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At Davis-Moore, Integrity is Paramount

November 2007, F&I and Showroom - Feature

by Joan Shim - Also by this author

Dawson Grimsley started out in sales at Davis-Moore Auto Group in Wichita, Kan., in 1976. It was back then that he caught the vision for prioritizing ethical behavior in the dealership.

“My old boss used to say, ‘If it’s not right, don’t do it,’” Grimsley said. That boss was Grant Davis, who joined the dealership in 1955 and helped build it into Kansas’ largest automotive group.

After working his way up in the dealership as the used-car manager, general used-car manager and general manager, Grimsley became co-owner and president of the auto group in 2001 when Grant Davis passed away. He continued the existing practices that leveraged the company’s high standard of ethics and compliance, as well as starting new ones. These practices have enabled Davis-Moore to establish a reputation of integrity in the community.

“I have found through word-of-mouth from repeat customers, as well as through casual conversations with individuals in local restaurants to their competitors in the Wichita area, that the Davis-Moore name is synonymous with high-quality, high-ethical standards and a positive car-buying and financing experience,” said Adam Barocio, an account executive with EFG Companies, which provides F&I support to the Davis-Moore group.

If It Ain’t Broke

Davis-Moore has promoted from within for more than 30 years, and Grimsley credits the company’s ethical consistency and success partly to this policy.

“They learn to do business the way you want them to and they see that we have a very high standard for ethics,” Grimsley said. “Once you have people who understand the processes and the reputation you have to uphold, it is so much easier when they start getting into different parts of the dealership.”

The employees learn early on that management has a very low tolerance for dishonesty. “If someone does something dishonestly, I won’t put up with it, no matter who they are,” Grimsley said. They also gain a general grasp of the business before entering positions with greater responsibility. Management benefits by being able to evaluate employees’ performance and character before entrusting them with more.

“Based on their work experience within the dealership, management is able to properly judge the ethical standards and commitment of these individuals prior to offering a promotion to F&I,” Barocio observed. “This practice ensures that the proper individuals are given this opportunity. It also reduces turnover in the department, leading to improved compliance with ethical standards and higher customer satisfaction.”

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