Peak Your Profits: Ahead of the traffic
A client once said to me, “Remember Jeff, in the extra mile, there’s no traffic jam!”
Another client, that’s way ahead of the traffic, is Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Former senior vice president Wayne Kaufmann once told me, “Our business is simple. You just have to do everything right all the time.” Apparently, Enterprise is doing lots of things right.
Kaufmann joined Enterprise in 1963, six years after the company was founded by Jack Taylor. In 1963, Enterprise’s fleet size was 27 cars. From those humble beginnings, they’ve emerged as the industry leader.
As part of my initial work with Enterprise and their leadership team, I learned Enterprise:
- Had surpassed Hertz as the largest car rental company in North America, based upon fleet size and number of rental locations. (Today, Enterprise Holdings is the world’s largest transportation solutions provider.)
- Had in excess of 2,500 branches. (Now, more than 9,900 fully-staffed neighborhood and airport locations in over 90 countries.)
- Had a fleet of more than 260,000 cars. (Now, more than 1.9 million vehicles worldwide.)
- Had over 20,000 employees. (Now, 100,000.)
- Had annual revenues over $2.5 billion. (As of fiscal year end in July, 2017 — Enterprise Holdings had revenues of $22.3 billion. Enterprise Holdings operates the Enterprise Rent-A-Car, National Car Rental, and Alamo Rent A Car brands through its network of independent regional subsidiaries and franchises.)
- Had an unwavering commitment to customer service.
Enterprise even created the Enterprise Service Quality index or ESQi. It’s a measurement tool that reflects their employees’ service behavior, as judged and rated by Enterprise customers. And ESQi is just as important as other statistical information for utilization rates, transaction times or new accounts.
Andy Taylor, when he was Enterprise’s Chairman and CEO told me, “ESQi is only one element of our success, but it’s an essential one. I refuse to give my competition my service advantage.” He went on to share this philosophy: “Our business really isn’t about cars, it’s about giving our customers’ freedom, flexibility and independence.” (Today, Andy is Executive Chairman of Enterprise Holdings.) Yet he has always known, loyalty is a key profit and growth driver.
Taylor told me his philosophy would help Enterprise reach or exceed its goal—doubling annual revenues. According to Taylor, the key to this goal’s realization was staying on track. He said, “Jeff, if you get off track, you’ll be buried. To stay on track, keep your customers happy, keep your people happy and then you’ll make money!” Enterprise is happily making money … and on track!
They long ago, surpassed Andy Taylor’s $5 billion dollar goal. For once again, for Enterprise Holding’s fiscal year ending July 31, 2017—revenues were $22.3 billion. They also owned 38 percent of the United States airport business, and globally, conducted 70 million customer transactions.
Plus, in the fall of 2017, the Enterprise, National and Alamo brands landed the top three spots in the J.D. Power North American Rental Car Satisfaction Study for the fifth year in a row. And Enterprise, National and Alamo were the only brands to finish above the industry average.
Pam Nicholson, President and CEO at Enterprise Holdings said, “These kinds of milestones are achieved only one way in an industry as competitive as ours, they are a direct result of our employees’ incredible work ethic and their all-in focus on customer service excellence and efficient operations.”
She added, “Our total revenues not only continued to increase significantly during FY2017, but they actually more than doubled during the last decade along with our fleet size. In addition, since 2007, we have grown our share of the U.S. airport business 10 percentage points.”
How will you and your team, learn specific service strategies to grow, to achieve new milestones and to stay on track?
The preceding is an excerpt from the new fifth edition of Jeff’s bestselling book, “Peak Your Profits.” It’s scheduled for a summer release and will be available on Amazon and at your favorite bookstore.
Jeff Blackman is a Hall of Fame speaker, author, success coach, broadcaster and lawyer. His clients call him a "business-growth specialist." If you hire speakers, please contact Jeff at 847-998-0688 or firstname.lastname@example.org. And visit jeffblackman.com to learn more about his other business-growth tools and to subscribe to Jeff's free e-letter, “The Results Report.” Jeff's books include “Stop Whining! Start Selling!” (an Amazon Bestseller) and the soon-to-be released fifth edition, of the bestselling “Peak Your Profits.” You can also stay connected with Jeff via Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter: @BlackmanResults.