Don explains the ins and outs of running a successful dealership. While dealerships are often considered in a negative light, they are in the business of making money and are pretty efficient at doing so. Don provides valuable insight about the methods and metrics they use to gauge success and make decisions. They hold weekly status meetings and utilize software to track and delegate every aspect of the business. Listen in to gain knowledge about ways that you can improve operations at your shop!
Don Herring Jr. started his automotive career at 12 when he began washing cars at a dealership. During high school, he moved up to work in the parts department. He went off to college thinking he was going to become a doctor, then changed plans with the hopes of entering the air force. Unfortunately, his timing coincided with the end of the cold war and his aspirations of entering the air force diminished. So he again turned his attention to the automotive industry. He was making very good money being a car salesman during college and moved back to Dallas to join the family dealership. By 2005, his family had 3 dealerships and Don Herring Jr was in charge of the third dealership. He survived the 2008 economic turndown and 2015 has been their best year since then.
In this episode, we go down a slightly different path and interview a smaller shop owner to get his perspective on running a performance shop.
Justin Miller started working as a dealer tech at age 17in Raleigh, NC. He began doing work and selling parts online in his free time. Justin has worked hard to grow his business with an initial investment of his own $1200. He now rents a 4200 sq ft building with a dyno and several lifts. And he employees 1 full time technician and a receptionist.
In the first Do It For A Living roundtable discussion, we discuss the idea of certifying shops, tuners, and engine builders to work on customer cars. Kevin Dubois assumes the role of a shop owner. Ben Strader takes on the task from an education standpoint. And Todd Earsley will act as a consumer.
The idea is to bring a sense of legitimacy into an otherwise fragmented market. Think of something like ASE certification for mechanics, or Better Business Bureau for businesses, or even Master Plumber certification.
We go over topics such as: Does the industry need some sort of standard? What might the qualifications be to become a “Certified Shop/Tuner/Engine Builder?” Who would enforce this standard? How would this benefit the consumer? And many more!
David Localio was fortunate enough to have a family who fully supported his addiction to horsepower! He bought his first car in 6th grade. (That’s correct. 6th grade!) His first experience with turbos came when he got ahold of a Buick Grand National and spent all of high school modifying it into the 10’s. He got a job at a local repair shop and realized that service work just wasn’t for him. So he enrolled in the School of Automotive Machinist (SAM) and ended up working there as well. He then went on to be involved with a ton of influential racers and engine builders over the years. He eventually began working on import motors because he saw a void in the market. This was the official beginning of Headgames Motorworks.
David was hit really hard by the financial crisis in 2008 and barely made it out still in business. He was forced to let most of his people go and got several months behind on his bills which has wreaked havoc on his credit. But he toughed it out, worked hard, and emerged stronger than ever! Now he works out of a 5000 square foot building with several employees and cranks out some of the best heads in the market.
Andrew Brilliant was gracious enough to continue to talk with us about aerodynamics. Tune in to this special Bonus Episode to hear more details about what he can do to improve aerodynamics on your car.
Andrew grew up in LA loving cars and knowing he wanted to be involved in racing. He attended Berkeley where he got his Mechanical Engineering degree. During his first job as a software engineer, he started helping the owner of the company who happened to have a couple race cars. This was his first experience with a racing team.
This let to Andrew creating simulations to determine gear rations and then expanded it to aero simulations. He continued to get more and more opportunities with racing teams and decided to leave the software company. He discovered that aerodynamics was that “thing” that he wanted to do for the rest of his career. This is when he created AMB-Aero. The chips started to fall into place and he moved to Japan where all the most advanced aero cars were racing.
He has worked on some very famous Time Attack cars from all over the world. And he is available to visit your team and discuss ways to improve the aerodynamics of your race car…without breaking the bank. But if you want to go all out, he is the best in the business and his car’s lap times can prove it!