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There’s an old saying that goes, “Growth and comfort can’t coexist.” In an ever-evolving industry like this one, shop owners and their staff understand this phrase as much as anyone. But in the end, oftentimes it turns out that the greater the challenge at hand, the greater the reward that will come from it. And it never hurts to get some help along the way.

On today’s episode of Digital Shop Talk Radio, we have Adam Bendzick (Pro Service Automotive Repair, Prior Lake, MN), a shop owner who started his business by risking everything he owned to get his shop off the ground. Through lots of hard work and by learning from his peers and The Digital Shop professionals at AutoVitals, Adam turned his shop into a multi-million dollar operation, hitting goals he never thought possible. Tune in to see how Adam did it and some words to the wise for those considering getting started.

Episode Transcript

*This transcript was generated using Artificial Intelligence. Errors may occur. If you notice an error, please contact [email protected].

Tom Dorsey (00:00):
Good morning and good afternoon. Welcome to this week’s edition of The Digital Shop Talk Radio. I’m Tom Dorsey. I’ve got our co-founder and my co-host, Uwe Kleinschmidt joining me today. As you can tell, we’re practicing social distancing. Normally we sit much closer than this. And today we’ve got a great guest on Adam Bendzick from Pro Service Automotive. Welcome back, Adam. Great to have you on.
Adam Bendzick (00:23):
Hey, great to be here. I appreciate you guys inviting me back.
Tom Dorsey (00:27):
Yeah, buddy. Yeah, and we’ve had Adam on, it’s probably been about a year, and in that time Adam has experienced some phenomenal growth. You might remember the show he was on with John Long and Christopher Peterson. We were talking about specialization of roles and we were talking about efficiency at the counter and in your process and some other things. And well about a year on Adam has applied those principles in his business. And we’re going to talk about some results today and how actually you’re managing that phenomenal growth. What’s that last year been for you?
Adam Bendzick (01:03):
The last year has been phenomenal. It’s been our best year in business. We just eclipsed the $2 million sales mark, which is the first time ever. It’s special thanks to the staff and the processes and the different vendors such as AutoVitals that we’ve been working with. And that growth is all those tools, so to speak, put together.
Tom Dorsey (01:25):
No, that’s fantastic. And so what would you say is last year you were kind of formulating the plan and you were really thinking outside of the box, I think in how you’d been running the business before and how your process had gone. There’s a lot of hurdles to overcome there, right? You’ve re-factor the thinking of the technicians in the front counter and the staff buy into that plan. Then of course you have to implement the process and it better pay off because then you got a whole bunch of, oh yeah, well we told you so’s in the back and that can impact your process and your progression. How did you get that plan, kind of buy in from the staff and then get the muscle memory developed to get the results that you’ve achieved?
Adam Bendzick (02:19):
Right now we have a great shop culture going where I think we can change those things and people adapt to ’em and such, but it’s not always like that. It’s not always been like that for us. Some people are resistant to change. Some people will go into it and embrace it. And I think once you find the right team, it’s all those people that will embrace that change. You’re always going to get the grumbles initially for sure of, gosh, I’m using this tablet or I’m doing this, or I’m just so used to using this tool and this way of going about doing things. But what you end up seeing is you see that 523,000 drop to 518, God, we invested this money in the ATI, why are we not seeing an initial improvement? God, I want to see this right away. I want to see that buck come right away.
I want to see my sales skyrocket. I want to hit $2 million that next year because God, I spend 40 50 grand with ATR or whatever it was. Why am I not seeing this right away? But it’s a change and it’s like one step backward to take two steps forward. Like it’s so cliche, but it is so true. And that’s one of the things found the biggest thing. So we went from 2012 to 2013, went to 588,000 and that was a $70,000 bump. And along the way there wasn’t always these big a 100, 200, 300, $400,000 jumps. There’s little victories along the way, but I think it’s important to celebrate all those achievements no matter how big or small they are. I can remember back when we first started the business back in 2002, I was straight out of high school. I started this business with a 3,500 truck loan kind of deal.
