Lyon-Waugh Auto Group
Acura of Peabody
Peabody , MA
Overall Rank for 2012: 94
Few major dealerships shut down during business hours, but Acura Peabody General Manager Joel Avery believes in building employee camaraderie.
"We have bimonthly employee lunch meetings where we close the store for an hour," he says. "We talk about customer satisfaction and update our [Acura] Precision Team status."
But once past the business agenda, Avery quickly turns to the social side, recognizing "birthdays, anniversaries, employees of the month for individual departments and employee accolades from our customers."
Acura of Peabody is part of the six-store Lyon-Waugh Auto Group. Sales and service employees regularly compete for cash incentives based on performance, and the dealership offers medical and dental insurance for workers and their families.
But Avery has other, more informal morale-building tools such as occasional barbecues and ice cream events. He also allows employees to accrue vacation days beyond the year they are earned. Workers can be awarded paid time off for performing volunteer work.
Because the store is in the Lyon-Waugh headquarters city of Peabody, Mass., Managing Partner Warren Waugh often drops by and is quick to pass out Red Sox or New England Patriots tickets when employees' extra-effort deeds catch his eye.
"Warren is a pretty common sight around here," says Cidalia Schwartz, group marketing chief. "And everybody competes to win a spot in his fishing tournament off Cape Cod" -- an annual excursion on Waugh's boat for the top two sales and service performers from each group dealership.
Engaged workers perform better, Avery says. Acura of Peabody is a five-time winner of the Acura Precision Team award for sales leadership.
-- Jesse Snyder