Automotive Sales Training - Are You a Professional Or a Lot Lizard?

Drive up to a dealership and you will most likely see a lot lizard. Their species is easy to spot. They tend to congregate in front of the dealership, smoking, joking, complaining and waiting to wait on someone. Notice I said waiting to wait on. These lizards are a curious species in how they tend to look for prey. The professional is a different breed. The professional tends to not wait on much or for long. The professional has goals, a work plan and is too busy taking action to join the lizards for long, if any at all.


You have heard it before that a dealer provides facilities, inventory, capital and an office; in return, the salesperson provides the effort. It’s the type of effort that defines which category the salesperson will be in. The choice of category will influence the attitude, future and happiness of the salesperson. Let’s look at traits of a professional:


• A professional has goals. Those without goals are destined to live and work for those who do.

• A professional has a work plan. Professionals recognize that time is their most important currency, because when the 1,440 minutes of each day are gone, they aren’t coming back. A professional avoids and kills all time vampires without mercy.

• A professional self-educates consistently because he understands he could not possibly know it all and has a desire to get better every day.

• A professional has a complete follow-up program built over and beyond the dealership’s CRM, because she realizes the real capital of her business is what she does with that database of customers.

• A professional has a marketing/prospecting system, because he realizes that you cannot give the control and power of your income up to dealership advertising, seasonal traffic patterns or economies. The professional makes and works a plan to get all of his business through his own efforts and becomes independent of walk-in traffic.

• A professional works consistently on gaining and maintaining a positive attitude, because without it, everything else does not work. A professional does not care that others may scorn her and her positive approach to life.

• A professional is continually realizing the importance of combining mind-body-spirit for continued success, and without the combination of all of them, his efforts and success can quickly go away.

• A professional creates a “business within a business” that features her own personal stamp or brand.

• A professional is committed and commitment equals consistency.


If you are cynical about dedicating yourself to being a professional, I invite you to take a good look at the lot lizard. Observe him as he squirms around endlessly on the lot. Observe the lot lizard’s attitude, happiness and success. Ask yourself what their long-term possibilities are for success. The choice is yours. Lot lizard or professional?


If you would like the free Special Report “Becoming A Professional,” e-mail me at with the word “Professional” in the subject line.


Don't forget to follow me on Google

Views: 402


You need to be a member of to add comments!


Comment by Mark Tewart on March 18, 2013 at 9:19am

Thanks Joe

Comment by Joe Clementi on March 17, 2013 at 7:56pm
Thanks Mark! Another excellent post. Well thought out with a detailed description for success. You have prescribed the ideal plan a sales associate can follow to complete the journey from average to great! I can't recall the author but this quote has stuck with me- "success isn't a once a day's an every day thing".

@Lynn. I'm sorry you were put into a position that will challenge your commitment to success every day. However, we always have choices! We can choose (as I did and many others have) to seek out mentors, pay for our own training, read every available book and seek out every helping hand! "Success is a choice...unfortunately so is failure"
Comment by Pat Kirley on March 7, 2013 at 6:38pm
Look if you worked in a office, you are going to give it time to find your feet and get used to things. You are at the start of your career, Rome was not built in a day. I don't think I sold two cars in my first month back in 1975 and most of my colleagues thought I was employed to run errands for them and there was no training. I learned by watching, listening and reading a Dale Carnagie book. That was April 1975, in November 1975 I was sent on sales training with Ford in Ireland and I am still learning.
Today you can get a wealth of top quality training from this site. Give it a few months and if things don't improve then consider moving. Talk to your manager about what training programmes they have for staff.
Don't give up, I wish you a happy and prosperous career in the car industry and feel free to email me if you need any advise.
Comment by Mark Tewart on March 7, 2013 at 1:28pm

Lynne, sorry this has happened to you. I normally would not say this but my best suggestion is to find a dealership that has an extensive training program and utilizes a fully functioning Customer Relationship Management system. If what you said is true, the salespeople including yourself are set up to fail at a high rate because of a lack of proper leadership and management. Normally, I would direct you to take responsibility and focus on what you can do and give you suggestions but I dont think it will make a difference. If you were truly made to split a deal because as a new person you did not know how to fill out the paperwork then you are at a horrible dealership and should find a better dealership.

Comment by Lynne Lopes on March 7, 2013 at 1:18pm

I have only been in the business about a month. I love my job, but my surroundings are the problem. I was never given any real training and the other sales staff don't care to help me out at all. I have only made 2 sales and one I was forced to make a split because I wasn't sue how to fill out the paperwork and needed help from another sales guy. They get a draw each week and I am only getting commission twice a month. We pretty much have to be lot lizards because I don't have anything else I can do. I don't have previous clients to call and I have bird dogged every gas station, friend and business in the area that I pass by coming to work. Does anyone have any suggestions that can help me be better at this? Oh, and there was not a training process...just thrown into it. 

Comment by Pat Kirley on February 28, 2013 at 4:59pm
Agree totally
Comment by David Ruggles on February 28, 2013 at 2:37pm

Not much follow up being done with crows perched on the railing in front of the dealership.  Sounds like a dealership in need of a rotation system.

dE Sponsor

Latest Activity

Stephen Sutherland-Tomey posted an event

Steve Sutherland-Tomey at The Office

October 15, 2018 from 6pm to 7pm
Looking forward to the readSee More
3 hours ago
Dane Saville posted a blog post
10 hours ago
knorr kendra's blog post was featured
10 hours ago
Mike Esposito posted a blog post

Auto/Mate Integrates DMS with DocuBizz

Invoice workflow solution streamlines accounts payable processes in auto dealershipsAlbany, NY –…See More
11 hours ago
knorr kendra posted a blog post
12 hours ago
Harris Scott posted a blog post

Ways To Escape The Black H*** Of Technical Debt

Traditional software programs will have phase-based approach to the development. Those are feature…See More
14 hours ago
DealerELITE's event was featured

The Theory of 5 Amazon Download Event $3.99 LIMITED TIME at Online

October 24, 2018 to October 27, 2018
Mark your calendars ... October  15th to 27th to download Chris Saraceno's (DealerELITE co-founder)…See More
Todd Smith's blog post was featured

de sponsor

Get Newsletter

dE Sponsor

© 2018   Created by DealerELITE.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service