I was going to school for business management accounting. That’s what my degree is in. And I remember working Domino’s after at Domino’s Pizza delivering pizza from five o’clock till midnight, one o’clock in the morning to just pay for that truck loan and then coming back at seven, eight o’clock in the morning to then work at the shop and then go to classes in the afternoon and repeating this cycle. And it just really is like you bust your butt, you’re going to get something for it. And I’ve always had this commitment to just be the best person and put the best foot forward, so to speak. So along that way, as you grow that business, I can remember being just completely tickled that we hit $18,000 in sales one month. Now I think about that and I’m like, God, if we don’t do that in two or three days, it just really is like you think about that improvement and where we were and where we came from and to literally think that this shop probably shouldn’t have succeeded, I probably should have not been able to make through.
I mean that 3,500 bucks, $2,500, it went to our first month’s rent payment down payment to get the ball rolling. We have a thousand dollars a capital to work with. And I don’t say those things that give myself a pat on the back or anything like that, or the staff that’s around me, my wife, her involvement and the belief that she’s had in myself and the huge piece of the puzzle that she’s brought to it or Nick or any of other staff members. We don’t do that. We don’t bring this stuff up to give ourselves a pat on the back. It’s more or less to say if you’re a shop that’s struggling and you’re having tough times and you don’t think there’s a light at the end of the tunnel, keep pushing forward. It is right there. You just got to focus on it and think that you’re the best person and there isn’t a better shop out there and just have that mindset. This is an obsession is what it’s, and I’ve become obsessed with the business point.
Tom Dorsey (05:55):
It’s a duty duty to that business and to those folks and families that depend on your business, both your employees and your customers, it’s a duty. And so it is, yeah. Hey, the expectation is that you do it. You’re in it to win it and that you are successful and it isn’t bragging it. And especially when you’re able to take some things that have been traditional in the way that we do business and change those up and have success to show other folks how to do it because then we grow as an industry. And this guy right here, I got to tell you, I mean talk about inspiration is ever since that episode that we did last year, a lot of the things that came out of that episode, I’ll tell you what, have made it into our product, have made it into our messaging. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve talked about in front of groups or on the show about things like the Amazon rule and specialization of roles and these concepts that we’re really looking to incorporate into our product solution. I’m sure you’ve got some insights on
Uwe Kleinschmidt (07:01):
Sure, yeah, no, I was very, very inspired by that. It was episode 10, I know it for a fact.
Tom Dorsey (07:10):
50 episodes. Yeah, that was right.
Uwe Kleinschmidt (07:14):
And so what you mentioned what Christopher and John mentioned, those little jewels easily overheard, but when you really think about it, they’re really important. Whether it’s to hit the bus test John brought up or when you talked about specialization, my question though is I want to go back to what you said. In other words, it has to get worse before it gets better. Running a small business, you cannot afford a lot of getting worse. So when do you pull the plug or how do you measure? We are still in good shape. I have faith and enough data to show me we’re going to be over the hump soon. Right. Which reminds me of our current situation we’re in. We are watching all the numbers and are waiting for the uptake because we know it’s coming. Yeah, right. So how did you deal with that?
Adam Bendzick (08:22):
A lot of it is a belief in the process. We make mistakes along the way and such, but I’m always going to bet on myself when it comes to making a change. If I feel strongly about something, whether it’s right or wrong, I want to see it through. Sometimes that’s a week, that might be a month, that might be a year before you make that change. But with the ATI program, initially we had our coach that was meeting with me weekly and I resisted his suggestions a lot just because I’m like, God, I’m doing well. We’re seeing the business grow and I am just bullheaded in a lot of ways and knows this firsthand with some of the things that he’s made suggestions on that I resisted initially, but then fully embraced once we make that change. But nonetheless, it’s a lot of that stuff is really listening to people that have had success and taking their suggestions and what works for them and trying to implement those things because if they’ve had success with it and then I stay motivated and I stick to it, I hopefully will have success too. And my variation of that change may be a little different than theirs after it’s all said and done, but nonetheless, it’s staying motivated with it. So to answer your question, it’s not really like there isn’t an easy way to say a timeframe wise.
