Vale Noel Gould


RIP Noel


I was sadden to learn earlier this week of the passing of local automotive industry legend Noel Gould.


Although I did not know Noel well, over the years our paths had crossed and we'd done some business. Noel struck me as a caring and genuine person who was respected by his employees and the industry at large.


My sincere condolences to his family...


The end of an era?


As I reflected on the loss of Noel, I wondered if we were nearing the end of the "colourful car dealer"?


Once there were so many of them; larger than life characters who did their own commercials and who were "bigger brand" than the cars they sold.


Today, few dealerships bear the names of their owners, and many are part of huge corporations rather than family-run businesses.


Good thing, bad thing? (or just different)


There's no doubt that over the past three decades, the retail automotive industry has become much more professional and more customer focused.


This is certainly a "good thing" but it does seem to have come at a cost. Whilst consistency of "guest experience" is a worthy goal, it can remove the personality and "quirkiness" from dealerships.


Dealerships with great leaders will continue to be rewarded


There's a lot of talented operators in the retail motor industry, but "great leaders" still make a difference to staff and ultimately customers.


Great leaders inspire exceptional performance from their teams which results in amazing customer experiences and ultimately more sales / higher revenues.



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