How Long Will It Take?

When a customer shows up at 10:00 am and asks “How long will it take for an oil change?”, what most service advisors will do is answer with a specific time estimate. The superstar service advisors know better, so they’ll ask the customer, “How soon do you need it?” They know that if they were to answer the question by saying “It’ll only take 45 minutes”, they would then be expected to complete the service within that period of time. On the other hand, if they ask the customer how soon they need to have it done, the customer may very well respond with something like “I just need to have it by noon.” At this point, the service advisor can simply say “That won’t be a problem at all”, and they now have two hours to complete the service, rather than just forty-five minutes.

Best of all, if you are able to call that customer an hour early to tell him the oil change is complete, you’ve just exceeded that customer’s expectations by under-promising and over-delivering.

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