A lot of it is seeing how your techs respond to it. Can you give them a tablet and then in a week say, alright, I want to do what I’d call a half-ass digital inspection today. Initially you got to get ’em into it and then see do your customers respond to it? Do they engage it? Do you see them looking at these inspections and getting good positive feedback? And then if so, now try to get things like give every step along the way when you make a change. If it’s a change that the techs are initially going to resist, give them something positive to look at too and maybe focus on the positive. So if you are trying to get ’em to do a digital inspection, try to make it so that you have maybe a little extra flat rate time adjusting to something new and then they embrace it or find a way that, okay, this inspection, although it’s different than what you were before, look how everything is laid out.
I’m actually putting that old paper inspection. Everything was all over the place. Now this digital inspection has everything laid out in terms of how you get out of the car and those types of things. And I think if you get certain positives in it, then they’re going to embrace that change a little bit better, I guess you could say. So not a great answer to your question in terms of a timeframe or whatever, but it’s just a belief in the process that you’re trying to change, allowing it enough time to change and then seeing results. Tracking car counts. If you’re advertising a certain thing in a special and everything like that, how did your car counts change? How did your average repair order change? Did you see a positive result? If you didn’t see a positive result, probably throw that idea out the window. But if you saw a positive result, now how can I elaborate on that positive and make it better and better and better? So hopefully that adds a little insight into answering that question, I guess.
Tom Dorsey (11:46):
And so I would think that it probably starts at commitment, right? Is that if you’re going to go through the pain you have believe that there’s going to be the payoff at the end and so that you stay in the saddle because if you don’t, then you’re likely to give up,
Uwe Kleinschmidt (12:02):
Right? No, there is definitely commitment, but as Adam pointed out, you see a drop in something, whether it’s ARO or technician productivity. So your commitment doesn’t pay the bill in the, but if it’s not there, then you give up early, right? So you have to have commitment.
Tom Dorsey (12:26):
And that doesn’t pay bills
Uwe Kleinschmidt (12:27):
Either. That doesn’t pay bills either. That’s correct.
Tom Dorsey (12:30):
And rob you from paying bills.
Uwe Kleinschmidt (12:33):
And so there’s this fine line when you still believe in yourself and in your team. And I was just wondering whether you can share with the audience beyond what you already shared, what are those sensors which trigger, okay, you said it already, it didn’t work, so let’s try something else.
Adam Bendzick (12:57):
Yeah, so let’s take one example would be like we just talked about the service Pfizer production manager role and how I could see that being an improvement as opposed to what we did before. So on Protractor, and a lot of the same stuff is on the business control panels for AutoVitals and everything like that. So it’s just a matter of how you want to track that data. What you guys have is great. I have some great alerts set up with emails and text messages that come out to me. So it’s nice to have that feedback there. That’s a great way of monitoring things. We also have Protractors dashboard showing different conversion percentages and stuff like that that we use there. So I use both those tools to monitor everything in terms of that service advisor, production manager role. And the production manager asked many jobs and the service advisor hand in the customer side of things.
What I looked at before was how was our conversion percentages, how was our ARO, how was our GP percentage and everything like that, how were they before? And then how are they after with the change? And the biggest things that I saw was the system of accountability and that there’s two people working with every ticket as opposed to just one gave that accountability to say, okay, don’t let yourself slack and not estimate everything off of inspection. Give the customer every dollar amount. And then what we ended up seeing was the possible, the total dollar amount that was available to sell to the customer. I don’t have the exact numbers in front of me, but maybe it was $1,500 before we did the service advisor production manager role. Now let’s say it’s three grand and our technicians are checking these things out and they’re coming out with $3,000 of work on average for every ticket.
