My Momma Lied to Me

19 years old, walking down Huron Street in Ann Arbor, Michigan, 2,100 miles from home, I watched the wad of chewing gum I had just spit out arc into the street; and realized that my momma had lied to me.  As a littler shaver she told me "always spit your gum into the street to

Throw in a Bag of Doritos and You’ve Got a Deal

 When our oldest son was about three, my wife and I told him we would paint his room any color he wanted.  His top two choices were a medium blue and yellow.  Not just any yellow, but yellow like Play-Doh yellow.  He settled on the yellow.  Frankly, I couldn’t imagine that any of us would

Blonde with 9 Inch Spikes

  It’s not what you think . . . this is about customer retention.  My mom was recently telling my kids that my kindergarten teacher expressed concern about me because I was always playing with the girls.  Here's my side of the story.  There were two distinct play areas in the kindergarten room: the boys’

I Crossed the Finish Line Alone

  Every race has its winner and a whole bunch of everyone else.  Whose story do we usually hear?  I participated in a 5K this weekend.  I didn’t finish in the middle.  And I didn’t come in 1st either.  I was dead last – but maybe there’s a story in that anyway. First, the event

Bundle Up

  About 35% of policy owners shop their car insurance in a given year.  Less than half will actually switch.  That puts customer retention in the mid 80% range.   When an insurance agent also writes a second line of coverage (home owners, renters, etc.), his client retention improves by about 10%.  When the client also

Only You Can Prevent Preventive Maintenance

The fire had gone from a spark to nearly a thousand acres in less than 3 hours. There had been no measurable precipitation for over a month, it was nearly 100 degrees and the wind was blowing – and there were all these people telling me that they thought the fire would burn the other way. Do we live in the same reality? Sometimes we all need a little help seeing reality – especially when it comes to auto service and maintenance.

Home of the Brave

  When my Dad was about the age of my youngest, he was homeless, walking down the middle of a city street, the buildings on both sides burning so fiercely that the asphalt was melted, sticking to his shoes and those of his parents and younger brothers.  Bodies were piled on the sides of the

How Much for Your Business?

  My friend who owns a 6-bay shop was telling me that business is great.  While he is always keeping his eye on improving the bottom line, he said that the only way they could service more vehicles would be to add additional bays.  Consequently, in all the years I took my cars to him,

Virtual Reality in the Auto Shop

We’re always seeking feedback from our customers and they respond very positively.  Over the years we’ve incorporated suggestions for new service topics for our video library.  We’ve also gotten a lot of suggestions along the lines of “things I wish my customers knew”: things like how challenging and, yes, difficult it can be to diagnose