Davis Automotive Group is a third-generation retail automotive group and we often say that our growth was organic. We were never really out there looking for opportunities, however through various relationships, different opportunities presented themselves and suddenly we found our “ma and pop” organization had grown to over 600 employees across several different enterprises in two different provinces.
We are a family-owned business with four immediate members working in the business. As our business continued to grow over the years, it was an all-hands-on-deck approach, with every family member naturally gravitating towards the different enterprises that make up our business. For the most part, we managed by committee and for many years, due to the relatively small size of our operation, this approach worked well. However, as we grew larger and the responsibilities increased, we quickly realized that not every family member had the desire, or the skill set to run the overall operation of their respective enterprise.
We had a few family discussions to attempt to develop a more structured operation, but we quickly realized that due to the complexity of our business we needed some significant help. We were referred to Ignite Management from an acquaintance within our industry. We soon met Mike Watson and began working with his team to build our structure and I can say that without a doubt, it is the best thing that has ever happened to our organization. Within a few sessions, the Ignite Management team understood the complexity of our organization and began to methodically guide us through their process. They helped us redefine who we are and together, we built out a vision of what we wanted for our organization as well as how each family member fit into the business.
There is no question that the sessions were tough. Family business is never easy, but the Ignite Management team has an incredible ability to get as much from each member as possible and then help shape their desires into the new structure, ensuring all voices are heard. By the end of our sessions, we had developed a legacy statement for our company, created a new, more succinct vision, and had a very simple mission statement that would become our north star. These foundational elements helped to inform our strategic plan that would guide us into the future. Once we had our direction, the Ignite Management team worked closely with each of our entities to help them build a plan that related back to the strategic direction of our overall operation.
The best thing about the experience for Davis Automotive Group has been the clarity that we found through the process. Each family member now has a very clear understanding of their role, and each family member knows what they can expect from one another – something we did not have before. The role clarity has allowed each of us to remain in our swim lanes and eliminate crossover of duties or expectations which ultimately is the key to relieving potential conflict from the workplace and within our family.
If you are struggling with a clear path forward for your business and need a roadmap to success, then I would highly recommend Mike Watson and his team at Ignite Management.
General Director, Davis Automotive Group