Not only is David Long a strategic operator, he is proving that it’s possible to both lift and empower others while providing the structure and accountability required to grow. Also, he has the best hugs, according to Michael Cirillo. Michael, Paul J Daly and Kyle Mountsier listen to David’s insights on building up the culture of an organization, and keeping it laser focused on its goals.
What we cover in this episode:
6:38 David talks about how a conversation with his daughter was the starting point for the Pandemic of Positivity. Kyle and David reminisce about the early days and getting it off the ground.
14:40 Every week, David hosts a weekly Zoom call where he brings in speakers to talk to his team, and this has been having ripple effects to the friends and family of his employees.
“I got a screenshot Friday from somebody that works in our accounting office and it was a message from her daughter, who doesn't even work with us. And the speaker that we had, which happened to be a Navy Seal, the speaker that we had on Wednesday, because I send out the recording as well. “It not only impacted me but it impacted my family.” And this is her screenshot sharing with me the impact that Navy SEAL had on the circle of influence in her life. So, you know, maybe it's not for everybody, but I think there's people in the recesses of their own mind that may say they don't like it, but are listening to it afterwards, or joining. And they pick one thing out, and they go home and share it at home, with their, with their loved ones. And that, for me, is what it's all about.”
21:34 At Hansel Auto Group, there are clearly defined goals and structure. Every team knows where they’re headed and what hill is next to be taken. David thinks that people prefer systems of accountability.
“Every department is laser focused on their top three, right? There's not 30 things that we're running around trying to do. There's, there's three and then there's one hill that we're willing to die on in the next 30 days. Right? Each department has their own hill. And once we take a hill, we're not giving that hill back. We're finding the next hill while we keep that plot of land. Does that make sense? Make no mistake, in the world of great culture, and love and warm embraces, we don't get what we want. We get what we tolerate, right? Make no mistake, that there is still structure. There's discipline, there's accountability. And I actually think that people would prefer to live and work in that environment than to live and work in the environment where it's the flavor of the week, flavor of the day.”
25:21 David has opened 59 buy centers, and talks about how he hires outside of automotive to fill those positions. Give him an hour with a barista who wants to learn, and he’ll have them making offers in 3 minutes without needing a VIN number.
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Kyle Mountsier, Paul Daly, David Long, Michael Cirillo
Kyle Mountsier 00:00
Paul, I've really had one question for you since the beginning of us knowing each other and
this is Auto Collabs.
Kyle Mountsier 00:14
And you keep it's like I'm from Philly, the Philly Skyline on the original ASOTU thing Philly Philly Philly Philly setup, right, all this type of stuff. And my question is, is have you ever run the stairs? Like have you ever done that done the thing all that?
Paul Daly 00:31
Yeah, okay. The most recent time I ever ran the stairs was actually with today's guests, David Long. Wow. No, no. I had no clue over here. Like,
Michael Cirillo 00:43
where are we going with this? I can't believe you didn't know. That's amazing. So
Paul Daly 00:46
the last time I went up the Rocky stairs. Picks photo proof of this. We literally just got finished the ASOTU live event in Philly, in the middle of the lockdowns and David Long was in town and I was like, Have you ever seen the Rocky statue? No way. And so we all hopped in the car, and we drove down to the Art Museum and we have pictures of all of us standing Rocky, running the steps on a beautiful cloudy day.
Michael Cirillo 01:12
Is this real? I feel like I you this
Kyle Mountsier 01:14
was not a set. sign any paper you want me to sign right now. So
Paul Daly 01:19
if you're just this podcast, what happens is before we record an episode, some we just hit record and somebody comes up with something to say in the beginning and that was it. And so I didn't know where Kyle was going. Kyle didn't know where Kyle was going. Michael never knows where anyone is going. Michael still dumbfounded. Wondering how he got to Philadelphia. I got nothing. Out of throwing it in-ears that he's such a diva. You should have seen the contract we had assigned to get him on
Michael Cirillo 01:47
with 70 countries with listeners. That's what he said. He said
Paul Daly 01:51
I want one cappuccino for every country. audience listening cappucino,
Michael Cirillo 01:56
what does that taste like?
