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Why Do You Do What You Do?

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Now, this story is going to sound like it’s set up for operators of a quick lube business, but it's actually a good read for anyone that wants to build a sustainable culture in their shops. 

Many of you may already have some of these already, and some of you have never even thought about it. There is a simple set of standards that all of us have and they are your core values.

Your company’s core values are important to your brand identity. A positive culture has significant benefits, improving productivity and profit margins along with employee morale and retention. Defining your company’s core values is a good first step toward creating a positive culture.

I want to introduce the core values that I have implemented in my business and that have helped light a spark among our teams. These five core values are what we look for in a new hire and in making a retention decision. They are table stakes that we need to have in all our locations to continue to grow and succeed.



Competitive people keep the company on its toes. When you have people competing to find out who’s best, the whole team gets motivated. This motivation turns into sales and customer service. This is not intended to be used as a tactic to allow pressure selling or unethical behavior.

We constantly run little competitions and one offs to keep that competitive fire going. Think about tracking your team’s service advisor KPIs and using high performers as trainers at your next meeting.


Customer Focus

Customers are our lifeblood. Without them, we do not survive. We work on other people’s investments. We need people who will have the utmost respect for our customers and their property. We look for people that understand this responsibility at all levels of the business. 

How many of you have an employee that sighs every time a car comes up late in the day? Do you have an advisor that makes snide little comments when a customer will not buy something more than a simple oil change? 

Remember that even that simple oil change is a customer and no matter what they spend, they are as valuable as any other.


No-Excuses Attitude

We succeed or fail as a team. We need people who will get the job done and fix (or acknowledge) mistakes with no excuses. When something is too hard, how many of you hear people try to make up something silly to get out of it?

We have all had a tech before that looks at the world in a glass house. They try to justify their weakness by pointing you in the direction of others rather than just taking it on the chin. Find someone that is willing to do whatever it takes, ethically, to get the job done. 


Continuous Learning

Hire people who want to learn.

We should not be hiring for bodies. We should be hiring people who we think could move up in the company. We look for people who want to better themselves in more ways than just hard work. We use Coursera for some exceptional leadership to further their education and business understanding. Isn’t it worth $30.00 a month to build well rounded managers? 


Honesty and Integrity

This is the most important of our core values. There needs to be trust in this business. Managers need to trust and rely on their crew. Customers need to trust us with their property. If we do not think we can trust someone, they should not be working for us. If there happens to be an unethical issue, you need to act. Keeping that person on your team undermines the basis of this core value.



These are my core values. What do you think? Do some of these look like ideals that you would want in your teams? What other values do you need to see? Use that magic Google tool and look up “examples of core values,” and you will see hundreds. Don’t go overboard. You want to set four to five as your base.

This is how we go to business. Your teams need to know these and understand them. If you can get this buy in across the board, the sky is your limit as to what you can accomplish.

If you need any help on building a mission statement or deciding whether a combination of care values is realistic, feel free to reach out and we can have a conversation. In the end, only you know what you expect in your teams and that goes from ownership down to store management. Set your expectations and build your base from there!

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