Tag Archives: honest mechanic

Mini Cooper Repair: How to Replace the Side Mirror of a 2001-2006 Model

MiniCooper hood emblem -- how to repair the side mirror

This repair takes about 10-20 minutes. It is not very complicated and does not need much in the way of tools.

Tools you need for this Mini Cooper repair are:

  • Allen wrenches
  • Small flat head screwdriver (optional).

Note: The repair steps are provided in three groups, a, b, and c, depending how much of the mirror you want to replace. You can jump down to the b or c sections if you just want to switch out the cap or the mirror glass.

a. How to replace your complete Mini Cooper’s side mirror

1.) Take the current side mirror off your car. To do so, you want to expose three Allen screws that connect the door and mirror, which you can achieve by rotating the base of the mirror’s assembly. Using an Allen wrench, unscrew the three screws and detach the mirror from the car. Be sure you leave behind the rubber gasket, though. You will also need to remove the connectors that go to heated or power mirrors from the old mirror and the door.

2.) Put your new side mirror onto the car. Attach the new side mirror to your Mini Cooper’s wire connector. The connector runs into a plastic tab within the door. Be certain the tab is positioned in the direction of the car’s exterior. Uncover the Mini Cooper’s screw holes by pivoting the mirror at its base. Place the mirror so that it is covering the rubber seal. Grab the three Allen screws again. Screw them in. Finally, rotate the mirror back into its final position.

b. How to change only the glass of your side mirror

You can just use your hands, with no need for additional tools, if you only want to switch out the glass; however, a small flathead screwdriver can sometimes make the process easier. To proceed, press on your Mini Cooper’s mirror at its upper edge, applying significant pressure. Put your fingers beneath the mirror’s lower edge, which now protrudes. Pull toward you until you can feel the release of the clips. When you only need to change the glass, you can detach the heated mirror from the electrical connector, and the new glass should snap into position. When you are also changing the Mini Cooper’s cap, put this glass in a safe place so that it does not get broken.

c. How to replace just the caps of your Mini Cooper’s side mirror

To change the outside caps of your Mini Cooper’s side mirror, you just need to disconnect them from the five clips that hold the caps to the mirror assembly. You want to start with the bottom two clips, using two fingers to release them. Then you want to release the top three. You should now be able to release the cap. As indicated by Brett Foote of North American Motoring, you can use a knife or other small tool if you are having difficulty getting the cap to release. “[B]ut be very careful because they are very fragile and prone to breaking,” she added. When you have the old cover removed, position the new cover, verifying that all five clips snap into position. Finally, push back on the glass of the mirror until it snaps into its position as well.

Mini Cooper News

Now that we have completed the technical discussion of the repair, we can turn to trendier business, recent news items related to the carmaker that might interest you as a Mini Cooper owner:

  • One-of-a-kind Mini Cooper stars at royal wedding
  • Portugal gathering of Mini lovers will mark four decades of the event

One-of-a-kind Mini Cooper stars at royal wedding

The Mini Cooper can be more than just a car to help you get around town. It is also stylish enough that it can serve as a fashionable gift, even to royalty – as indicated by the Mini that was given to Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. The unique automobile did not appear at the couple’s reception, though. Rather, it was sent to a nonprofit selected by the couple; that organization will, in turn, sell it at auction.

The standard Mini Cooper 2-Door was taken by the designers at the automaker and adapted. They added a bespoke interior and roof graphic, highlights of which were specially chosen embroidery and 3D-printed features. The concept that inspired the manually applied roof graphic is a blend of the Stars & Stripes and the Union Jack – mixing the national backgrounds of the bride and groom. Additionally, “Just Married” is projected onto the ground from the car when the doors are opened. The side scuttles, chrome finish, and other granular aspects of the car’s detailing are custom-designed for this special moment as well.

The “satellite grey” leather interior is another key feature that contrasts nicely with the “crystal white” color of the car’s main body paint. A slender strip provides the date of the wedding, as well as the names of the bride and groom. The door cards contain accents that harmonize with the hues of the graphic on the Mini Cooper’s roof. This particular car will only be made by Mini Cooper once, but you can customize your own vehicle to resemble the royal wedding car using the official customization platform, Mini Yours. You can include 3D-printed components with that design if you want.

As noted above, the car is being handed off by the marrying couple to a cause: the Children’s HIV Association, where it will be sent after the couple’s wedding on May 19. Assumedly the car will get a great price at auction given the amount of publicity this regifting has produced.

Portugal gathering of Mini lovers will mark four decades of the event

Portugal hosted hundreds of Mini lovers from around the world when lovers of the automaker held the 40th yearly International Mini Meeting (IMM) there. This year was the first time the event has taken place in the European nation. Slotted for the 17th through the 21st of May by the Clube Mini de Portuga, the IMM was held on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, approximately 62 miles south of Porto in Praia de Mira.

Each day of the IMM was focused on one of the cars made by the automaker. One car that was spotlighted was the Mini Moke, for instance. The Mini Van and Mini Clubman were also given their own dedicated days.

Another car that was given special attention was the Mini Cooper S, which is a performance-driven version of the car that has been around for 55 years. When this version of the car was introduced, it both increased the quality of the brakes and gave the car twice the power.

Honest Mini Cooper repair in Boulder

Mini Cooper has proven that it has the refined approach to appear in the headlines with the royal couple, and the International Mini Meetings continue to draw attention. The Mini Cooper is about substance of course, not just style – and its incredible drivability must be safeguarded. At Independent Motors, we believe great service starts with honest communication, and we want your business for the long haul. See Our Mini Cooper Repair philosophy.

How to Change Your BMW Hood Ornament (aka Roundel Emblem)

shot of BMW emblem in rain on car

One of the defining features of a BMW is its roundel emblems, on its hood and trunk. These ornaments are eye-catching when the car is first purchased new. However, they will wear over time, fading and potentially cracking – in large part because of long-term exposure to the UV rays of the sun. Getting a replacement emblem is certainly affordable compared to many other car parts, showing up on eBay and other online stores for $5 to $35. Once you have a new emblem in-hand, removing the old one and replacing it with a new one can be performed in a total of 10 to 15 minutes.

Caution: While an 82mm diameter is standard, BMWs DO NOT always have the same size ornament. You can use a resource such as RealOEM to verify the part that you need. If you cannot figure out what part you need, the last-ditch possibility is to take off the current emblem and look on the back for the OEM part number. That way, whether you purchase an OEM or aftermarket part, you will know exactly what you need.

You will have to get both the emblem and two mounting grommets. Once you have the parts, you are ready to gather your tools and move forward with this BMW repair.

