We often have potential new vendors approach us, but we already use several. How many parts vendors is a reasonable number to use without going crazy trying to keep track of all of them? How many do you use at your business?
"You always want the best part at the best price for your customer, right? Keeping track of the sale and the part installed. The key: good bookkeeping skills. I have about a half-dozen vendors. Because of the sales volume I do with them, they reciprocate by offering great service and going above and beyond when we need their help with a special item. It's all about customer service and the relationships it forges—the vendor, your shop and the consumer."
This past month all I have seen are tool promotions for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer cause. How much money did the cancer group get when I purchased the special "pink" tool package?
"What a great cause! Yes. Most tool companies—among thousands of other big-name corporations—had been promoting breast cancer awareness, in October. Depending upon the particular tool company's agreement with the Komen program, determines the donation amount. Curious? Ask your tool guy for their company's policy on the cancer program."
ASE-certified technician Pam Oakes is the owner of Pam's Motor City Auto & Tire Center, an award-winning automotive service business in Fort Myers, Fla. She also is the author of the book series Car Care for the Clueless and hosts a weekly radio talk show by the same name on CBS Radio's The Sky and CoachMeRadio. And yes, she still "turns wrenches.