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Don't lose sight of business basics in this world of change

Wednesday, March 28, 2018 - 07:00
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This is new to me. I’ve been asked to write a column, starting this issue, about what is important, impactful and what is happening in the world of MSOs. Let me think…there’s the changing rate of consolidation, increased risk of litigation and thus increased importance of factory repair procedures thanks to new technologies and the John Eagle Collision case; scans, calibrations, changing nature of insurance relationships, changing nature of OEM relationships and shop certification, rising repair costs, changing repair procedures thanks to new substrates and construction complexity, increasing insurance premiums, technician shortages and thus rising cost of labor, autonomous vehicles, telematics, changing consumer outlook on transportation, increased accident frequency, predictions of decreased accident frequency, a growing economy, changing regulatory outlook, changing training needs, increasingly larger amounts of data to deal with, changing tax structure, changing claim handling and settlement procedures, increased concerns over security, decreased amount of personal privacy, changing needs of management and leadership, and more. Obviously change is the common theme among all of these. And we won’t run out of topics. 

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In the midst of all this change, I often have to remind myself to not lose sight of the basics. Hiring the best staff possible, a great work culture, exceptional customer service, ample communication, shop safety, efficient and consistent process, financial stability, quality workmanship, leadership, and training continue to be among those key basics that we build our businesses upon. 

At the same time, all the changes around us cannot be ignored but instead must be addressed. If we address them in order and by priority, it becomes less overwhelming. I believe our highest priority should be the safety and security of our customers closely followed by the protection of our businesses and our staff.

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