A Dealership Was a Zoo, Crowd Sourced Markup Tracker, Grit From Ukraine Workers

March 23, 2022
It’s a great day to make some trouble as we cover some stories from the retail front door all the way across the world to wiring harness production in the Ukraine. From turning a showroom into a zoo, to consumers creating their own way to track dealership markups, all the way to Ukraine workers boosting wiring harness production, we’ve got trouble brewing…in good ways.
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Wire Harness Production to increase in Ukraine amidst shelling and curfews

  • Increasing from 40-70% by adding a night shift
  • Incredible determination and grit
  • We are impacting lives far beyond our storefronts

Someone created a crowdsourced markup tracker

  • Bob Lanham posted this on Linkedin with a flurry of comments ensuing
  • Divided response

Jimmy Jones with Byers Automotive caught my eye. "Bring the kiddos by the store tomorrow to see some animals from the Columbus Zoo!" he wrote

  • 300 people and six animals (Leopard Tortoise, Echidna (a porcupine-like animal native to Australia), Armadillo, Shingleback lizard, Anteater ,Sloth


Kyle Mountsier,Paul Daly


Paul Daly 00:24

Yo, itis Wednesday, March 23. I got the day, right. And today we're talking about adealership that became a zoo, Ukrainian workers, a crowdsource markup tooltracking dealers all over, I don't know, I don't know, too much. drew me wayoff.


Kyle Mountsier 00:43

Ifyou're not watching the live stream, this is what's great about adding newpeople to the team, you just you get more value out of the time in a day,because there's no time that Paul and I would ever be like, let's throw aWednesday graphic in front of our faces to start the pod. But that's the beautyof having having Isaac in the background producing this thing rocking androlling, but we got surprised.


Paul Daly 01:07

That'sfantastic. I love this. This is like a new reaction video moment. kyle rightbefore we jumped into the stream, we were like, alright, let's review the shownotes. And we're like, what are we talking about today? I'm like, thedealership that became a zoo, a crowdsource markup tracker. And kyles like, ifyou would have told me six months ago that this is the stuff we'd be talkingabout. I would not believe you. You know, we had a phone call on the way whenwe were both driving in from work and our into the offices today. And we werejust super excited about today. And we're saying like, it feels like things arecoming together. Today's the day where things are gonna come together. We havebeen like, feels like marching through the mud in a good way. Right, becausethere's so much to do a asotus doing so many things like we're hiring people,like we're rolling, or rolling. And it's easy to get buried in the minutiae of,you know, growing a business and running a business, that you feel likesometimes, like I worked all day, but what did I get done? You know? And sotoday this morning


Kyle Mountsier 02:05

doesn'tfeel like I already know. Yeah, it feels like just because we're doing thingsthat, like we're getting somewhere. There's something there's somethinghappening. There's already. I mean, Paul, this is this is what I love about.And I wrote, I wrote this in the email, but this word culture, and there's somany businesses that have this where it's like, all the employees wake up withthis, like, let's get going, how do we make how do we make today's happen? Youknow, we talked about the service, the service teams yesterday, they're alwaysin early, and the businesses that I would challenge you, if you're looking atyour business, and you're seeing everyone roll in five minutes late, youprobably have a culture that isn't exciting to come to. But if everyone's 10minutes early, and all of a sudden, before you even get started, people arestarting to ping you on the excitement that's going to happen. That is a goodthing. That's That's good. Like, that's going to be a barometer for me nowmoving forward for all the things that we're doing. Because I recognize thatthat energizes me, as I get started in a day, it's like whoa, I you know, itused to be me kind of getting things started now we're watching others getthings started in the morning. And that's the energy that we want to keep atleast in in the asoto contagious world of of automotive. And I think thatthat's what we're encouraging, encouraging others to kind of find and draw outof their people.


Paul Daly 03:27

I lovethat it there's like this element of, you know, everyone saying like, hey,people need time to refresh, right? They need to start time they need to stoptime. So they have room for the personal life. I know there's been elevated,you know, an elevated attention on personal life, work life balance, me time, alittle self development, all that stuff. However, I would argue that when yourwork is actually part of your passion, right? Being there early and stayinglate is actually a very fulfilling thing. Because you're passionate about whatyou do. I've often used driving the word thriving is the benchmark, like how doI know? How do I know that my team is doing well? Well, yes, people want tolearn new skills. Yes, people want to get a new title and want to make moremoney. But if people feel like they're thriving, yes, right. Nothing elsematters because people stay where they're thriving a ping pong tables, nevergonna do it. A pallet wall is never going to do it. Right. Yeah. Because


Kyle Mountsier 04:19

nobody,nobody plays ping pong at 630 at night because they wanted to stay at work.Right? Right. That's not what they're doing at 630 or, or eight or whatever,you know, whatever you're closing time is they're not like, you know what, I'mgonna hang around for that extra extra.


