According to Webster, DNA is the fundamental and distinctive characteristics or qualities of someone, or something. It’s the nucleus of how things work. The genetic markers of life and business have a lot of similarities. How we perform and at what level is shaped by our business DNA. What is your dealership’s DNA? What type of markers do you use as a guide to understand your dealership’s makeup and how well you’re really performing?
I was in a dealership recently discussing the year so far. Every department was seeing some type of growth over the previous year, and “Why delve into anything?” was the general consensus. “We’re growing,” was one comment, and “Why rock the boat?” was another. They were sure that they were setting the standards, and every other dealership around them was a distant second (it wasn’t said quite that way). Now here’s where looking at those markers came in.
We started looking at the sales department’s DNA markers. It started with what the sales department had sold the previous month and what more they possibly could have sold. We looked at their beginning inventory, their wholesales minus the retails, along with ending inventory for that particular month compared to national and regional averages (there are those markers).
Comparing like dealers regionally and nationally, they were underselling like dealers with the same type of inventory by approximately 15 percent, or about seven units a month. Inventory was not being relieved at the same rate because of this, which increased flooring costs, and let’s not forget those seven units a month and the additional profitability that others were realizing that they were not. This dealership was not doing badly. They just weren’t doing as well as they thought.
Time and time again I hear, “We don’t have this or that product, or enough of it, and that’s the nucleus of the problem.” Most of us know better, though. It’s in the fabric of our businesses; it’s in our dealership leadership. Looking at the markers around us and using them to improve is available to all of us. What sets us apart as individuals and in business is our DNA. I find it interesting that there is a DNA sequence that is referred to as the “sense” strand. Let’s use it. ...
Mark Mooney is director, retail performance for Pied Piper Management Company LLC, a Monterey, Calif., company that works with motor vehicle manufacturers and dealers to maximize performance of dealerships. One of Pied Piper’s most popular services for the powersports industry is Pied Piper Prospect Satisfaction Index (PSI) sales mystery shopping to help turn more motorcycle shoppers into motorcycle buyers.