Think about it: how much of your typical work week do you spend stressed out about not having enough time? There are 86,400 seconds in a day, and once they’re gone, they’re gone. Poof.
We talk to auto repair and tire shop owners all the time and they often tell us that they feel like they’re being pulled in a million directions at once. It's time to take back control of your day!There’s a steady stream of emails, tons of fires to put out, employees to manage and customers demanding one-on-one time with you. Shop owners have little to no time left to focus on growing their business.
If this sounds like you, know that you’re not alone.
There’s a lot to do every day, but you can’t let the email machine or the daily grind bring you down to the point your auto shop is managing you instead of the other way around.
Getting a grip on time management.
Manage Your Time – Don’t Let Time Manage You
Your time management problems may be undercutting your potential and your business’ potential. Managing your time is often the key to your shop’s success, and to maintaining a work-life balance. That’s right. Repeat after me “Free time”. Effectively managing your time means a boost in productivity which means an increase to your profit margins. It means less stress so you can better take on what each day brings with focus and clarity.
Do you find yourself saying any of the following phrases or thinking these things when you finally get home to your couch and turn on the TV?
- Just call me Gumby - I’m always being pulled in many directions
- What is happy hour? - Never has a “typical” 9 to 5 workday
- If I could turn back time - Not enough time in the day to get everything that needs to be done, well…done
As an auto shop owner, your duties can seem never-ending. Let’s just say, you wear many hats.
You’re an accountant and responsible for balancing the books, managing day to day spending, budget and finances. Block out time for these duties. Don’t let it loom over you all day long. Set aside time each day to get it done. Concentrate on this one task. Nothing else should exist.
You’re a manager who oversees hires, fires and handles any employee issues that may arise. Maybe an employee just didn’t show up for work one day. Or you hired someone you thought was a great fit for your team and then found out they weren’t. All of these responsibilities can become exhausting and without proper time management and processes - they can lead to burnout.
You’re the authority for all things customer service related. Think customer satisfaction, complaints and servicing. A customer comes in saying that work has not been done the right way. Or they waited way too long for an oil change.
Sound familiar? You’re probably nodding your head right now while at the same time breathing a sigh of frustration. You have a lot on your plate. We get it, we’ve been there (have we mentioned we’ve been in the auto repair and tire industry for over 40 years?).
Some effective and simple time management tips can help you significantly impact the amount of time you’re spending on things that don’t help you increase the revenue of your shop, and help prevent burnout and frustration
Here are 8 Time Management Tips for The Crazy Busy Auto Shop Owner
We’re serious! Sounds counter-productive to say to take a break as one of your time management tips, but taking a few minutes to recharge your batteries will supercharge your productivity.
Take Advantage of Your Most Productive Hours
We all have a time when we’re at our best. Studies show that for most of us our cognitive energy is highest at the beginning of the day. Schedule your most important to-dos to coincide with this time of day.
Eliminate Time Wasters
Block out any distractions like social media or getting stuck in an internet vortex. Stop taking insanely long lunch breaks. Maybe cut the water cooler chats short next time. Everyone is guilty of engaging in activities that drain productivity instead of boosting it. Recognize what those are for you and minimize or eliminate altogether.
Crystal Clear Communication
Communicating effectively helps to cut down on duplicated efforts, misunderstandings and in the end saves you valuable time. Always be sure that the lines of communication are always open. What makes communication crystal clear?
- Don’t say too little or talk too much. Try to convey your message in as few words as possible.
- Think about what you say before you say it
- Listen more than you talk
Train Your Technicians & Staff
One of the best time management tips we’ve come across is to make sure your staff is top-notch. Take the time to properly train each employee so you’re comfortable with delegating the responsibilities you don’t need to handle yourself. Make sure everyone knows their roles and what is expected of them and you just might be able to go home an hour or two early each day.
Reorganize the Shop
Take some time to save some time. Look around your shop layout and current procedures. Find ways to optimize the workflow and lay things out so technicians walk around less and spend less time navigating the shop and bays.
Don’t be a Slave to Email or Your Phone
Make it a habit to avoid answering your email or the phone just because it’s ringing or you keep getting that annoying email alert pop-up. . Don’t instantly give people your attention unless it’s absolutely crucial for your business to offer an immediate response. Set times throughout the day to disconnect and block out times each day to answer email and return calls.
Use an Automated Platform
Finding new customers and keeping existing can be some of the most time-consuming (not to mention stressful) things on your to-do list. But this can be exponentially simpler IF you have the right program in place. Incorporating marketing automation and loyalty programs into your POS gives you the peace of mind that you’re system is working for you to bring new customers in for the first time and existing customers back in for follow up service.
BAYiQ offers an automated platform that keeps your customers loyal by rewarding their choice to shop with you and communicating the benefits, specials and promotions you offer. In addition, our system makes it super easy for customers to share their positive experience through online reviews - helping other shoppers make the decision to choose you over the competition. Best of all it's a platform that runs with very little involvement from you or your employee's, letting you focus on operating the business.
We’re your solution to saving time. BAYiQ is easy to use, integrates with existing systems and gives you the confidence that you are getting and keeping customers so that your shop is profitable.
Take a Time Management Test Drive with BAYiQ
BAYiQ can help save you time and money. We all need more of both. Ready to see BAYiQ in the works? Watch a 5-minute demo now.