‘Put me in, Coach!’

June 9, 2023
To achieve shop excellence, consider hiring a coaching company, which brings with it a wealth of expertise and experience in the automotive industry.

As a shop owner in the automotive repair industry of 2023, you are no stranger to the challenges and competition that exist in today's business environment. With increasing customer demands, the need for skilled technicians, the constant pressure to maintain profitability, and the current foundational changes you are facing with the transition toward electric vehicles (EVs), it can be difficult to keep up with it all. A lot of the shop owners I have known over the years were often very late in the game when they finally decided to hire a coaching company. And in too many cases, these owners were looking for a magic pill, not necessarily aware of or interested in all the hard work a coach would ask, or more correctly, demand of them.  

Hiring a coaching company can be a good strategic decision for repair shop owners in today's challenging, changing, and competitive business environment. With their expertise, objective perspective, accountability, training and development resources, and customized solutions, they can help us overcome the challenges, help us achieve our goals and stay ahead of the competition. 

A good coach helps you take on challenges 

A coaching company brings with it a wealth of expertise and experience in the automotive industry. By hiring a coaching company and gaining access to a coach, we also gain access to a team of professionals and other shop owners like us who have a deep understanding of the unique challenges and opportunities that exist in the automotive repair industry. Ultimately, it is our coach who will make the taking of that leap comfortable, or at the very least, help us see that it is an unavoidable necessity. Good coaches don’t lie about the pain, but they are there to help you deal with it when it comes. You will no longer be alone as you take on the many challenges you face every day as a shop owner. And who knows? He or she might have an idea or two that will allow you and your shop to achieve that next level you have been chasing for all these years. 

Every business is unique, and what works for one shop may not work for another. A good coach understands this and takes a personalized approach to each shop and shop owner he or she works with. He or she takes the time to understand the unique challenges and opportunities of each shop he or she works with and tailors the coaching approach accordingly. 

The experience and expertise of a coach are also important factors to consider. A good coach should have a deep understanding of the automotive service and repair industry, as well as experience working with shops like yours (such as general repair, collision, high-end European, and more). This experience and expertise can provide valuable insights and strategies that are specific to your business and the challenges you face. 

A coach should also be skilled in communication and relationship building. He or she should also be able to communicate effectively, both in terms of explaining concepts and strategies and in terms of providing feedback. In being assigned a coach, ask questions, and make sure you end up with somebody you feel comfortable with and that has the knowledge and experience to take you where you need to go. 

A good coach holds you accountable 

It is something new and often initially uncomfortable for many shop owners, but a good coach should provide accountability. A coach should help his or her clients set goals and benchmarks and provide feedback on progress, not just celebrating our successes but highlighting and providing insight into our failures as well, not as a bludgeon but a relentless focus on success. This helps to ensure that the coaching relationship is productive and that the business is making progress. And don’t forget that the coach is as accountable as the shop owner is. Accountability makes all of us responsible for success. Our success as a shop owner is our coach’s success. He or she is accountable for that. 

As a shop owner, it can be challenging to step back and view our business objectively. A coach can provide an outside perspective that is free from the biases and preconceptions that can often cloud our judgment. This can help us to identify areas for improvement and make changes that will benefit our business in the long run. By setting goals and benchmarks, we can stay on track and measure our progress. 

A coach can develop and provide us with a customized solution and plan that is tailored to our unique business needs. Whether we are looking to improve customer service, streamline our operations, develop a succession plan, or increase profitability, a coach can help us to identify the specific areas that need attention and develop a plan for our success. 

A coach can assist with training and development resources

Another important benefit is access to training and development resources. A coaching company can provide training on the latest industry trends and techniques, helping us develop the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed. And don’t forget about the networking opportunities. On the other side of the development and training are extraordinary networking opportunities with other clients, just like you, folks who are on a journey very similar to yours. Any journey is less difficult if you have somebody to share it with. And who knows? You might just learn something important along the way. Your coach can show you the paths and make those introductions. 

You also need to remember that success does not come with simply knowing what is right or wrong. If it were what we knew, most of us would have it licked by now. Clearly knowing the path and walking the path are two quite different things. A good coach will keep you on the right path.  

It is not as simple as a coach + curriculum + networking = shop success, but it is not a bad place to start and covers a lot of the bases. A good coach and quality coaching company might be worth your time and consideration. It’s not cheap, but it’s usually well worth the investment. 

Put me in, Coach! 

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