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Women in Automotive January 27, 2008

Posted by ratemyrepairshop in Automotive, Car shops.
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The idea of a woman working in an auto repair shop has become somewhat of a norm in todays society.  But, you would be amazed at how thick of a skin a woman needs to have in this environment.  If you are a woman planning on starting a career as a Service Advisor, here are some of the things you will have to handle.

1. When you answer the phone be prepared to be mistaken as the receptionist and not a Service Advisor.  Also, there is a certain feeling of disappointment you hear in the customers voice when you explain who you are. (this only happens approx. 1 in 100 calls)

2. Some customers will blatantly ask to speak to a man.

3. When you explain a repair to a customer there is the odd person who will not believe you.  Unfortunately it will take a “male” service advisor saying the very same thing to get them to listen.

4. Know your stuff.  Auto techs will test you out.  If you know your way around a car you will gain their respect. 

Don’t think any of these things are a daily occurrence.  I am a man who cannot speak from a woman’s point of view but, I would say it probably happens at least 1 time every month (possibly more).

There are a lot of positives to think about if you are a woman entering a career as a Service Advisor.  There are many customers, both female and male, who feel more comfortable talking to a woman.  You may have to prove yourself first, but, once you gain their respect, you will have a customer for a lifetime.


Happy, Loyal, Auto Shop Customers January 19, 2008

Posted by ratemyrepairshop in Automotive, Car shops.
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I would say 75-80% of the people who come into an auto shop are there out of necessity, not by choice.  Car problems are never planned. It’s not enjoyable to know that you are going to have to pay a bill just to get your vehicle back into original working condition.  But, when you are treated properly, with fairness, it is easier to handle the bill and accept it.  The way an auto shop treats its customers is how brand loyalty is built.

It may shock you but, when I was working at an auto shop, we had people almost on a  weekly basis bringing us donuts, pastries and other gifts.  We had earned their respect, and they were grateful.  We let them know that when something went wrong on their vehicle, they could turn to us. 

Sometimes, when you work in an industry with a low public opinion, it is easier to impress.  Something as simple as changing a light bulb for free would even get people offering us tips.  There are plenty of areas where an auto shop can take initiative and go the extra mile.  The most crucial element in building happy and loyal customers is to treat people with FAIRNESS. 

Do all Auto Repair Shops try to Rip People Off? January 7, 2008

Posted by ratemyrepairshop in Automotive, Car shops.
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Depends on who you talk to.  There are no shortages of negative reports and stories on the net about people who have been treated unfairly at a shop. But, there are countless amounts of outstanding shops in the industry. 

The difficulty in repairing cars is that the causes are not always clear cut.  Unfortunately, it can take time to correctly find a particular problem, and it can be more than just one part causing an issue.  For instance, most electrical problems are caused by many parts along the same wiring route.  You can’t find out for sure until you replace each part as you go along. 

The majority of time, a person who feels that they were ripped off was probably not contacted properly by the shop.  It comes down to a lack of communication, and this is where problems occur.  Most shops are now aware that word of mouth can either build their business or destroy it.

Overall this is why we have started www.Ratemyrepairshop.com. Here you are able to rate your auto shop. Now we will be able to screen out the good from the bad.  With your help, other people will be able to find out which shops are the best around.

Do Women get Ripped off at Auto Repair Shops? December 9, 2007

Posted by ratemyrepairshop in Automotive.
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Most people do not realize it but, 65% of auto repair shop customers are women.  I have worked in 2 different auto shops over the course of 6 years.  I soon realized that the women coming to the shop often felt uncomfortable.  They felt that if they didn’t understand how an engine or transmission worked they would be treated unfairly.  But, people are people.  It depends entirely on which shop you go to, not your gender.  If you go to a shop where they could care less about their integrity and more about the bottom line, then you may be in for a large bill.  Again, even if a man were to go to a shop like this and didn’t know very much about automotive, he would probably be overcharged as well.

The best thing to do is, find a respectful shop that treats their customers with care.  I am proud to say that both of the shops I worked at never took advantage of women or men.  I was taught that a Service Advisor’s job is to help everyone with their automotive questions.  I don’t believe it matters which gender you are, but, if you don’t know very much about your vehicle, then you had better make sure you are going to a reputable shop. 

That is why www.ratemyrepairshop.com  was launched.  We want to give people the ability to find the best auto repair shops in their area.