How GM Brad Wise adapted his hiring process for a post-pandemic world

Now that most of the industry has settled into remote working or returned to the office, recruitment has been a priority to fill vacancies that may have become vacant along the way. Today on Inside Automotive, we discuss how to recruit and retain top talent at your dealership with Brad Wise, General Manager of Ferman Chevrolet Mazda.

In terms of skills, Wise says he’s looking for salespeople who are social media savvy and can create dealership-related content on their personal platforms. In fact, Wise and his team discussed hiring content creators and then training them to become salespeople. It’s one of the most important skills that’s changed in the past few years, Wise says.

“What we’re trying to do is produce massive amounts of outgoing, meaningful, and creative activity all day long,” says Wise.

From his perspective, Wise’s ideal candidate is an underrated superstar in their current store. This is the type of employee Wise wants to meet, he adds. Ferman Chevrolet Mazda has made great strides in branding and is positioning itself as one of the best places to work in automotive retail.

Once you’ve brought the best talent to your dealership, you need to retain them. Consistent and valuable training is key to retention. Wise says Ferman Chevrolet Mazda holds training sessions every day beginning at 8:30 a.m. He explains that many training courses have nothing to do with selling cars. The training aims to become better people and to grow personally while growing professionally.

To recruit high performers into your dealership, Wise recommends looking at restaurant, bar and hotel staff. These candidates are accustomed to standing up, working hard and generally have great interpersonal skills. Pay attention to the excellent service you get in restaurants or bars and have business cards handy if the occasion arises.

When it comes to filling open leadership positions, Wise takes an unorthodox approach. He says a good salesperson is not necessarily a good manager. A good manager is a motivator, leader, organizer, and treats people consistently, Wise says.

For more from Brad Wise, General Manager of Ferman Chevrolet Mazda, watch our full interview above.


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