Are You A Change Agent?

The retail sector has been getting hammered lately. I’m not talking about just our segment, but the entire retail sector, especially in recreation industries like golf, camping, cycling, you name it and there’s a retail chain that has shut its doors recently.

The retail sector has been getting hammered lately. I’m not talking about just our segment, but the entire retail sector, especially in recreation industries like golf, camping, cycling, you name it and there’s a retail chain that has shut its doors recently. Millions, if not billions, have been lost or shifted to the new reality in the marketplace that none of us really want to admit is happening. Amazon.


Remember when we all feared that Wal-Mart would take over the world? That seems quaint now compared to what Amazon is doing. It is brilliant how they’ve taken over almost all corners of the retail sector. But there’s one area where I think powersports dealers still have an advantage and that is with creating memories and experiences… that and you still can’t buy a new motorcycle on the internet.

What is happening today is a major shift in consumerism. CHANGE with big giant capital letters! So what can you do about it? Everyone working in this industry from ownership to the clean up crew need to become agents of change. No small task.

Do you have the necessary skillset to manage and lead change in your company? I recently took part in a management seminar that studied this topic and it was enlightening. I thought I was a fairly open-minded person but when it came down to how I deal with change, it was not what I expected. I straddled the middle area of the rating scale where one is more likely to be a dissenter than an adopter of change. Many of us get set in our ways and are reluctant to do things differently than what has worked for us in the past. But today’s reality in retail means we need to break the norm and be open to doing many new things (within the industry,
of course!).

Speaking of changes, BMW dealers were below average five years ago in Pied Piper’s Prospect Satisfaction Index (PSI) survey, but this year they are the top ranked OEM. Pied Piper President Fran O’Hagan says dealerships need to accept that the world has changed, and their behavior must change, too. Today many customers “meet” a dealership for the first time through a dealer’s website. “No dealership would lock up the store and leave for the evening with a customer walking around inside. They need to follow the same approach with customers who make contact through the dealership website…” Bottom line is you need to treat your internet customers like you would your walk-in customers. Don’t leave a potential customer hanging on your website without a response. Treat them like a real customer because that’s your best chance to get them in your real showroom.

Greek philosopher Heraclitus was known for his doctrine of change being central to the universe. He said “nothing stands still,” and “you could never step twice into the same river.” I think if he were alive today, he’d be an adventure rider and quite possibly a successful powersports dealer.

You May Also Like

The Future of Buying: Navigating Powersport Consumer Trends

Insights into a study on the future of powersport shopping.

Future of Buying Study

In late summer/early fall of 2023, Rollick conducted a "Future of Buying" study to understand consumer shopping behaviors in the outdoor recreation space, receiving feedback from nearly 27,000 participants. 

The study, which had an impressive response rate of up to 30% in some cases, was enabled through collaboration with 27 Rollick clients across the powersports, RV and marine industries. The findings aim to communicate how consumers interact with brands and dealers and the technologies utilized during their shopping experience.

Racer and Dealer Sponsorship Must Be a Two-Way Street

You’re better to have no racers than the wrong racers.

How to Respond to Digital Leads

Timing, presence and tools are all critical.

Digital leads
How to Attract, Retain and Develop Talent

This recorded AIMExpo education track features a panel of dealers discussing their hiring and retention practices.

MPN talent panel, AIMExpo 2024
How to Grow and Excel in Digital Retailing

This recorded AIMExpo education track discusses the world of digital retailing and why you need to be there.

MPN Digital retailing panel, AIMExpo 2024

Other Posts

BMW Motorrad Presents the Automated Shift Assistant

Making riding simpler and more comfortable.

Automated Shift Assistant
Indian Motorcycle Dealers Ranked Highest in 2024 Pied Piper Internet Lead Effectiveness Study

The industry’s average performance declined; increased use of texting was offset by lower speed and quality of email and phone responses.

Accepting the trophy from Pied Piper CEO Fran O’Hagan (center) were Joel Harmon, Polaris vice president, on-road sales and market development (left) and Aaron Jax, vice president, Indian Motorcycle (right).
NPA Pre-Owned Market Update: February 2024

Average wholesale prices continue to improve, reflecting dealer sentiment and demand for pre-owned.

National Powersport Auctions, NPA, Market Report
Establishing the Right Pay Plan for Your Dealership’s F&I Team

In an industry where skilled F&I professionals are in high demand, an attractive, fair and equitable pay plan becomes a key tool.

Motorcycle dealership F&I