WHAT’S YOUR PLAN WHEN INVENTORIES NORMALIZE?
Today (if you’re like most dealers) you’re selling everything you stock and you’re making the highest grosses on both new and used vehicles that you’ve made in years; perhaps decades; perhaps ever. Of course, while many sales managers will chalk this up to their superior desking skills, the truth is that the market (as it always does) is the primary driver of what you can make on a vehicle sale.
But it’s not the only driver; it never has been.
When new car inventories were running 90+ days, many dealers saw negative front-end grosses on these vehicles. Finance, taking in a good trade, and the future service business from these sales made it okay to technically lose money on these deals.
But not every dealer had negative grosses on new cars, and not every dealer was holding 60+ days of used vehicle inventory while they constantly struggled with sales team turnover. These dealers had a plan they worked. They had processes they enforced. They had salespeople who were effective, efficient, and enjoyed selling cars.
This begs the question: What is your plan when inventories normalize?
NO DOOM & GLOOM
Rest assured, even if you do nothing except wait to adjust as the market changes, you won’t be closing your doors. The tired “car dealer is dead” obituaries have been written… and wrong since the first vehicle was posted for sale online. Do nothing and you’ll survive. Of course, you’ll again be chasing deals at the end of every month, you’ll again have constant pressure from your OEMs, and you’ll again be lamenting how you just can’t find any good salespeople.
What if great salespeople wanted to sell cars for you? What if you could stop the constant churn of your bottom sellers? What if you could turn mediocre sellers into trained killers? Imagine not having to spend most of your time recruiting, hiring, and training salespeople only to have them underperform.
To do this, you need a plan. And that plan should be to turn your sales managers into leaders.
TURNING SALES MANAGERS INTO LEADERS
Whether you make great grosses and build market share in the future has little to do with where you spend your marketing dollars. (Hint: There are no magic beans or silver bullets in the digital marketing world.) Your ability to achieve maximum profitability while building market share (oh… and driving great CSI) rests solely on whether your sales managers are confident leaders or merely angry deskers.
The great news is that it’s not expensive to do this… it just takes work. No need to spend thousands to send your management team to some three-day workshop where they’ll learn a lot and change very little. Instead, you and your managers can follow a simple 24-week plan detailed in Ridiculously Simple Sales Management.
Wait, 24 weeks is simple?
Actually… it is. It’s ridiculously simple, in fact.
Wait. Is this just some blog post so you can sell some books?
To be clear, I’m hopeful this post will spur some book sales. However, because I net about $6 per sold copy, even if everyone who reads this post buys one, I won’t be retiring any time soon. To do that, I’d need to start holding three-day workshops and charge dealers thousands to send their teams. Of course, I would do that if becoming a confident sales leader was hard… it’s not. It is, as I wrote, ridiculously simple.
RIDICULOUSLY SIMPLE SALES MANAGEMENT
This book was written for one purpose: To help you build and maintain a high-performing sales team. A team that wants to work for you. A team that wants to succeed. A team that wants to sell cars each and every day. To get there, you need sales managers who know how to lead.
Ridiculously Simple Sales Management is divided into 24 short chapters packed with advice, tips, and best practices that both new and seasoned sales managers will be able to put into practice immediately. Additionally, each chapter closes with bullet-pointed highlights and chapter exercises that ensure your team can easily implement the lessons just learned.
Your 24-week plan is ridiculously simple: Assign one chapter each week to your team. Then, ensure they employ that chapter’s lessons the following week. Regroup once a week to review the progress of the most recent lesson and check to be certain previous lessons have not fallen by the wayside. If they have, pause the plan and address these immediately.
At the end of the 24 weeks, your sales managers will have become true leaders. That is, if they truly care enough to outperform the competition, to stop taking what the market gives you, and to start building market share and profit in any environment. Oh, and if they’re genuinely tired of the costly sales team turnover that keeps getting in the way of making money and having fun.
Steve is the author of Assumptive Selling: The Complete Guide to Selling More Vehicles for More Money to Today’s Connected Customers;" as well ...
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