Part 2: Automotive Recruiting Tips for Attracting Young Talent

Transparency is critical to Generation Y and it starts with the job posting.  Dealerships should consider posting information regarding employment directly on dealership websites to include details on job responsibilities and expectations, compensation and benefit plans, sales training programs, and most importantly, opportunities for career growth and development.  This same information should also be reflected in any additional job postings, be it online or in print.  Job postings should be clear and not misleading.  For example, a sales position should not be posted as marketing or a customer service role.

The educated Generation Y population is looking for a better balance of life and career.  Addressing their wishes may have an improved effect on their overall sales performance.  Creating flexible schedules that mimic corporate America with 40-hour weeks and at least monthly weekends off is suggested.  Most dealerships will pack their sales floor with staff out of fear there will not be enough coverage.  Couple log hours and idle time and you have created a double edge sword for Generation Y, who is use to instant gratification and furiously fast multilevel tasking.  The result is a shift in work ethic in the younger generations, who can become complacent and unmotivated leading them to quit.  Dealerships can avoid this trap by watching floor traffic and make note of peak hours and non-peak hours and modify the schedule accordingly.

Income security is another appealing point for Generation Y.  This generation prefers the security of a salary or hourly wage over risking making more money on a commission based pay structure.  Generation Y is the cumulative result of “feel good” education and “everyone is a winner” sports programs and therefore lack the thick skin for aggressive selling or perceived financial risk  Creating realistic training salaries and pay plans that combine salary with commission is alluring to this generation of up and coming salespeople.

This generation lacks an individual competitive streak and is greatly motivated to be part of a team.  When constructing a training program, consider team building as part of the structure instead of competition between individuals.  During training, demonstrate why something is important instead of just giving a direct order.  Show them how each step of the process builds on the previous step.  Help them to visualize how what they do affects other departments.  Create a network of support inside the training module.  This generation is also highly technology driven and savvy.  Take advantage of this asset by including the use of modern technology during training and expand their sales role to include social media and digital marketing opportunities.

If you need help with recruiting automotive salespeople, The Manus Group is your helping hand!  Visit our website at or call us at 888.735.8311.


About the Author

Stephanie Young is the Vice President of Sales and Marketing for The Manus Group, where she is an active blogger, social media contributor and spokesperson for one of the nation’s leading automotive recruiting and training firms. Stephanie is also the current Ms. Florida Forestry Queen, promoting her platform encouraging young woman to pursue their interests in STEM field careers.

If you like this blog, please share with others and connect with Stephanie on Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+

Copyright © 2014, Stephanie Young All rights reserved.

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Comment by Stephanie Young on May 20, 2014 at 10:02am

Thank you, Frank.  Each year I am given the opportunity to work with a mentor program.  From this experience, I have learned to adapt my relationship building skills.  In customer service, it is not about the salesperson's is about the consumers experience!  You don't happen to have the lesson plan from "Gen Y Do I Care?" do you?  I would love to see it. 

Comment by Frank Renaldi on May 19, 2014 at 2:22pm

Great analysis on Gen Y.  I agree %110.  I was putting a class together to get certified by the state for CE for Real Estate (past career) and it was called "Gen Y Do I Care?" to educate Realtors on how to communicate and do lasting/ongoing business with Gen Y.  So important to understand your consumer or employees to maximize potential.  Keep up the great work Stephanie! 

Comment by Stephanie Young on May 13, 2014 at 9:17am

Mark, thank you for your post.  I agree that dealerships needs to adapt to our ever changing market.  The automotive industry has embraced digital marketing because the status quo of past marketing was no longer effective.  Unfortunately, dealerships are missing out on talent when they stick to the status sand through their fingers.  As for the title, "re-engineer the dealership to be more effective and tips to retain employees who are not attracted to the current management style and work hours in our industry" is a little long and maybe even a little scary for the reader and might not lead to readership,but I get your point and I agree.  It is time for change!

Comment by Mark Dubis on May 13, 2014 at 8:20am

Stephanie, thank you for sharing great information, but unfortunately you mis-named your post.  Your content talks about ways to re-engineer the dealership to be more effective and tips to retain employees who are not attracted to the current management style and work hours in our industry.  

When you speak to most auto retail professionals you discover that most dealerships, even the publicly owned ones are happy with the status quo and not looking to re-engineer their organizations. Auto retailers spend over $1 billion in recruiting, hiring, and  tr... and so far most aren't taking the steps you describe to solve their employee turnover issues.  

I agree with you that we need to implement changes to improve our industry, but the reality is that NO training is effective unless you can retain your employees and build sustained customer loyalty.


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