My 4-year-old twin daughters recently got fish. My husband and I are not “pet people”, so this was a major deal. After the girls picked out their new fish and a couple of small aquariums and some fish food, we thought we had everything we needed. But, just to be sure, my husband asked the lady the fish department if there was anything we were missing. She quickly identified herself as a fish expert.  She then looked judgingly into our cart and told us that the small tanks we got for the fish (the cheapest ones they had) were not going to work, despite there being pictures of beta fish on the front. I asked her why and she simply replied “There is a difference between surviving and thriving.” This lady legitimately guilted us (or what we would call at BCI, upsold us!)  into buying way nicer tanks for these silly fish. We thought we would spend around $20 on the experience but walked out of the store with $60 less dollars in our pocket simply so that these silly fish would “thrive and just not survive”!

As we all get ready to start 2017, this might also be a good question to also ask ourselves.  Where are you with your business? Are you surviving or thriving?  I challenge you to take time today and ask yourself if you are surviving or thriving in each one of these categories:

  1. Employees: Do you have the right employees in the right place in your dealership? Do they have positive attitudes that create an incredible experience for your customers? If you need to hire someone new, do you know what specifically you are looking for to fill that position?
  2. Goals: Do you know where you are going in 2017 or, are you just flying by the seat of your pants? Have you communicated your goals to your employees? Do you have a plan in place to make them happen?
  3. Marketing: Do you have a fresh plan that will keep you in front of your customers, or are you simply doing what you do each year and hoping it all improves sales?
  4. Cash flow: Do you have a plan to keep your cash flow strong even when it’s slow in your dealership? Have you recently evaluated your insurance for your company? Are you taking a regular paycheck as an owner?
  5. Processes: Do you have processes in place for you and your team to follow in your parts, service and sales departments?

Take time to evaluate and determine if you are simply surviving or you are truly thriving in your business.  Maybe 2017 will be the year to “thrive” and take your business to new heights!