned on the air that he was in the market for a new truck. Of course, manufacturers coul…

New NHTSA Labels Present Challenges to Dealers

New NHTSA Labels Present Challenges to Dealers

Warranty work is a large part of any service department’s revenue. The recent announcement by the NHTSA mandating manufacturers to use specific labelin…

Don’t Be Intimidated by Customer Loyalty

Don’t Be Intimidated by Customer Loyalty

Many dealers are intimidated by the concept of “customer loyalty.” The simple attempt at trying to design and implement a strategy that creates lifet…

Manufacturers Start Recognizing Importance of Technology

Manufacturers Start Recognizing Importance of Technology

As reported by Automotive News, Audi has begun integrating iPads into their franchise dealer’s sales force. With their iPad tablets, which they’ve na…

Privacy & Data in the Age of the Connected Car

Privacy & Data in the Age of the Connected Car

In recent articles by both CNET & Automotive News, it’s reported that U.S. regulators are looking to institute mandatory vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) c…

You Get What You Pay For: A Customer’s Service Nightmare

You Get What You Pay For: A Customer’s Service Nightmare

There’s one thing that all auto franchises have in common when it comes to service: battling independent auto shops. I’m fairly certain that …

What’s In a Name?

What’s In a Name?

Since 2003, MPi has been helping dealerships across the United States create more profitable service departments through technology.  Our mission is…

Tesla Demonstrates How OEMs Could Cut Into Service Revenue

Tesla Demonstrates How OEMs Could Cut Into Service Revenue

Everyone in the automotive industry is familiar with Tesla’s entry into the automotive retail business, however, not as many realize that they&rsqu…

When the Customer Isn’t Right

When the Customer Isn’t Right

I write a lot about customer experience, service and retention. With our hyper-competitive industry demanding greater transparency, it will continue to b…

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

As the holidays quickly approach, many companies are giving back to their customers. Through toy drives, volunteering at local charities or fund-raising,…

Will You Fight To Win A Customer?

Will You Fight To Win A Customer?

The battle for customers in the automotive industry is hyper-competitive. Dealers advertise low price loss leaders and court an Internet buyer with compe…

Business Technology Means Keeping Up With The Joneses

Business Technology Means Keeping Up With The Joneses

In the B2B world, we’re seeing a shift in importance and shopping behaviors by business buyers. What’s interesting is that business buyers ar…

Service Reviews: Why You Need To Pay Attention Now More Than Ever

Service Reviews: Why You Need To Pay Attention Now More Than Ever

Most dealerships understand the importance of online reviews, in general, for their stores. Consumers are increasingly turning to the Internet to researc…

Lessons We Can Learn From the Failure of Blockbuster

Lessons We Can Learn From the Failure of Blockbuster

As I’m sure you’ve heard, Blockbuster Video has gone out of business. DISH Network, which owns Blockbuster, officially announced last week th…

The Future Is Now: Google Enters Fixed Ops

The Future Is Now: Google Enters Fixed Ops

In July, I wrote an article that was published in Dealer magazine titled “Beam Me Up! How Service May Look In The Future.” In that article, I…

A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Words

A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Words

When dealerships first started publishing web pages, I remember that many felt that it was not very important. However, as many other dealers were doing …

Fall Conferences Focus on Fixed Ops First Strategy

Fall Conferences Focus on Fixed Ops First Strategy

The fall conferences have ended in our hometown of Las Vegas, NV. As always, there were great speakers and good educational opportunities. It’s alway…

Why Are We Rewarding Non-Accountability?

Why Are We Rewarding Non-Accountability?

In my sessions at conferences, I discuss the importance of measuring and holding employees accountable. Doing this consistently allows you to identify yo…

Employee Loyalty: Is There a Silver Bullet?

Employee Loyalty: Is There a Silver Bullet?

When was the last time you heard of someone who had worked his or her entire live for a single company? Chances are these instances involved members of a…

Why Apple Isn’t Magic

Why Apple Isn’t Magic

As I’m sure you’ve heard, Apple will start selling their new iPhones tomorrow. The buzz leading up to the announcement was typical with specu…

What’s Your ROR?

What’s Your ROR?

