Episode Description

In this week’s episode of Beyond the Wrench, we are joined by Rachel James, Financial Advisor, Northwestern Mutual. We are discussing everything it takes to become a great shop. We are covering topics including generational gaps in the industry, common road bumps in a shop, looking at the big picture, tool investment, and much more!

Watch the Full Episode

How to Help Shops Become Better Businesses

  • Start by looking at the big picture of the shop.
  • Ask technicians, “What do you want most?”
  • No matter how much you plan, things will go wrong. It’s all about having a plan and strategy to get you through those hard times.

Common Road Bumps in Running a Shop

  • The best of the best shops are looking at their business daily.
  • Shop owners aren’t always working in the shop. They are observing and trying to improve their processes.
  • It’s all about the little details. Success is a natural consequence of doing the basics.
  • Things change, and as your business grows, more problems arise. You need to have a plan in place.

Helping Shops Look at the Big Picture

  • Create a vision with goals. Ask yourself, “Where do I see myself in 5-10 years?”
  • Create an environment where change is welcome.
  • You have to be creative in order to create an environment younger people are going to want to get into.
  • How it’s always been is not necessarily how it has to be.
  • Take a look at what’s working and what’s not working. Find the bottlenecks, and change the environment.

Tool Investment

  • Find an experienced technician to get advice from.
  • You’ll lose sockets all the time. Don’t buy the most expensive ones.
  • Pick and choose where you want to invest in your tools. Some items you’ll want to spend more money on, and others you can buy cheaper.
  • Spend the money on the tools you’re going to use the most, and really take care of them.
  • You don’t need every tool. Know your role and buy the appropriate tools that will allow you to succeed.

Create a Shop Environment That Attracts Younger People

Show Notes


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About Our Host:

Jay Goninen
Co- Founder & President, WrenchWay
jayg@wrenchway.com | 608.716.2122

About Our Guest:

Rachel James
Financial Advisor, Northwestern Mutual

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