UNDERSTANDING BASIC FINANCIALS is a common challenge faced by newly hired managers, whether you promote from within the dealership or bring in a new person from the outside.
How do you prioritize the immediate training they will need to succeed in their new position? Naturally, priority is given to training specific to their department’s primary job skill sets. The lesser but still important duties are the associated skills they’ll need when all elements of a plan are considered.
Two of the primary responsibilities of managers are to create and manage budgets. Outside of our accounting departments, accounting or financial training is rare for the people we normally have running a dealer’s sales, parts, or service departments. In addition to the department-related skills that earned them the position in management, new managers will require financial management skills. Unfortunately, our industry has relied mainly on the “learning through osmosis” method to convey that knowledge.
It’s the only way to explain what we encounter when we survey middle managers about their level of financial understanding at any of the dealer training courses offered by the association’s Dealer Institute. Typically, the level of understanding on a scale of zero to 5, with five being the best, averages between a 1 and 2. This is not their fault.
WEDA’s Dealer Institute offers great introductory financial training as part of its Dealer Management training program. In the meantime, a rudimentary internal training session could pay big dividends.
Western Equipment Dealer Magazine Spring 2019 Issue
By Gord Thompson