One of the most typical comments I get from automotive technicians and others in the industry is that the general public just doesnt appreciate the value we provide. To a large degree, thats very true, but it probably has more to do with the general lack of understanding of modern vehicle technology by that same public. The average consumer feels intimidated every time they take their vehicle in for service simply because of the complexity of the modern automobile. People tend to fear what they dont understand, and that more than anything else leads to the feelings of distrust we work hard to overcome at the service desk every day. The answer, of course, is to communicate clearly with customers. Let them know about the value you provide as a certified professional and take the time to explain, in simple terms, exactly what they are paying for and why. To help open that dialog, ASE has established a weeklong celebration of excellence for those hardworking automotive professionals who do so much to keep America rolling. We call it Automotive Service Professionals Week and this year it runs from June 12-18.
Building on the success of Automotive Service Professionals Day begun in 2001, ASE established National Automotive Service Professional’s Week in 2005 to honor the commitment and dedication of automotive, truck and collision technicians, along with parts specialists and other support professionals who serve the motoring public. For 2007, ASE continues this recognition for a full week and has it listed in the 2007 Chase’s Calendar of Events.
Twenty-seven states issued proclamations honoring National Automotive Service Professionals Week in 2006, and we will once again be working with our Blue Seal of Excellence Recognition Program shops to push to have all 50 states recognize the outstanding work done by automotive professionals across the nation. But you dont have to wait for ASP Week to take advantage of a great opportunity for the NATEF schools to plan their own recognition events before the semester ends. The dedication that ASP Week spotlights begins in classrooms and technical labs all across the nation, with thousands of automotive technology students who represent the future of the automotive service industryindividuals like those reading this column. If you are an instructor, why not use this idea to plan a recognition event of your own?
ASE established National Automotive Service Professionals Week to recognize the men and women who service and maintain the highly complex vehicles upon which we depend so much for our day-to-day transportation. This event acknowledges their skill and dedication, and ASE is proud to help recognize these individuals for their commitment to their customers, their craft and the American economy. Theres no reason that recognition cant extend to those young men and women who are just beginning that career journey as automotive professionals.
ASE certified professionals are among the best in the business. That dedication to being the best is something the automotive industry needs to spotlight more often. Automotive Service Professionals Week is designed to help do just that. So mark your calendars and join in the celebration. After all, its really your week.