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Dealer Week’s impact already felt

Leading up to an event like MRAA’s Dealer Week, it’s easy for marketing and promotional efforts to make promises on how the conference’s content can help your dealership. After just Day 1 of Dealer Week 2020, however, the impact these courses are having on dealerships can already be felt.

After attending the event as a team yesterday, in which just 8 of the 30-plus courses were presented, one dealership met for a recap meeting at the end of the day. Leadership noted, “I am VERY impressed at the conversation we had as a group at the end of the day. It was dynamic, thoughtful and held 100% participation.” And out of the meeting surfaced this detailed list of each individual’s key takeaway from the day:

  1. Video is the big push. Do video for everything, including things like F&I and how to get financed, etc.;

  2. Fast field forms (dealer case study) and the integration of videos to serve the customer (delivery, operation, delivery condition, etc.);

  3. Onboarding videos for company history, processes, bigger picture, meet the team;

  4. Dealing with difficult customers: Have the customer set the expectation, e.g. customer new boat breaks down - they may expect us to respond differently;

  5. Having the customer let our team know their timeframe and expectation rather than automatically respond like it's a fire;

  6. Checklists to create consistency, talking same language, communicating important pieces consistently, sends the message that we are on the same page, better hand offs;

  7. Have a career path and communicate that to team members, it would uplift spirits and inspire positivity;

  8. Service department needs phone training;

  9. More follow-up so that the customer is also thinking ahead for what they need, follow-up so that the team is thinking progressively too;

  10. Have a guideline for the entry-level positions and their possible career paths — you wouldn't lose the rock stars at the end of every season;

  11. What employees want: Inspiration, education, autonomy (consistently communicate these subjects)

  12. Give people the learning tools they need to succeed (onboarding);

  13. Communication. Let the customer drive the type of communication that they want (text, email, call, etc);

  14. GAP- How you respond to somebody else. Detaching yourself from their reaction in the time between what they are saying and you responding in order to collect yourself.

  15. GAP- Responding to an angry customer when you are on the spot and without necessary information. Diffusing the customer.

  16. Offer options in dealing with an upset customer; don't over promise;

  17. GAP- very simple concept that's easy to skip, we need to constantly remind and practice that self-awareness;

  18. Video FAQ's to elevate the customer experience and preemptively address issues;

  19. Culture vs motivation, self-reflection and leadership feedback;

  20. If you want repeatable success, you need process; create the processes we need and should have

  21. Q&A page, portable, printable, shareable, 17 reasons you shouldn't buy a boat

  22. Accessibility and delivering information and expectations;

We’re through about a third of the event, and this dealership already has nearly two dozen ideas to implement — a business-transforming list of tactics. The group asked upper management to participate in a Friday recap meeting for a deeper dive into reflections for the week, and they requested the end-of-day conversations be recorded for future reference.

At the MRAA, we don’t just create education; we create programs that will drive real results in your dealership. Stay tuned for Day 2.

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