Glenmore Audi saved the day!

To the Owner and Management Of Glenmore Audi:

Yesterday I took delivery of a 2008 TT.  It’s been a car I have wanted for awhile now, and I finally decided it was time.  After a couple of meetings with Ken Sim, your salesperson, I was convinced I wanted the car, but not so much the payment.  Throughout that process - Ken was great.  He helped me along, never pressured me, answered my questions, and made himself available when I had the time.  Overall it was a great experience, which says a lot seeing as I put buying a car and going to the dentist in the same category as far as the “things I like to do” list.

I noticed a scratch on the hood, and immediately Ken said he would take care of it.  He did.  When I came by yesterday the IPod connector wasn’t working, and Ken spent the time trying to help me figure it out.  This may not seem like a life stopping event, but with the amount of time I spend in my car – the only thing that keeps me sane is my IPod.  We couldn’t figure it out.  He asked others for help.  Frank in the service department was on his way home, yet he still stopped and helped us out.  Not only that, he was still friendly and helpful, which goes a long way as service with a smile is hard to find at the best of times.  It’s often the little things that matter.

So I am fairly certain reading letters like this, you may be waiting for the “complaint” or the “bad news”.  Well there was some - the part I needed, that Ken helped me figure out, that Frank took his own personal time to install, was $500.00.  Worse – it wasn’t covered under warranty.  Seeing as I was just picking up the car, and our deal was done, there were many concerned looks, there were quiet conversations.  In the end my problem was solved, but it created another one.  Turns out the bad news was for you guys.  Ken told me not to worry about it – that my happiness was more important, and he would figure it out.  Once again Ken came to the rescue, not to just sell a car, but to make a customer happy. 

So today perhaps I came out a little ahead, very happy, and I have a car which is new to me, but not “new”.  Today there is going to be discussions on your end about which department pays for what, and whose fault it was that the problem was maybe missed in the first place.  I am attaching something I gave to my people just last week about customer satisfaction.  It has to do with empowering your people to make good decisions to make customers happy.  Keep in mind that customer satisfaction today leads to return customers tomorrow.  If I were you I wouldn’t be questioning Ken on why he went to bat for a customer – I’d be questioning the department that builds a piece of plastic with an IPod cable attached that costs $501.00.  Mistakes happen in my business everyday.  It’s actually my job to get in there and fix them; to train the employees on how to handle not only the problem, but to come up with the solutions with and without my help.  If a company has integrity it stands behind what it does, it promotes its people to act with honesty and sincerity, and it mandates that its people take initiative to get the job done right, on time, and within budget.  Maybe your budget went a little sideways at the end.  I know mine does regularly.  Please keep in mind that I will need service on my car, and there will be no one else my car goes to because of Ken and Frank.  I will replace this car in two or three years, and there will be no one else I go to because of Ken and Frank. 

I hope today, the discussion will be about everything that went ‘right’ yesterday, and the perspective of what went ‘wrong’ is not that your employees went too far.  I would be focusing on the cost of your parts.  That may be something that comes from the top of your company.  Perhaps it’s something that is a fixed cost, and you feel you have no control over it.  My job would be to disagree with that.  In business, people often don’t focus on the bigger picture, or get the true nature of a problem right.  What happened yesterday was that your employees earned you a customer for life, your parts supplier might have easily cost you one, and technically they almost lost you a customer on the day I became one.

When I call Ken today to ask him about my tire pressure – he is going to help me.  My lack of mechanical aptitude means that even though I tried to fill my tires up last night it didn’t seem to work.  While Ken is trying to make you money (and obviously himself) he has guys like me bugging him about tire pressure.  He takes it in stride, and handles it very well like he has everything else throughout the process.  Again, I picked up my car yesterday, and my tire pressure is low.  I am not focused on the inconvenience of having to deal with that, because I am satisfied it will be taken care of, but don’t lose sight of where your problems lie.  Every business has them, mine is no exception.  It’s how you handle them that determines your long term success.  Yesterday met my high expectations, based on people trying.  There may have been a couple of things I would have done differently, and I would be happy to let you know what those things were, but Ken and Frank saved the day, and they did it with a smile.

Thanks,

Tom McCaffery
General Manager
Plains Fabrication & Supply