Tools:

  • Needle nose pliers
  • Masking tape
  • Thin flat-head screwdriver
  • Plastic pry tool

Step 1 – To safeguard your BMW’s paint as you take the emblem off the car, it is a good idea to tape the area around it. You can also keep from scratching your car by placing a cloth beneath the pry tool as you work. Be careful in your choice of pry tool, since it will greatly impact how simple the replacement process is; it should be as thin as possible. If you decide to use a flat-head screwdriver, it is important to use masking tape on it as well – again, to keep the paint from scratching.

Step 2 – Once you have your tools at your side and have everything protected, begin to use the prying tool to remove the ornament that is currently on your car. Move around the emblem so that it stays relatively flat as you loosen it. After you have mostly freed it, you can finish the removal with your fingers.

Step 3 – On the back of the ornament are a couple of tabs that fit into grommets for mounting. It is a good idea to go ahead and put in new grommets when you replace the emblem. The grommets, which are made of plastic, will naturally start to wear and crack as they age, threatening the stability of the ornament – sometimes even resulting in it breaking off the vehicle while you are on the road (which is dangerous, although not as bad as a poorly secured tree flying off it).

Step 4 – Use your needle nose pliers to take the grommets off your BMW. At this point you should have both the grommets and ornament removed. It is an ideal time to clean, since it is likely that dirt or other debris has become stuck under the emblem over time.

Step 5 – With everything cleared away, you can now take your replacement grommets and simply press them into position. Line up the emblem so that you can fit its tabs to the grommets. Be sure that it is tight, without any space between the ornament and the hood.

Step 6 – Drive to a friend’s house and show off your BMW repair.

BMW News & Information

Now that you know how to replace the emblem, we can switch gears to trending news items that may interest you as a BMW owner:

  • BMW electrified car sales pass a quarter million
  • First Chinese self-driving license for global automaker goes to BMW
  • BMW to introduce wireless charging for electric vehicles

BMW electrified car sales pass a quarter million

On May 15, BMW announced that it had achieved a milestone with its electrified car sales, surpassing 250,000 vehicles.

In the press release outlining this news, Pieter Nota, a BMW boardmember, said that the sales of these cars had risen significantly during the beginning of 2018, allowing the carmaker to roll past the quarter-million mark. The sales of electrified models – including Mini Electric, BMW iPerformance, and BMW i, hit 9,831 during April, representing a 52% increase. BMW’s goal at the beginning of 2018 was to sell 140,000 electrified cars, and Nota said that projection is well within reach given this strong start.

First Chinese self-driving license for global automaker goes to BMW

The Shanghai Intelligent Connected Autonomous Driving Test License is a highly valuable prize for the self-driving car market in China. On May 14, BMW became the first carmaker to receive this license, which means that they will soon be able to test their driverless cars on China’s roads. The awarding of this license is a big step forward for BMW in its efforts to dominate the self-driving market in the key nation.

BMW will start to use the permit in Shanghai at a future point that is not yet known. However, it already has a group of five dozen self-driving specialists, so they will be ready once the automaker is free to move forward. What this testing will involve is building machine learning algorithms based on data from real-world traffic patterns.

Testing will initially be within a contained area – not out on the streets of Shanghai. The track that will be used for the autonomous research will be 3.5 miles long. Two cars, both BMW 7 Series, will be used in the closed facility. By the end of 2018, there will be a total of nine cars involved in the testing.

BMW to introduce wireless charging for electric vehicles

Smartphones are now increasingly being charged wirelessly. With an inductive charging system for electric cars, BMW is bringing this same approach to the automobile.

Many of BMW’s plug-in hybrid electric cars will eventually be able to use this wireless charging pad. The 530e iPerformance is the initial model that will be outfitted to work with the technology.

BMW car owners in Europe will be the first to get access to wireless charging when it is released in the next few months. A limited number of drivers in the United States – via a California pilot project – will also get access to this convenient feature.

The system will be made up of a main coil and charging pad that could be set up either outside or within a garage. Beneath the car is an additional coil.

The charge rate will be as high as 3.2kW via power sent through an alternating magnetic field extending from one coil to the other. Charging the car completely will take about 3 1/2 hours, making it much more convenient to own an electric car.

Honest Boulder BMW repair

BMW’s commitment to sustainability, as exhibited by its investment in and rising sales of electric car technology, shows an alignment with values we hold dear in Boulder. The carmaker also is cutting edge in its global embrace of autonomous driving. The above process will allow you to remove and replace your BMW roundel emblem; however, if you would rather have the repair performed by an honest and experienced mechanic, we can help. See our BMW repair philosophy.

Toyota Camry Repair: How to Change Your Radiator

Toyota car grill -- brand logo - Toyota repair - radiator

Note: These repair steps apply specifically to older Toyota Camry model years, 1997 through 2001.

A Toyota Camry can often live to an old age and continue to be reliable. You will help the car make it farther along the rode by performing routine maintenance. One key maintenance element is to repair a radiator that is worn by corrosion or otherwise becomes damaged. When you have a Toyota Camry from 1997-2001, below are the steps to replace the radiator.

Caution: You want to make certain that engine coolant is kept safely away from your children and pets, within a resealable container. Also take care of any spills right away. It can kill a person or animal to eat antifreeze – and to make matters worse, it has a sweet taste. For the same concern related to the toxicity of the substance, you want to protect yourself when you perform this Toyota repair by putting on protective eyewear, gloves, and clothing. Finally, you could get badly burned performing this work on your Camry; stay safe by not opening your radiator cap if the antifreeze temperature is 100 °F or greater.

Step 1 – Gather these items to complete your repair:

  • New radiator
  • Resealable container
  • Engine coolant
  • Distilled water.

Step 2 – Once you have your supplies ready at your side, you want to unhook the negative battery cable. At the bottom of the radiator is a drain plug. Loosen it. Now let the engine coolant flow into the resealable container. You can increase the rate at which the fluid runs by loosening the radiator cap.

Step 3 – Disconnect the outlet hoses and inlet hose on your radiator. Unhook the outlet hoses and inlet hose on the oil cooler as well. You will see clamps on the wire harness that is attached to the fan shroud. Unhook those, as well as the fan motor’s connector.

Step 4 – Take out the bolts on the fan mount, along with the fan itself and the motor. Reach into the engine compartment and remove your radiator assembly. Your fan is currently connected to the old radiator. Disconnect it and attach it to the replacement radiator.

Step 5 – Now gradually, conscientiously push your replacement radiator into the engine compartment. Tighten your radiator and fan bolts and clamps.

Step 6 – Returning to the wire harness on the fan shroud, reattach its clamps. Rehook the fan motor’s connector. Reinstall the inlet and outlet hoses on the oil cooler, and reinstall the inlet and outlet hoses on the radiator. Grab your reverse battery connector and reattach it.

Step 7 – Using a mixture of 1-part distilled water and 1-part engine coolant (half each), fill the radiator. Note: Pour coolant into your radiator gradually so that there are no air pockets created.