Paul Daly 04:34

Wedidn't have it planned to talk about any of this stuff. It's just the way itwent, you know, I want to draw focus to to the daily email, we send it out ifyou don't get it. More and more people are signing up actually at a bunch ofsubscriptions just this morning. And here's why. Because we're trying to armyou. If you're a dealer, we're trying to arm you with some words and somethoughts that you can get to start your day. So yesterday there was thisencouragement to the service department today. It was culture. And what dealersare doing is using this in morning meetings, they're using it to circulate withtheir teams to encourage and inspire, we believe so many feel this way, we'retrying to give you some words to use. So asotu.com. a s o t u.com, get on anemail list and see if you can get a daily dose of that, um, it's great to seewhen you know a dealer, share it with your team, because you see, dealerpersonnel signing up. So now we have the opportunity to encourage them everymorning, as well,


Kyle Mountsier 05:26

you knowwhat I want to just like, sorry, another unplanned thing, we'll get to the funstuff like Sorry, but, you know, a lot of times in the dealership or in acompany, you might find something like, if you're listening, you findsomething, you're like, Oh, that's really good. I'm going to eat from it, andutilize that within my community, right? I'm going to take that and utilizethat as my leg up. But our encouragement is not to just use that as a leg upand not let anybody else in, put it but to share it because then actually, whathappens is, let's, let's say both people get the email or listen to thepodcast, or whatever it is, it doesn't even have to be there. So do stuff, butboth people are talking about or thinking about the same things on the way in,right to work or whatever you're doing in a day, all of a sudden, theconversation starts to pile on on that. And actually the acceleration ofinnovation or change, or better culture, or anything like that happens quickerthan you having to carry that message or call out all of the intentionality.


Paul Daly 06:24

That's agreat, that's a great point. You know, if you're a dealer, we said, that's whatit's good for. If you're an industry partner for your vendor, guess what hasthe same effect, right, you're trying to get your team fired up about theautomotive industry, you're trying to bring some encouragement to your dealersand your customers. And if you're an account exec, right, the the people thatyou deal with on a regular basis, so we're trying to come at it from bothangles. Let's talk about a few things that are going on. You know, let's let'sstart. I want to give some some props to the Ukrainian wire harness assemblyworker. It's unbelievable. Oh, we got a comment for Rob not getting audio. Idon't know what's going on. Maybe close your browser and open it back up.Because audio, I think we're saying everything's fine. I'm hearing it and weusually hear the stream too. So if you're having trouble with the audio, maybeit's a LinkedIn issue. Maybe it's a you issue, Rob, maybe it's you. plug yourheadphones in. I'm kidding. I'm kidding. Um, so in Ukraine, we covered thestory about a week or maybe two weeks ago, where the wiring harness factory alot of VW wiring harnesses are made in Ukraine, and they were still puttingthem together Automotive News cover the story. still putting together this iskind of a follow up auto news kind of followed up on this and said, not onlyare they still doing it, but they're actually increasing production from 40%capacity to 70% capacity by adding a night shift. There have been severaltimes, you know, it's right next to a like a bunker, they've had to evacuateand go back, evacuate and go back. Like, let me just talk about thedetermination and grit of these Ukrainian workers making wire harnesses and thefact that we, in the auto industry in the United States get to participate inthat through the work that we do, it's hard to really connect those dots. Butright now, we're helping to support them. And they're working hard to supportus by supporting their family. Like it just reminded me of how broad theindustry is and also how much grit is just in the DNA of the automotiveindustry from the manufacturing lines. All the way through to the retail sale.Yeah,


Kyle Mountsier 08:24

I itjust encouraged it tells me better get going. Right. Yeah, if if I'm in theautomotive industry there. I I've heard this from a lot of people and andactually Brian Binstock, one of our investors says it a lot. He says like,think about all the people that count on a salesperson selling a car, a serviceperson, you know, servicing a car, think about think about the line where thatgoes back to it goes back to the OEM jobs, the manufacturers, the partsbuilders, the parts builders are across the world that the taxes that go intomaking roads in the cities, this is the the kids that are growing up playingsports, think about everything that depends on someone selling a car. There's alot of weight there. But there's a lot of encouragement there that says, hey,look, this is a this is more than just like me putting me putting a car thekeys of a car into someone's hand or putting food on my table at home. This isme supporting a global economy. Yeah, by by wrapping my hands around thiscustomer and caring for them enough to get them into a vehicle.


