Gunn Automotive Group
Overall Rank for 2012: 96
Any auto dealership can offer its employees pay, benefits and time off, but only a few -- such as Gunn Acura in San Antonio -- can offer an environment where employees won't spend their days trapped between their customers and their boss.
General Manager Eric Scott says the dealership's "one simple price" philosophy of selling and servicing vehicles allows employees to better serve their customers and be happier on the job.
"It's a lot less confrontational with customers. We don't negotiate on trades. At most dealerships, employees typically feel trapped in the middle between their customers and their manager. We don't have that here," Scott says.
Like other Gunn Automotive Group dealerships, Gunn Acura employees participate in an employee stock ownership plan that allows them to accumulate a stake in the privately held group. Pay, benefits and time off are comparable with other employers in the San Antonio area, Scott says.
The dealership is selective in its hiring and invests heavily in training, he says, and that builds a lasting relationship between employee and employer. The stock plan and no-haggle sales philosophy add a sense of stability to the dealership's work force, Scott says.
"I think the management makes a big difference in whether you're able to retain your best employees," Scott explains. "I also think we do a much better job of training up front so that employees are more successful and don't drop out so quickly."
-- Larry P. Vellequette