It’s probably not that high, but let’s just say it is. If we were before only estimating 1500 of it, we kind of kept ourself as far as what we could sell. So I want to see that we bid out $3,000 of the work and now you see that improvement. And what ended up seeing was we had 75% conversion rates, 80% conversion rates before the service advisor, production manager role. Now they’re 50%. And I’m like, God, that’s actually a loss. We’re converting less sales. No, we aren’t. We’re estimating everything. And so you see those changes or whatever. And what some people might see as a negative I see as a positive because you got to look at the whole picture. It doesn’t mean that our guys are doing a bad job. I think 50% conversion rates is a great rate. If you’re estimating everything, it’s, it’s phenomenal.
If you’re estimating everything, if you’re estimating the things and you’re converting 50% of it, now it’s only 25% and now it’s maybe not so good. So all those processes, whatever you have to implement, whatever you implement, you have to see it through. And then you have to make it trackable in some type of way, shape, or form. And that’s one key example of why I like this setup as opposed to other ones is the accountability factor. Our guys are great. They don’t need somebody micromanaging them or anything like that, but in some ways it may be that they were overwhelmed with the entire process and needed help to keep themselves on track. So that’s a great example, I guess you could say that an improvement that we saw.
Tom Dorsey (16:08):
Yeah, that’s awesome. And that’s why that business control panel is such a powerful tool because it allows you to see that insight as you say, oh my gosh, my conversions are tanking. I’m in big trouble. Wait, my revenue’s going up. And you can look at those two KPIs side by side and get that type of insight that says, I’m going the right direction, lemme crank the throttle up and do more of it.
Adam Bendzick (16:30):
And then John, long circling back to his hit by bus test rule that Uwe had mentioned, the feedback that you get from your staff members, even if you don’t see the numbers, I go and be like, Hey, how’s it going today? They’re going to let you know if something isn’t working or there might be that initial grumble. And you got to see whether that’s an initial grumble because something’s changed or whether it’s actually like, Hey, this isn’t working. We need to change back or go a different direction. So that hit by bus rule is a perfect example of now I go to John and Nick at our shop or John at our shop and I talked to ’em and how’s things going? How are you liking it? This and that. And they’re like, you know what? I feel really good about it because now I don’t know everything about half the vehicles that are in our shop now.
I know pretty much everything that’s going on with every vehicle in the shop. So if I get a call or John’s in the bathroom or he needs to go grab lunch or something like that, I can answer it for him. It might not be my specific role to handle the customer end of it. I’m kind of the estimated production manager type role, but I know what’s going on with that vehicle and I can take a look at it and I can tell him constantly what’s going on with it. And the same thing for John is maybe Nick’s handling the when’s this vehicle going to be done kind of thing and handling that workflow and such. But he can look at the schedule, he knows what’s going on in the vehicle. He’s the one that talked to the customer, and he can give a better idea of how that vehicle’s looking in terms of everybody’s as opposed to just the customers that he’s working with. So I think our customer experience and service is better because of it too.
Tom Dorsey (18:01):
Yeah, much better. And there’s much more ownership, I would say internally because it’s not just the information that you have in front of you, but now you have more understanding of things that you can’t ignore or that you should make sure that are being managed and it creates a better teamwork. And like you said, ultimately a much better customer service experience, which leads to better retention and then the air go, the numbers that you’re seeing skyrocketing in your business. That’s fantastic. For sure. Real quick, I want to give a quick plug. We’re going to have you involved in our, so for folks that are listening and that want to get really the details, we don’t have enough time to cover it in this 30 minutes, but next Wednesday starting at eight in the morning Pacific time, we’re having a digital shop online summit and Adam’s going to be participating in there and where he’s going to be given kind of the how tos with what happens that we’re hearing about today.
