Founded in 1979, DaBryan Coach Builders in Springfield, Mo., has weathered the economic storms that many coachbuilders, over the years, have fallen victim to. When Dan Mitchell took over the reins as president in 1996, DaBryan was already well-established as a leading coachbuilder in the industry. For Mitchell, sticking to the fundamental principles the company was founded on is part-and-parcel of DaBryan’s continued success.
Says Mitchell, “The fundamental principles that drive the success of DaBryan Coach can be summed up simply as quality, integrity and honesty. We have worked through the years to weave those principles into our culture and to attempt to make them second nature for our employees.”
All businesses should incorporate core values, continues Mitchell. It’s these values that are the stepping stones for a successful company. The following principles and values are what DaBryan Coach Builders has built its reputation on from day one:
1. Take care of your customers. Customers want to get a good value and they want to deal with people who they can trust. They want you to do as you say and say as you do. DaBryan works to establish customers’ trust by quickly processing titles, resolving warranty issues and offering reasonable assistance.
2. Build a quality product. This attribute obviously factors into the customer’s value equation and drives the sales process. It is also important in building pride within your organization and for yourself. No one wants to buy from or work for a company that manufactures poor-quality vehicles. Strive to be the best. The cost you incur becomes an investment that pays dividends.
3. Take care of your employees. Employees make your business successful. Work to make your employees successful. Compensation and benefits are only part of the equation. Employees need to be proud of their company and properly fit within the culture. Employees need policies, processes and organization in order to measure their own success. Reward results. Rid your organization of bad employees — they drag down your good ones.
4. Pay your bills. This sounds pretty simple but many companies damage themselves by not properly handling their obligations. Vendor relationships are very important and the surest way to sever that relationship is to not pay on time or as promised. Everyone has cash-flow issues now and again. If a short-term issue comes about, just keep your vendor advised and work out terms. Then keep your word. You should always have adequate cash available. That is what fuels a business.
5. Be honest. If you are not truthful or if you fail to do what you say you will, it doesn’t take long for customers, employees and vendors to look elsewhere. Business is so much easier when it is built on honest activities. You can’t really be successful doing it any other way.