On today’s show, Dick Garber, President and owner of Garber Management Group, headquartered in Saginaw, MI, will speak candidly about leading an organization in the middle of the pandemic, supporting the community, and taking over the family business at 25 years old. As an employer of over 2,000 people, he will also share his secret to employee retention and maintaining a conscious culture.
Being named President of a 75-year old family business at 25 could seem like an exciting, yet daunting, task. For Dick Garber, all he saw was an opportunity. An opportunity to make some tough decisions and position Garber Buick for exponential growth. In this episode of Mitten Money, Dick will discuss his experiences as the third-generation of a family business, how he’s grown to twenty-three car dealerships in six states, and his view on the future of the automobile industry.
Not only is Dick Garber a successful business owner, he is a generous contributor to many community non-profits, and one of the nicest, most genuine and down-to-earth people. In this interview, Dick states, “I’m not a car guy. I’m a people guy.” Those that know Dick would agree with that short, yet powerful, statement. In conversation, he makes you feel valued and appreciated.
Dick also gives advice on employee retention, and it is no secret why people remain loyal to his business and the Garber name. They feel valued. Dick and his team have created a conscious culture where ownership and organizational pride in the Garber brand are felt at all levels. “The brand that we've created in mid-Michigan has created a culture where our turnover is less than half of what it is out state. Our profits are higher traditionally than we experienced out state and a lot of that has to do with employee retention.”
When talking about his love for the community, his thoughts are heartfelt and sincere. “I believe that business's calling is greater than just a return on investment for the shareholders, it's got to be good for the entire entity when you build that culture. That includes all stakeholders - the shareholders, the community, the staff. Everyone who touches your business.”
1:36- Dick Garber’s background
3:50- Taking over the business at 25-years-old.
4:50- How did COVID affect your business?
6:50- What’s hot? SUV’s crossovers or cars?
8:10- Are there cyclical trends you are experiencing?
9:05- What are your own views on money?
9:50- What has you excited for the future of the automobile industry?
12:09- What is your involvement with Conscious Capitalism?
14:20- Reducing turnover in the company.
16:05- What is your favorite car?