Paul Daly 01:57
Oh my gosh, well, on the west coast, they drink a lot of cappuccinos which happens to be where David Long is from sir. Let's bring it back here. That's amazing. You didn't know that actually had no clue. The first time I ever met David Long was on a sailboat. This sounds another fantastic story. So Dale Pollack invited me to go on a sailboat with the dealer at nada last time it was in San Francisco. And it was the owner of the group that David Long was with at the time why the group name is escaping my memory. But I met David long for the first time and his kindness and warmth and just welcoming nature like we've been friends ever since that day.
Kyle Mountsier 02:31
Yeah, you know, what's funny about the times that I like initially ran into David Long was in Clubhouse actually. And I'll never forget the very first kind of conversation that he was a part of. And the only way that I remember it is he was talking about how he manages VinSolutions with his team and how he does it on these these. He calls him periods of the day kind of like a hockey and then he has overtime and all this type of stuff. And I just remember thinking in my head, his mode was like, and if they don't do it right out crushed them, which is not what he said. But it was that it was that mode of intentionality that was like, No, this is how we do business. And if they don't get it done in that time every day, then they're not doing their job right but on right there next to it. And with such tender loving care is this guy that is just filled with positivity filled with empathy for not just him to his team, but actually for the entire industry. Like he has a real empathy as he does for the auto industry. And that is unique about David.
Paul Daly 03:33
Michael when did you meet David?
Michael Cirillo 03:35
I met David for the first time in person like a month ago, but we had met online obviously clubhouse and things of that nature. And it was delightful. Because you know so often you meet people What's that old saying? Like? You know, be careful meeting people you admire a celebrity you admire in real life because they might disappoint you. It's the opposite. Yeah. Like, like you said is positivity is kindness on a list that I've made of people who have the warmest embraces number one, Mom, number two, David Long that's because right because he pulls you in, he has such warmth. And I was just gonna say this to crap I said clubhouse and I was about to say piggy back
Kyle Mountsier 04:26
after this, I'll circle back on that for you
Michael Cirillo 04:30
is that he's debunked the myth of leadership in that you in order to hold people accountable, you must be difficult, hard, etcetera. You know, he set a standard. He holds people accountable, but he shows you that it can happen with to your point love and kindness so we hope you enjoy this episode with David Long
Paul Daly 04:55
are we looking at the cameras
Michael Cirillo 04:56
now? No, I just it was it was a gut instinct. Kyle look at the cameras So about a year ago, I think maybe a little bit over a year ago, I hear the this name for the first time, David Long and I'm like, you know, or in the car business. So the first reaction is, who's this chump. And then all of a sudden, he opens his mouth. And I'm like, holy crap, this is a person I need to know. This is a person who I must meet whose hand I must shake. And, and, and everything that I felt you might be in real life is exactly who you are one of the most authentic, caring, genuine and positive people I've met in the industry, at least in the last six weeks, at least.
Paul Daly 05:49
I knew that was a setup for somebody.
Michael Cirillo 05:51
To be in here, I got a question for you to kick this whole thing off. I mean, obviously, you are. You are a wealth of knowledge, wisdom, as it pertains to the retail auto industry. There's a lot of narrative out there about the doom and the gloom, you've started this whole movement, this Pandemic of Positivity, which is I think, where I want to set the stage here. How did that all come about? And more importantly, how is it that you're seeing it from that angle, when there seemed to be so many out there seeing it from the opposite kind of doom and gloom scope?
