Professional Community for Car Dealers, Automotive Marketers and Sales Managers
Our colleague Stan Sher wrote a pretty good tear on the issue of searching for the Next Internet Manager to blame for sales failures. I have to say I agree with his sketch there. I think, however, that it is not just Internet Managers. It can be nearly every manager in a dealership.
For example, the call goes out: “We need a great used car manager!”, and we get Clark Kent who comes with a stellar recommendation. Forty-five days into his employment, online merchandising and pricing of used cars is corrected, AutoTrader is in line, the liner ads are looking good, and things are really just starting to roll. In other words, Clark Kent is starting to show the “S” on his chest. Then the GM comes in and says “The owner wants some cut-backs, and you’re it!” And the GM keeps his job, Clark Kent loses his, and the politics of the blame for the continued poor used car track record at the store fall to Clark Kent. Which is what the GM may have wanted, anyway.
And so the call goes out for The Next Superhero.
And the next used car manager with a stellar reputation is actually awful, and forty-five days into his employment the online merchandising and pricing, print liners, and so on are not yet correct and/or are greatly wrong for the market. In other words, this Clark Kent had no “S” on his chest or any other letter. So, the GSM comes in and says “I told the GM that you are awful!” And the GSM keeps his job, Clark Kent loses his, and the politics of the blame for the continued poor used car track record at the store fall to this new Clark Kent. Which is what the GSM may have wanted, anyway.
And so the call goes out, again, for . . . you guessed it: The Next Superhero. Get my drift? It doesn’t matter in this scenario whether the new manager is any good—it just matters that there is someone to blame because the store has no vision. And this happens and happens and happens. Possibly across several departments in a dealership, and definitely across many dealerships in the USA. Because politics are what require the cycle of The Next Superhero, not business needs and sales advancement.
You don’t need The Next Superhero on the floor or on the Internet. Hire great people, manage them to great performance, and teach them great processes! Hold them accountable, give them a fair pay plan, and compensate them for being great. And, most of all, get a vision for your dealership.
Everybody keeps their job, store performance and profits go up, and all is right with the world.
And you don't need The Next Superhero. In fact, you never did.