Landing a role in the shop isn’t too difficult right now, but growing your career and taking it to the next level right now means making a lasting impression on the shop manager.

Take it from me—I’ve hired four techs in the last two months, and probably hundreds since I founded my dealership back in 2013. It’s one of the most important roles, and one of the most overlooked when it comes to the value good techs add to the dealership. I mean REAL money—getting vehicles frontline ready faster drives massive profit growth. And I work with my team to make sure they know that and are rewarded for it.

A positive impression on the used car manager, recon manager, and dealer can lead to career advancement, increased responsibilities, and a better work environment with longevity and reliability.

Here are some key ways technicians can make a lasting impression on their shop manager.

Join the WrenchWay Community

How Technicians Can Impress Shop Managers

1. Master Your Craft

The foundation of any impressive technician lies in their mastery of the craft. Continuously update your knowledge of new technologies, tools, and diagnostic methods. Attend training sessions, workshops, and pursue certifications to stay ahead. Being an expert in your field not only instills confidence in your manager but also contributes to the overall success of the shop.

2. Demonstrate Efficiency

Efficiency is crucial in a busy shop. Showcase your ability to complete tasks promptly without compromising quality. Utilize your time effectively, prioritize tasks, and create a streamlined workflow. Check in with the recon manager or shop manager frequently, communicating on vehicles inside platforms like Carketa. Managers appreciate technicians who can handle multiple responsibilities efficiently, ensuring that the shop operates smoothly and customers are satisfied with the service.

For techs at my dealership, efficiency is so important I actually reward them with spiffs based on productivity. The top performers get bonuses based on their efficiency. Aligning incentives to per vehicle profits will drive results.

3. Communicate Effectively

Clear communication is a vital skill for technicians aiming to impress their shop managers. Keep your manager informed about the progress of repairs, potential issues, and estimated completion times. Provide detailed and accurate information, and be proactive in addressing concerns. Effective communication fosters a collaborative work environment and demonstrates your commitment to the success of the shop.

4. Come With Solutions

Don’t be a problem pointer-outer, be a problem solver. Demonstrate your problem-solving skills by approaching challenges with a systematic and analytical mindset. Managers appreciate technicians who can diagnose and resolve issues efficiently. Showcasing your ability to think critically sets you apart as a valuable asset to the team.

5. Take Initiative & Be Reliable

Proactively take on additional responsibilities and tasks without being asked. Whether it’s assisting colleagues, organizing tools, or suggesting process improvements, taking initiative demonstrates your commitment to the success of the shop. Managers appreciate employees who go above and beyond their job descriptions, showcasing a strong work ethic and dedication to the team’s success.

Recently, I hired a shop manager who was extremely experienced. He recognized a massive hole in our post-sale experience and organized the entire team of techs to make the customer experience massively better. Repeat and referral business is up, our brand reputation and positive reviews are growing, and we’re making more buyers happy. I didn’t hire him to do this—it’s not part of the job description—but he did it because those who rise to management positions in the dealership (and make more money, inevitably) do what needs to be done.

Impressing a shop manager as an automotive technician requires a combination of technical expertise, effective communication, problem-solving skills, and a commitment to safety. By consistently demonstrating these qualities, technicians can create a positive and lasting impression that opens the door to career advancement and professional success. Remember, it’s not just about fixing cars; it’s about contributing to the overall success of the automotive repair shop.

Guest Blog Article By: Jason Berry, President & Co-Founder, Carketa

About Carketa

Carketa is the dealership Decision Intelligence System that helps automotive dealers turn inventory faster to maximize their profits. From acquisition to sale, we make every step easier for the entire team at the dealership. With live market data from more than 20 million vehicle listings plus customizable reconditioning and inspection templates, managing inventory has never been easier. Carketa was founded in 2018 & built by dealers looking for better reconditioning and inspection software to improve their own dealership.