Talking shop…. Mike Garrett of High Country Motors
December 5, 2013
Mike Garrett and Kim Garrett, owners of High Country Motors, 277 East Agate Ave, Granby
How long have you been in business? 20 years under Mike, and Kim 97 years in the family.
How did you get started in this business? Grandfather and father: Glenn Pharo/ Fred Garrett
Business mission statement: Value of customer relationships
Success in the mission: Build lasting relationships. We will see our customers again
How do you cope with Grand County's seasonal surges? As they come. You can't plan around them due to them being weather related
What do you think is the biggest business barrier in Grand County? Labor pool
What do you think is your biggest business barrier on a state and/or national level? Politics. Taxes, Government spending, and most of all ObamaCare
What can government here do to help? Reduce big government which in turn will reduce taxes.
How does your business give back to the community? Fair, high school sponsorships.
Give examples of how you are environmentally responsible. We utilize our waste oil for heating
How do you support other local businesses? We shop locally as much as possible. We have never bought an appliance out of the county.
How do you feel about direct competition? There is no direct competition located in the county for us in the auto dealer side. As far as the service side over the years I have seen way too many shops come and go. Everyone flocks to the new flavor of the month in the service business and then returns after they find out it's not so good. The internet is the direct competition for retail.
How do you market yourself? Internet, word of mouth
What's the main thing you have you learned in your years in business? It is tough in Grand County. You have to be a survivor. Many people have failed here and should not feel as that they are failures, this is a hard place to make it.
Where do you go for help when you need it? Home and think.
Who is your biggest business influence/mentor? Dan Hahn
What do you think is the most significant economic driver in Grand County? 1: Second homes 2: tourism 3: Agriculture
If you could go back in time and start up your business venture all over again, what would you do differently? Given the climate of the government, I would not do it at all.
What's the best compliment you received from a client/customer/guest? "Without you on Main Street it would not be Main Street." Bob Anderson
What do you consider to be your biggest mistake in business? Budgeting for 2008-2012.
What organization(s) is (are) most useful to business owners? For us Colorado Independent Automobile Dealers Association. Not much locally.
How much of a role does technology play in your business? On a scale of 1-10, a 9.
What are the technology challenges in your business? Cost of technology.
What's the general key to making a customer/client/guest happy? Treat them as locals.
Is their any certain trend you've noticed in consumer habits lately? Everyone is an internet buyer.
What are some ways to keep up staff morale? Be their friend first and their boss when you have to.
What are some ways you train your staff on an ongoing basis? Daily changes in an over-regulated world.
If you could give advice to a novice entrepreneur, what would it be? Don't do it you can't afford to pay back what the government has spent.