It’s that time of year when choosing the perfect gift for those who are most deserving becomes a top priority. We typically end up with three lists. The first is an obligatory laundry list of business-related clients and vendors, household service providers/tradesmen and the distant relatives whose names we can’t quite remember. For this group, if we can’t find something online, a gift card will do.
On a second list, we include the special people who will receive gifts from the heart, typically, our spouse or significant other, children, parents and the friends we hold most dear.
The third list only has one name on it — our own. We often put to paper what we’re most hopeful of receiving that will give us pleasure, test our skills, make our life easier, enhance our wardrobe or bring us joy in a way only we understand. The caveat being that if we don’t get what we want, we’ll buy it for ourselves when it’s on sale in January.
The notion of getting your career something nice for Christmas doesn’t entail a trip to Neiman Marcus. It simply requires your commitment to include something that will advance your career on your wish list. As with other holiday purchases, it will require some thought.
The selection criteria is no different than for the gifts you buy others. What is it that the gift recipient needs the most, where can I find the highest quality item and can I afford it?
For F&I practitioners and desk managers tasked with shopping for a career-related gift for themselves, I’d suggest completing a state and federal regulation and best practices F&I professional course. State and federal law-savvy dealership personnel who have signed a commitment to ethical practices are more effective when structuring deals; finding willing credit sources; presenting voluntary protection products; answering questions; optimizing income opportunities while reducing chargebacks; curbing customer hassles and negative PR; and keeping regulators and the plaintiffs’ bar out of the store. They definitely boost the dealership’s CSI and bottom line.
But what about the third qualifier, “Can I afford it?” It may seem like a significant investment, but when you consider a course’s comprehensive content, as well as the professional association’s state-of-the-art training platform, impeccable standards, in-person instruction, proctored testing and two-year recertification cycles, it’s money well-spent.
Plus, given the benefits that will accrue to all of the parties to each transaction, it’s an investment your employer may be willing to make on your behalf. Significant discounts on the certification course pricing are available from many finance sources, aftermarket product providers and general agents. This year, ask for the gift that keeps on giving.