Step 8 – Go ahead and start your car. You want to actually warm up the engine so that any excess air can escape from the vehicle. Shut off the car again. Bring your coolant back up to the top.

Sustainability Tip: As long as your engine coolant is not contaminated and is relatively fresh, you can reuse it – which is the environmentally friendly way to go. “If you choose not to reuse it,” suggested It Still Runs, “take it to a garage or hazardous waste facility where it can be disposed of properly.”

To take that advice locally here in Boulder, the Boulder Hazardous Materials Management Facility (West of Boulder County Recycling Center / 1901 63rd St. / Boulder, CO 80301; 720-564-2251) accepts coolant and a litany of other household wastes for disposal, as described on the Boulder County website.

Toyota News & Information

Your radiator fix should now be complete. Having finished that Toyota repair, we can now turn to a lighter subject – interesting stories in the news that might interest you as a Toyota owner. Here are a couple of notable reports:

  • Toyota gets 4 of top 10 for longevity
  • Battery exchange explored to keep EVs going

Toyota gets 4 of top 10 for longevity

We should all be concerned about sustainability, and the choices we make related to transportation heavily impact our carbon footprints. That said, there is a strong argument for the full-sized SUV in a new study of automotive longevity. The research, conducted by used car site iSeeCars.com, found that full-size SUVs are the likeliest model to achieve 200,000 miles or more. The data used for the study is from 13.5 million used cars (1981 to 2017 model-years) that changed hands during 2017.

The Toyota Sequoia is the number-one most likely car to make it to 200,000 miles, although only a fraction make it: 6.6%. Two other full-size SUVs rounded out the top three: the Ford Expedition (at 5.4%) and Chevrolet Suburban (at 5.2%).

The reason that large SUVs last so long in comparison to other types of cars is that they are built for “truck-like durability” with a body-on-frame design, noted iSeeCars CEO Phong Ly, who added that “[t]hese vehicles can also be easier to repair than smaller SUVs, which can contribute to their longevity.”

Ly’s comments directly tie into the issue of gaz-guzzling that is so central to the SUV: body-on-frame construction is bad for fuel efficiency because of its hefty weight –significantly outdone by unibody, in which the body and chassis are basically a single component.

Setting aside that issue, let’s look at the top 10 models in terms of getting to the 200,000-mile mark:

1.) 6.6% of Toyota Sequoias

2.) 5.4% of Ford Expeditions

3.) 5.2% of Chevrolet Suburbans

4.) 4.2% of Toyota 4Runners

5.) 3.9% of GMC Yukons

6.) 3.8% of Chevrolet Tahoes

7.) 2.8% of GMC Yukons

8.) 2.6% of Toyota Tacomas

9.) 2.4% of Toyota Avalons

10.) 2.4% of Honday Odysseys.

The road lives of these models are much better than average; among all car models, just 1.2% hit 200,000 miles, per this analysis.

Also note that the first two models that are not large SUVs are both Toyota, the Tacoma midsize pickup and the Avalon full-size sedan.

Battery exchange explored to keep EVs going

A sore point related to electric cars is that you must recharge them by hooking them up to electrical power. Even if a fast charging system is used, it will often take about an hour to get an electric vehicle (EV) completely recharged.

To address this pain-point, a battery exchange system is under development at Toyota for smaller electric vehicles, according to the Japanese site NHK. Although this system would be established just in Japan at this stage, it is still interesting in terms of the carmaker’s direction. The project would place stations throughout Japan that would allow car owners to easily exchange their batteries and stay on the road. Stations to allow for battery exchange would also be implemented at Toyota dealerships – where owners would be able to hand over a depleted battery in exchange for one that is 100% charged. This process could take just a few minutes, a similar amount of time to traditional refueling at the pump.

Honest Toyota repair in Boulder

Toyota increasingly has more sustainable car options, but it also has some of the most well-built cars on the road – with its durability proven by how the longevity of its models compare to other brands. Part of getting that great longevity out of a car is by taking car of it, as with replacing the radiator when needed. Do you need help with your radiator or with any other Toyota repair or maintenance? At Independent Motors, we like the Toyota brand so much that many of our employees own and drive them, including our owner Bill, who has driven a Toyota Prius since 2006. See our Toyota repair philosophy.

VW Repair: How to Change Your Serpentine Belt

Volkswagen - VW Repair - Quick Steps to Change Your Serpentine Belt

The alternator, air conditioning compressor, and other engine accessories in your Volkswagen are provided power by a v-ribbed belt or serpentine belt. The good news is that you will not need special tools in order to replace this part. You will not always be able to access the serpentine belt immediately, though: in the Jetta and Golf, you will have to remove an auxiliary v-belt first.

No matter what type of VW model you own, you can use the below steps for replacement – skipping over the v-belt sections as applicable.

Caution: Before you start this Volkswagen repair, you want the car to sit for 2-3 hours so the engine can cool. If you do not allow ample time for cooling, you could get burned.

Removing your VW auxiliary v-belt

  1. Make sure the ground is level. Activate the parking brake.
  2. Lock your steering wheel by turning it all the way to the right.
  3. Look for the ground cable attached to the negative battery terminal, and disconnect it. Apply a wrench to the retaining bolt, loosening it. Remove the clamp from the terminal.
  4. Get a pad and paper. Create a rough diagram of how the belts are arranged around the engine pulleys, so that you can later install them in the exact same way.
  5. Grab a socket and loosen the mounting bolts on the power steering pump. Let the pump slide in the direction of your engine.
  6. Take the v-belt from the engine pulleys, and pull it out of the car.

Replacing your VW serpentine belt

  1. If you have not already done so (#4 above), grab a piece of paper, and make a drawing of the path of your serpentine belt around the engine pulleys.
  2. To release the belt’s tension, manually rotate the tensioner pulley – which you can find right beneath your alternator – away from the belt.
  3. Using your hand, remove the old serpentine belt from the engine.
  4. Look at your diagram of how the pulleys were arranged within the car. Place the new serpentine belt so that it matches the drawing.
  5. Take the serpentine belt, and situate it through the pulleys using the diagram you sketched.
  6. Get the belt tight again by releasing the tensioner pulley.

Installing your auxiliary v-belt

  1. Check the v-belt to ensure that it is not degraded and does not have a crack in it; if it does, you want to replace it.
  2. Thread the v-belt through the pulleys, as indicated by your drawing.
  3. Make sure you have lain the v-belt properly in the engine pulleys so that it is seated correctly.
  4. Move the power steering pump out of the way of the engine, and use your socket to tighten the mounting bolts.

