PRINCIPLE #1 - STOP THE BLEEDING
Bob knows that as an owner you are running from situation to situation, only to be exhausted and out by the end of the day. Most dealerships have a few different forms of “bleeding” and you must identify and stop it before you can move forward.
PRINCIPLE #2 - INSTANT INCOME
If you are like most dealers, in order for you to begin to get your feet back under you, you need to begin to generate additional income immediately. Bob finds that for every million dollars in revenue you are generating, a dealership typically leaves over $100,000 on the floor. One of the ways that Bob suggests that you can generate instant income is by simply rebidding your insurance on an annual basis.
PRINCIPLE #3 - BUILD THE CULTURE
Having a vision and clear expectations for all of your employees is one way that you can get your dealership to run more effectively, even when you are not there. It is important for your employees to understand how they are a core part of your dealership. When they take ownership in their job and your company culture, it becomes more than just a paycheck to them.
PRINCIPLE #4 - DEFINE THE PROCESS
A lack of process in your service, parts, whole goods and rental departments is the one thing that Bob and his team see costing dealerships the most money. When you have a well-defined process in each of these departments, you establish clear expectations for your employees and have standards that are measurable. Bob says “You can’t manage what you don’t measure, and you can’t measure what you don’t understand.”
PRINCIPLE #5 - CREATE THE PLAN
Bob recommends having financial, marketing and transition plans. By having each of these plans, you take the guess work out of key areas of your business. While it does take time and commitment to make each of these plans work, you will find it is well worth the effort.
PRINCIPLE #6 - INCORPORATE THE PEOPLE
Often business owners make the mistake of planning around employees instead of creating a business plan and then incorporating the staff into that plan. Making decisions about who you hire and what their roles are should be one of the last things to place into your business strategy. You need to make sure that the people you are incorporating into your business are willing and capable of implementing the processes you have set in place.
PRINCIPLE #7 - MONITOR, MEASURE & ADJUST
Congratulations! If you have worked through the first six principles, you are experiencing newfound freedom and success. Now is the time to do what owners & managers are supposed to do: monitor, measure and adjust the processes to make sure they are working effectively. You should be evaluating your vision, values, goals, processes, and people on a regular basis --making small adjustments that will improve your overall business.