In almost every aspect of your dealership, you calculate ROI. Whether you’re looking at your ad spend, calculating labor costs or analyzing your di…

Empowered Employees and Pizza: A Success Story

Empowered Employees and Pizza: A Success Story

Creating a great customer experience in your business requires work. Not only does it require work, it also requires both buy-in and trust. In Gallup&rsq…

Being Different Makes A Difference

Being Different Makes A Difference

Being different will get you more service business, according to a recent study published by Google. In a study titled “The Road to Winning Drivers…

The Perfect Storm

The Perfect Storm

According to this article in last week’s Detroit Free Press, the average age of vehicles owned in the U.S. continues to be on the rise. With the av…

Four Lessons Shark Week Can Teach Us About Loyalty

Four Lessons Shark Week Can Teach Us About Loyalty

As I’m sure you’re aware, this week saw the annual return of Shark Week on the Discovery channel. In its 26th season, the summer-event has ga…

How Microsoft Almost Gave Its Business To Google

How Microsoft Almost Gave Its Business To Google

Frequently, I write about how dealerships (or any company for that matter) need to have efficient, reliable communication tools in place so that all depa…

How Being Delusional Can Make You More Productive

How Being Delusional Can Make You More Productive

I came across an article recently on LinkedIn by A.J. Jacobs, editor of Esquire magazine, in which he discussed using self-delusion as a tool to becoming…

How MySpace Started Its Rebirth by Alienating Its Most Loyal Customers

How MySpace Started Its Rebirth by Alienating Its Most Loyal Customers

MySpace was, in many people’s opinion, the social network to be on for many years. In fact, in 2006, MySpace surpassed Google as the most visited w…

Apple’s Customer Loyalty Strategy and How You Can Adopt It

Apple’s Customer Loyalty Strategy and How You Can Adopt It

I came across an interesting article in Forbes the other day that examined why Apple has such loyal customers and how they plan to increase that loyalty.…

Sometimes Listening Means Being Able to Laugh At Yourself

Sometimes Listening Means Being Able to Laugh At Yourself

​Tales are told almost everyday of some traveler or another experiencing a travel nightmare. Everyone that travels has an airline that they love to hat…

The Transformation of Customer Service

The Transformation of Customer Service

Our philosophy at MPi centers on using technology to increase efficiency and generate more revenue for the dealership, while ensuring a better customer e…

Disney Rules That Can Make Your Service Magical

Disney Rules That Can Make Your Service Magical

Disney is beloved the world over and is recognized as a premiere family destination place. Whether you’re talking about the parks in Orlando, or Ca…

How Big Data Can Transform Your Customer Service Experience

How Big Data Can Transform Your Customer Service Experience

An acquaintance of mine shared an experience with me that got me thinking. He traveled frequently and was a member of a particular hotel chain’s lo…

The Technology Invasion… Are You Ready?

The Technology Invasion… Are You Ready?

Dealerships are typically slow to embrace technology. In some cases, it’s for budgetary reasons and for others it’s out of a lack of a sense …

Creating Customer Loyalty through Consistency

Creating Customer Loyalty through Consistency

​Hotel chains across the country have long had problems with customer loyalty due to an  inconsistent customer experience. In researching the prob…

Is Your Service Department Your Red-Headed Stepchild?

Is Your Service Department Your Red-Headed Stepchild?

There was a fascinating article in Automotive News which discussed a new trend that many dealers are adopting: placing their service departments at the f…

Dude, Where’s My Car?

Dude, Where’s My Car?

​Customer: “Is my car ready?” Advisor: “Let me check…. I’m not showing that its ready yet, ma’am.” Customer:…

Using Text Messages In Service Provides Instant ROI

Using Text Messages In Service Provides Instant ROI

In today’s world where everyone is going 120mph, people are more interested in convenience than ever before. Is it because time is so limited in o…

Why Service Reviews Equal Revenue

Why Service Reviews Equal Revenue

Today’s world is full of review sites and social media- the epitome of information at your fingertips.  And because of this, reviews have beco…

Why People Are Skeptical Of Great Customer Service and How to Use that To Your Advantage

Why People Are Skeptical Of Great Customer Service and How to Use that To Your Advantage

In today’s world, there are many standout companies when it comes to customer service; Zappos and Nordstrom being a couple of examples. These compa…

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