Being Different in Business and Winning
We always get this question asked – how can we be different in our business? The perfect example is one we have used before and that is Don Beyer Volvo. This place is very different.
A typical car dealership generates about 12% of it’s revenue from after-sale service, Don Beyer is more like 30%. They also have convincing evidence that satisfied customers will keep traffic moving for new cars as well. More than 80% of one year’s sales were to past customers or to people that had been referred by past customers. Now that is cool.
Some different things that they do:
- Mechanics are on salary above the award.
- Based on work quality the top mechanics have the keys to a car for the month.
- Test drives for cars repaired are as common as new car test drives.
- People are there until 8.00pm to make it easy for customers that work to get their cars.
- Limousine service is available for customers.
- Service training for all team and for customers by their full time service trainer.
- 2 days after the repair the full time customer relations person calls customers to find out: Was the repair satisfactory? Was any of the work a repeat repair? Would they recommend the service department to others?
- A few days later the same as above follows in writing as some people are more comfortable responding this way.
- Customer advisory board meets with team members quarterly to discuss feedback etc
- One such recommendation is the Guarantee. If customer finds a cheaper genuine part from somewhere else, they will get double their money back.
- Open dealership, so customers if they like can spend all day there looking around.
- Goodwill budget, where money is allocated and must be spent each year in the service department.
- 100,000 and 200,000 mile club to keep owners of older cars coming back. Members get discounts on repairs. Great way to keep them coming back to see the new cars and the new things in the dealership. They know that one day they will buy another car.
- Express check in and out for customers in a rush.
- After a car is sold to a customer the procedure is for 4 1/2 years that they will receive a call on a quarterly basis. The questions they will be asked are: How is the car going? They will be queried about any service issues. They will be invited in to look at the new models. Their answers will be valuable market intelligence and clues to developing problems that can be caught early.
These are just some of the things that this really amazing business is doing and has been doing for years. All little things that add so much value and differentiates this business from most others.
Every business could be doing things like this and not just car dealerships. The question is how many are?
If you are not this is a massive opportunity to be different in your business and to WIN. Contact us to discuss how we can help you get your business to the next level with our business advisory services.
5 Key things you should do to help improve your cash flow
Small business owners are not planning ahead enough. Small business is getting riskier for many owners, with tens of thousands of SMEs now more likely to experience financial stress in the coming year as per research conducted.
Credit rating agency Dun & Bradstreet says one in 10 businesses with fewer than 20 employees now face a higher risk of failure than a year ago. It’s no wonder when so many SMEs are reportedly struggling with reduced cash flow and more businesses are failing to pay their bills on time.
When businesses go under, it’s generally not because they’re not making an accounting profit, but because they simply don’t have enough cash to pay their bills. In fact, there are plenty of profitable businesses that have ended up in administration because of cash flow issues.
There are ways to improve your SME’s cash flow.
Chase Up Payments
The first step is to chase up those who owe you money. A cash crunch could be the result of just a few late-paying clients so it’s imperative to keep track of who’s running late with their payments.
It could be a mail-out or a simple phone call reminder to let them know the payment is due. You just need to be active.
Reduce Payment Terms
Consider offering just 30 days credit terms instead of the longer 45 day plus terms, communicate with customers and offer discounts for those that pay straight away.
Review Financial Products
Review your financial products – transaction accounts, credit cards, loans – and if they aren’t working for your business talk to your financial institution and make sure you shop around for a better deal.
Ask For Help
Don’t be afraid to ask for help – ask us how we can assist you to improve your position. One of the keys to running a better business is having profit and loss and cash flow budgets prepared annually. That way you can see ahead what your profit and cash flow will look like. This then gives you an opportunity to act. If you know ahead of time that you are going to have a cash flow problem then you can do something about it. Most businesses do not know they will have a problem until they actually have the problem. Typically, by then it is too late to do anything about it.
Another great strategy is to monitor and compare the budgets to actual data. Thaw way you can see how you went compared to the budgets.
Another strategy is to conduct ‘what if analysis’. What we do there is we consider what impact there would be on your business if:
- Sales decreased by 10%
- Accounts receivable are collected in 65 days instead of 40 days
- And so forth
It is a great way to see what would happen to your business if certain things happen.
Speak to us so we can help you get all of the above in place.
If someone asked you what your ideal day is, what would you answer?
This year was a year where many of us have taken stock of what is important, refined our goals, and focussed on closing the gap between our ideal and our reality.
We’ll look forward to working with you again in 2022 and helping you to close that gap!
On behalf of all the team we wish you a safe and happy Christmas.Back to News Page