So you can get over and register for that. It’s going to be an all day, it’s going what, eight to three next Wednesday? So it’s going to be kind like the radio show format, but it’s going to be a complete online, like a trade show actually. But we on a replicate a trade show, we’ve had so many of these industry events canceling over the last couple of weeks, the ATI super conference and NAPA Expo and just all of Meineke, MDA canceled. And so we want to do AutoVitals, likes to innovate and show leadership in the industry and we wanted to get on the line and give a trade show experience. Now we can’t get you cheap beer and golf tee times with your buddies and along the lines waiting to get on a plane somewhere. But the educational stuff that we want to bring to you breakouts, we’ve got a great lineup you can go to, what is it? Online
Dustin Anaas (20:07):
Summit. Online summit Tom,
Tom Dorsey (20:11):
And get registered and Adam’s going to be given a breakout. We’ve got Kim Hickey, we’ve got Doug Bracket. Scott Thorley from AMS is coming and it’s going to be fantastic. And so it’s an opportunity for you to still get some of that educational experience, but do it from the safety of your coronavirus free bunker, wherever you might be holed up and still get some of this information out. So tell us a little bit, Adam, about what you’re going to be doing for us next Wednesday.
Adam Bendzick (20:48):
So Dustin just mentioned that to me this morning as far what I think we’re going to be doing, if I’m not mistaken, is kind of talking about workflow and different things like that and what’s worked for us and what hasn’t. Is that correct as far as where we’re going to be moving forward with our end of it? I think
Uwe Kleinschmidt (21:06):
So let me chime in because I think we are hiding still. One of the biggest surprises for me at least when I talk to you, Adam, so if we go back to the numbers, your 600,000 revenue was achieved with four employees, if I’m not mistaken.
Adam Bendzick (21:28):
That’s correct. Yep.
Uwe Kleinschmidt (21:29):
Your 2 million are achieved with seven or eight, is that correct?
Adam Bendzick (21:34):
Eight, yeah. Yep. Actually eight includes my mom, who is the paint?
Uwe Kleinschmidt (21:41):
So let’s seven. Yes, everybody counts. So now everybody can do the math. 600,000 with four people, 2 million with twice as many, right? With seven, not even twice. That is three times more revenue. In other words, you have increased your revenue by employee by a hundred thousand dollars a year. I mean I had to do the math twice because the number was so high. You didn’t believe it. I didn’t believe it. This is an incredible achievement and if you don’t mind sharing how you did that next week, that’s probably going to get a lot of people listening. Yeah, that’s what I was going for. Yeah,
Adam Bendzick (22:36):
I’m totally going on for that. So yeah, as far as that goes, we’ll go more into conversation. It’s great. I really enjoy coming on the show. Eventually you think about helping train or educate and this and that. I’m 36 years old. I’m in a position of there’s growth beyond this that we envision for a company, but at the same time, I really enjoy coming on here, talking to you guys. Then I know that hopefully I’m helping make a difference in terms of other shops, even if it’s just shedding a light on that. God, look what we went from to where we are now. That would be the ultimate pat on the back that I’d ever have as somebody saying, God, I was listening to that webinar episode 60 or on episode 10 and I took a couple things from here and there and I implemented that into my shop.
Whether you sent me a private message or whether you heard it on the webinar, anything like that here to help, I wouldn’t be where we are today without that help of ATI. Without that help of AutoVitals. Even just at vision last, whatever it was a week and a half ago or two weeks ago that we’re at it. I went to ATI bootcamp in that 2012 and I took down pages and pages and pages and pages and pages of notes. I can’t emphasize how many pages of notes I took and I came back, I’m like, this is what we got to do. I can’t implement all this stuff all at once, but I still have those pages of notes. There is my this little guy
Tom Dorsey (24:17):
Chub secret, that’s
Adam Bendzick (24:18):
The Bible. This is my Bible. Legitimately, there is many things on here. We weren’t charging shop supplies before. There’s a parts margin matrix legitimately. I have this sitting next to my desk every single day because all my notes from that bootcamp and then the charts and different things that they have, I reference it back. And then I went to that vision conference and the same speaker, Matt Winslow, he was the speaker at the bootcamp that I went to eight years ago. That’s awesome. He was the speaker at the vision conference. He touched base on everything. And I’m going back there and I’m sitting back in my chair and I’m like, oh yeah, I do that, I do that, I do that. And you kind of develop this cockiness kind of thing. And it’s not meant to be cocky, it’s just a matter of look at what I’ve retained over the years.
