When the COVID-19 vaccine was first made available in the U.S., many distribution points were quickly overwhelmed by throngs of people who wanted to receive it. Although there was nothing funny about the situation, there was a meme that circulated on social media that addressed the situation in a humorous way.
The graphic on Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites suggested that whoever designed the highly efficient drive-through system at Chick-fil-A should be in charge of figuring out how to distribute the vaccine. The obvious point was that the same process being used to serve chicken sandwiches to hundreds of hungry people every day at noon might work when it came to delivering vaccines, too.
That light-hearted look at how a process used in one industry could help another made us think about the work we do in the auto dealership and auto finance sectors. We wondered what other businesses might be doing that could help those of us in auto-related industries.
Then, in June, we saw an article in Automotive News that explained how someone’s trip to the dentist inspired an idea for a new service-department communications tool for auto dealers.1 It said the new platform featured “two-way texting, video inspection and the ability for customers to approve, decline, finance and pay for recommended repairs, provide reviews and get vehicles appraised.”
Who would have thought that knowing how to serve chicken could help us deal with a healthcare crisis or going to the dentist could lift service-department customer satisfaction scores? It underscores we can all learn a lot from each other if we only take time to ask the right questions and listen for the answers.
As we look for more and better ways to take care of our customers who are in the market for new vehicles, what lessons can we learn from businesses in other segments of the economy? What can we borrow from the food service, healthcare, technology or manufacturing industries that can help us be more efficient and effective?
As we’ve seen time and time again throughout history, sometimes all it takes is seeing a spark of an idea somewhere else and bringing it home to your own organization to make a measurable difference. You just have to believe that the answers are out there and remember to look for them. You never know what you might find – even at the dentist!
1 Shine, D. (June 7, 2021). How a trip to the dentist inspired a service drive communications platform. Automotive News. Retrieved from: https://www.autonews.com/fixed-ops-journal/how-trip-dentist-inspired-service-drive-communications-platform
Exeter Finance LLC is a non-prime auto finance company headquartered in Irving, Texas. The company partners with franchised and independent auto dealers throughout the country to make car ownership a reality for consumers. For more information, call our Dealer Operations Group at 1-855-4EXETER (855-439-3837).