David Long 06:26
What actually came about with Kyle was one of the original OG's, this was the two years ago? A year ago? I can't
Kyle Mountsier 06:34
it's a long time or a year ago, almost a year and a half now, I think. Yeah. So
David Long 06:39
I'll never forget. So I'm what I'm leaving the house, and our daughter, which is one of three really tough girl and she rides horses. She's just, she's tougher than most boys. I know, me included, for sure. And I'm leaving, and she has these like, wet eyes. And I'm like, what's going on you? Okay, honey? She's like. I'm concerned. And um, what are you concerned about? She said, I'm concerned about you going into work with the pandemic, and all the stuff that's going on. And, you know, I don't want you to die. And she got really emotional. And I thought, wow, if my daughter that's always tough as nails is thinking that, what am I people's significant others families, daughters, sons, aunts, mother's cousins, what are they thinking? Right? Like, if she's thinking that I got to think that other people are thinking that. So I thought, how do we make for a different narrative, right? We can't change the narrative. But how can we add a narrative that is a little bit more beneficial to what we're trying to accomplish here? How do we come to work, stay safe, go home safe, keep our families protected, not just physically, but emotionally, mentally, spiritually. And that's how it was birth. And it's got legs, and here we
Kyle Mountsier 07:51
go. And then I got a text at 2:33am. Central Time, fair is 11:33. Pacific time, so there wasn't that much of a mess. Like, Hey, we gotta get a website we gotta get we got to call people together. And that's, you know, what I love about what I love about you, David is, you know, when when you send an idea through, and I don't care what it is, whether it's Pandemic of Positivity, all things Used Cars, or Tier 4 marketing for salespeople doesn't matter. There's never a thought in my mind, that's like, you probably won't follow through with that one. Like, if I get an email or a text on, I'm thinking about doing something, it's that you are already like eight steps into it, and you're just calling other people to it. And I think that that's a real trait of yours that I've seen exercise is that is that you've got this, this kind of desire to call other people to something and I actually, I got the I've had the privilege of being a part of you have a weekly sales call actually team call that you invite the entire industry to, to hang out with the Hansel group, right? Where did that I want to hear the origin of that, because I haven't heard the origin and what is it along the same time of like, just calling people to something I think is a just something that you're about you're you're saying, hey, look, I see a need. And I'm going to call as many people as I possibly can to
David Long 09:27
what was really cool was when you helped me create the Pandemic of Positivity I thought, how do we, how do we just continue to pour into people? And then in the absence of information, as you know, you know, I have multiple rooftops, different locations. If I can't touch everybody all the time, and when the pandemic people were like, you know, they didn't, weren't all connected and doing this face to face thing. So I started these 3pm Zoom calls that happened every day at 3pm. And we just checked in it started. It was everyday Five days a week, and I'd get speakers, we talk about how we're going to take care of ourselves, how we're going to take care of our customers, how we're going to stay safe at work, and we're gonna go home safe. And then that evolved into we're two and a half years into having these zoom calls. And the speakers that I've gotten, like, it's unbelievable. The people that just want to pour in, like, some of these speakers get 10 15 20 $75,000 an hour. And they're like, I'll join your team call on Wednesday at 3pm and give to your team. And that's been going on for two years. It's been amazing. So super fortunate to have people like you in my life.
Kyle Mountsier 10:40
Thanks, David. I appreciate that. Honored to be thankful
Paul Daly 10:46
Kyle Mountsier 10:49
this is great. I just feel encouraged when I'm around you so so good. Just like just like Michael said,
Michael Cirillo 10:56
You know what? He said something about touching? Can I just pause here? Now we're not going there you creeps.
David Long 11:02
Are we going to edit this out?
Paul Daly 11:06
Cirilo Cirilo. So,
Michael Cirillo 11:08
you can tell a lot about a person by the way that they hug someone. Ah, and I went to a mastermind years ago, and they actually talked about the importance of human touch, and hugging and the importance of hugging and how much I mean, there was a child singer, Charlotte diamond, I think her name was and she wrote a song called Four hugs a day. Four hugs a day, that's the minimum, like how much embracing that children need in order to develop. David has one of the warmest embraces. And so if you're ever curious about someone, like are they legit, Are they genuine? Do they actually care? You get a hug from David and you know that all of it is just, you know, one of the war seriously, okay.
Paul Daly 11:55
My mind only goes to how can we get a picture of Cirillo and David in a hug and then just put a making a quote graphic that says David has one of the warmest embraces or one of the warmest embraces in the automotive industry?
Kyle Mountsier 12:08
So what has to happen is you have to find like your did Cirillo. Did you need a step stool for that? Was that what happened?
Michael Cirillo 12:16
No, I was firmly implanted in his armpit.
David Long 12:25
That's why these Wednesday calls happen, because I couldn't hug people. So I had to virtually hug people see their face, see their expressions, and it just kept going.
Paul Daly 12:36
They kept going. So when did they go? When did they cut down from daily to weekly? Do you remember about when you made that shift? Or, or what your mindset was in when you said, Okay, I don't think we need every day anymore. I think we can roll it back.
