When times are good it’s easy to sit back and look for growth in your business. People spend their money and hopefully they’ll come and spend some of it with you.
What happens though when the economy falters? Some businesses just wait and hope, some will cut back staff and services, a few will look to improve the way they do business. They’ll look for customer service improvements, invest in their business and hope they see a return.
Brown Bros Ford Lincoln has done the latter. We are reaching out, trying to improve the customer experience and trying hard. We’ve undergone a multi million dollar renovation. We’ve looked at and brought on board new systems, invested in new equipment and invested in new people.
Our Service Department is a case in point. We have expanded our two convenient locations, our main facility at Main and Marine and our devoted diesel and performance shop on Sherbrooke St just blocks away.
We thought our customers would like us to open Saturdays, so we did. We needed a covered vehicle drop off area for customers, so it was added. We maintained our free service loaner policy and added a shuttle service with a devoted driver as well. For customers that want to wait, large HDTV, wifi, comfortable chairs and free coffee. Our exclusive Loyalty Rewards program was added. Competitive pricing was kept as well.
Apparently customers have agreed with us about the changes because they keep coming back. To meet demand, Phil Poon our Service Manager has needed to add two more factory trained technicians bringing the total to 27. Those 27 technicians average more than 13 years of experience each. Also joining us are another receptionist, cashier and one more Service Advisor. All in all, 5 new people have been hired to meet a 15 percent increase in business over the same period last year.
If you read the business section of the papers every day it can be hard to find a positive story or outlook. Here’s one, look after your customers and they will come to your business. Brown Bros. is seeing growth when service intervals in vehicles have been cut in half or less. Maybe more businesses need to look at improving customer service as a way to grow rather than cutting back at the first sign of economic trouble.