Measuring your v-belt’s deflection

  1. At the longest stretch of the v-belt, put a straight edge on top of the two pulleys.
  2. Use a finger to press in the middle of the belt.
  3. Grab a ruler, and measure how far it is from the belt to the straight edge. The maximum separation you want is 13/64-inch.
  4. Take your socket, and loosen the mounting bolts on the power steering pump until the v-belt is sufficiently tight. Again, move the power steering pump out of the way of the engine. Tighten the bolts again.
  5. Reestablish the connection between your negative battery terminal and the ground cable. Put the clamp back on the terminal, and use a wrench to retighten your retaining bolt.

All steps of this Volkswagen repair are now complete. Your new serpentine belt will keep your car continuing to operate smoothly so that you can get where you need to go.

Note: Beyond replacing serpentine belts as needed, it is also smart to buy a backup belt and keep it in your trunk, as indicated by Jeffrey Caldwell in It Still Runs. “That way if the drive belt breaks while you’re on the road,” he said, “you will not be stranded.”

Volkswagen news & information

With the serpentine belt project finished, we can now take a look at recent Volkswagen news that might be of interest:

  • Two-motored VW racecar to run Pikes Peak
  • Ashton Kutcher’s VW could break world record

Two-motored VW racecar to run Pikes Peak

It is a commonly accepted notion within the automaking industry that racing can be helpful in the development of stronger cars. Prior to starting production of a car, you will often not be able to see its vulnerabilities until you test it at high speeds on a track. Carmakers are also able to bring more people into their dealerships from victory in races or even just the publicity surrounding them. Given these different general reasons to race, a Volkswagen prototype racecar will make its way to Colorado to take on Pikes Peak in a few months.

Volkswagen has another reason to race, related to the sustainable design of the car it is using. At a time when electric cars are increasingly becoming a serious alternative to internal-combustion cars, Volkswagen and its competitors are leveraging racing to show off their technology and make electric car ownership more attractive. Since traditional car racing is on the decline, noted Steve Hanley in CleanTechnica, the electric vehicle racing series Formula E is drawing the attention of many carmakers. The Jaguar I-Pace and Tesla Model S sedans are example cars that will be featured in racing series.

As a dive into electric racing, Volkswagen is traveling to Pikes Peak with an electric racer featuring dual motors in June. The hill climb that take place there on the 24th is the only race of its type on the planet. The stretch of road runs 12.4 miles, increasing from an elevation of 9,390 feet to 14,110 feet above sea level. Electric cars are actually well-designed for this competition. “Internal combustion engines lose power at higher elevations,” noted Hanley, “but electric motors are unaffected by altitude changes.”

Ashton Kutcher’s VW could break world record

The world record for the sale of a Volkswagen at auction may be broken on April 14, when the VW Microbus or Samba bus from That 70s Show is offered at Barrett-Jackson’s Palm Beach Auction.

No other VW Samba Van, or Microbus, with provenance has ever appeared in an auction, which makes people think that this one could be a record. It is worth noting that when That 70s Show was on the air, the bus was auctioned. It was sold for $28,000 at that point, but that was before the Microbus was a point of focus for collectors. Between that initial sale and today, numerous Samba vans have sold for greater than $100,000, and the collectible car industry has surged incredibly.

Mike Hanlan of New Atlas explains another reason why this car is expected to draw a huge price tag: it celebrates the youth of baby boomers, a group he described as “the people who have now accumulated the majority of the world’s wealth, and the same people who pay millions of dollars for the artifacts of their youth at auctions.”

Honest auto repair in Boulder

Hopefully the above steps have been helpful to you in understanding the replacement of your serpentine belt. If you would rather have an expert perform that repair or any other, we can help. At Independent Motors, 90% of the auto repair we do is repeat business. See our Volkswagen repair philosophy.

Subaru Repair: How to Break in Your New Engine + Oil Change Schedule

Subaru logo on steering wheel - Subaru Repair - How to Break in Your New Engine

Many car owners do not realize that when they drive a new car off the lot, their engine’s long-term health will be greatly influenced by their treatment of the car during the first few weeks on the road. You may have any of three different engines in a Subaru –turbocharged or naturally aspirated 4-cylinder, or 6-cylinder, all of which are horizontally opposed – and all of which require a proper break-in period at the beginning.

While we want to help with Subaru repair as needed, we also want to help you avoid large expenses with preventive strategies. Best practices to maintain and drive your car properly during the extremely important early period of ownership are as follows:

Tip 1. Start slow. Wait until you have at least 1000 miles on your odometer before you exceed 4000 revolutions per minute (RPM). Simply exhibiting patience with the car in this manner allows you to keep the engine stronger for all driving scenarios. Plus, keeping it slow at first lowers your risk of burning oil in the years to come by letting your piston rings seat properly within the combustion chambers.

Tip 2. Do not brake or speed up suddenly. As indicated in #1, you want to take it easy on your engine in its first few weeks on the road. You make it possible for the components within the engine to continue to fit well long into the life of the car by only accelerating moderately as you accrue the first thousand miles. As with acceleration, you will develop the correct mating of the pads with the brake drums or discs by applying the brakes lightly from day one. You will potentially cause your brake components to break if you are using the brakes heavily prior to completion of seating.

Tip 3. Avoid cruise control. You want your car to be speeding up and slowing down a bit, going through a spectrum of RPM levels, rather than keeping it on cruise control and having it rev at a consistent rate. You want the engine to be exposed to diverse engine conditions within a safe range (similar to stretching a muscle).

Tip 4. You want to take the car out on different types of routes, including city and highway roads. As with avoiding your cruise control, you can help the internal parts of your engine be ready to take on a range of engine RPM by using different driving scenarios. You want both the braking and the acceleration of your Subaru to be lively but conscientious (remembering moderation but also sticking to the task of “breaking in” the engine).

Tip 5. Get your oil changed at the first recommended point. See the full information on oil changes below – but the standard is 6 months or 6000 miles, whichever comes first. Whatever the case for your model, it will give the general health of your engine a boost by getting an oil change on time, with high-quality synthetic oil. Your oil change will be a bit different depending on the intake method and size of your Subaru engine. To make certain you use the right oil type and that you follow the change schedule correctly, check the car manual, although guidelines for the 2017 lineup are below. Often mechanics will suggest getting two oil changes within the break-in period, underscoring the gravity of this stage in the car’s life. To be clear, this recommendation is to get an oil change “halfway through the first oil change interval, and then performing another at the first scheduled change,” as indicated in It Still Runs.

Tip 6. Be responsive to your dashboard. You do not want to drive the engine when it is cold. Be aware of the blue “cold engine” light; if you see it, warm up the engine before proceeding.

