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Four Ways Automotive Managers Lose Good Employees

Most People Are Not Happy With Their Jobs

Former NFL Head Coach, Tony Dungy once said, “The secret to success is good leadership, and good leadership is all about making the lives of your team members or workers better.” The consensus is that workers who are treated well by their managers not only produce better results, but they also tend to stay around longer. Unfortunately, many Americans are not happy with their current workplaces. A 2011 survey by Gallup found that 70 percent of people either disliked where they worked or were not actively engaged. While managers are not one hundred percent responsible for that number (many of them are probably a part of that group as well), their impact on an employee’s day can make or break it.

Is The Manager To Blame?

That principle is further driven home by another poll from Gallup that revealed 50 percent of employees who quit cite their manager as the reason. Again, that is a staggering piece of data. That number should be enough to cause all managers to re-evaluate their approaches. Another piece of data that should put a pause in all managers’ steps is $1,200, the average cost to train new employees. Putting that in perspective, if there is an average turnover of 5-10 employees a year, that number begins to add up. For the auto industry leader, what are some poor mistakes managers can avoid to keep from becoming another statistic?

Not Fostering A Culture That Makes Employees Feel Valued

Regardless of their role, salesperson, F&I professional, service staff, marketing, and branding, or anyone else, they all have to feel that their work matters and is necessary to meet agreed-upon goals. There is always so much to be done, and in the hustle and bustle, it is easy to forget to make employees feel valued for what they bring to the table. One of the easiest ways to make team members feel valued is by simply saying, “Thank You.” The words are always appreciated, but there are even more interactive ways to express the same thing. Some great ideas presented by autocare success magazine, Ratchet and Wrench are employee appreciation days and team outings. Something as simple as a Saturday afternoon barbeque or a team building idea voted on by the staff can go a long way for managers to show employees they care.

Not Allowing Employees A Chance To Voice Ideas That Encourage Innovation and Change

No one knows the products and customers better than those who spend time with both every day. This causes many employees to have innovative ideas that they would like management to act on, but unfortunately, the suggestions do not always make it to fruition. Management has to be careful not to stifle employees who care enough to talk about better ways of doing something. Managers should always leave an open line of communication for these types of things, and may even want to host brainstorming sessions to encourage this culture.

Utilizing Criticism Instead Of Thoughtful Dialogue

There is nothing wrong with constructive criticism. Everyone needs to learn where they need to improve so they can increase performance and learn new skills to use throughout their career. However, there is a difference between having a conversation about an improvement that the manager and employee agree on and blaming a team member for a mistake. F&I Magazine made an interesting point about misplaced criticism: “It merely puts the other person on the defensive, and makes them work twice as hard to prove they are right.” The whole point of feedback is to get better as a team, and language is key to creating a unified front.

Not Offering Opportunities For Training

The automotive world is forever evolving: new technologies, ever-changing customer expectations, and a new sales landscape requires employees and managers to stay up-to-date on the latest trends. It can be frustrating for good employees not to be offered the opportunity to enhance their skills or learn new ones to keep current. Good managers provide their team the chance to receive the latest training. This creates avenues for driven employees to move up the ladder or take on more responsibilities (which they may have been seeking in the first place), so this should be a win-win for everyone.

50 percent of employees cited their manager as the reason they quit their jobs. This means the role of the manager, as a leader is essential for a well-running automotive team. The recipe for happy employees is not incredibly tricky: a healthy workplace that allows employees to feel like they are making a difference. The four points above will hopefully help managers create that environment to retain the movers and shakers on the team.

Chanell Turner
Chanell Turner
Chanell Turner is a contributing writer and investigative journalist for CBT News.

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