Maximum Octane


Build An All-Star Bench For Your Auto Repair Shop with Geoff Berman

Ep. 72
Even when games feel under control and coaches can taste victory, they must be prepared for the unexpected. What if their star player injures or gets ejected? In that case, only an eager and capable bench can save them. With automobile repair shops is the same. Your internal customers might be doing great, yet you must have a few replacements lined up, just in case, ready to jump on the field when needed. In today's episode, I'm joined by the extraordinary Geoff Berman, an innovative thinker and Performance Coach at ATI. Together, we discuss why auto repair shop CEOs should invest more time in having a skilled bench to replace (if needed) any internal customer. Geoff explains how to gather the right candidates for your bench, the difference between recruiting and hiring, and the ideal depth for a bench.We also go through why you should avoid hiring in a hurry, the 90/10 rule, and so much more. In This Episode, You Will Learn:What losing an internal customer can cost us (3:20)Why the deeper the bench, the better (7:48)The differences between recruiting and hiring (11:13)The importance of training B and C techs (18:01)Even if you have 20 years of experience under your belt, you must keep practicing (20:41)Just because you've been doing it for years, it doesn't mean you are good at it (27:20)Connect with Geoff:LinkedInEmail: gberman@autotraining.netLet's connect:LinkedInFacebookEmail:

Hope For The Warriors with Leslie Hunt

Ep. 71
PTSD and severe wounds don't really care about political views, party affiliations, or opinions on sensitive topics. They exist, they are real, and they affect thousands of real American people. On the bright side, providing massive help to them is pretty simple; anyone can do it, and it doesn't require communing with any particular political view. In today's episode, I'm joined by the inspiring Leslie Hunt and her infectious energy. She is the Director of Donor Partnerships at Hope For The Warriors®, a private company dedicated to serving those who served and their families, helping military veterans to transition into civilians, get employed, and deal with mental and physical health issues. We talk about the things society and most institutions fail to provide for military veterans and their families, the importance of peer-to-peer mentorship, and the impressive work of Hope For The Warriors®. We also discuss how auto repair shops can benefit from employing veterans and the multiple (and effortless) options we have to extend a hand and offer valuable help. In This Episode, You Will Learn:A bit about Leslie and Hope For The Warriors® (1:59)The things veterans and their families are missing and struggle to get (6:06)How helpful peer-to-peer mentorship can be (10:07)What makes Hope For The Warriors® one of the best charities out there (17:05)How veterans can solve the #1 problem of most auto repair shops owners (21:58)The military-civilian translator and other Hope For The Warriors® resources (25:05)Resources:Hope For The Warriors® websiteConnect with Leslie:LinkedInLet's connect:LinkedInFacebookEmail:

Set Your Business In Front Of The 2023 Automotive Industry's Trends with Mike Bennett

Ep. 69
Specialists forecast consumers will spend between $26 to $30 billion in the automotive industry in the next two to three years. What are you doing today to ensure your business is ready to secure a piece of that? In today's episode, I'm joined by Mike Bennett to talk about the tendencies and trends of 2023 in the automotive industry and how shop owners can be more proactive and take their businesses in front of them. Mike is an Automotive Management Coach at ATI, Executive Coach, Certified Profit First, and PXT, and a writer at Ratchet+Wrench. We had a fantastic conversation about the state of the American economy, how the Automotive Industry is a bit insulated from it, the growth the automotive market has been experiencing for the last two decades, and how to be prepared since it is expected that growth to continue. Mike explains why he believes we'll see significant growth in the Automotive Industry, the segments of our market that'll drive that growth, and what shop owners and business leaders should do to enjoy its benefits.  In This Episode, You Will Learn:Why is our industry a bit sheltered from the state of the U.S economy, and how can we benefit from that (4:09)The "Americans don't drive anymore" myth (7:25)What are the things that are impacting consumers' confidence, and how does that affect our industry (14:20)How many resets do business owners need? (24:10)Why we don't see loyalty to brands anymore (28:58)The four segments that'll attract $26 to $30 billion into the Automotive Industry (29:33)Connect with Mike:LinkedInLet's connect:LinkedInFacebookEmail:

Getting Ready To Face The Whatifs of Life with Donna Hazeltine

Ep. 68
No one likes to think of accidents or the possibility of getting hurt or incapacitated, yet accidents and fortuitous events happen. We can't prevent them just by ignoring them. If any of those things occur, how ready are you, your spouse, or your business partner to deal with them?In today's episode, I'm really excited to welcome Donna Hazeltine, the co-owner of American Import Auto in Venice, Florida, a beautiful mind and a great friend. We discuss the importance of having things in place just in case an unfortunate event knocks at our doors. Donna talks about her aha moment, the day she realized she didn't have an answer to the question: what if something happens to Jeff, her husband, and co-owner of American Import Auto. We discuss why most people resist getting life insurance or contacting a lawyer to put a will in place. We also touch on life and disability insurance, why they are so important, how to put a what-if plan in place, her work at Hope For Justice, and so much more. In This Episode, You Will Learn:About Donna's aha moment (5:44)Putting things in place so our company can last forever (10:13)Why it is essential to revisit will and life insurance quite often (12:16)Having a will or life insurance is an investment in yourself and your family (15:23)About Donna's what-if plan (19:13)Why having disability insurance is a good idea (22:49)About Hope For Justice and how they help human trafficking victims (29:15)Resources:American Import Auto websiteBook: Peter Pauper Press - I'm Dead, Now What?: Important Information About My Belongings, Business Affairs, and WishesHope For Justice websiteLet's connect:LinkedInFacebookEmail:

