By Farid Ahmad, CEO, DSMA
There are many reasons why I love working in the automotive industry, but among the top ones is the way it is constantly transforming. From autonomous vehicles to new energy sources and beyond, a host of innovations are ushering in an exciting new era in automotive.
Of all the ways our industry is evolving, though, there’s one in particular I find especially exciting: everywhere you look, automotive professionals are becoming increasingly diverse.
As a proud Canadian of Pakistani descent, helping with the growth of diverse representation in this industry is a goal I’m deeply passionate about. But supporting diversity isn’t just the right thing to do — it’s also the best thing for your business.
As an automotive dealer, you have options when it comes to the partners you work with. From parts suppliers, to marketing services, or mergers and acquisitions partners like DSMA, collaborating with diverse teams can bring numerous benefits to your business.
Curious to learn more? Here are five ways choosing diverse partners can benefit dealership leaders.
- It Gets You Access to the Best of the Best
The best talents come from all backgrounds. Working with a partner that has built a diverse team means you’re working with a group of professionals that have been carefully assembled — each person, no matter who they are, was hired because they were the right person for the job. And in the fast-paced world of automotive, that’s a powerful edge over the competition.
- It Supports Balanced Decision-Making
Every decision we make, to some degree or another, is based on our experiences. Collaborating with a diverse team provides you access to a wide range of perspectives, which allows you to approach a question or challenge from a variety of angles you may not have otherwise considered.
- It Can Open New Markets
Whether you’re looking to attract new customers through marketing or expand your business through a merger or acquisition, working with a partner that has diversity in their DNA brings valuable expertise. A partner comprised of diverse team members has the knowledge and experience to spot valuable new opportunities that could otherwise potentially go overlooked.
- It Can Encourage Employee Retention
We all want to work someplace we believe in. Much like providing quality customer service or being involved in the community, working with diverse business partners is a tangible way to demonstrate your values to your team and inspire them to feel invested in the dealership.
- It’s Becoming an OEM Priority
More and more, OEMs are prioritizing dealerships that integrate diversity both inside their walls and out. From hiring diverse team members to choosing diverse business partners, dealers who align themselves with their OEMs’ diversity goals position themselves well for positive OEM relationships for years to come.
DSMA Is Committed to Diversity
At DSMA, we consider diversity a strategic imperative. Not only is it the right thing to do, but it’s also in our customers’ best interests. When I set out to build this company, I made it my mission to offer our clients the best service possible – and to do the best possible job requires the best employees.
Our team, comprised of people of colour like myself, to female executives, to team members of all ages, may not be what’s expected in our industry, but then again, neither are our results. And that’s a point in which I take immense pride.
In closing, I’d like to commend the many dealers who are beginning to direct their attention to this important issue. Whatever stage of your diversity journey you’re on, your efforts are helping to make automotive a stronger industry for all.
I’d also like to offer a word of encouragement to any fellow minorities who may be reading this. While the industry is continuing to make significant progress along the road to change, our destination is still on the horizon.
I myself have found immense power in sharing my story, and I encourage you to do the same. Ultimately, we’re all more alike than we are different, and stories and experiences are a powerful means to connecting us all.
With gratitude, I’d like to thank you for your time. If anything I’ve written here has resonated with you, I’d encourage you to reach out to us.