One of the many very heartening findings of Capricorn’s landmark State of the Nation 2020 Report was that most workshop owners are feeling confident about the future of their businesses.
Here’s what we found:
Table 1: How confident are you in your businesses’ future?
But we didn’t stop there. We also asked Members why they felt confident. The answers were revealing. Here’s what we discovered.
1. A loyal customer base
The top reason (19%) Members gave for their confidence in their own workshop’s future was that they maintained a loyal and returning customer base.
As one Member told us: “My customer base keeps growing due to word of mouth and I no longer do any advertising”.
2. Business growth
Eighteen per cent of Members said they were confident because of their business growth and they expected that growth to continue.
“We started our own field service business 10 months ago and we now book three weeks out for a service or repair, but breakdowns always come first,” one Member told State of the Nation.
For 13% of Members, it was their longevity in business that provided comfort that their business would continue to do well.
One member told us: “We have been operating for 40 years and have a large customer base. Now the grandchildren of our original clients are coming in”.
4. The team
The next most popular reason given for business confidence amongst workshop owners was the team they have managed to build.
5. A passion for what they do
Next on the list with Members was their passion for what they do, including their confidence in their offer to their customers.
As one Member told us: “We pride ourselves on the work we do and, especially in a small town, that earns trust and a good name with customers”.
6. Good operations and investments
Sound management practices and sensible and strategic investments, and confidence in those investments and the way they operate their business, were another big reason Members were confident about the future.
One Member explained what that looked like in practice: “Careful research, quality time expenditure and investment, and the confidence to step into new areas — not always follow the well-trod pathways.
It was “the ability to not fear failure but rather to be courageous in new ventures and to assess and gauge the steps forward”.
7. Good word of mouth
We know from a separate question we asked in State of the Nation that 75% of Members rely on word-of-mouth recommendations as a major promotional tool for their business.
So, it’s easy to see how having good word of mouth is a big reason for Members to feel confident about the future of their business (and why it has already been mentioned by respondents above a couple of times).
“We operate a very honest business,” one Member said in their survey response. “I never advertise or market my business. Customers are referred by word of mouth. The recommendations are very satisfying!”
To find out more about the challenges and opportunities Members see ahead of them, both for themselves and the industry as a whole, download your free copy of State of the Nation.