David Long 12:48
We're probably four or five months into the pandemic. Yeah. And we had just come out of fire season where people lost their homes. I mean, it was, it was a really, really difficult time here for us and the country and the world. So it it just was something I felt well, one, I felt like I needed it. So most of what I do, like All Things Used Cars on Friday, I did that for me, just happens to benefit 300 to 500 people a week, Pandemic of Positivity, I did that for me, it just happens to impact people on the Wednesday call, I just wanted to be around people and feel cared about and be able to show my love and appreciation for the team that works for me. And then we started inviting people from outside of my company and it worked out.
Michael Cirillo 13:32
Can I ask you about the leadership side of this? I mean, because often, oftentimes, as leaders, we have these ideas, and we believe passionately in them, but they're, I found in organizations, there's, there's those that buy in, and they're like, yes, we want to be a part of this, then there are even if it's a small faction like 20%, that are like this kind of always time, I just want to stay heads down, and I want to do the thing. And and oftentimes in organizations, we tend to just kind of give in to that small percentage. How did you navigate that as a leader being like, this is a thing we want to do. Here's the purpose, did you have to constantly remind everyone of its purpose? Was it or was it like, Hey, you're just showing up? And that's the way it is?
David Long 14:16
Well, I don't know that. It's just like you got to show up like we're having to call in you have to show up. It's more of a and I did get that noise, right? Let me just do my job. I don't want to mess with that. Let me just stay focused on what I'm doing. We don't need these distractions. And I've just stayed steadfast and kept doing it and the feedback that I get not just from the people that work inside of our stores, but I'm getting messages, screenshots, I got a screenshot Friday from somebody that works in our accounting office and it was a message from her daughter. That doesn't even work with us and the speaker that we had, which happened to be a Navy Seal the speaker that we that you had on Wednesday, because I send out the recording as well. Not only impacted me but it impacted my family. And this is her screenshot sharing with me the impact that Navy SEAL had on the circle of influence in her life. So, you know, maybe people, it's not for everybody, right, Michael, but I think there's people in the recesses of their own mind that may say they don't like it, but are listening to it afterwards, or joining. And they pick one thing out, and they go home and share it at home, with their, with their loved ones. And that, for me, is what it's all about. So I hope that answers your question.
Michael Cirillo 15:31
Paul Daly 15:33
All right. So looking at the clock, we're having too much fun on this call here.
Kyle Mountsier 15:39
I gotta, I gotta lean in here. Because, you know, we've kind of talked this, you know, the Pandemic of Positivity, and these weekly leadership calls, and this is Auto Collabs. And we're talking about the collaboration, the effort that it takes to push automotive forward and the industry forward. And I just want to be very clear that, that exactly what David has done, in these communities in building these communities, is it's almost the ground level for every other conversation that we've had. For me, I'm gonna, I'm gonna speak just like this. There's no question after this, maybe there is a question. I am just, I am being like filled up with, if everybody doesn't buy into this level of intentionality, with the communities that you can touch, right? David's like, I got 1000 people over here, that work, I got 1000 people, that pandemic of positivity, and I got three to 500 a week. And he's like, alright, boom, boom, boom, put them onto my put them, put my arms around them, give them that virtual
Paul Daly 16:48
hug. And this is the warm, embraces warming.
Kyle Mountsier 16:52
And this is the community that I need to make sure that that I'm crafting and curating and leading and guiding, and whether that be from the front, or from the middle, or wherever you're doing it from that this, like, all the technology conversations, all of the, the the new ideas or the innovative things, they they literally go nowhere without this, because I'm I'm just like, I'm throwing a guess out there, David, that you didn't wake up one day and be like, You know what? Zoom calls. That's what's gonna make my culture at my dealership. Great, right? Like that's, that wasn't the thing that like, triggered incredible culture.
Paul Daly 17:36
I don't think anyone's ever said that in the history of zoom calls. Exactly. So
Kyle Mountsier 17:41
I you know, I want to even back up from that, in in some of the things that you've talked about, especially I've heard you talk on All Things Used Cars, but the things that are the groundwork level things that are required to to do things like have people showing up to a daily Zoom call or implementing change, or creating a buy center or new sales processes, that the like the ground level practical things that you're doing, that are breeding success in those other areas? What are some of those things that you are pointing to that are going hey, if I don't do those every day, then none of these other things are going to happen?
