Over the years I've seen many dealerships terminate employees for various reasons. Most states today, state in their labor law claim, they are a right to work state. Interesting part about that is this means you really don't have to have a cause to terminate someone's employment at your dealership. Let's look at this in more detail, together we will analyze these terminations.
It will motivate the team
Some dealers and general managers believe firing somebody regularity motivates the team to perform at their best levels. Nothing could be further from the truth! This actually runs the entire team's quality of life into the ground, and causes unnecessary turnover in a dealership.
These are the dealerships that are always introducing another advisor with the customer asking what happened to Dan?; Or they make the comment "I don't know who anyone is anymore." Stability in your dealership personnel is important to have your dealership maintain consistent growth.
They don't perform our process
Managers have explained to me that this team member isn't performing the processes and needs to be terminated. In many of the examples I was given, the employees that are not performing the processes weren't even explained in detail the way the dealership wanted it done. No training was provided to show the employee how to do the right process. No coaching was performed writing out exactly what the employee needed to do to stay working at the dealership.
Somehow, management believes switching employees is the productive way to get the process implemented that they desire. The reality is the new employee won't know the expectations of the dealership either, and will become the next failure when they don't perform appropriately.
Some people are found to have integrity issues in their employment at the dealership. Most dealerships will terminate these individuals immediately without mercy.
I have seen a few examples where the dealership confronted the individual and retained them as employees successfully. These examples are very few and my belief is the best practice is to remove these individuals from the dealership. The primary reason is removal is best practice because other staff members see that action as justification for them to steal as well.
Coach the team
Most employees will implement changes requested by management with the right coaching. We must explain why the process makes sense for the dealership, and discuss why the employee is not meeting your expectation. Coaching for improvement is far better than termination in over 80% of individuals working for dealerships.
Challenge yourself to look at your coaching techniques as an area of opportunity for improvement. Listen to what your staff says without retribution, even when they disagree with the existing process. Challenge them to offer an alternative to the way you're doing business and how it would benefit the customers, the staff, and the dealership. Keep an open mind and encourage input from everybody!
Rob Gehring, President
Fixed Performance Inc.
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Rob is President and Founder of Fixed Performance Inc. which he began over 15 years ago. His passion for customer care and helping others has assisted hundreds of dealerships with their fixed operations performance. His common sense coaching and training lifts people up as individuals and team members. With over 30 years of dealership management experience, he understands and respects the daily challenges of fixed operations. Placing a strong value in people and best practice processes always provide growth. His articles have been published regularly in national publications and weekly newsletters are read by thousands.