When Training Warrants an Outsider’s Perspective

Last year, Advantage Rent-A-Car set out to bolster incremental sales — a goal that had long eluded the company. After years of relying on in-house training programs, Advantage decided to seek the help of an outside training specialist.

“We had struggled with incremental sales for years, and when I looked into the future I realized that we just would not be able to survive at the current revenue per day,” explains Mark Haws, Advantage’s director of fleet and revenue. Haws contacted Khoury Consulting Inc., a consulting company in Winter Park, Fla. KCI specializes in counter sales and customer service training for the car rental industry.

After investigating Advantage’s approach to counter sales, KCI tailored a training program for the company. To Haws’ surprise, the investment paid off immediately. “It’s been like a whirlwind,” he says. “We started to see results in the first month and continue to see them today.”

Haws says he’s certain that the increase in both incremental sales volume and daily dollar average is attributable to KCI’s training. Like many other RACs, Advantage has discovered that sometimes an outside trainer’s perspective is what’s needed to improve performance.

Outside trainers can share practices that have a proven track record elsewhere. They’re also less likely to be constrained by a corporate culture’s biases and notions of “how it’s always been.”

In Advantage’s case, the company’s willingness to make such an investment, in fact, changed its corporate culture for the better.

Gina Brennan, Khoury’s vice president of organizational development, explains the philosophy behind KCI’s training: “The consulting division of our business helps clients identify and capitalize on revenue opportunities in the areas of front-line service and sales performance, transforming the traditional order-taker organization into a sales and service machine.”

What makes KCI unique, Brennan says, is “our hands-on delivery approach combined with a relentless focus on results. We spend most of our time at the counters with front-line agents and managers.”

What kinds of results is Khoury talking about?

“Most of our customers realize over a 500% return on their investment with us,” Brennan says.

CONTINUED:  When Training Warrants an Outsider’s Perspective
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