As the general manager of a car dealership, it’s your job to make sure that you’re running a tight ship. That doesn’t mean that you have to have your thumb in everyone’s pie. Your employees shouldn’t feel as though you’re micromanaging them, and they shouldn’t flinch when they see you coming. However, that doesn’t mean you should be hands-off with your dealership. You really need to be there and be present in your store without hovering over every little thing. Here are some management tips that will make you money and create a better working environment for all of your staff.

Be There Every Day

With very few exceptions, you should be the first one in the door in the morning and the last one to leave in the evening. When your employees are sweating, you should be, too. If it’s rained, and everyone’s out on the lot towel-drying vehicles, grab a rag because you need to be out there, too. When your employees see that you care enough to get your hands dirty, they’ll want to get their hands dirty for you.

Lead with the Carrot, Not the Whip

When any of your team members has done something exceptional, you need to recognize it. Give incentives for great performance. Let everyone know whose idea that amazing promotional campaign was. If you have a record-breaking sales weekend, get a catered lunch for everyone the next weekend or add a little bonus to everyone’s next paycheck. You get more bees with honey than vinegar, and your sales and service people will love this kind of honey.

Watch Customer Interaction

Don’t hover over anyone, but pay attention to your sales team and how they interact with customers. If you see a lot of hostility, arguing, or otherwise negative interactions, you might want to have a staff meeting to inspire more positive sales tactics over all. If you notice these things in just one or two employees, talk to them individually and privately. You never want to air dirty laundry in public.

Support Your Staff

The customer is always right, but sometimes the customer really isn’t. If you get a bad review online, or you have a customer who just can’t be pleased, don’t throw your staff under the bus. Take responsibility, apologize for any shortcomings, and try to offer something to make the situation better. If the customer can’t be appeased, let them go. You can’t win ‘em all. But, with these tips, you can win most of them!