Zanchin Automotive Group
“When is somebody successful, just because somebody says so?” quipped Joe Zanchin, President of the Zanchin Automotive Group, in speaking with The Canadian Business Journal when asked to attribute what has made the company thrive. “We set a goal and we like to hit the goal and then we go to the next.”
It’s that simple philosophy that has made the modest Zanchin Automotive Group, based in Vaughan, Ontario, successful over the years, since its founding in 1973. Lead by Zanchin, the company has instilled a model of going beyond expectations for its customers by selling the right product and giving its customers the right service, a sign of the company’s exemplary business model.
The Zanchin Automotive Group serves as a group of dealers, counting for an extensive range of automotive brands.
“I fell in love with the Honda the first year it came to Canada. I took my attention to it because I knew it would be a winner. I pursued Honda until I became a dealer and it was the right decision,” said Zanchin. “We then progressed to other brands.”
The power to move you
While Zanchin noted that the automotive industry certainly felt the pinch of the recession, especially on its domestic side with Honda and Toyota, its dealers were then required to do more in order to keep customers satisfied and “to be content with a bottom line that will not be as much.”
The Zanchin Automotive Group strives to move its customers “physically and emotionally” through its simple philosophy and high quality product.
“We had to work much harder to make less money,” said Zanchin. “[During a recession], we work more intelligently, with more effort, with expectations that may be a little less. Customer satisfaction is not easy. Customers are demanding and know what they want, and they have the right to ask for their maximum…and we provide that.”
An environmental solution
“In a world where temperatures are rising, pollution is poisoning the environment, and energy demand is increasing exponentially,” says the company’s website, “there is an answer blowing in the wind,” noting the installation of a 50kW wind turbine at its Maple Honda dealership, which has taken the innovative step of “integrating energy efficiency into the automotive workplace.” The turbine produces up to 110 megawatts annually, equivalent to powering 17 homes, while simultaneously reducing more than 80 tonnes annually of carbon dioxide emissions. The company continues to strive to reduce its carbon footprint.
Powered by clean, efficient wind energy, the Zanchin Automotive Group prides itself on being “part of the solution, not part of the pollution”, feeling that its wind turbine installation, the first commercial type of its kind at a Canadian automobile dealership, sets the example of how important it is to have a clean environment.
Having wind mills is very feasible and it also generates electricity for the dealers. It is an appropriate way of telling the customers that we care about being environmental,” said Zanchin. “Everybody thinks we are responsible for all the smoke and burning gas and disrespect, but this is considered to be clean air. We invested big money to put up wind mills to send that message.”
To Zanchin, the advantage is that the company always gets involved with brands that will be supported by the right people. “Our attitude is that the customer becomes a friend. We make sure that we are the doctor of their automobile.”
“I respect people when they come to the dealership and spend $30,000 or $40,000 because it’s not just an automobile for them, it’s an investment,” said Zanchin. “We really pay attention and try to understand that. And not only when they buy the car but when they come to service the car. This is what our people to do; we listen to the needs of the customer. This is what gave me the opportunity to grow as much as I did.”
And while Zanchin won’t get into the specifics of the company’s plans for the future, there are certainly plans for business growth and expansion. The company has a willingness to grow and to ensure that it employs more people because it has the ability and know-how to do so.
“We are very prudent and very careful,” Zanchin summarized. “We have the energy to grow and not make too many mistakes.”