After co-owning a chain of other shops with his brothers, Zar Syed, chief operating officer at Mechanic One, realized the level of success that can come from simple, professional and honest auto repair, and wanted to come up with something revolutionary for a shop of his own.
Before the August opening of Mechanic One, Syed went to about 15 shops in the area to do research as a customer and to see how shops worked. Armed with his observations on what not to do and the most up-to-date equipment, Syed created a shop that he describes as the “Apple of auto repair.” The shop not only uses Apple products, but Syed also use its business model as a guide and has designed his store in a very similar, minimalist approach.
1. According to Syed, most customers do a double take when they walk in the two sets of doors into the facility. The ceramic tiles, exposed beams and aluminum wall all reflect the shop’s simplistic and modern design approach.
2. The employees all wear uniforms that are similar to those worn by Apple employees, but with a slight twist. The staff of Mechanic One all wear a blue T-shirt with a white wrench on it. The wrench logo can be seen all over the store. “You see a wrench, what do you think of? You think of something that needs to be fixed,” said Syed when explaining how he came up with the simple but memorable logo. During the holiday season, the shirts change from blue to red.
3. The lobby is always the perfect temperature for customers. How is that possible? Customers have climate control and are able to set their preferred temperature through an iPad that is hook up to the shop’s advanced Nest thermostat system.
4. Customers have their own bathroom, separate from the staff, that is kept clean at all times with stainless steel appliances and ceramic tiles. An air freshener and Bath & Body Works soap keeps the bathroom from feeling like it’s located in an auto shop.
5. Customers who come in for a service at Mechanic One can expect top service from a highly trained technician. All of the technicians are ASE-certified and many are Master Technicians. Another perk of coming into Mechanic One is that every customer who comes in for a service is treated to a free car wash.
6. The shop tries to be as eco-friendly as possible. Along with using wireless devices instead of paper, Mechanic One uses an energy recovery ventilator (ERV), a low-powered device that keeps the air fresh at all times. The device is even connected to a carbon monoxide sensor that sends an alert to Syed’s phone if any is detected. The ERV helps keep the shop dust free.
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