It may seem obvious, but General Motors employees make for some very difficult car buying customers. WardsAuto sat down with Mike Boguth, vice president and dealer-operator for Hamilton Chevrolet.
Hamilton Chevrolet sits just outside of the famed GM Warren Tech Center, and Boguth stated the employees bring unique challenges to the sales force.
“There’s no argument this is an excellent market area. The challenge is that the GM employee team is very demanding,” he said in an interview.
“They know how the cars have been engineered and how they’re supposed to work, and when they’re not working that way they’re very demanding in the service department. Our goal has always been to rise to the level that’s needed to take care of their complaints. That sometimes poses a challenge because many employees ‘know somebody.'”
Not only do the employees know the vehicles like the back of their hand, but employee discounts run rampant. But, Boguth manages. He stated 65-percent of GM employees use some sort of discount when they come into his store to purchase a vehicle.
“It’s a lower margin than a non-GM-employee-discount sale would be. We’ve set up our expense structure knowing what that margin is going to be and we’ve succeeded in being profitable throughout our 60-year history.”
Still, Hamilton Chevrolet thrives, as it has since it opened its doors all the way back in 1956.