Cardinale raises profits at two dealerships by changing management style

Publish Date: 
Sep 13, 2013

SEASIDE, Calif. – A new management approach helped Cardinale Automotive Group ride out the recession and increase profits at its two Harley-Davidson dealerships by 285 percent, owner Joe Cardinale says.

The group operates 15 dealerships in California and Arizona, states hard hit by the foreclosure crisis and recession. The downturn cemented Joe Cardinale’s resolve to change the way he ran his business. He held onto principles like developing relationships and maintaining an unwavering minimum target of 20 percent gross profit. But he added sales metrics and reading assignments to his staff development, he told Ward’s Auto.

“We decided at that point that we would no longer be market-driven, we would be a management-driven company,” he said. That management includes encouraging employee volunteerism and personal development.

Each sales associate is required to hold 20 verifiable phone conversations and schedule a minimum of two in-person appointments each day. They are also graded regularly on their performance in CRM, sales and telephone training, and interaction with mystery shoppers.

Unit sales in 2012 at Cardinale’s Harley-Davidson dealerships in Salinas and Monterey reportedly were up 285 percent over the previous five-year average.

Recent reading requirements for employees have included The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino to Ed Young’s Outrageous Contagious Joy to The Art of War by Sun Tzu.

Posted by Holly Wagner