clark's corner Archives - Page 3 of 5 - BodyShop Business
Keep Those Customers Coming Back!

I recently shepherded two far-flung friends through having their vehicles repaired after non-injury collisions, and I’m sad to report that their experiences will not lead them to recommend their body shops to others.

PBE and Body Shops – A Partnership

This year, plan to get some advice from your paint, body and equipment (PBE) vendors to help ensure you return your customers’ damaged vehicles to pre-accident condition.

Comparing the Collision Industry of the Past to Today

I hunted down a bunch of old friends and customers who were still repairing or repainting collision damage every day to get their take on what industry changes have been good and which things were better back in the day. Here’s what they had to say.

Color Trends with the Pros

When the next Acura NSX ($200K) or the next 3T5 Lexus/Toyota or KAB Nissan/Infiniti colors show up at your door, don’t despair. First, catch it on the damage appraisal, and second, get advice from your paint jobber.

Wishful Thinking

One sure way to improve both morale and work flow is to talk about what you need to improve your operations. Start a similar conversation in your shop at the next coffee break. You might be surprised what you can learn.

Paint Without Fumes or Overspray

Teaching people how to paint or measuring coating application success using real paint and real parts is messy and expensive. Wouldn’t it be cool to “paint” without these problems?

Small Business Commitment

I had driven by this one body shop many times. They had sparkling glass on their front doors and a nice customer waiting area. Then I saw the one sign that’s a universal indicator of a truly great body shop: I-CAR Gold Class.

Communication is Critical

Communication in the workplace is a key differentiator of successful businesses. The employees can’t help if they don’t know what’s supposed to happen.

Know the Difference

It takes years before you understand all the lingo and applicable terminology in our industry. There are so many letters! Which one is CFM, and which one is PSI? Is GP the same as GM? Does your DRP suggest PDR?

The “Other Guy’s” Repair

The perfect 100-point collision repair could take a really long time. And while those multiple steps and tasks may be exactly what the car manufacturer recommended, any real-world body shop has to balance the ideal repair with the time allowed.

It’s Classified

After all these years of watching collision repairer licensing efforts, I still think the solution is to do the absolute best job your shop can and let the market punish the poorly run competition.

Explain Yourself

How would you explain the auto body industry and what you do for work to the fellow next to you at the bar? Here’s what I tell him.