Automotive News is embarking on a project that will be fascinating and exciting for a lot of auto dealers.
We have created a program that will recognize the automobile dealerships across the country that are the best places to work.
In the last few years, automobile dealerships have been encouraged and sometimes forced to spend hundreds of thousands -- or millions -- of dollars on facilities and facades.
I'm convinced that although a clean, modern dealership is important, it's far more important to have the best people. As in all industries, it's the people that make for a great business.
The retail car business has changed dramatically over the last couple of decades. The technology alone has changed how dealers run their business. Technology has touched every department.
What was once a fairly simple business has grown into an unbelievably complex business, but it's still a business that's about selling and servicing new cars and trucks.
The Best Dealerships To Work For program is based on surveys of each dealership's management and employees.
It's going to be exciting to honor and reward dealers who are doing an outstanding job in their community. And who knows? Maybe we'll find that what works in the Southwest may differ from what's necessary to succeed in business in New England.
We're looking forward to having a grand celebration in October to honor the winners.
Even for those who don't win the recognition, they can still confidentially learn useful information about their own operations and maybe find ways to improve. Find out how your people regard their workplace.
It should be rewarding to compete in the Best Dealerships To Work For program.
The auto industry sells millions of cars and trucks a year, but they are still being sold one at a time by people to people.
It's an exciting challenge to learn how you rank among your peers in doing the best job to recruit, train and keep the best people.
It's easy to enter. Just go to autonews.com/bestdealerships and let us know you want to participate. To be considered for this year's program, you must register on the Web site by March 30.
And if you are at the National Automobile Dealers Association's convention Feb. 3-6 in Las Vegas, come by Booth 1512 and get all the information to enter.
Good luck. It's going to be fun.