One of the key areas that dealers expect an agent to help with is the training of the F&I team. While the dealership may be utilizing training either online or from other sources, the agent who adds to that sets themselves apart from the competition that will eventually be knocking on the door. Conducting a monthly F&I meeting provides the agent with great opportunities to have direct input to the process and practices used in the F&I office at a level not available in any other venue.
Let’s look at three ingredients to build into each meeting.1. Have a specific agenda. Gather information from the F&I managers and check production levels to determine a specific product or part of the process that everyone agrees could see improvement. When you decide the agenda for the next meeting and provide lead time to prepare, everyone can search out articles, information, and research to provide valuable input for the upcoming meeting.
The most important facet of every meeting is to assure that it is interactive, and everyone participates. Having a monthly meeting where everyone is expected to research and bring information to share to the meeting will provide the most productive agenda that will help influence growth and change.2. Listen and practice with them. The two factors that have provided me the most insight on how to help F&I managers have been the willingness to listen to their challenges and struggles and then practice with them to work on solutions. Ask for the most challenging issues they are facing and listen to learn.
Other F&I managers may have solutions that are working for them. Ask them to demonstrate this in a role-playing session to show what the solution looks and sounds like. The role-play should last only 10 to 15 minutes; however, it could be the best-spent time of the meeting.3. Leave them with a challenge. End each meeting with an action item for your trainees to complete or an objective to shoot for. Always have a handout to leave with them, whether a recent article or third-party research that validates the need for a product. They will know you are working to help them and they as well as the dealer will know you are providing more than the average agent.
I shared a recent article concerning the computer technology behind self-driving cars in a recent meeting. A seasoned F&I manager called me several weeks later and said they had sold seven of the last 10 customers that originally said “No” to a service contract by using that piece of information. That has built more value in my interaction with them than most other efforts. It helped them help more customers. That is success!
When you invest the time to provide a valuable monthly F&I meeting for your team you will build more success for the dealership, more protection for their customers, and more profit for yourself. Everybody wins!
I look forward to seeing you on my next post. Visit www.go-reahard.com to learn more about how we can help you help more customers. Also feel free to contact me. Exchanging ideas that get results is my passion!