Shop Look: Vermont Quick Lube of Barre, Vt.
SHOP STATS: Vermont Quick Lube Location: Barre, Vt. Manager: Craig Premont Average Car Count: 25 Staff Size: 6 Shop Size: 4 bays Average ticket: $90 (includes inspections, mechanical repair)
Sitting along the main drag in the small town of Barre, Vermont Quick Lube is a shop that likes to set people at ease.
“Our guest experience and our customer satisfaction is our culture here,” says shop manager Craig Premont. ”We find different ways to make it fun, to make us stand out from other quick lubes.”
Carnations and car washes are given on Ladies’ Day Wednesdays. There are games, occasionally, and even free lunches for customers. Premont says that’s a great customer recruitment tool.
All that is why Premont says the shop is a local staple. The business started as a family-run enterprise and, after changing hands in 2009, it still remains in local hands. The current owners, John Lyon and family, also runs the Harley Davidson store across the street.
The long, shallow A-framed building includes two quick lube bays with pits, two lift bays for inspections and repairs and a car wash. Inside, there are spacious bays for techs to do their work.
The building had some recent upgrades, too.
“We completely installed an up to date epoxy floor,” Premont says. “We’ve painted, we had the driveway sealed and relined. The employees have new, matching uniforms. We have a dress code to make everybody look crisp and professional.”
The floor, painted safety blue, has made a big difference compared to the old, concrete surface.
But even a fresh coat of paint makes a big difference for customers who might have gotten used to the building’s former look. Premont says it’s great to see customer reactions.
“One thing that I really appreciate about the building is that it’s been here for a long time, so people know it,” he says. “It’s upgraded. It looks amazing. It’s awesome to hear that your hard work pays off.”
Set an Example
Premont is focused on keeping an exemplary shop area, particularly because customers wait in their vehicles during service.
“It’s really important for us to keep everything open and clean,” he says. “When a customer comes in I want us to have a very clean environment.”
Through the ownership change and some renovations, Premont says that he’s glad the pits remained in place.
“We like that we still have the pit system,” he says. It certainly makes it easier. It’s much faster, and we’re able to stick with the ways that the Pelletiers (original owners) had it, which is nice.”
Under Lyon family ownership, Premont says they continue to support the community that supports the shop.