Note of Caution: If you want to keep your Subaru healthy and prevent engine problems in the months and years ahead, use engine break-in best practices, as described above. It is worth noting that these strategies are not as critical for the newer cars as for the older ones. However, your chances of going hundreds of thousands of miles with relatively few issues will be greatly improved by careful engine treatment as you go your first 1000 miles (and continue with excellent Subaru repair and service as needed). On the other hand, failing to be conscientious could mean that you do not the value out of the car that you want.

Subaru oil change schedule

The interval of 6 months or 6000 miles, whichever comes first, is mentioned as a standard for new Subaru cars above. That interval applies to all 2017 and 2018 Subaru Outback, BRZ, Forester, Crosstrek, Impreza, Legacy, WRX, and STI. If you have a different year of the car, check your manual for your interval.

As indicated above, some mechanics will suggest doubling up the oil change during the first interval (which would mean also changing it at 3 months or 3000 miles, whichever comes first, in the case of the 2017 and 2018 Subaru models above). As noted in Cars101.com, it may be a good idea to change the oil ahead of the standard interval, “especially with hard driving, cold/hot weather, or manual transmissions that are revved up or downshifted.”

The Subaru owner’s manual backs up that perspective. The carmaker mentions that there are also various scenarios in which you want to refill the oil prior to the oil change – important since the rate at which engine oil is consumed increases under certain conditions. Those scenarios are:

  • During the break-in phase of initial ownership
  • If you filled the car with low-quality oil (or if you cannot verify oil quality, as when you buy a Subaru used)
  • If you used oil that is of the wrong viscosity
  • If you use high engine speeds (i.e., operating it at high RPM)
  • If you carry heavy loads in your Subaru
  • If you connect a trailer to the car
  • If you have lengthy stints of idling
  • If you are in traffic jams or other stop-and-go scenarios
  • If the external temperature is extreme during the car’s operation
  • If you are speeding up and slowing down the car more often than normal
  • If you have engine braking implemented.

In these situations, it is a good idea to check your oil every other time you refuel your car. Plus, you want to get oil changes more often as well. If your car is consuming more than 1 quart of oil per 1200 miles, you want to bring it to a mechanic to determine why consumption is abnormally high.

As a sample (otherwise check your manual), here are the types of oil that should be used in 2017 versions of these Subaru models and engine sizes:

  • Outback 5 L – 0w-20 synthetic
  • Outback 3.6 L – 5w-30 conventional or synthetic
  • Legacy 2.5 L – 0w-20 synthetic
  • Legacy 3.6 L – 5w-30 conventional or synthetic
  • Forester 2.5 L – 0w-20 synthetic
  • Forester 2.0 L Turbo – 5w-30 synthetic
  • Crosstrek 2.0 L – 0w-20 synthetic
  • Crosstrek 2.0 L Hybrid – 0w-20 synthetic
  • Impreza 2.0 L – 0w-20 synthetic
  • BRZ 2.0 L – 0w-20 synthetic
  • WRX 2.0 L Turbo – 5w-30 synthetic
  • STI 2.5 L Turbo – 5w-30 synthetic

Honest Subaru repair & advice

Knowing how to care for your car for yourself as needed can be helpful for your finances. However, you will probably have situations in which you want the help of a mechanic for your Subaru repair or maintenance. At Independent Motors, 90% of the auto repair we do is repeat business. See our Subaru repair philosophy.

VW Repair: How to Change Your Thermostat

Blue Volkswagen Bug and Cloudy Sky - VW Repair - How to Change Your Thermostat

VW Repair: How to Change Your Thermostat

The Jetta model, with a liquid-cooled engine, was first released by Volkswagen in the early 1980s. Volkswagen reintroduced the Beetle model as the New Beetle in 1996. Along with the Golf and the Passat, these two models keep the engine cool using radiator fluid instead of air flow. To avoid overheating, a thermostat gauges temperature and reports readings back to the computer. When the thermostat becomes dysfunctional, it is necessary to take it out and put in a new one.

Here are the steps to perform this Volkswagen repair:

Caution: Before proceeding, note that the engine should not be hot when you make this repair. Be certain that the car has had time to cool prior to the work to protect yourself from serious burns.

Step #1 – Drive the car onto auto service ramps. Position the wheel chock in back of the rear wheel.

Step #2 – Beneath the radiator drain valve, position a drain pan that can hold up to two gallons of coolant. Take a ¼-inch ratchet drive and insert it into the drain plug. Let about two gallons of coolant flow from the radiator. This drainage gets the level of fluid down enough that you will not get it on the engine. Once complete, set aside the drain pan; you will reuse the same fluid.

Step #3 – Find the spot at which the engine connects to the upper radiator hose. Loosen the clamp. Pull the hose out of the housing. You should now see the housing for the thermostat.

Step #4 – Take a socket and disconnect the three bolts that keep the housing attached to the engine. The 14-mm socket is most common, but your model may require a different size. Remove the thermostat housing.

Step #5 – Take the old O-ring from the thermostat housing. Put on a new one. A traditional gasket is not used to create the seal, so the O-ring must serve that function.

Step #6 – Take the thermostat that is no longer wanted from the engine and put the replacement part into position. You will know which end of the thermostat should be inside the engine by the big spring on that end of it.

Step #7 – Position the housing of the thermostat over top of it. Use the bolts to secure it. Check the bolts for rounding, rusting, or other corrosion. Replace them if needed.

Step #8 – Hook up the radiator hose again. Use the clamp to lock it into place.

Step #9 – At the radiator’s left side, you will see the fill cap. Open it, and pour the fluid back into the radiator. Make sure there is sufficient time for the radiator to let out air. Once all the fluid is back in the car, close the cap.

That’s all; you are finished with your Volkswagen repair. You should now have a new thermostat in your car so that you know your internal temperature is being properly protected. Your car is safe to drive without concern of overheating.

Volkswagen News & Information

Now that you have changed the thermostat and have that task out of the way, here are some recent news stories that may interest you as a VW owner:

  • VW sales up 6% in February 2018
  • Large segment of VW workforce will get 45 vacation days
  • 50 VW electric cars for German city
  • VW’s marketing chief aligned with blockchain startup

VW sales up 6% in February 2018

Sales for the US division of Volkswagen rose 6% in February, year-over-year (YOY) vs. February 2017. Volkswagen of America noted that the key reason for the sales bump was that its sports utility vehicles were becoming more popular.

The rise of the VW SUV is also a victory for sustainability, with both of the models sold in the United States (since the Touareg was discontinued here) also manufactured in North America. There were 7,486 sales of the Tiguan, which is built in Mexico, in February. There were 4,766 units of the Atlas, produced in Chattanooga, sold as well. That total of 12,252 represented more than half (54%) of all United States February sales by the automaker.

As SUV numbers rose, Passat numbers fell. The sedan, which is produced alongside the Atlas in Tennessee, backslid 50.3% YOY in February, dropping to 3,036.

