HARDISON’S TIPS – SEPTEMBER 22, 2021 – What’s Dealership Culture Got to Do with It? – PT. 2

HARDISON’S TIPS – SEPTEMBER 22, 2021 – What’s Dealership Culture Got to Do with It? – PT. 2

2. Onboard with purpose.

Once leadership has committed to providing nothing less than superb customer experiences, start hiring people who are just as passionate about customer’s as you are.

New hires don’t have to share all of the same characteristics. But they do need to place a high value on serving your customers. You can even ask a question during interviews to gauge candidates’ customer orientation, like social media platform Hootsuite does. This helps ensure that you hire the right people while also sending a clear message dealership-wide that customers are imperative.

Don’t forget to include the customer in your new-hire onboarding. Set expectations on how to greet, listen to, and respond to your customers. Define and perfect how a customer is transitioned from one department to another so that engagement is seamless. If your processes are already built around the customer, your dealership culture is fueled and ready to drive the type of experiences that yield brand loyalty.

3. Keep up the momentum.

Review and tweak your processes from time to time. Are they creating the experiences you’re aiming for? Are they meeting customer expectations?

Remember that today, customer-centric processes = data-backed processes. Customers want to feel known and want speedy, personalized experiences. Be sure to provide your team with tools to help them meet these needs.

Then be sure to regularly ask your team for feedback. Is there a skill they want to learn? A process they can’t quite master? Pair them up with a superstar on your team for fast results.

Here’s the dealership culture deal.

Customer-centric culture is important to all businesses, but even more so to those in the automotive industry. Unlike companies like Google or your cable provider, just about everybody working at your dealership has direct interactions with your customer. This makes culture even more important. It also gives you the benefit of using each touchpoint to build brand loyalty and wow your customers.

Plus, fair or not, we have some making up to do. Let’s make equating the car-buying experience with a trip to the dentist history. Inspire your dealership culture from the top down. Lay the foundation with your onboarding process. And keep marching toward stronger dedication to customer-centricity with each and every interaction with a customer. Reward employees who carry out consistent processes expected and watch how the culture will change.

From his success on the sales floor of an automotive dealership  to becoming a veteran trainer and then the adoption of technology for Internet-based marketing, his career has evolved to deliver the skills and tools needed to help consumers. Richie Bello combined his automotive expertise with his robust desire to “take care of the customer first” to become an automotive influencer, published author, and renowned trainer.  Bello absorbed the wants and needs of consumers as he worked up the ladder of the automotive industry.

Over the thirty-five years of his career, he developed strong Internet marketing skills, leading him to developing software solutions that create ease for consumers, and helps dealers improve relationships with customers. Innovation drives success. And, for Bello, it’s in his DNA. took years to come to consumers and arrived in a timely manner, during the 2020 Pandemic. With over 6 million vehicles on the site, features that help consumers deliver, finance and warranty, Bello has met the retail digital age head on.

Bello also is founder of Richie Bello Institute of Leadership and Management, a 501C3 not for profit, dedicated to the recruitment, education and employment of veterans into the automotive industry. Visit


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