Let me first point out the odds of becoming a sales manager in the automotive industry. There are approximately 20,000 new car dealers in the US and Canada. They will average approximately seven new sales people a year between them. Do the math on that. You are one in 140,000 that will make it to sales manager on a business card and start the climb up the ladder in our industry.
The reason that number is so high is the lack of time devoted to those new seven each year on grooming them into our industry. The majority of us came up in this business hard. Look at it in retrospect. How many other occupations have you tried to become employed in before settling for the car business. You had what it took to make it to this point. From this point forward will determine how many rungs on that ladder you will accomplish in your career. The most fatal mistake you will ever make in that climb is arguing with those individuals you are in charge of and that you are supposed to be grooming and also assisting in the improvement of their personal income.
In our industry, nobody gets a raise until a salesperson gets one first. They are the most paramount, front-line mirrored image of our dealership that we will ever have, have done, advertise, or promote. They are also a direct image of you. The only reason a salesperson asks a question or will argue with you over something you have instructed them to do, is because they don’t understand it or they don’t believe it. When you have a salesperson that argues with you, you have already lost the battle and will have twice as hard a time ever bringing them back completely under your fold.
The way to eliminate this problem is through sales meetings. That is your opportunity to show those individuals that are relying on you, just exactly how good you truly are. First you need to ask them individually, in that room, what are the biggest problems you are experiencing right now, greeting, qualifying, demonstrating or closing the deal? Give them the four basic options. When they tell you what their biggest problem is, roll play it out with them. Don’t run through some quick funny little adage that you think is humorous. If you don’t know the answer to the questions, tell them you don’t know, but that you will find out for them.
Remember, we teach all over the world. Used car management training is how we exist. We learn from the individuals in our classroom as much as we teach. Roll playing gives you a chance to see exactly how advanced and how far your people have come under your tutelage.
One last thing — a salesperson does not know what a salesperson does not know, and a salesperson will not know until you tell them.
Till next time,