Attract, Don't Chase: How to Hire a Mechanic with a Fishing vs Hunting Approach [PODCAST]

Aug 15, 2023

Feel like you're constantly chasing an elusive goal? It's as if you're on a never-ending quest to hire a mechanic for your shop, but they keep slipping through your fingers. Your shop is buzzing with potential, but there's that one snag: where are all the top techs hiding? It's like a game of hide and seek where you're always "it."

Guess what? You're not alone in this endless pursuit. It's like a cycle of "Come here, no go away," right? You've tried everything – shouting from the rooftops, offering incentives, maybe even flaunting shiny toolboxes – yet you're met with silence. So, here's the big question: What if we flipped the script? What if, instead of chasing, you could sit back, relax, and lure them in like a skilled mechanic-hiring fisherman? Intrigued?

Fasten your seatbelt. Let's transform your approach and make those top techs come knocking. Ready? Let's dive in.

Trading the Hunt for a Fishing Expedition

Ever feel like the chase isn't worth the prize? You pour in hours, days, maybe even weeks pursuing something, only to realize the chase drained you, leaving little energy for the reward. Hiring stellar automotive techs feels uncannily similar, right? We're told it's a game of cat and mouse. But what if, instead of hunting, you tried fishing?

Hunting vs. Fishing: Unmasking the Key Difference

Hunting is active – the camouflage, the aim, the effort to snag the auto technician trophy. Fishing, on the other hand, is subtle. It's about choosing the right spot, offering enticing bait, being patient, and waiting for the catch to come to you.

Consider those job ads you've been throwing out there. Are they more "hunter" than "fisherman"? Are they just loud proclamations or do they draw in the crème de la crème?

Crafting the Perfect Bait: It's All About the Offer

Ever seen a fisherman use the same bait for every catch? Nope. Because what hooks a trout won't necessarily nab a marlin. Likewise, cookie-cutter job offers won't land diverse talent. Think about this: What do top automotive techs truly desire? Sure, a competitive salary is appealing, but what about continuous training? Flexible hours? The juicier the bait, the grander the catch.

Yet, there's a twist: The bait isn't just what you provide – it's how you serve it up. A generic job post hastily cobbled together from an online template? It's like tossing a plain hook and hoping for a bite. Not a winning strategy to hire a mechanic.

Patience Pays Off: Cultivating an Irresistible Brand

Fishing isn't solely about the act – it's also about creating an environment that fish can't resist. How's your pond, shop owner? Top techs are drawn to shops with a sterling reputation. Glowing reviews, word of mouth, a captivating mission and values, and killer branding – these are your allies. They're like glistening scales, catching the eye, and igniting curiosity.

This doesn't mean you need to be the biggest or flashiest. But ask yourself: Would you want to work at your own shop? If that's not a resounding yes, a little pond sprucing might be in order.

Stay Calm, Avoid Desperation 

Ever noticed how fish can sense your nervous energy? Make a sudden move, and they scatter. The same principle applies here. Tech-savvy pros can smell desperation from miles away. If you're incessantly posting, rehashing, and spamming job boards, it screams, "Our ship is sinking!" Surprisingly, that's a turn-off.

Counterintuitive, right? You'd assume that showing neediness would help you hire a mechanic. But the best ones seek stability and growth, not a ship that seems ready to go under. 

Reel Them in with Care: The Art of Onboarding 

You've got a bite! What now? A fisherman doesn't yank the rod with all his might; that would snap the line. Instead, he reels in gently. Similarly, once a tech shows interest, your approach matters. No one wants to feel like a cog in the wheel.

Understand them. Grasp their dreams and hurdles. Offer guidance, eliminate obstacles, provide mentorship. Keep in mind, each new recruit is like a fresh catch. With nurturing, they can mature into a prized trophy.

Release the Small Fish: Not Every Catch is a Keeper

Here's the real deal. Not every tech you draw in will be a perfect fit. And that's alright. The beauty of fishing is recognizing when to release a catch back into the wild.

If someone doesn't align with your shop's values, it's better for both sides to part ways. It maintains a thriving pond. Who knows? That small fish may return one day as a formidable catch, ready when you need to hire a mechanic again.

In the End, It's About the Journey

Fishing is as much about the experience as it is about the catch. It's a delicate dance between patience and action. Likewise, hiring a mechanic requires a balanced approach.

Remember, it's not just about filling a role; it's about enhancing your team. Every new hire is an opportunity, a fresh story, a distinct voyage. So, cast your bait, sit back, and welcome the top techs with open arms.

Charting a New Path

I get it, it's been a struggle. Nights filled with doubts – "Why's finding a good tech so darn hard?" or "Am I doing this all wrong?" Feel like you're pouring effort into a leaky bucket? I understand. Countless shop owners find themselves on an endless treadmill, striving without quite reaching that sweet spot. 

But here's the scoop: Your shop, your vision, it's worth every ounce of effort. Every hurdle, every fumble – they're all part of the journey. Remember, it's about attracting, not chasing. It's about setting the stage, arranging the pieces, and letting the talent come your way. It's a game-changer when hiring a mechanic. 

Now, if you need an extra dose of inspiration or want to delve deeper into the fishing approach, I've got a treat for you. 

I recently joined Mike Edge on the Gain Traction Podcast. We explored my journey with Technician Find, our triumphs, and our stumbles over the years in hiring technicians.

Mike's a blast, and he really honed in on a core mindset I shared for finding top techs: Think like a fisherman, not a hunter! 

Remember, the right mindset lets you make mistakes and still stay on course toward your ultimate goal to hire a mechanic!

And keep this in mind: Your shop's success story is just around the bend. So, gear up, prep that bait, and watch your garage transform into a hub bustling with top-tier talent. Embrace the process, take the plunge, and never stop learning.

Ready to break free from the norm and lead the way? Let's embark on this journey together! Oh, and catch you on the podcast.

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