Auto Repair Shop Coaching Library


Sports – Gears and Teeth Discussion

  • Three gears review
  • What teeth are on each gear?
  • 30,000 foot level to select your three gears
  • PARP is 80% of what needs to happen during the Daily Ops

Financials On All Cylinders

We revisited the hexagon, the triangle, the gears, and the teeth on said gears. Owners were to focus on their top three.  The following focal points were discussed:
1. P&L knowledge
3. Budget writing
4. Snapshot
5. Technician Productivity
6. Billed hours vs. last year
7. Gross profit
8. Setting yourself apart with benefits in effort to justify higher than average prices with First Class Service…

One of the many reasons that a customer may enter your shop is to ensure that their family vehicle is prepared for an upcoming road trip. Before heading out on vacation, it’s reassuring to know that your trusted independent repair shop has fully inspected your ride. After all, none of us want to end up on the side of the road, at the mercy of a potentially untrustworthy repair shop far from home. That is where this Action Flow Chart comes in. Having a thorough, customizable inspection form on hand for these customers is a life saver!

This customer could have avoided this if he had filled out the trip inspection form.

Your service writers and the trip inspection form could’ve helped him avoid this situation.

Inspection Form for Upcoming Trips

Brian starts the clip by introducing the inspection form to the group. He points out the spots in the document that can be personalized, then mentions that some shop owners prefer to color code the sections. One such owner chose to color code the tasks to indicate whether they were a front of house job, a back of house job, or both.

Brian runs through the list of under the hood, interior, and exterior items to check. We could easily forget many of these items without using the inspection form. For example, do your mechanics always check the spare tire? What about the trailer hitch wiring? If the customer will be pulling a trailer or camper, this is a must.

Technicians should perform a test drive for certain aspects. Specifically, when driving the vehicle, they should make sure the speedometer and the cruise control are working correctly.

After completing all 22 inspection points and taking any necessary actions, don’t forget to wipe off any potential handprints and return the vehicle clean.

Ready For The Next Step? Book Your FREE Strategy Session!

Brian Gillis - You Net ResultsYour auto repair shop lacks direction. Maybe your business plan has stalled out, and you aren’t meeting your goals. You need an experienced automotive industry coach to help you. Then why not schedule a FREE business strategy session with You Net Results guide Brian Gills? You’ve got nothing to lose, so sign up today!

Finding the best drivers “gears” for General Manager

  1. Focus on workflow
  2. Communications skills
  3. Numbers knowledge
  4. Awareness Factor
  5. Aggressive vs passive
  6. Hands off method
  7. Helicopter view
  8. Planning and organization skills

Management On Cruise Control

What are your three gears in the triangle to move forward with management in your company?
  1. Organization / Methods
  2. SOP developed and refined
  3. Follow up  / measure
  4. Provide direction, information, and solutions
  5. Standards in place
  6. Game planning daily
  7. Workflow method
  8. System for productivity and time management

Knowing your strengths and weaknesses is the key to success for any business. This is especially true for an auto repair shop. Perform a SWOT analysis in order to compare your internal strengths and weaknesses against external opportunities and threats.

This comparison will give you a better understanding of the current market conditions. Thus, you can make informed decisions that will lead to success. Let’s look at how a SWOT analysis will help your auto repair shop.

SWOT Analysis – Analyzing Internal Strengths and Weaknesses

A SWOT analysis begins by looking at internal factors, such as existing staff, equipment, location, customer service policies, and financial resources. These factors are key for an auto repair shop, because they directly affect the quality of customer service.

By studying these factors, you can identify weaknesses. You may need more help to improve customer service or efficiency. Also, you may identify your areas of strength. This way, you can continue providing good service to customers.

SWOT Analysis – Assessing External Opportunities and Threats

It is equally important to look at external factors when conducting a SWOT analysis for an auto repair shop. These include trends in the industry, such as new technology, competition, and changing consumer preferences.

Looking at external factors lets you see market changes. These potential opportunities or threats may impact your business. By evaluating internal and external factors, you can plan to improve operations. This way, we can stay ahead of competitors.

Pair Them Against Each Other And Examine Growth Chances

When running a repair shop, it is necessary to know your strengths and weaknesses. A SWOT analysis compares internal strengths and weaknesses with outside opportunities and threats. These facts help you can make wise decisions to move your business forward.

Are you investing more resources into customer service, or researching new technology trends? When performing a thorough SWOT analysis, you will gain the tools needed for success!

You Net Results Will Help You On Your Strategic Journey Through Auto Repair Ownership

Contact You Net Results today. Let us help you begin the process. Book a free consultation. Brian Gillis and team will help you build your foundation. Plug into our vast network of auto repair shops, and work together to strengthen the industry! Let’s make April the best month of your business life!

