Car Dealerships and Buying 101 at Kiwanis

Monday Morning
We had 19 members at Monday’s meeting to hear about Holiday Automotive from our own member, Pat Friedel. A “Happy Buck” was offered by Gary Miller for being back from vacation to Puerto Vallarta and also because he met a Mexican Kiwanian while in Mexico. Ron Seidl was the 50/50 Raffle winner, and he drew the Nine of Clubs. Not a winner so the pot continues to grow. Next week’s drawing will have 42 cards with nine pay cards and a pot of at least $131. Good luck!

Holiday Automotive – Pat Friedel
Pat Friedel was our program on Monday morning and he came to talk about his employer, Holiday Automotive Group. Pat has been with Holiday for three years after working for a number of years at the Service Motors Ford dealership. Shortly after Pat left Service Motors, Holiday acquired the Ford product line and Pat found himself selling Ford products again, only in a different location. Pat provided a little behind the scenes insight into how Holiday was able to get the Ford dealership. Pat also noted that Mazda doesn’t like being in the same building as another product line so Holiday will be building a new Mazda building further to the north on Rolling Meadow Drive. Pat also talked about Mike Shannon’s philosophy on running a customer friendly auto dealership. None of the sales associates are commissioned but rather all the sales associates are salaried with bonuses paid based on sales volumes and client satisfaction scores. Pat noted that the national average for cars sold by sales associates is 8-10 cars per month and at Holiday Automotive they sell almost double that average on a monthly basis. Holiday moved to “Simplified Buying” about 21–22 years ago that made the car buying experience more about outstanding service since the price was already a given. According to Pat, Holiday sold 434 cars last month and has had a number of months over the past several years when they sold over 500 cars per month. He also talked about how customers come to the dealership fully armed with internet printouts to find the best deal for the car(s) that they’re interested in. The one variable that is always a challenge is determining the trade in value on a car deal. Pat finished his talk by telling us how generous Mike Shannon is to our community. We are very lucky to have Holiday as part of Fond du Lac for a lot of reasons.