While the Passat was a weak point, total sales for the US division of Volkswagen hit 26,660, making it the strongest February for the auto manufacturer since 2014.

To look at the first two months of 2018 together, the start – at 51,404 cars – has been 5.7% better than last year.

Large segment of VW workforce will get 45 vacation days

Approximately 120,000 VW union workers have arrived at an arrangement with the automaker that includes a substantial raise and, for some workers, six additional vacation/sick days.

Beginning in May, the union employees will see their salaries boosted 4.3%. During 2019, VW workers will get an additional 2.3% bonus along with benefits within their pensions. Some workers will be able to forego the bonus pay in exchange for six extra personal days (if they either work the night shift, or have parents or kids who require their care).

For the people who do fall within those parameters and decide to go with the extra six off-days, that will mean those individuals get a total, including the public holidays, of 45 paid days off work annually.

VW, Audi and Porsche cars are all manufactured by Volkswagen Group, which has an entire global workforce of approximately 636,000 – 286,000 of whom are in Germany.

The German members of the VW workforce are able to be powerful in negotiations with the multinational corporation because the economy has been expanding quickly and the unemployment rate is down.

50 VW electric cars for German city

In February, Volkswagen gave 50 e-Golf cars to the City of Hamburg. These zero-emission electric cars were part of a partnership between the carmaker and the German port city.

As the new, virtually silent electric cars were given to the city by Volkswagen, the company’s group strategy for new business director, Ludger Fretzen, noted that the 50 vehicles are a step toward healthier air quality.

“The objective of our partnership with Hamburg is to make urban mobility more environmentally compatible and more efficient,” noted Fretzen, who added that this sustainability effort was aligned with VW’s ongoing, long-term green campaign, Roadmap E.

VW’s marketing chief aligned with blockchain startup

IOTA, a blockchain startup, is loosely considered a distributed ledger technology (DLT). As such, it allows computers, for a very contained consumption of resources (and hence cost), to send data and payments securely.

IOTA created a data marketplace that was officially released in November 2017. Along with a major investment from Robert Bosch Venture Capital, that launch has made IOTA a point of focus for international business.

Given the prominence of IOTA, it is noteworthy that VW’s chief digital officer, Johann Jungwirth, joined the IOTA Foundation’s board. His position will be to guide the plans for the foundation and to make recommendations on how IOTA and the carmaker could work in tandem.

Honest Volkswagen repair in Boulder

While Volkswagen sales may be growing in the United States – and while the carmaker may be taking positive steps for workers, the environment, and data security – there will still be times when you need VW repair or routine maintenance. At Independent Motors, 90% of the work we do is repeat business. See our Volkswagen repair philosophy.

 

Why Honesty is the #1 Business Priority

Why Honesty is the #1 Business Priority

Popularity, happiness, youthfulness, timeliness, reliability, niceness, comfort, friendliness, innovativeness, uniqueness, and quality are all values that could be used to describe a business. Companies or brands can choose to embrace whatever values they want, and some qualities are deeper than others (quality having greater substance than youthfulness, for example).

 

What value do people appreciate most in the businesses from which they attain products and services? As residents of Boulder, we will have our own expectations in terms of how businesses behave. For instance, sustainability or community focus might be a value we appreciate more than in some other geographical areas. However, looking internationally gives us a good sense of what consumers expect from or most prioritize in businesses generally.

 

Before we get into the international value of honesty within business, we take a look at truthfulness as a characteristic of businesspeople. Finally, after discussing the survey results, we look at an honest option for car repair in Boulder.

 

Characteristics of businesspeople with integrity

 

We can talk about brands all we want, but what about the people? Here are a couple of characteristics that are common to high-integrity professionals, based on ideas from public speaker Brian Tracy that he described in Entrepreneur:

 

  • They hold themselves to honesty as a nonnegotiable standard (regardless of any immediate or long-term profit motive); and
  • They keep promises (and, in so doing, prove themselves to have candor).

 

Tracy additionally calls honesty and integrity the #1 sign of a strong leader. “Integrity is a state of mind and is not situational,” says Tracy. “If you compromise your integrity in small situations with little consequence, then it becomes very easy to compromise on the [large] situations.” (Note that Tracy uses the notions of honesty and integrity interchangeably, whereas the poll creates distinction between these two concepts.)

 

#1 worldwide business value

 

Now let’s get to businesses and the notion of honesty as a value within them. The issue of the most highly prioritized values was the focus of a poll conducted by PR firm Cohn & Wolfe. The survey asked consumers worldwide what value was the most important to them, and the one that received the highest number of responses was honesty. The second and third highest listed values were reliability and integrity.

 

The PR company polled 12,000 individuals in 12 major world markets, one of which was the United States. One of the primary researchers behind this study was Geoff Beattie, a former TV news reporter. Writing about the study in Fast Company, Beattie notes that its results seems off in terms of what we understand about how people actually do buy. For instance, it does not seem that people are necessarily concerned about the integrity of their smartphone manufacturer. However, the fact that people are saying that trustworthiness really is the thing that they want most in those who provide them goods and services should be taken very seriously by businesses.

 

Beattie explains that after being a part of the same poll’s research team in 2012, 2013, and 2014, he had started to believe that the Great Recession was a gamechanger in people’s expectations toward businesses – that trust and transparency have become essential, with consumers being increasingly concerned that they are part of a respectful relationship. People are setting aside polish and charm in favor of something genuine, real, and authentic.

 

The two reasons that Beattie sees authenticity as on the rise are these two elements:

 

  • While people may disagree on the causes of the Great Recession of 2009, the result is that more people are distrusting the activities and intentions of corporations. Incredibly, the study from Cohn & Wolfe found that only 1 in 33 (3% of) people in the US, UK, Italy, Sweden, Spain, and France thought that large enterprises were very transparent and trustworthy. In Germany, just 1% of people think businesses should be trusted. This focus on honesty is especially high in Europe and the US – more than in China, India, and Indonesia.

 

  • Since the world is becoming more digital all the time, the likelihood that businesses are exposed for not having been forthright about certain information is rising every day. Beattie says that when he first began work as a journalist in the 1980s, it was challenging to get information related to businesses that was not their own self-published materials. When you did get something that was really eye-opening, the corporation might respond by 100% denying the allegation or not issuing a comment. Today, since everyone with a smartphone can be a journalist, and since data is distributed in vast troves across the earth, companies will no longer be insensitive to these concerns. A large company with many different international locations has to think that there is at least one person within its ranks who is failing to perform their job correctly, behavior that could be uploaded to social networks (becoming a viral hit and PR nightmare).

 

As Beattie sees it, honesty is not an option for these large companies. They have to be transparent with people, or it will come back to haunt them.

 

Impact of Edward Snowden & related stories on perception

 

To continue exploring honesty as a worldwide concern, there is plenty of evidence to back up the idea that consumers will flee companies that hide critical data that they feel should be public. High for priorities in terms of transparency are the point of origin and other descriptors of foods, notes Beattie.

 

At the same time people want access, there has been a huge recent rise in the general public’s concern with information privacy and security, per the Cohn & Wolfe findings. Beattie notes that part of the reason that is the case is because of Edward Snowden and the basic truths about the invasiveness of the surveillance state that were put into the limelight by his whistleblowing.

 

Authenticity is increasingly a topic for the top technology providers, since they are having to adapt to meet the changing needs of their evolving customer bases. It is not easy to successfully approach this issue, since it can be confusing to summarize with proper highlighting and clarification of the specifics within a data privacy agreement (those long contracts we all sign when we get an update for our phones or software).

 

“We believe this is the moment for big brands to take the idea of authenticity seriously,” writes Beattie.

 

12,000 people: 4 characteristics of an honest, authentic company

 

When this group of people was asked what made a company authentic or honest, they listed what they expected from honest brands or companies in open-ended answers. The answers typically included a desire for these characteristics (among others):

 

  • values that do not change regardless of context
  • consistency in grounding actions within an overarching mission
  • transparent exposure of organizational policies and any major behind-the-scenes issues
  • the capacity to present mistakes while being clear about the need and intent for improvement, as applicable.

 

Honest Boulder mechanic

 

One industry for which consumers feel particularly concerned about honesty is car repair, since the automobile is such a resource-intensive and highly valued possession. At Independent Motors, we believe great service starts with open, honest communication. See our history and beliefs.

The Power of Listening

 The Power of Listening

If it matters to the customer, it should matter to the business.

 

Organizations should listen carefully to what their customers say in order to better meet their needs; it’s a win-win.

 

Listening is a simple concept… or is it? Actually, no matter how much businesses might recognize the importance of understanding their customers, many fail to listen to “us” (as consumers) directly. Sure, many companies will put together surveys to collect data and “listen” in that way. However, collecting feedback in that manner is not the only or the most important way to listen. By going beyond an obsession with surveying for feedback and instead listening actively and broadly, avoiding “leakage,” and implementing other tactics, companies can be more effective.

 

Why customer surveys do & don’t work

 

Having a systematized way to collect feedback may be one-size-fits-all and in a different category from listening during a conversation, but these responses do help businesses. Six reasons that companies should poll customers and listen to their feedback, according to Client Heartbeat, are:

 

  • Useful in development of a product or service, shaping it to meet customer needs;
  • Helps you to know how satisfied your customers are;
  • Gives you guidance to craft a more powerful customer experience;
  • Helps create better retention (keeping rather than losing customers) through better information about their frustrations;
  • Offers insights so that the organization can ground its decision-making in data rather than guesswork; and
  • The business can find out who its “brand ambassadors” (customer advocates) really are.

 

Now, those arguments for customer surveys seem compelling. But many point-of-sale surveys are poorly constructed, according to a study by Interaction Metrics (which notably, like Client Heartbeat, is a survey company). The 2016 analysis assessed the surveys used by 51 major US-based retail corporations, rating 15 different aspects of them. The average result out of 100 possible points was an abysmal 43! The most interesting specific finding, revealing a primary reason that companies are so bad at these surveys, was that they tend to be manipulative: “32% of all questions led customers to give answers that companies want to hear,” noted Interaction Metrics.

 

Surveys are used to generate “customer-experience metrics.” Customers want to be heard of course, but the term customer-experience metrics should already raise eyebrows in terms of treating customers like they are numbers. Even if these metrics are not a replacement for strong individual listening, businesses can have difficulty with them. Many companies have a hard time determining how customer metrics relate to their activities. Plus, it can be difficult for businesses to get their staff excited about metrics since they are so impersonal and often fail to give insight into sudden shifts in customer sentiment.

 

Businesses often cannot decide whether they should focus more on metrics that have to do with customer relationships or sales. (We choose the former.)

 

These metrics can also be skewed because the people who complete it will not necessarily give a business a good sense of its average customer. In Forbes, Todd Hixon suggests that the subset of customers who answer surveys can be an issue, suggesting that respondents are:

 

  1. People who are not highly active;
  2. Older customers; and
  3. People who are irritated and want to vent.

 

Hixon also says that key demographics including millennials and mobile users are probably not represented well.

 

Beyond issues with the information collected, the process of applying feedback from customers is difficult for businesses too. According to management consulting firm McKinsey & Company, one of the primary reasons that businesses fail with listening in this way is that they “don’t have the culture to loop customer feedback through the front line to improve behavior or connect it to innovation.”

 

The importance of listening actively & broadly

 

To explore the topic of active and broad listening, here is the reasoning behind each element of that effort:

 

  • Why listen? You can find evidence of the sound value of listening within the business world in the classic organizational management text The One Minute Manager. This book, published in 1982 and authored by Spencer Johnson and Kenneth Blanchard, suggested that the #1 way to create engagement among personnel is to set aside time to listen to them. While this book is about employees rather than customers, its high valuation of listening is on-point as it notes that it’s a way for managers to relate with people individually and make sure that they know their work is appreciated.
  • Why listen actively? If surveying customers can be viewed as a rudimentary and flawed effort at listening, active listening is a way to refine this skill. This technique is helpful in therapy sessions, and it is helpful in business as well. When we listen actively, we do not focus on throwing in our own opinion or solutions (unless requested) but instead repeat back what we think we have heard. This practice is an effort at clarification; if what the listener repeats back is at all flawed, the speaker can correct the message.
  • Why listen broadly? It’s not just about how we listen, but who we listen to – and our attitudes impact the extent to which we are willing to hear someone’s point-of-view. Being open to people means that you can keep revising your understanding of the world, explains therapist Rena Pollak via healthy psychotherapy network org. Pollak notes that it is important to remain flexible because our ingrained perspectives are often based on biased perspectives, misinformation, and control, such as when our parents instill in us their own insecurities, telling us that all women are liars or that we will not achieve our dreams.

 

Leakage: why listening cannot be faked

 

If you are trying to put on the front that you are paying attention to what someone is saying, but you really aren’t, you may leak out indications that you do not care, says Jeff Thompson, PhD, in Psychology Today. Thompson writes that “leakage, or unintended non-verbal communication” cues that give away when we are not listening are self-touching, eye-rolling, fidgeting, failing to make eye contact, and paralanguage or back-channel communication – the last of which Thompson summarizes as “huffing or audible noises and that teeth-sucking noise.” Seriously.