David Long 18:22
Whoa, that's a big question. So when I think about that, I think about painting the Golden Gate Bridge, and I don't know why it's not gold, by the way. It's red if you haven't
Paul Daly 18:30
seen it, so, you know, there's no, there's no gold
Michael Cirillo 18:34
by any Tanner's not even driving a vertebral 20. That
Paul Daly 18:38
was obviously named by a bunch of marketers, for
David Long 18:41
sure. So what I what I think about though, is like, it needs to be constant and never ending, right? It just can't stop. I would love for it to some days, I think I'd love for it to stop. But the balls in the air need to stay in the air. And the only way I know how to do that is to continue to move forward regardless of the noise and the echo and the naysayers, right? Just keep putting one foot in front of the other kind of impact people in a positive way. And are there haters or people that don't believe? Absolutely! so but cannot let that slow me down, I really can't. So what I do is I have different channels, I call them channels like stations. So I have the video channel I have the which is CO video. I have a YouTube channel. I have a website channel internally that I pour into. So anybody that needs anything at any time is going to get it somewhere, some way, some shape some fashion, they can go get what they want. And if they don't go get it. It's intentionally getting dropped into their world and hopefully they're consuming and I think they are because our culture is great. Our performance is great, right? The results are great. And guess what people go home feeling like they have just traded a full day of their valuable life for a company that cares. And that at the end of the day is the most important thing to me.
Paul Daly 20:10
Paul, I cut you off. That was like three years ago, trying to think what I was gonna talk about. I do you remember what I was gonna say?
Kyle Mountsier 20:19
That was a pandemic's distance ago, right? That was Yeah.
Paul Daly 20:25
That's gonna say something. So we were definitely talking about a lot of the the human element side of business, I do want to, like, tie in for a second the operational side of what you do, because it'd be easy to in a world of, you know, motivational influencers on the internet, it would be easy to look at Pandemic of Positivity, and bringing in guest speakers and kind of like the flair and the energy around that to, to kind of shoebox you into a role, where it's like, okay, well, like some people are good with people. And some people are good with operations, as if they have to be separate. You're a very, very savvy operator who consult a lot of dealers on operations, you want to have the most efficient inventory, according to vAuto in the country. And so you're doing a lot of things operationally that are winning. So can we just talk for a second about what what are you most focused on in the operations of your business at this period of time? Right. So talking about like, maybe like, the financial markets are different and all that, what do you laser focus on from an operational standpoint?
David Long 21:33
It's a good question, because every department is laser focused on their top three, right? There's there's not 30 things that we're running around trying to do. There's, there's three and then there's one hill that we're willing to die on in the next 30 days. Right, each department has their own hill. And once we take a hill, we're not given that hill back. We're finding the next hill while we keep that plot of land. Does that make sense? Yeah, well, that's, yeah, make no mistake, and in the world of great culture, and love and warm embraces, we don't get what we want. We get what we tolerate, right? Make no mistake, that there is still structure. There's discipline, there's accountability. And I actually think that people would prefer to live and work in that environment than to live and work in the environment where it's the flavor of the week, flavor of the day. And then you're you're saying,
Paul Daly 22:27
Can you clarify that you think people prefer to work in the environment of accountability? Because what you're saying,
David Long 22:32
oh, yeah, structure, discipline, accountability. I really believe that. Like they, I think that people excel when they know exactly what the non negotiables are
Paul Daly 22:44
for cheese area. Look, if anyone has ever had a two year old, three year old, four year old, five year old six year old seven year olds, right, you understand that when you give them some boundaries that you're willing to enforce, they actually get a lot happier. Oh, yeah. It's clear. It's just human nature. Right?
David Long 23:04
I think so. Yeah.
Paul Daly 23:04
David Long 23:06
I don't want to use all warm embraces every day. To Michael's point, right. There is a culture of accountability that I think people like to excel in.
Paul Daly 23:15
So what's the hill? What's the hill that you're, you're taking on this month, or this quarter this season.
David Long 23:21
So my hill my personal hill, is I just opened my 59th Buy center and in that of 59. So inside of the 59th, there's KPIs and checkpoints that we that I personally took the accountability that I need to be at, at the 10th, which is two days from now, the 15th, the 20th, and ultimately, at the end of the month,
Paul Daly 23:47
so your group has 59 Buy centers?