This is eight years later. I didn’t dismiss anything that they suggested. I was resistant to it right away, but I took a pile of notes and then over the course of the eight years made changes on top of that stuff. I literally still have the book. I know where I came from. I mean as far as this goes back when we’re doing $300,000 in sales, $500,000 in sales, my vision has not changed whatsoever. It is full steam ahead just as much as it was back then. And if I ever get down about myself or anything like that, you always got that perspective of look where you were and look what you achieved and just keep on focus on that end of it. And just so as far as these webinars that are coming up next week, I encourage and hope that people really watch, they get their pens and pencils out.
They get their think like a CEO book out or whatever it might be, and really pay attention to it. Guys like Frank, guys like John, guys like you guys, Uwe Tom. I mean, I can’t emphasize enough paying attention to it. Yeah, maybe you won’t agree with everything that’s said, but still take it in stride and really pay attention to it. See how it might help your shop out. Because if there was anything that I could change over the years would be to not resist so much in the beginning of any new change is really fully embrace it and go for it and believe in yourself.
Tom Dorsey (26:34):
Yeah. What happens, right is that with ATI, there was a track record, there was folks out there that had benefited and you said to yourself, Hey, if they can do it, I can do it. And then you get into it and you’re like, well gosh, I don’t know. What did I get myself into here? And you find a path, but that’s what I was saying earlier. If you stay committed and you have that belief and that end goal, and then it’s just work your plan and you’re eight years in starting to reap a lot of the benefits of the seeds you planted back then and now you’ve got healthy soil and you got straight rows and you’re ready to continue to grow into the future and continue to harvest that work that you put in. And what we want to see is either a new chapter into that ATI Bible or the digital shop Bible right next to it. Because really that is the marriage that’s moving us into the future is that a lot of those basic fundamental, like you said, shop supplies and aren’t managing your matrix correctly and all of that foundational stuff that ATI establishes now, it’s being adapted into the digital age through the work that we’re doing and really the work that you’re doing, putting our solution to the test and giving us the feedback that help us to make it right.
Adam Bendzick (27:56):
Yeah, without a doubt. Yeah, it’s been great to be involved in AutoVitals when it was first starting out and then having, I mean, I don’t know that Uwe and I have always had the best relationship in terms of what we put out there on Facebook and some of the conversations back and forth. And now I feel we have a great relationship and everything like that. That’s not to give the wrong impression whatsoever, but as far as when it comes down to it, we really challenged each other in terms of like, no, I think it should be this way. And then Uwe’s like, no, I think it should be this way. And I mean if you could see our private messages that we had amongst each other, you would think we’re probably having this big blown out argument and this and that. And it is what it is.
It just comes down to the passion that he has for the industry and the company is the same passion that I have for the industry and the company and we’re both obsessed in making ourselves better, but in a lot of that is we can only make ourselves better if we have a trust in each other that we both have the best interest of the industry in mind. So that’s one thing for any of the new shops or even the shops that have been there for a long time, is really thinking about who you’re partnering yourself up with and do you have accessibility to basically the founder and the owner of the company? Will they listen to your messages or will they not care? And I’ve prided myself on anybody that walks to the door that wants to talk to me as far as a customer or anything like that.
Yeah, come on in. I will handle you just like I would if I was a service advisor or just like I would as a tech or if I was cleaning toilets and stuff back there. I don’t care what I’m doing. It’s just like this obsession for being the best that we can. And I really appreciate that in terms of AutoVitals and the growth that you guys have had and why we’ve aligned ourselves up with your company is because I feel like that same goal or mindset is there as well, is that I’ll do whatever it might be. It might be two o’clock in the morning and got ’em getting a text from Adam and what the hell does he want? Kind of thing. But I’m going to respond to it because that’s the passion I have for the industry. And so some of my best thoughts that I have in terms of business wise and goals and changes and everything like that will be at one o’clock in the morning.
