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Business is like team sports - building a high-performance group brings results

John Good

Success in the premium automotive retail space is, like so many other premium sales environments, dependant of building strong relationships of trust with your clients.

To do that any organisation needs to identify, develop, and retain an outstanding team. It is essential that each interaction contributes to a total buying and ownership experience that stands well above the ordinary.

At LSH Auto Australia, as Australia's leading Mercedes-Benz retail Group, we have stayed true to the philosophy of the entire worldwide LSH Group, which is to find, develop and nurture talented people who will be long-term members of our team and who will give life to the values that drive our culture. We do that by investing in skills and emotional intelligence.

In what is essentially a service industry, technical skill alone will not set us apart from the crowd. We need our team to be well tuned to the needs and feelings of our customers and to be supportive of each other and conscious that we are in the business of delivering experiences, not just transactions.

That is why we invest considerable effort, through numerous programs, to professional development and continual engagement with all our team members. We communicate internally with frequency and regularity, and we are as transparent about our plans and achievements as we possibly can be. We need to have a shared vision and that simply is not possible if we don't share information.

We go to significant lengths to recognise great team performance and contribution, through a program that allows those recognised to choose a charity to receive a donation in their name. In that way we engage with our team in being a valued corporate citizen of the communities in which we operate. We run new start and best practice programs, such our cadet program and our Masters Club, that recognises and helps share best practice in a wide range of disciplines. We actively seek opportunities to deepen the experience and further the careers of those who express a wish to progress.

All these team developing initiatives are not focussed on immediate sales. They are at a higher and broader level of ensuring that we have the team that can deliver the results we need with the levels of staff and customer satisfaction that will build loyalty with both groups.

Our focus on team development, alignment and building a positive culture is an investment in the group's future that has already delivered results far superior to short term incentives or top-down management. We see the results in the positive responses and affinity built with our customers and in the positive feedback from our team. Feedback that saw us named as one of the AFR Boss 2022 Best Places to Work.

A long-term focus on building high-performing and well-respected teams is ingrained in the LSH Group DNA and it has served the group well for more than fifty years of remarkable growth. It will remain a clear focus of our ongoing efforts in Australia.