Paul Daly 09:33

That'sso cool. we did the service owed service. The people that show up early, maybein the next one be to the people who always stay late, which are which are thesales people and go sales people, we got way out from both angles. So I'm goingto get if you don't know in the show notes of the podcast or the live streams,we link up articles to everything we talked about. So you can actually checkthem out what we are talking about. You know, speaking of articles that werewriting stuff Okay, well, I'm so our staff writer Chris Isaac, if you haven'tgotten to know him yet, you will. And if you could, you know,


Kyle Mountsier 10:09



Paul Daly 10:10

I'msorry. Isaac is the producer we have we have people everywhere. Chris And Isaacother Chris Reeve, sorry, but but if you've laughed at telling it like it is,or a GIF, chances are he had a lot to do with making you laugh. And so he wrotean article on now he's full time right now we're producing our own articles hetracked down on LinkedIn. The I don't know, was it the sales manager or generalmanager, sales manager,


Kyle Mountsier 10:36

JimmyJones buyers automotive.


Paul Daly 10:39

And theyliterally brought a zoo into the showroom.


Kyle Mountsier 10:44

So goodvan there. And my favorite part about this was he asked you know what, animalstarlet stole the show? I'm already in it. Look, every single time if you got akid under seven, if there is a slot in the room that that animal wins period.And the story is I don't


Paul Daly  11:01

knowwhy. and wallah. The slot. There's something so there's a slot that this littlezoo near near us in Syracuse, and it was the first time I had seen one upclose, and there are so slow, and just so cool.


Kyle Mountsier 11:16

Like,you just don't even care at some level. I feel like as you like, I'm just


Paul Daly 11:22

I'm likehow do you man? I'm like, how do you live? I think like how do you procreate?species survive? Well, everybody's


Kyle Mountsier 11:32

gonna belike, what happened to Wednesday's podcast?


Paul Daly 11:38

Buteither way, so they actually had 300 People come to the showroom to see somerepresentatives of the Columbus Zoo who brought six animals in. They had a tourleopard tortoise, and Chinda. Is it like a porcupine like animal fromaustralia, an armadillo, a shingle back lizard and an anteater? It's ananteater an Aardvark is that same thing?


Kyle Mountsier 12:02

I thinkthey're slightly different. okay to be wrong. Yeah. Okay.


Paul Daly 12:06

I neverlooked at my six year old hell no. Yeah. Yes, he will. And then of course, theslot and talk about serving the community in a fun way. You think that was funfor the team? Yes. You think it was fun for the community? Yes. Do you thinkthe zoo appreciate some support? Always do right? They're always looking fornew people to visit. And so, you know, there's just a great article onasotu.com, or you can click through it, the show notes, um, that, you know,Chris kind of kind of writes up a nice little heartwarming piece of hischildhood that he shared. And if only Columbus was closer to Nashville, hewould have been there.


Kyle Mountsier 12:39

Yes, Ilove that part. It's so


Paul Daly 12:41

alright,we saved this last story for last because this is probably going to be the mostfiery one. So yesterday, some people fired up. Oh, it already has, you see. Soum, yesterday, Bob Lanham, the head of automotive for Mehta posted a website. Ican't remember the URL is


Kyle Mountsier 13:00

it'sjust markup.com I think,


Paul Daly 13:03

oh,there's Oh, yeah, it is. Yep. It's markup.com. Or maybe it's Hold on. I want toget this right. archive.org markups.org. Okay, so markups.org somebody createda simple tracking tool where people can crowdsource right, you can crowdsource?Which dealers are marking up cars, by how much?