I can’t go to sleep and I’m like, I got to hop on the computer, look at a number or this and that before I can go to bed. So obsessed with it or I got to email myself, remember to do that tomorrow. And I think that why I have an appreciation for what you guys do is it was the same way. You remember the first time we signed up with automobile, we’re talking until 11, 11 30 at night my time because you guys committed to say, Hey, this is potentially a good customer. I think I want to bring them on board. And we felt the same way. So what I hope everybody does next week is really look at the people that are on that panel and the success that they’ve had, really take notes, pay attention and not try to implement everything right away, but make your think like a CEO book and maybe it’d take you eight years to get to that point but still try to progress on things.
Tom Dorsey (31:10):
I couldn’t have said it better. And that’s exactly the thing that we want the takeaway to be is that it’s a serious, it’s about coming in and opening your mind to these different concepts and to allowing somebody who’s been through the fire and has figured it out and has had the success and it’s really just replicate, learn from them and replicate it in your own business and take that chance. Take that leap and you can, again, you can always just monitor that through the data, right, through the business control panel. And if it isn’t working for you, get on that Facebook forum, reach out to folks like Adam and the entire community inside of AutoVitals solution users, and you’re going to get answers. You might not like the answers. And it’s similar to what happened with ATI, right? Is you might be like, wow, these guys nuts or what, but you know what?
You just got to try it and you got to commit to it and you got to, I always like to say give it a pay period because your techs are going to know one way or the other, give it a pay period and see those quick wins and take advantage of those benefits. And as a matter of fact, for folks that are thinking, gosh, we’re worried about what’s happening over the next couple of weeks or months because of the coronavirus and all this stuff that’s happening, how’s it going to impact our business? We’re going to come together and we’re going to talk about experiences across the country from folks and what’s happening there and some great ideas to help us weather that. I mean, we’re American small business owners. I mean we adapt and overcome. We don’t run and we don’t hide. Matter of fact, when we get lemons, we make lemonade. And so some of the ideas that we’ll probably be discussing on our panel discussion are things like promo ideas to keep those bays full similar to what the supermarket’s doing. Maybe one free roll of toilet paper for every oil change or promo your HEPA cabin air filters, right? Screens out. 99.9% of all coronavirus get yours today. Those kind of outside of the box thinking is what’s going to help us get through this scare.
Adam Bendzick (33:23):
I wanted to do that promo of the one free toilet paper for an oil change kind of thing, but then my wife kicked it to the curb. She’s like, it’s too touchy of a subject right now.
Tom Dorsey (33:32):
It’s too early. It’s too early. But you never know, right? If they’re lining up around the Ralph’s over here and around the Costco, we can’t even get in the parking lot point they anyway, so what are you going to do?
Adam Bendzick (33:44):
Yeah. To your point though about the scare and everything like that that’s going on right now is think about it as a positive way. This is a way to take maybe that one step backward to take two steps forward if it means a webinar that you watched on AutoVitals with digital shop talk radio or it means you started going on YouTube or you started researching different things about the automotive industry, there is a ton of knowledge out there. It’s just a matter of whether you choose to sit back and think, oh my God, my business is going to go under because of this. Or you think maybe this is that $523,000 to $518,000 hiccup kind of thing because we’ve got coronavirus going on there and then you turn that into a next year’s success story kind of thing. So just try to see the silver lining and everything, and maybe this is a great way to say, God, we were busy as hell last year.
We did $2 million. I almost want to slow down and think about, all right, what can bring us to 2.5? What can bring us to three if I don’t have the opportunity because of this stuff going on and maybe we shut down for two weeks. I can tell you my mind is going to be racing with ideas to improve things once we come back stronger than ever. And so that’s just going to be my mindset going into it is that we’re going to try to make the best of it and we’re going to get through it and hopefully everybody else has that same mindset and we just don’t focus on the hitting the panic button. We focus on making things better.
Tom Dorsey (35:18):
Now, that’s probably the best advice I’ve heard in a long time, right? Is don’t spend your time reading about this virus. What are you going to be a virologist or something? Spend your time learning about workflow management and specialization of roles and some of these concepts that Adam and John and AutoVitals shops across the country leading the way in proving, learn those concepts. And then you tie the knot next Wednesday in the digital shop online summit.