David Long 23:50
That's I'm glad you asked it that way. No, I've opened personally helped 59 Buy centers, which is a whole different life that I live. And that starts at 5am. And I consult for a lot of different dealers throughout the country, and teach them how to open up and manage a buy center. Yeah, and buy cars that they can't get at the auction. It's been a lot of fun.
Paul Daly 24:13
And so what makes give give us like the the two to four things that make a great buy center.
David Long 24:21
The right people, right, I think what most dealers do, by the way, the car industry is over 100 years old. The buy centers are the most profitable department that isn't at every dealership in the world like it, you can have a great sales department service department parts department collision center, but a great buy center. They're not on every corner operating efficiently. And I asked people why. And the reason is because it requires a completely different approach and a completely different skill set, one of which most dealers don't possess. So you go get your salesperson and your sales manager and think you're gonna buy cars from private party sellers. That is is not the approach that I've ever seen work. There's a completely different strategy. It's like, it's like being in a completely different industry, right?
Paul Daly 25:10
So 59 successes later or 58 successes and one pending success because you just opened it. Right? What what, what is the approach difference, like give us the fundamental difference in approach.
David Long 25:21
So when we hire somebody, we don't hire somebody with automotive experience. Our my experience, my team's experience is to hire somebody that was a barista or a lot porter or somebody that was a telemarketer. And give them a role that they can excel at that very, very simple and gives the guests an amazing experience. So you know, you might you call most dealers and say, I want to know my car's worth. What do you generally get Kyle,
Kyle Mountsier 25:47
you get? Hold on, well, do you have the VIN, send me 10 pictures, you gotta come down, show it to my manager, you're you Your presence is your power, you know, all of that type of stuff.
Paul Daly 25:59
It's a Monday and Monday's cars are a little lower. Right?
Michael Cirillo 26:03
Yeah. So this is code onto the lot and see if it's there, let me physically touch it.
David Long 26:07
If you had a barista, if you gave me a barista, and gave me one hour with them, I just use barista as an example, because some of the best agents I've had were baristas, I could have them given you an instant cash offer in three minutes on the phone without a VIN number. And without asking 1000 questions. It's just it works.
Kyle Mountsier 26:29
And so and, and I, my perception, especially in the world of like having KVB, ICO or a VAN or, or a VINCUE or anything like that is not just the inbound volume that you take, but the outbound volume that has to happen. Because it there's much there's even more of a numbers game on the buy side than there is on on the sell side, right. And so you have to be able to execute that quickly. One from a customer perspective, but also just from a volume of, of, of outreach, both inbound and outbound. So that speed, that speed to the customer in that three minute appraisal, without a lot of unnecessary barriers is really important to being efficient in that buy center. And the minute you slow that down, like things go off the rails really quickly.
David Long 27:21
It is so true. And it's so simple. That's why most dealers can't do it. They overcomplicated
Kyle Mountsier 27:28
that that was a loaded statement right there. He said it was it's so simple. That's why most dealers can't do it was like,
David Long 27:35
that's why I figured it out. Because Because I'm such a simple minded guy, like I couldn't do anything that was overcome black. So it's just, it works out well. And it's good for the consumer. Not only that, it really helps the customer. Right, they can get a number, they don't have to sell their car, they don't have to buy a car from us to sell their car here. And it's just a win win all the way around. So it's funny.
Michael Cirillo 27:59
Oh this underscores something this long standing debate, though, in the industry where where, you know, especially we see it with dealer versus vendor and vice versa. It's like, don't talk to me about this, because you've never done it. And it's like, yeah, well, you don't talk to me about this, because I know you've never done that. What you're saying here is oh, wait, it's completely teachable.
David Long 28:21
It's so simple. That as a matter of fact that hired speak at a simplifying, I actually hired two guys, with MBAs from MIT to simplify an AV test, every word track, every script, every piece of the process, and they helped me perfect it over eight years ago. Wow.
