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The Most Successful Auto Repair Shop Owners CONTRIBUTE!


Contribute by Rick White, President, 180BIZ

You're going to notice I'm not in my office today. I'm outside and it's a great day for today's conversation. I want to show you where I am at the moment. I'll do a little panoramic here with my phone.

This is an absolutely beautiful park here in Harrisonburg, Virginia, and for the next four days is going to be inundated with about a hundred cub scouts. This is our day camp and it is a lot of fun. This is my fifth year doing it.  So what I'm here to do today is to talk to you about it. By the end of the day, this pavilion is going to be set up for the cub's favorite part of day camp, which is the archery and BB gun range. I am the range (safety) officer. I will get this all set up today for the kids to learn how to safely operate rifles as well as a bow and arrow. And let's face it, that's what everyone joins scouts for, right? 

So all of this, the reason I'm talking to you today from here is that I want to use the word CONTRIBUTE. I think it is so important for us as business owners to not just take from our communities. It's important to be able to give back to our communities as well.  Don't just write a check, that's too easy.  Here's what I want you to do. Find something that you're passionate about and get involved so that people know who you are. You can go there with a uniform on if you want, a nice polo shirt or something like that. I don't, we have a scout shirt that we wear here, but the whole idea here is to give back.

I have to tell you something. One of the greatest things that you can do for yourself is to give to others. The more you give to others, the more it's going to fill you up, the more you're going to feel better. And I know we're busy and we've got a lot of stuff and you’ve got a family. Trust me.  I flew Friday to Arizona, taught all day Saturday, and was at the airport at three o'clock in the morning so that I could be back here today. You can't cash excuses. You can't do anything with excuses. Find something you're passionate about and get involved.

I was involved with Junior Achievement. I've been involved in the Boy Scout Program for most of my adult life.  I've gotten involved with other groups and activities that are community-oriented which means something to me. Now people get to see my passion and my joy and it connects and it gives them a chance to get to know, like, and trust me. I want you to join and do these things because you want to and because you want to make a difference. The byproduct will be more business. It will make a difference in your business. It will create positive word of mouth buzz. It will get more customers in your door. Get involved.

Today, it's all about face time. Forget about mailing postcards to get to know people. Just get in front of them. That's all it takes. Do you know how many clients I had because of scouts? It was about 60 or 70 easy without even adding it up.  It was just because they got to know me.

So the lesson for you today is to find out what you love to do. Maybe it's something you want to do with your kids or your grandkids. Now, I have to be honest with you. I'm involved in cub scouts right now because of my grandson, Brandon. We will be here all week from 7:30 am until 4:30 pm. I will be teaching these kids how to handle firearms safely. I think that's so cool.

Just to be in the outdoors like this is amazing. There's a pool down the hill where I can hear the kids playing. I just love it. Harrisonburg does such a great job with the parks.

Please stop and think about how you can CONTRIBUTE to the people that are basically paying you. How can you give back? It'll be amazing. You can set up a volunteer day or a volunteer week where everyone in your business participates. Close the shop for the day or the week and everyone volunteers for that time period. And guess what owners? You pay them for it because they don't need to worry about the money. You let them as a group decide what the volunteer activity will be. Maybe it's Habitat for Humanity. Maybe it's a cleanup day. Maybe it's something you do on Saturdays. Maybe you bring them out afterward to a nice lunch or dinner. Just have a great time with it.  You can bring them to go-cart racing or mini-golf or something like that afterward. Do something fun but do something for the community. And the more involved you get, the more engaged your staff will get. You will hold your head up a little bit higher. You're not just one of those guys that are sucking the life out of the community. You're there to be part of it.

Put anything you do on the front page of your website because millennials want to support businesses that are community-oriented. 

Take care, God bless.