Adam Bendzick (35:49):
You know how many hours I’ve spent adjusting our inspection sheet to make that thing the best it could be
Two to three minutes. You know how many hours I’ve tied things to can jobs and everything like that. I couldn’t even tell you how much time I spent with that. If we have to shut down business for two weeks, this is a great opportunity to do. So. This is our sixth episode, right? Each one of those episodes is 30 to 45 minutes. Mine usually go longer. I ramble on forever, but nonetheless, those are 30 or 45 minutes. How much information can you gather if we’re shut down for two weeks? Watch every one of those fricking episodes. There you go. Spend your time and just don’t focus on all the negative. Grab your notepad and go to work. And hopefully maybe your staff does the same thing. Maybe you can encourage them to do the same things. Just because we’re at home doesn’t mean our mind stops working.
Dustin Anaas (36:45):
Hey, and you know what, Adam? I’m going to make a quick plug here on that too. Go to and you can actually stream the episodes. You can watch ’em or you can listen to ’em. So if you’re editing your inspection sheet and you want to get some inspiration while you’re doing it, pop on an episode of the podcast and listen to guys like Adam and stuff like that while you’re doing your computer work or while you’re doing other things, while you’re cleaning your house. You know what I mean? Reorganizing your tools. Just get the information flowing and then get the good stuff moving
Tom Dorsey (37:16):
Yeah, thanks Dustin. And you can subscribe on there also, and then you’ll get notifications and reminders when the show’s about to start so you don’t miss anything. Like our compelling intro we had today where we were just sitting there with a blank look on because a little light didn’t light up for us. So you can just ignore that part.
Adam Bendzick (37:33):
Tom Dorsey (37:34):
Well, it was awesome,
Adam Bendzick (37:35):
Man. No, it’s been fun. I appreciate you guys your time and inviting me back on.
Tom Dorsey (37:38):
Yeah, no, thank you. That was awesome to have you on and looking forward to talking with you next Wednesday. And like Dustin said, everybody get out there and register summit. The full list of all the presenters are on there. If I forgot I didn’t mention anybody, Fred Gestwicki, Frank Scandura, we’ll catch you next Wednesday, so different time starting at 8:00 AM Until then, get out there and register, learn about what’s upcoming, prepare yourself, get ready for that digital shop online summit and we’ll talk to you next Wednesday. Until then, get out and make some more money.
Adam Bendzick (38:18):
Real quick, Tom, if I could.
Tom Dorsey (38:20):
Sure, of course.
Adam Bendzick (38:22):
About the panic button, everything like that. This is a quick, maybe plug fraud, vitals or whatever, but same thing as we did is the last couple of weeks, we generally average show out the year 90 to a hundred cars per week. The last couple of weeks it’s been 55 to 60, so almost half as little. We went and ran a campaign, AutoVitals campaign, and I would say we had 120 cars this week. So there is like that. Okay, let’s weather the storm, let’s get through the crap and everything like that. And if you need that emergency car count thing before those campaigns, I didn’t have a button that I could press like that emergency car count thing. If you ran the right campaign and everything, you can boost your car count right back up just in the click of a button. So just don’t panic over it. We’re going to get through this thing and as soon as we’re done, use the tools that you have. Great resources.
Tom Dorsey (39:12):
Yeah, no, that’s a great point. Really what Adam’s saying is if you don’t have AutoVitals retention, what’s wrong with you? And if you do have it and you don’t have your campaign set up to where they’re delivering twice your car count with a click of a button, then talk to your advisor. Actually, let’s take it on the Facebook forum because you can ask questions about that and get examples of how folks are running their campaigns and promoting. Like I said, roll the toilet paper for an oil change. I mean, hey, that’s a pretty solid deal nowadays, but you can get on the Facebook form there and hash it out. Folks are going to give you what they’re doing and how it’s working just like that. And maybe you post up your success also on there and help other folks learn it. And we’ll get you on this show and we’ll make fun of you for a half an hour. You’re awesome, Adam. I appreciate it, man. We’ll talk to you next Wednesday.
Adam Bendzick (40:01):
Thank you. Thank you guys too. Have a good one.

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