Years ago, after he had created a multi-billion dollar business from scratch, Ross Perot was asked about his role at the company. His answer was “sales.” Along with all the other obvious roles of a CEO, Perot was clear his top priority was taking care of customers and finding new customers.
How often today do owners or general managers pick up the telephone to spontaneously call a customer who hasn’t been to the dealership for a while? Turn the tables and imagine you were the customer, getting an unexpected phone call from the owner or manager of a local business.
That unexpected call may be enough to remind the customer how much they enjoy motorcycling and get them back into the dealership. Even better, take something the dealership knows about the customer and turn it into relevant news: a new model just arrived, an accessory sale is under way, we are looking for more used inventory, a dealership ride is coming up, and so forth.
Two more benefits too: First, consider these customer phone calls sales “intelligence gathering” even if they don’t result directly in a sale. Secondly, make sure your own sales team follows your lead and works to make business happen rather than just waiting for it to walk in the door.
Yes, your role as owner or general manager includes all kinds of other responsibilities, but make time to talk with your customers too.