How Ready Are You For Your Business' Succession with Eric Goodnoe

Ep. 67
When we think of retirement, we usually focus on what kind of life we want to have or where we want to take our business before that happens, yet we rarely think of who'll be in charge after we are gone. Having a succession plan and working backwards from it is an excellent way of figuring out our and our business direction, streamlining our path and setting a definite date for our goals. In today's episode, I'm joined by Eric Goodnoe, President of M&D Auto & Body Repair in Hasslet, Michigan. After his father retired, M&D Founder and former President Eric realized dealing with the succession plan was an excellent opportunity to set a clear direction for himself and the company and redefine personal and professional milestones. We talk about Eric's experiences during the succession, the transition from being the second in command to President, who he trusted to take his place and why, and how it changed his views on the automotive industry and business management. We also discuss Eric's retirement plan; he shares advice on business succession for shop owners, why he decided it was a good time to expand his business, and more. In This Episode, You Will Learn:A bit about Eric's succession and business expansion plan (3:49)How it was for Eric to transition from 2nd in command to lead the business (11:12)The benefits of implementing open-doors policies (15:21)Eric's 15 years retirement plan (17:50)What does succession look like in your business? (22:38)Connect with Eric:M&D Auto & Body Repair websiteLet's connect:LinkedInFacebookEmail:

Swing Hard, In Case You Hit It with Jesse Cole

Ep. 66
If you are a baseball fan and have never seen a coach breakdancing in the middle of a game, an umpire dancing before calling a play, or a male cheerleading team, you don't know the Savannah Bananas. And that, my friend, means you are missing a lot. In this episode, I'm delighted to welcome Jesse Cole, Founder of Fans First Entertainment and owner and operator of the Savannah Bananas. Jesse is also the author of "Fans first" and "Find your yellow tux," "Banana Ball," and a Keynote Speaker who dedicated most of his life to creating extraordinary and unique experiences for the fans. Throughout our conversation, we talk about Jesse's commitment to creating memorable experiences every time the Bananas get in the pitch and the idea of treating the Savannah Bananas presentations as a spectacle that will never be completed. Jesse shared details of how they keep their shows fresh and entertaining, the attractions that didn't work very well, and his constantly exploring and trying new things mindset. Plus, Jesse talks about his mentors, what to expect from the Bananas in the future, and so much more.In This Episode, You Will Learn:Fans first, entertainment always. Jesse talks about Fans First Entertainment's mantra (2:52)About Jesse's "obsession" with creating unique experiences (6:33)Jesse talks about the importance and benefits of having a clear vision (11:45)How to turn an idea into the fuel for your entire business (15:52)Work your idea muscle every day (21:21)Resources:Fans First Entertainment websiteThe Savannah Bananas websiteJesse Cole booksConnect with Jesse:LinkedInTwitterLet's connect:LinkedInFacebookEmail:

Seven Proven Marketing Methods with Jimmy Lea

Ep. 65
Many shop owners think there is a right time to turn off their marketing. There is not; you should never turn off your marketing! But that is just one of the many misconceptions about marketing and how it can improve your car repair shop. In this episode, Jimmy Lea revisits us to share seven proven marketing methods to help you take your business to the next level. Jimmy is a colleague, friend, and product evangelist at Kukui. Jimmy loves to help car repair shop owners of all sizes and shapes invest wisely in their marketing efforts, track their ROI, and make the proper adjustments to guarantee their efforts.  Throughout our conversation, Jimmy explains why having a user-friendly, quick, and agile website is crucial, how to use Google ads, why they are so important, and how to communicate clearly with customers. We also talk about why we, as shop owners, must embrace technology, the importance of committing to social media, why you should use it mostly to build genuine relationships with your customers, and much more.  In This Episode, You Will Learn:Why you should never turn off your marketing (3:22)What kind of website should you get for your shop (6:32)How Google Ads work and why you should invest in them (10:06)Don't confuse your customers (20:01)Don't get overly attached to your ZIP code (23:16)Why exploiting the benefits of social media is an excellent idea (26:12)Check your Google reviews and reply as soon as you can (32:13)Resources:Kukui Corporation websiteKukui LinkedInKukui InstagramKukui FacebookConnect with Jimmy:LinkedInLet's connect:LinkedInFacebookEmail:

How To Lead, Influence, and Trust Internal Customers with LeAnne Williamson

Ep. 64
We all want to grow our businesses, influence our internal customers and help them develop, grow, and become better professionals. But how many of us are prepared to delegate and trust our team members' decisions? Today, I'm joined by the fantastic LeAnne Williamson. She is an Executive Coach, Advanced Certified Profit First Professional, Certified Engagement Coach, DEI Certified, and Consultant at Automotive Training Institute. She also writes for Motor Age and for the ATI Blog. Besides her formal education, LeAnne is passionate about personal development and is constantly honing her craft by studying with some of the greatest, like Bob Proctor, Tony Robbins, and Robert Kiyosaki, to name a few. Throughout our conversation, LeAnne dissects and explains leadership, what practices lead to an enticing, productive, and stimulating leadership style, and why so many shop owners struggle with delegating. We also discuss the importance of trust and accountability to achieve empowering levels of leadership, how to break old habits, and much more. In This Episode, You Will Learn:A bit about LeAnne's background and why she is so passionate about leadership (2:43)Leadership is an influence process (7:25)The four styles of leadership (8:13)An advice for shop owners who can't let go of making all the decisions (14:43)Learn to embrace and accept change (17:30)You can always squeeze in some personal development training in your schedule (21:05)Sometimes, shop owners get in the way of their internal customers (26:03)Is advice always welcome? (34:05)Resources:Book: Michael Bungay Stainer - The Advice Trap: Be Humble, Stay Curious & Change the Way You Lead ForeverConnect with LeAnne:LinkedInLet's connect:LinkedInFacebookEmail: