In a review of the past year or so, the one Dealerite Blog that has received, by far, the most readers is the one entitled ‘What is a Professional Environment’. I think that, perhaps, the reason for this is that the professional environment that is described in the blog is not what one would expect. It has to do with dealing with human nature in a way that does not try to reform that nature, but instead, recognizes the nature and uses it to the betterment of the organization, the staff and the customer. People perform as professionals when they fully embrace their directives and make them their own.
A professional appearance is just that, an appearance. That appearance can only withstand the test of time with a customer and co-workers if there is substance behind it. Honesty and integrity are a big part of that substance. This applies as much to management and their interactions with staff as it does to staff and their interactions with customers.
One of the biggest ways to sabotage a professional environment is resentment. When a person feels resentment whether caused by commission or omission, it’s like a guitar string that will not stay in tune. There will always be something holding back the organization’s success. From the standpoint of the staff, if the resentment that lingers in an individual is merited, it will fester and spread throughout the organization. If it is unmerited, it becomes a different problem altogether. Unmerited resentment needs to be addressed to find out if it is a matter of misunderstanding or a personality flaw in the individual holding that resentment. If it is misunderstanding, that becomes an issue for good management to correct. If it is found to be a personality flaw, the correction is replacing that personality.
People who feel resentment without merit are a fact in any society. There are those who feel they are owed something simply because they exist. This mentality may have been nurtured and fostered by politically correct schools, bad parenting or low intelligence, but those who have this personality are not the kind of people who can be part of a professional organization. Most people will perform up to a task when given the chance and when they feel that the task is theirs (that they own the task). The minority who do not fall into this category are a sad reality, but that doesn’t mean that you need to hire them or keep them on if they have already been hired. Some of these people have college degrees, but I wouldn’t even have them washing the cars on the lot…and they wouldn’t take that job anyways.