An informal survey of several shops revealed both an optimism about the year ahead and a focus on business growth. Further, training was in the forefront of the minds of several managers contacted.
For example, Jo Ann Nemeth, chief operating officer at Glasspro in Goose Creek, S.C., outlined a new training program for the shop, one led by training manager Jeff Olive, gold medalist in the first Auto Glass Technician Competition in 2005.
“We have a new training program for bringing new trainees on board,” she said January 4. “Every new trainee goes with [Olive] for 2-4 months until they are trained and ready to move on to another supervisor.”
And when it comes to the new year, she said, “training the tech base is our main priority.”
But, she added, her goal is “ … as always, to delight every customer we come into contact with and grow our business.”
Business growth is Job #1 for Leroy Quinn, who manages Binswanger Glass in Pineville, N.C. That’s especially important since he just moved the operation from Gastonia, N.C., to a 4,000-square-foot facility about 30 miles away.
“We just moved to a new store, so our goal is to try and make it successful,” he said. “We’re going to try and get new clients all year.”
Susan Greenhaw at Chip’s Auto Glass in Ft. Pierce, Fla., named her major priority immediately when asked: “To grow the business, that’s for sure.”
Don Hilts, owner of Novus Glass of Eastern Maine in Bangor, Maine, plans on achieving all of the above.
“I want to grow the business, get some new clients and create steady work throughout the year,” he said. “My primary focus is going to be on training and getting new clients.”