Learn from your Managers Mistakes!

Posted: October 3, 2012 in Uncategorized

Past experiences can help us learn from our own mistakes to ensure we do it the proper way next time, regardless if it is a procedure, account follow up etc.  But when you learn from your managers mistakes in the past this can help develop and mold yourself to be a future & or better manager for your team.

I had the luxury of experiencing the most horrible manager I had ever worked for; however I look at it as the best experience ever to help myself as a manager & to not repeat their mistakes.

When running a dealership; managers are to help assist, educate, guide, encourage & help their sales team to become strong & effective reps to sell more cars. What do you do when they are not there to help you move into the right direction….Wing It? Many sales reps find themselves doing just that.

Managers that lack those essential skills are the ones that are afraid if they teach they will be the one replaced with that team member.

I look back and see that this actually happened to that specific manager.  He sure did enjoy watching his YouTube Videos at the desk tower while a sales rep is waiting to get help with closing a deal. Mocking the staff was his big thing. I am not sure how you can mock a team that is working their butts off to make numbers & yes money for him too.

Never had I thrown him under the bus to the owner, which drove him nuts while the owner was in my office with the door closed, he would walk back and forth repeatedly to see if I was still talking to him. Jabbing me with questions after the owner left the office.  Was it right to do that? No but I still stood strong to evaluate him and how I can learn from his mistakes.

That may sound a bit strange however if you actually take a moment to review, observe & quietly critique the manager in your own mind as it can help mold you into the manager you may not realize you are or can be.

Lack of leadership can be a learning tool for you & creating a strong team.

What can you do as a manager to help strengthen your team?

  1. Work with your team! Getting into the field with your team can show your staff you are not afraid of getting dirty.  Jumping in the trenches will show them you are willing to do anything for them as a manager.
  2. Guide your team! Providing the best of guidance is helpful to prevent from making the same mistake twice.  Role play and be patient. Every single person is not the same in learning skills. Being patient will pay off in the long run.
  3. NEVER EVER MOCK YOUR TEAM! Making mocking or crude remarks in front of your team about their team members can provide mixed feelings. Your team does think in the back of their mind “Dang what is he/ she saying about me?” It’s not high school anymore… It’s grown up time! Speak highly of their team members in front of your team.
  4. Teamwork before Play. Yes I know clips of videos can be fun while sitting in front of your computer but ones which are totally irrelevant to the dealership needs to not happen.  If your sales team member is standing there with a customer and you dinking around, yikes, you need a recheck on your priorities.  Jumping to your sales team and assisting their customers will show not just your team but your customers your actions of “Customers come first”

I see many people trying to take management jobs but once they get it they don’t realize the work that is needed & skillsets required to be a successful manager.  Your attitude can only take you so far. Observe first and learn before taking the next step. You will be thankful you did!


All opinions are solely based upon the author only: Jennifer Schrader


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