Solomon Bruce Consulting Blog

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Car Dealership-- Part 2

     My last post described my initial visit to the car dealership when I was out of town last week.  I discussed how I was treated by the service adviser and how she could not recognize great customer service.  There is more-- here is the "Rest of the Story".
      I talked with the salesman for probably an hour.  The service adviser came to the salesman's office and saw that I was sitting there, looking at new cars.  She astutely figured that perhaps I might buy a new car so she came up and said, "I will have your car washed for you!"  Ummmm, interesting.  I said, "Sure, go ahead!"
      About 20 minutes later, the salesman was telling me what great service the dealership had and how happy I was going to be with the work done today on my car.  I figured OK, it is just another car salesman talking.  The car was delivered back to the service advisor's area, however, this time the bugs on the grill had gotten a bath, however, were not yet removed!  I asked if this is how they wash cars at this dealership?  The salesman was highly embarrassed and called the service adviser over to see if this was how they return "washed" cars.
     Well, you can guess where we go now!  I heard a long litany of reasons why the car was still dirty, however, it seemed like the service advisor was more into reasons than fixing the problem.  The salesman called a lot attendant and asked that the car be "rewashed" and insure that the final product was indeed something that they would be proud to deliver!
     With the high power under carriage water jets, a "front end shield" had been blown off.  I was aware that this shield had been broken many miles ago and had used the famous duct tape to fix it.  I pointed this out to the salesman-- identifying a wonderful sales opportunity that had been left unaddressed.  Again, you know what happens here!
     The service manager comes running, literally and figuratively to try and help.  He said that he would check to see if they had the proper part in stock.  If they did, did I want it installed.  I said tell me the price first.  A few minutes elapsed and the service manager came back and said, Yes, indeed, they had the correct part.  He told me the price and I said, Sure, go ahead and fix it!!  The service manager smiled and was happy to receive the order to fix the car.
     Now, does this happen at your business?  Don't think about the car dealership, think about your business.  How many unmet service or product needs go unfulfilled because either no one asked the client or failed to see that a sales opportunity was there for the asking?  Do you encourage your staff to find new sales opportunities with your current client base?
     Recall my story above.  I knew that the shield was damaged, however, I did not think that it was serious enough to warrant any undue concern on my part.  Yes, I wanted it fixed and when the service manager told me he had the part in stock and the mechanic had the time to fix it, why not get it fixed?  After all, it was damaged.
     In every encounter you have with a client, always see if there some additional value you can provide, not in a negative or "high pressure" way, but sincerely see if there is something else the client may need that you can provide.  I think that you will find that the answer is always YES, there is always something else you can provide.  Becoming aware of these sales opportunities allows for greater store profitability as well as increased customer satisfaction.


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