Lots of folks suit up to look the part. Unless the general manager of your dealership looks the part and plays that role hard, though, with passion and an enduring commitment to excellence, your dealership will not be great.
GMs fill big shoes. They cover a lot of acreage in their responsibilities — staying atop of each requires structure, time management, planning, relational skills — and a strong competitive nature.
Like a good controller, the GM protects your assets. They keep the wheels on and the boat afloat — and the best ones also lead the charge.
Careful management, as prudent as it sounds to the ear, isn’t necessarily the management you want for your business. The industry is full of careful managers. They dip toes in the water. They solicit inventories of opinions. Meanwhile, amidst their pondering and evaluating, the horse leaves the barn, the window closes, the opportunity moves down the street.
Rust Never Sleeps
A great GM is a closer — sees opportunity and seizes it or directs others to do so. Is this your GM? Has your GM laid out a crisp and structured vision for your dealership? Has your GM prepared your staff to capture this vision? Is he or she an exhorter, a motivator — and a “helping hands” kind of GM?
The Peter Principle theory says “managers rise to their level of competence.” Contemporary sage Tommy Gibbs says great leaders never allow themselves to stay in their comfort zone because they recognize that getting comfortable is one step closer to failure.
It’s time to ask yourself — Is your GM the right GM for your bottom line?
GMs and Recon
Scroll down the GM’s job description. Right below “evaluating used car aging” is the most important and influential responsibility a GM can master: reconditioning oversight.
Really? Recon oversight is a dealer’s greatest opportunity to flow more margin to the bottom line and it is listed among the GM’s duties as… an afterthought? Does your GM see the potential here — one increasingly important as new car sales taper off and CPO and other used cars take center stage for the next few acts? Unless managed closely and activities accounted for carefully, the dealership recon function can become like the proverbial rug hiding all sorts of nasty, ugly things like:
Recon is a complex part of your business — more so than many GMs and their principals want to recognize. However, hundreds of dealers know now that, when operated using proven time-to-market (TTM) recon workflow technologies and tactics, recon centers:
It’s not just me claiming these advantages. It is also visionary GMs and dealers who understand the writing on the wall and who take action:
GMs who give the right priority to recon enjoy faster TTM, reduced friction among associates and, because they get cars frontline ready faster, improve inventory turn and gross margin.
Is your GM the right GM for your bottom line?