Andy Long & Don standing infront of Don's new Toyota Tacoma
Being a small business owner, I always enjoy interacting with other small business owners. Today, I got a visit from Don, the owner of Revolution Bike & Bean, here in town. Don bought the venerable bike shop about a decade ago and has run it since. He retired from professional racing to take up running his own shop. We talked about his journey today while he waiting to do the paperwork on his new Tacoma.
There is something about being across from the negotiating table with another small business owner that I really enjoy, a camaraderie that exists between us, usually unspoken, but certainly present. There is a different level of mutual respect. I enjoy that. I don't have to say "Hey, you have some of the same fears and joys that I have everyday! We have similar goals"--but I think small business owners are similar in that way. Don talked about the fun, exciting, and rewarding side of customer service. I enjoy those same aspects of my role in sales. Heck, we even talking about parking spots for our various locations. I chuckled a bit during that part of our conversation. It is such a small part of a business, but customer parking is super important. Most of the time, you don't even pay attention to something on the periphery like that...but then Mr. Royal pulls into the dealership and tells you, "Son, you don't have anywhere for customers to park! Get some spots open!". Being able to talk about a niche topic like customer parking, or balance enough showroom space for comfortable seating, with someone else who understands the importance of such small details is fun.
Don had been thinking about getting behind the wheel of a new Tacoma for while (months and months) and I was PUMPED to be here today when he finally bought his new truck. Our family business has been in Bloomington since 1969. Don's bike shop has been in Bloomington, in some form or another, for about 30 years. That's almost 80 years of servicing customers here in Bloomington. That's a long time. I'm very pumped to get him behind the wheel of the best mid-sized truck in the market--a truck that will probably last him 10 to 20 years!
Getting to spend a few minutes talking to customers, like Don, is probably the highlight of many of my days here at Royal South Toyota. After I've emailed or texted back and forth with customers about a vehicle, it is always rewarding to meet them in person, show them the vehicle, watch their reaction when the see the new ride! Being part of a small business is a blast most days. Good Luck Don! #TacomaLife #OutdoorGoals
- Andy Long