Kyle Mountsier 13:22

Yep. Sobasically, you go in, you submit the dealer, the markup and the type of carthat you are looking at, and basically that you can say, like, Hey, this is thedealers. And so you got somewhat zero sum with 5000 10,000. There's 15 18,000.And we know this, we've been, we're a part of the industry. And we all knowthat people are marking our cars inventory short, this is a reality and there'ssome I think there's some validity in it. The thing is now is that it's notjust, hey, it's happening, or maybe there's an article or two people arecreating whole websites, dropping them on Reddit and all of these feeds wherewhere people are starting to crowdsource like, who's better? Who's worse what'shappening across the industry? And you should see the volume of them that arein there is pretty wild. Like this thing picked up steam. You can


Paul Daly 14:17

go inthere search a dealership. So um, point point counterpoint. Let's do point counterpointfor a minute. We've been talking about like, is it okay, we have respectabledealers on both sides of this equation. Right? Hey, like supply and demand.Right? There's a shortage. We only have so much inventory, right, like markupsare fine. That's how that's how the supply and demand works. Right? The lesssupply the more demand, right, the higher the price. And that's how weregulate. So yes, the other side is like no, this is going to continue toperpetuate distrust in dealers, you know, so they know how much for marking itout. So those are really the two sides. I think you can do both sides withintegrity. I think dealers are operating on both sides of that. We'll see whatthe result is you know as inventory right. late, so we get back to normal,which probably is not going to happen for quite a long time. And, and so youlook at the comments, and there's people that are really angry. How dare they,and there's people that are really like, like, you know, excited, right?There's going to be bring transparency, the consumers in there saying, Yeah,this is great. And then there's like quite a few like little, little popcornemojis. Right? Like, I'm just gonna sit back and watch this thing. Now. Right?This comment says,


Kyle Mountsier 15:23

My FavoriteComment on Bob's post was looks like the new true car. But it's like the truecar of markups not mark, not markdowns. It's


Paul Daly 15:32

soright. And so and you know, people are like, well, it's possible to game thesystem, right? You can have salesman for one store going in and entering faketransactions, right, just but here's the thing, when you have a large pool ofdata, the point is, is that like the volume of data swallows up the positivenegatives the same way, like ratings on Amazon, right? If someone's just intoget it, or eBay or anything like that, like, if you have enough enough data,then it doesn't, it doesn't really matter. Um, I will say this, you shouldsearch your dealership and you should at least know. Right, you should at leastknow. It's always important to build as much value into the transaction as youcan. I'm willing to bet if there was like, a markup tracker for pretty much anyproduct these days. You know, from a percentage wise, there'll be so manyretail products that are by far like, way more percentage markups. You know,his versus ours. We know that because the $1,000 markup on a $50,000 vehicle isnot


Kyle Mountsier 16:26

percent.It's still not Yeah, so it but it's a good talking point to think like the perceptionof automotive is still that someone has to create this website. Yep. Right. Andso understanding that allowing your sales team but not just in your accountingteam, your service team to recognize the reality of how you're doing business,and sure that the communication is good internally and externally. And andrecognize that the perception of our industry still has a large scaleperception that is not great. And so turning that tide takes a lot. And we cando that in terms of markup. But the communication has to be very very top levelwithout a doubt


Paul Daly 17:09

Michaelweb no audio for you either. I don't LinkedIn is having some issues. You canturn subtitles on on LinkedIn. Yes. And then you can just like, I don't know,you'd watch the subtitles. On another platform, if you go to YouTube, go toasotube A S O T U dot B E And if you go there, it's live streaming on YouTube.And you probably have audio there. Um, Look, man, wewent over today justbecause


Kyle Mountsier 17:31

we went over Wait, we got one more thing,Paul. We got one more thing. We got to talk about Paul's knee. Paul, let metell you, let me just tell you your knee is one of the most fabulous thingsI've ever seen. A show stopper that just a showstopper. Just the point on it,that the accuracy at which you are having that step on the chair. Right. Sothanks, thanks to automotive news for allowing us to be a part of the articlethat we that Paul got the opportunity to, to lead that panel and his knee gotinto the shot. What a huge, huge kudos.


Paul Daly 18:09

I'd sayyes, it was a cars.com they reached out and asked if I would moderate a panelon diversity inclusion. Nada. So we brought our whole camera crew over. We setit up moderated amazing conversation with five really great actually six reallygreat people. We added one the last minute. And yeah, automotive news story andmy knee mated it. There is no mention in the article of who that phantommoderator was, but my knee is in there and we forever we'll be grateful for featuringmy knee in automotive news. The first time my photos ever been an automotivenews, so I'm excited. Alright, all said and done. Thank you so much for beingpart of the troublemaking squad this morning. Look in the beginning. We talkedabout culture go out there and courage. Some people today serve some peopletoday you have the chance it is up to you