Does your auto repair shop charge for automotive inspections? If not, why not? Whether a customer needs a pre-trip check, a brake inspection, or a full vehicle inspection, your technician’s time and your service advisor’s time are worth charging for. Some shop owners have experienced customers taking advantage of them by getting a free inspection from your shop and getting the repair done at a rival shop! Others do not feel it is fair to charge for inspections. Still, others offer tiers of inspections, ranging from free to charging different amounts. This is a great discussion about the philosophy behind whether or not we should charge customers for inspections.

Always charge for Automotive Inspections - Your Technicians' time is worth money.

Automotive Inspections – Time Is Money

Jerry outlined the model featuring three levels of inspection: A basic inspection, which is free; a more thorough mid-level inspection for a nominal fee; and a thorough, complete inspection, costing more. His experience? Most people are willing to pay for the mid level vehicle inspection, rather than going for the free basic package. Bottom line: it is not fair to ask your technician to work for free, or for you to pay him or her when you are not being paid by the customer.

Pam joined the discussion, pointing this out from a Service Writer’s perspective. Customers understand there is value in our work. They come expecting to pay for it, or at least they should. If your Service Advisor explains the value of the inspection, customers will be happy to pay for it. If they are not receptive, the chances are that your front counter employee is not asking enough questions.

For example, if a customer says their Check Engine Light is on, your Service Writer should be asking if they have noticed any issues with the vehicle’s performance. If you don’t ask, there is a good chance your technicians may not know where to look for the problem. Then, when you fail to fix the issue, the customer will rightfully hold you accountable.

Scott makes the point that many of his older clients do not drive much, but will take a long trip once or twice a year to see family. They enter the shop, asking for a pre-trip inspection, and are happy to pay for it. That peace of mind is so valuable. Opening the hood for the inspection also creates opportunities to sell more work if necessary.

What Are Your Competitors Doing?

Fred added that his Service Writer recently called around to other shops, asking how much they charged for automotive inspections. He was surprised to know how high their fees were to inspect customers’ vehicles. Since the market is bearing it, he found it necessary to raise his own inspection fees.

Jerry gave an example of the basic inspection in action. His shop offers a free 15-minute visual “no wrench” inspection. From just a few minutes of eyeballing the engine and wheels,  his technicians can recommend premium services such as a full brake inspection. Again, customers who come in and let us inspect their vehicles should expect to pay for our services ultimately. Obviously, if a more thorough brake inspection is in order, Jerry’s shop rolls the cost of the inspection into the repair charge.

Bottom line? Don’t give away free full vehicle automotive inspections. Many times, customers will take advantage of your generosity and get the work done elsewhere.

Ready For The Next Step? Book Your FREE Strategy Session!

Brian Gillis - You Net ResultsYour auto repair shop lacks direction. Maybe your business plan has stalled out, and you aren’t meeting your goals. You need an experienced automotive industry coach to help you. Then why not schedule a FREE business strategy session with You Net Results guide Brian Gills? You’ve got nothing to lose, so sign up today!

Leadership In High Gear

Defining Leadership

What are your BIG 3 driving gears? The following was shared :
  1. Empowerment
  2. Inspire / motivate
  3. Casting a vision
  4. Getting “buy in”
  5. Inspect what you expect / follow up
  6. Praising, showing gratitude, and accountability

Question asked and discussed :

Can confidence be learned?

Let’s Get Acquainted

  1. Only Two Ways to Increase Sales
  2. Notes
  3. Write Your Tie Down
  4. Top Three Incoming Calls
  5. How & Why
  6. Oil Change Script
  7. The Quick Close Script
  8. The Anytime Script
  9. Notes


Powerpoint PDF

In this clip from on of our Working On It Tuesday sessions, Brian and the class discuss Action Flow Charts. Specifically, Brian brings up the question of which color coding should designate who is performing the listed tasks. Pam suggests that instances where both technicians (blue) and service advisors (red) share the load, the chart should be color coded purple.

Color coding that form would help this Service Advisor to stay organized.Color Coding Your Action Flow Charts

Pam expanded on her answer, indicating that the Service Advisor at the front desk sells the job. Then, the technicians will perform the repair work. Therefore, many automotive repair tasks require a shared responsibility.

Pam brought up the Test Drive step in the Trip Check Inspection form. Jim Ryckman mentioned that his shop’s team performs an extensive test drive. He then explained how this test drive is part of his Preventive Maintenance Inspection process. The question arose on whether to charge for such an inspection.

Brian mentioned that any job that you are color coding for technicians to work on is worth their time, and you should charge for it. Some folks may take advantage of your free inspection offer, and then take their vehicle elsewhere that they know is cheaper. They may even perform the repair themselves, now that you have diagnosed the issue for free. Chances are that if you explain why they must pay for their vehicle inspection, they will agree to the inspection and repair.

Ready For The Next Step? Book Your FREE Strategy Session!

Brian Gillis - You Net ResultsYour auto repair shop is lacking direction. Maybe your business plan has stalled out. You definitely are not meeting your goals. You need an experienced automotive industry coach to help you. Then why not schedule a FREE business strategy session with You Net Results guide Brian Gills? You’ve got nothing to lose, so sign up today!

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