 

How companies & people can listen more effectively

 

Beyond being open to various speakers and listening actively, here are three additional steps you can take to improve the way that you listen:

 

  1. Be prepared. If you are underprepared, you will be more focused on understanding the basics than on deep problem-solving.
  2. Listen with both mind and body. Our bodies actually help to determine the way that we think, according to the notion of embodied cognition. Move your body so that it is positioned toward the speaker, nod, and look into their eyes.
  3. Self-monitor. Pay attention to yourself and ask yourself if you are listening in the moment. Also pay attention to whether you are conveying to the other person that you are listening – since their perception is ultimately the deciding factor in your ability to make them feel heard.

 

An honest boulder auto mechanic

 

Are you interested in working with a car mechanic that values listening to you? At Independent Motors, we believe great service starts with open, honest communication, in what we say and how well we listen. See our beliefs.

Why Values Are Important in Business

Why Values Are Important in Business

You may think that business and values do not have much in common. Perhaps business seems directly functional, while values seem to have to do with personal perspectives and cultural background. However, values are incredibly important to how businesses operate with their partners and their clients – whether the outfit is an auto mechanic in Boulder or any business.

 

Why is it important for a business to have values?

 

Ethics is not just important to the consumer or to affiliates of an organization but to an organization itself. In fact, W. Michael Hoffman has pointed out in risk assessment publication Corporate Compliance Insights that lack of values actually increases the risk of a firm. Here are a few key reasons why business management should be values-driven:

 

Pressures of the market – When you have to find ways to cut costs, you may not have as many checks and balances in place to maintain proper behavior. Employees might have their own ability to act one way or another, leading to possible ethical violations.

 

Diversity – In the United States, there are people interacting with different genders, religions, and ages. This diversity leads to different perceptions of what it means to act professionally within a business. While there must be commonly understood codes of conduct, the way that a person comprehends the exact same scenario and information can be very different from another person’s based on their demographic characteristics.

 

Globalization – People from various cultural backgrounds will not all experience different situations and circumstances the same. In certain cases, ethics becomes confusing related to the issue of culture, in which case the issue is sometimes considered a cultural sensitivity rather than a simple ethical precept.

 

Remote workers – Since so many people are working from a distant location part or all of the time, it is important to have values that infuse the organization at the management level.

 

Business partnerships – Your alliances with other businesses are another area in which ethical errors might occur. Values-driven tactics are effective not just at defining the ways that interactions occur internally but with external partners as well.

 

Team structure – There is more of a communal, integrated, team-based notion of internal growth in business today, with merit and individual aptitude leading the way to decision-making. Removing the top-down nature in which decisions have traditionally been generated has allowed all players to feel part of the process.

 

Entrepreneurship & intrapreneurship – Often now, companies are advocating that members of their staff, even at the entry level, become more innovative, try tactics (within structured confines) that embrace risk, and even get to use some funding. This method, called intrapreneurship, gives anyone working at a business a chance to feel like they are the owner and assume the relevant responsibilities.

 

Key values within a business setting

 

The above elements of business tell us reasons that values are important to business. However, what exactly are we talking about? What are the most common business values?

 

Here are some of the top values that are used by the world’s best businesses, according to responses to a questionnaire conducted by the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Alumni of the Stanford business school were asked to list the values that were most critical within a business setting. Here are a few key values, along with the comments that were made by those who responded.

 

Golden rule treatment – Wealthfront CEO Andy Rachleff noted that he thinks the golden rule is a fundamental precept of a solid business interaction. When a person approaches others with respect and with a goal of making a strong impression in a business setting, typically the favor will be returned. You will not only gain credibility but will also have greater peace-of-mind. You can put yourself at risk by acting in a manner that assumes mutual concern; however, even if you do get hurt occasionally with this strategy, you can simply discontinue your engagement with anyone who does not treat you in kind.

 

Integrity – Approaching your communications with all parties from a perspective of consistency and authenticity will point you in the right direction, according to Pagatech cofounder Jay Alabraba. Taking this honest approach will mean that you are not deceiving anyone or scamming them. In other words, you want to transparently convey what you are offering to everyone, regardless whether it hurts your immediate profits. University Games CEO Bob Moog also mentioned this value as a high-priority one in a business setting, noting that he had many handshake deals with other businesspeople, resulting in beneficial relationships that had lasted decades.

 

Straightforwardness – People often want to see a person who is going to talk with them directly and straightforwardly, advised Thought Leadership Lab CEO Denise Brosseau. Often people will want to work with startups or other organizations outside of Wall Street since smaller and less traditional companies can often have a greater degree of directness. This direct dynamic is aligned well with entrepreneurialism and the notion of getting to hand-select the partners through which one conducts business, said Brosseau. In that capacity, a company is able to not only offer straightforwardness itself but be able to filter for that quality in its clientele.

 

Mutuality – Tiny Prints co-founder Laura Ching noted that trust is built into a company that creates a familial, open-communication environment. When firms look for new employees, they can specifically have a desire to hire people who care about the strength of their bonds with others. The culture of an organization can also further enforce and enhance the notion that interconnection is critical to the mission of the company. People should be able to get courtesy from one another, but also friendliness. In that type of setting, people will feel comfortable to get even better at interacting with their peers. Loyalty and retention can both be high with employees and, in turn, with customers; after all, your clients become attached to certain members of your staff. When there is an implicit sense of honesty and having one another’s best interests at heart, you are able to acquire feedback that would otherwise be challenging to attain.

 

Transparent messaging – When a company has many different projects occurring at the same time, conducted by a broad array of players, there can be a huge range in the perspectives – leading, potentially, to communication difficulties between different projects that are ultimately interrelated. Empowered Careers CEO Steve Poizner commented that executives at companies should promote a business culture for which truth is critical to all interactions, regardless of all other factors. Additionally, said Poizner, being strong and unafraid allows someone to make the kind of impact they want with their customers and in their community.

 

Gratitude – We all want to be appreciated by businesses when we give them our money and invest in a relationship with them. As indicated by Ariat International CEO Beth Cross, organizations should remember that their clients care to know that they are appreciated.

 

Simple value – You can find out what the client needs in various ways, as noted by Design Within Reach founder Rob Forbes. Whether you use market research or simply release your offering to the market, you would be wise to think in terms of what the customer would actually value. By creating products that are high-quality and then communicating their story to your customer, you are able to give something to others through a business context that is authentic and can improve their quality of life.

 

Passion – Passion is another of those terms that may seem to be antithetical to the dry and serious needs of business. However, you really do want to care about what you do for a living – and be able to say the same about the people from whom you buy your goods and services.

 

An honest Boulder auto mechanic

 

It helps to get an idea of why values are important to business, and the specific values that should be high-priority for organizations. How can this search for values be reflected in your choice of car mechanic? We originally started Independent Motors because we felt our city needed an auto repair shop that was more in line with Boulder’s values – Community, Loyalty, and Honesty. See Our History and Beliefs.