A Blueprint for Change

May 18, 2007 by
Filed under: Collision Repair Industry 

Last week I received a call from someone asking my permission to use something I wrote at his association’s next meeting. I, of course, agreed to let him use it, but it had been a while since I had read it myself so I took another look at it. More than a year ago I wrote an outline for a presentation I gave for an auto body association meeting in another state. I titled it, “Taking Back the Collision Repair Industry: A blueprint for reclaiming your business from the insurance companies.” It’s a pretty good outline of talking points and action plans. It’s kind of buried in my website so I checked to see how many people actually found it and downloaded it. Not too many, so I decided to post a link to it here.

Read it, and if you have any thoughts or ideas post them here. I’ll take those ideas and make changes and improvements, and maybe make it easier to find on my website. I know there are people out there who read my yammering but ask themselves, “OK, that’s great, but what can I do to help myself?” Hopefully this will give them the framework they need to save themselves from the control of their pimps.

Blueprint for Change



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6 Comments on A Blueprint for Change

  1. Wade Ebert on Fri, 18th May 2007 7:53 am
  2. two words John.

    very nice.

  3. Johnathan Mixson on Fri, 18th May 2007 9:40 am
  4. John,

    I think you are on the right track here. We have already put most of this into practice in our business, and are seing some positive results from our customers as well as a few of the insurers.
    It has definitely helped us to get more money from the insurers as a whole, even though many of them are committing fraud by cost shifting to meet our bottom line.
    Keep up the good work, and thanks for sharing your thoughts with us.
    Johnathan Mixson, Sr.
    Mixson’s Auto Body, Sales & Rental, LLC
    Hampton, SC

  5. dockter phil on Fri, 18th May 2007 10:21 am
  6. Thank you for allowing me to use your article last week. It was very well recieved and our local group has adopted your blueprint as our battle plan. I am speaking at a national conference this weekend and will put forth your blueprint in my presentation along with my own musings.
    I really do feel that you have hit it and hit it hard with your blueprint for change. I’m glad you wrote it and glad you’ve kindly consented to allowing me to promote the concept in my goings on.

  7. Barrett on Sat, 19th May 2007 5:45 pm
  8. John,
    Once again you have not only got it right, but made a significant contribution to being a part of the solution of what ails this industry.

    We have employed these “Best Business Practices” for over 15 years and we continue to improve our processes and our bottom line, and do so in spite of some insurer’s efforts. Our reputation has continually improved along with our quality and services and we have earned the respect of the good insurers and have actually developed mutually beneficial relationships with a few which serve to be beneficial to our true customers and our team members.

    This should be mandatory reading for every shop owner and manager, and then if they elect to run their business otherwise, well, they will have to try and live (survive) with their decision.

    Thank you for your ongoing efforts to right the industry.

  9. Charlie Barone on Wed, 23rd May 2007 1:59 pm
  10. John,

    The most important point you made—or at least one of them—is “Always write your own estimate and be certain it is accurate and you bill your customer based on that estimate.”

    When shop operators began to abdicate their responsibility to price their own work and allow the third party payers to drive the bus, that is where this industry went wrong.

    Excellent points made!


  11. Howard Smith on Mon, 25th Jun 2007 12:04 pm
  12. Education, the key to change.
    DRP…..I can’t understand why any shop would prefer to cut their own throat with their own knife for the sake of letting everyone see them bleed to death.
    The succes that my company has had in the automobile industry is due to the professional relationships that have been established between the shops and the insurance company. We do not do DRP’s and we do not force A/M or LKQ parts!! We come highly recommended throughout the State! You have some very good points here and if followed, there would be no need for falsifying documents with your software. Keep it honest…..the sleep is better. and one more thing, as long as there are slow days in this industry, you will always have someone willing to sign one of those foolish DRP contracts……..so there is no need to cuss about it.

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