Milton Martin Toyota-Scion
Gainesville , GA
Overall Rank for 2012: 92
At Milton Martin Toyota-Scion in Gainesville, Ga., education is a never-ending prospect for employees.
There are the usual classes designed to build leadership skills, but at this dealership on the outskirts of Atlanta, sometimes the lesson of the day is good, old-fashioned values.
The store even runs a list of "core values" on its Web site. First on the list: being "Christ-centered."
Bringing faith, leadership and continuing education together is the unofficial job of co-owner and second-generation dealer Mike Martin. His son, General Manager Tommy Martin, describes his father as the store's "in-house counselor."
"He loves to do that. That's his passion," says the son.
Mike Martin owns the store with his brother Ricky. Their father, Milton, founded the dealership as a used-car operation in 1961 and purchased the Toyota business about nine years later.
In addition to numerous leadership classes, the dealership offers staff members financial-education workshops, which Mike Martin leads using a curriculum developed by Crown Financial Ministries. He also offers spiritually centered classes, including some that focus on marriage.
Says Tommy Martin: "We believe if you've got deep values, you'll have long-standing growth."
He says the store also emphasizes rewarding employees and celebrating progress and results. That, he says, could mean cooking Belgian waffles to celebrate a big achievement, such as winning the 2011 Toyota President's Award, or treating the sales team to a rafting trip.
"We really try to employ servanthood leadership," he says. "We want to celebrate every victory that we possibly can."
-- Leslie J. Allen