Wouldn't it be fantastic if your dealership had a team of employees who were dedicated to the business, and genuinely tried to go the extra mile in each situation with every customer?
It's easy to come up with excuses as to why it's impossible to build the dream team: there's a shortage of qualified candidates in your market, you can't pay your employees enough, the general work ethic isn't what it used to be, etc. Most of these excuses are coping mechanisms that allow managers to feel better about the situation because they believe that it's outside of their control. In order to take control and build a dream team for your dealership, you have to have thick skin and be prepared to hold yourself accountable.
As a manager, you hold the keys to creating your dream team. Whether you realize it or not, actively and passively you are constantly building up or tearing down your team. When you look at it this way, it becomes abundantly clear that as a manager, your behavior matters. Let's look at two common real-world examples: Active vs. Passive
|* Let people do their jobs
As you can see from these examples, both active and passive behavior can help or hurt your staff, and ultimately your business. The key is to choose the right course of action for the situation.
Now, let's examine some scenarios and think about how your actions could help or hurt your business in these situations.
Scenario #1: You have an employee who is (pick as many as apply):
- Habitually late for work
-Using their personal phone during working hours
-Creating drama within the workplace
What would you do? Would you choose an active or passive response? One of the biggest reasons why great employees quit is that management often ignores unacceptable behavior in other employees. It's easy to see how these negative actions could affect the entire team. Other team members may have to work harder to make up for the person who is not pulling his or her weight. Or, even worse, team members may conclude that this type of behavior is acceptable and before you know it, the bad behavior and habits have spread like the flu.
Habitual poor behavior demands an active response, but effective managers know they must use the right sort of action. Flying off the handle and yelling at the employee is certainly not how you create a loyal dream team.
You have an employee who has offended the business, or you personally, through his or her actions or words.
How would you react? Chances are you could be quite upset. Would your reaction to them be active or passive? Would you talk to them, or about them? Some managers think the 'cold shoulder' approach is passive, but that kind of behavior is actually active and potentially very damaging.
So what is the right course of action? How can you navigate these situations and use them to help build your dream team?
First. it's important to recognize that these imperfections have to come out. Much like refining steel in fire, you must use these 'fires' to strengthen and build up both your team and your management skills. It's impossible to avoid conflict, and if you try to, the fires will eventually consume you. It's not wise to enflame the situations and add your own negative emotions to them; this will create the kind of workers who view their position as 'just a job.'
To create a dream team, you must build your team up- build up their confidence, their skills, and their enthusiasm for the business, it's goals and it's customers. You must set your team up for success with strong processes and clear directives. Dave Anderson, president of LearnToLead said it best: "Poor performers love grey areas. Clearly define what's expected and accountability is a cinch. Fail to do so and it's impossible."
Time for a reality check: you've probably already realized it, but doing the right thing to help build your team will not always feel good or natural for the manager. If a team member is upset, it's human nature to react to that behavior in a way that makes you feel better. You might want to ignore the person or lash out at the individual, but these kind of reactions ultimately only hurt your business.
Someone very wise once said: " People don't care how much you know unless they know how much you care." Ultimately, this is the best piece of advice for building a dream team. If your team members feel that you genuinely care and have their best interest at heart, you've won more than half the battle.
What are some of the ways you can tangibly build your dealership dream team on a daily basis?
-Provide steady and consistent accountability- don't save it up for a performance review.
- Notice the good, the improving and the areas that need work.
-Recognize good work by being as specific as possible; the more specific the praise, the more impact and meaning it holds.
- Encourage any area where you see improvement, even if there is still a long way to go.
- Hold bad behavior accountable quickly and without any negative emotion- it's about the work, not the person.
- Praise publicly and coach privately.
- Work on your communication and coaching skills with each interaction.
- Solicit your team's input and ideas. Use them and credit team members accordingly.
-Hold regular meetings and trainings; keep these meetings positive.
-Provide a positive example by walking the walk and following the same rules and code or conduct you expect from your team.
-Own up to your mistakes.
Building a dream team is about brining out the very best in your team's members, and also brining out the very best in yourself. it's not always easy but's definitely worth the effort.
Managers: Are you Helping or Hurting When it Comes to Building Your Dealership's Dream Team?