Howdy Morgan! Thanks for agreeing to chat. First up: how did you join the industry?
I was scrolling Craigslist one day and saw a post for a car sales position in the next town over. I thought, "I like cars; I like talking to people." – I applied, interviewed, got the job, and never looked back.
Tell me more about your job. What's the secret to being a Concierge?
I'm not sure it's a secret, but curiosity has taken me a long way in this business. I am genuinely curious – about my customers, their lives, what they like or don't, and how I can best help them – I'm curious about my co-workers, how they're doing, what types of things they do in their roles, what I can do to make their lives easier – I'm curious about the latest technology, who is who and why in this industry, in curious about what's next, how I should prepare. And I guess it's more than being curious. Acting, engaging with, and pursuing those curiosities have propelled me.
It's October, "Spooky Season," so I'd love to know if there are any Halloween memories that stick out?
AHH, I love this question! I was once a sales manager at a Toyota dealership. We had a fish bowel sales tower. All 3 sales managers dressed as inmates, put bars on the windows and listed "MAX Security" above the office. I loved how we all went "all in" on it; the customers thought it was pretty comical.
Finally, I'd love to hear about a moment in your career when the industry revealed itself to be about more than cars.
At the beginning of my career in the automotive industry, I sold at a Ford store in a small town in Ohio. I had an older gentleman come in with a file folder stacked full. He was driving a 1997 F-150 (it was roughly 2012). He bought that truck new but now wanted to replace it. That file folder was stacked full of papers comparing different truck models and makes. Even though he drove a Ford, he was leaning towards a Dodge. We spent a few visits together, building a relationship. He ordered an F-150, 2WD, reg cap, XL, and long bed, and we ordered a painted Leer cap to boot. It took a few months to come in and put the cap on, but John was happy! He even wrote a long handwritten letter to our owner, expressing his gratitude.
Around 8 months later, I saw John's obituary shared online. He was an older man, retired, but I didn't see that coming and was saddened by the news – attended the calling hours to pay respect to John and hug his wife.
His wife came to the dealership within a few weeks to sell his truck. She said, "Thank you for giving me 8 more months with my husband". Of course, I was confused. She continued, "You see, John attempted to commit suicide last year. His doctor asked him to list what he wanted to do before he died to help give him reasons to live. Buying a new truck was at the top of that list. That truck made him happier than I've seen him in years."
That was when it became a lot more than cars for me; I recognized the real impact we can have on somebody's life just by selling them a car, something we do every day. Like most people we meet, sometimes we don't know what's going on in our customers' lives or what this car means to them, so I'll forever make sure my customers leave feeling like it was more than a car sale, something more special. This is also my greatest advice to sales associates – make it more than the car.