Here’s the script for “The Assistant Sales Manager” video below:
Once you’ve eased into the process at the dealership and driven the car, when it becomes time to get into the numbers, you’re likely to meet the Assistant Sales Manager – also known as…”The Closer.”
This role typically exists in large dealerships where the retail team itself is made up of 20 or more sales associates. One dealership where I worked had more than 40 sales associates on the floor, and so there were several ASMs who broke the sales associates into teams. When it was slow, we were coaching the newer team members on how best to present cars and not to mess up a deal. When it was busy, we were keeping track of where our other team members were in the deal so that we could jump in if necessary, without missing a beat.
Our main role, though, was to close deals. Usually, after your sales associate gets you to sit down after a test drive, they will go to the tower for the initial numbers, called the “first pencil” in industry-speak…and we’ll go through that it greater detail later. If your sales associate fails to get a commitment from you on the first pencil, then it becomes the job of the Assistant Sales Manager to go in and figure out where we’re missing you on the numbers so that we can get a commitment.
An ASM will negotiate price, payment, terms, options…anything to see where your head is at with the numbers. After discussions, a common question that you’ll get from them is, “If I could do that, would you buy today?” Their objective is to communicate your situation with the Sales Manager and get you to sign an initial commitment to buy.
They were likely promoted from the floor as a successful and polished associate who was prone often to get a buyer to say, “Yes.”
An Assistant Sales Manager is compensated not on each deal, but they will receive a small percentage of the total output of the department through the month. You may meet them early in the sales process, but they won’t be showing you a car or running around on the lot. You’re more likely to meet them after the sales associate shows you the first pencil, and you say no.
They can’t make the final decision on a deal, but if you hold firm with them, they will communicate your intentions to the person who can make a final decision.