Kyle Mountsier 28:44
So it's there. It's ready to go? Well, I you know, a lot of times, we've been kind of asking people as we wrap up, if you were going to do if you were going to encourage dealers one thing right now, to be making sure that they have in line in place and in their stores. What would that be? I'm just, I'm gonna venture a guess that that you're saying, find find a way to implement a buy center? Is that right? That would be the second thing. Okay, second thing right after me with it.
David Long 29:16
Um, find a way to impact people find a way to make leave people better than you found them create a culture of caring, because everything else can sort of spin off of that. But if you don't have that, I think it's really difficult to build anything. But now the second thing is, I would say making sure you have a strategy that doesn't miss opportunities to acquire inventory, especially in the market we're in right now. Like if you can't know if you don't know what your trade efficiency you're looking to book is your buy center strategy, your service drive conversion, you're probably not as dialed as you need to be in this economy. Or right now in this marketplace, I should say
Kyle Mountsier 30:00
David, thank you so much. We're gonna be seeing you at ASOTU CON. And you'll be I think we've got you planned for like 18 stages, not just your running shoes. No, but we are definitely hosting All Things Used Cars. David will be a part of a lot of other conversations there. And you might get the warm embrace that Michael Cirillo is having. And David, just thanks so much. Thanks so much for joining us on Auto Collabs. Always just a pleasure hanging out and chatting with you. Yeah, it
David Long 30:30
was great to see. I'll see you in less than 30 days. Right.
Kyle Mountsier 30:34
Is that about it? Yes, sir. It's awesome.
David Long 30:37
Great to spend time with you. I'll
Kyle Mountsier 30:38
see you soon. All right, thanks, David. Look, guys, every time, every time that I've ever been on the phone, Zoom call, clubhouse room, anything that I get to hang out with David Long, I get some piece that is additional than than what I knew before, right. And the texture from the texture in the way that he implements and the way that he's careful about the way he approaches people or processes. You know, I get there's probably some things that I can just go yep, that's what David's gonna say the answer to that one, but then he'll give this texture. And he's so poignant and, and careful with his words. I even just love the fact that we would ask him a question. And so many people just kind of like, boom, they hit you. And he would just take that pause, right? And being thoughtful and, and, and present with his words and his thoughts. And man, what an encouraging guy to hang out with.
Paul Daly 31:39
So like, Michael was gonna say this thing, Michael, it's your turn to say something? Oh, he's gonna pull his earbuds out. He's gonna walk away in anger.
Michael Cirillo 32:00
There's 100 million Italians, once you've met one, you've kind of met all?
Paul Daly 32:05
Well, you can say that? Yes, I
Michael Cirillo 32:07
can. What I love about that is especially when you contrast that against social media, the news, all of the things chirping in our ears, where it's like, no, it's speed, speed, speed, speed, speed, you got to go fast, you got to move fast. him not being afraid to take a pause. He pauses so he can accelerate because like, to your point what he hits you with, you're like, Whoa, there's so much in there. And I love that we start we kind of round it out what I believe makes a really powerful operator, there is this human side, this heart, this deep, caring. But there's also the accountability side. And I find especially when you talk to leaders, great leaders, they know how to balance both of those things, those that struggle in leadership, they never hold their teams accountable enough. Their teams never know what the expectations are. That was a huge takeaway for me.
Paul Daly 33:03
Finding someone that can balance it right? Without being without being volatile, I think is a key because like when you have hold both of those things, if your team is asking which 1am I going to get? Right? That would be an unhealthy way to go about it. Right? Because that's, that's the volatile personality that people can't trust. And he does seem to have found the balance. Because everywhere you go and you look at, you know, the different groups he's worked with, with the fact that he has, you know, these bi centers across the country helps people set up the Pandemic of Positivity, and just meant whenever I see him around a group of people, I get NADA, we get to see him around, you know, Dale Pollack and Jonathan Smoke and Tommy Gibbs and all these people. You just watch balance the business side, and the people side as if they belong together. Right, which, which is why it's so rare to see somebody execute on both sides of that, right. But when you do, it stands out. We hope that you take a little bit away from this interview, and maybe even just implement a little bit of it into your business today is whether it's your store, you're an industry partner, because one thing is for sure, the more we can embrace that balance like David does. I think the better the whole industry will be on behalf of Michael Cirillo, Kyle Mountsier, myself. We'll see you next time on Auto Clubs.
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