Wednesday, January 29, 2014

When Mike’s Auto Body Helps St. John the Baptist--It's a Slam Dunk!


During these uncertain economic times, many companies are cutting back on charity donations, but not at Mike’s Auto Body, with 12 locations in the Bay Area. In fact, this 42-year-old, family-owned collision repair company is stepping up its philanthropy, because they strongly believe in giving back to the communities in which they do business.

          This became more evident recently when Mike’s Auto Body reached out to one of its neighbors and came through with a timely and much-needed donation for the St. John the Baptist Catholic School in Napa, CA.

          Peter Bizaca, a marketing coordinator at Mike’s Auto Body tells the story behind the school’s latest donation. “We always try to be a good neighbor in every city where we have a location,” Bizaca explained. “The Rose family is all about giving back to the community, so we’re always looking for ways to help schools, Boys & Girls Clubs, families in need and other organizations. I first met with Father Mora, the pastor at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church to bounce around some ideas about a donation for the school and then I met with Nancy Jordan, the principal there, and asked them what they really needed. Pretty soon, the topic of portable basketball hoops came up, so we gave it a shot.”
       
Until now, the girls’ and boys’ basketball teams at St. John the Baptist Catholic School (5th through 8th grades) were unable to practice or play any games in their parish hall. They had to rent other off-site facilities or play on the road, but now thanks to Mike’s Auto Body, the teams can play at home in front of their friends and families.


          Bizaca and all the people at Mike’s Auto Body were thrilled to donate four portable basketball hoops and balls to the school. “This is one part of the job I really love,” Bizaca said. “Now the teams can practice and play their games right here on their campus, without traveling or finding other facilities and that’s the way it should be. At Mike’s Auto Body, we do philanthropy year-round and we do it from the heart. Hopefully at St. John the Baptist Catholic School they will be using these hoops and balls for many years to come!”

Prinicpal Nancy Jordan (at left with the Roses) was obviously thrilled by the donation and described how it will change the school’s athletic program, she said. “St. John the Baptist Catholic School and Church would like to thank Mike's Auto Body on their generous gift of four basketball hoops and basketballs. Students are now about to practice in their own indoor space and our physical education programs have been enhanced. Mike's Auto Body clearly cares about their community and seeks opportunities to support, grow and partner within their neighborhood. Research demonstrates the physical health of children is as critically important as development of the mind. Mike's Auto Body supports ‘whole-child’ formation by their gift. Their kindness demonstrates an active commitment to strengthening the Napa community."

"We finally get to play basketball in our hall!" - St. John the Baptist Catholic School 5th grader

"I have waited all the years I've been here to see this!" - St. John the Baptist Catholic School 8th grader

"Mike's Auto Body is really nice!" - St. John the Baptist Catholic School 6th grader


 

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Let's Meet Cliff Pereira, Estimator at our No. Broadway St. Location in Walnut Creek

Q: How long have you been with Mike’s Auto Body? 
A: 12 Years

Q: How many years of industry experience do you have?  
A: 17 Years in Collision Repair and 38 Years overall in the automotive field

Q: Favorite part of the job?  
A: Getting to know customers

Q: What do you do when you're not working at Mike’s Auto Body? 
A: Spend time with my wife and working on my 1966 Barracuda

Q: Major interests?
A: Vintage cars, motorcycles, soccer, good beer and wines

Q: What are the 3 things you want to do in your life?
A: 1.) Experience the 24 Hours of Le Mans in France 2.) Go an English Premier League Soccer Game 3.) Build a café-style motorcycle

Q: What sports teams do you follow and what are your favorite teams? 
A: San Jose Earthquakes and Everton (English soccer team)

Q: What was the title of the last book you read?
A: Soccernomics by Simon Kuper

Q: Favorite movies?
A: Le Mans, starring Steve McQueen

Q: Favorite TV Shows?  
A: Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, Café Racer and Undercover Boss

Q: Pets and their names?
A: 3 cats: Kimberly. Jason and Penny

Q: Favorite outdoor activities?
A: Wine tasting, keeping my yards looking good, catching Earthquake games and going to car shows

Q: If you could have any kind of car, what would you get and why?  
A: Any 12-cylinder Ferrari without a radio, just the sound of the engine

Q: If you could have lunch with anyone who would it be?
A:  Mark Donohue, ex-Indy car, Trans-Am and Can-Am driver who was killed in 1975.

Q: What are some of the customer service things you're proud of at Mike’s Auto Body and describe your view of what exceptional customer service is?
A: I’m proud when I meet a first-time customer and they are here because of all the good things they have heard about Mike’s Auto Body. Exceptional service starts by listening to the customer and creating a trustful relationship. Next, execute the repair and any promises while maintaining contact throughout the process. Finally, inspect the finished product and ensure that the delivery back to the customer is as smooth as possible with the confidence that the customer’s expectations are met or exceeded.

Q: What are some of the changes you’ve seen in this industry over the years and how has Mike’s Auto Body reacted to these?
A: Customers have grown more savvy and informed about their cars and I have to respect that as an estimator. The industry has taken customer satisfaction much more seriously in the last dozen years. Also, the insurance companies have been reducing their workforce while relying on our shops for estimating and repair, but they are also much more vigilant about our decisions when reviewed. Mike’s Auto Body strives to share industry insight, customer feedback/surveys and provides education to the employees in a positive sense so we can stay on tops of the game. 

 

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Let’s Meet Brad Woodland Our Napa Facility Manager



Q: How long have you been with Mike’s Auto Body?
A: Only 1 year, but definitely the best out of the last 25. It is a very family-oriented business.


Q: How many years of industry experience do you have?
A: 15 years total with 1 year at an insurance company

Q: Favorite part of the job?  
A: I love meeting new people and being able to help them at a time in need.  I also enjoy the problem solving aspect of it…..no 2 repairs and no 2 people are the same.

Q: What do you do when you're not working at Mike’s Auto Body?
A: A typical weekend consists of the family riding our bikes to the farmer’s market. Then it is off to help at softball, soccer, or lounging at the pool.

Q: Favorite TV Shows?  
A: My 2 favorite shows right now are Brain Games and Impractical Jokers. My oldest daughter loves watching Brain Games because it really opens your eyes to how amazing the mind is, but also how easily it can be tricked. My youngest daughter likes watching Impractical Jokers with the family, while we all sit around and laugh at the crazy things 4 friends force each other to do.

Q: Pets and their names?  
A: We have a cat named Sparkle. She was named by our youngest daughter who was 4 at the time. Sparkle was a feral kitten that showed up at our back door, starving and scared. As much as I wanted to tell our girls we could not keep her, I knew she would not survive if we didn’t.

Q: Favorite outdoor activities?
A: Anything with the family, but specifically mountain biking, hiking, or spending the day at the beach.

Q: If you could have any kind of car, what would you get and why?
A: Tesla, because it is a locally made, electric vehicle, that has excellent acceleration. It’s not your typical E/V (electric vehicle).


Q: What are some of the customer service things you're proud of at Mike’s Auto Body and describe your view of what exceptional customer service is?
A: Everything we do at Mike’s Auto Body is aimed at providing exceptional customer service. There is a culture here where every employee takes great pride in providing the best repair and the highest level of customer service. Whenever possible, we always try to do something extra to make the car look better or make the repair experience easier, such as cleaning the car, touching up old rock chips, fixing the unrelated damage that is in the same area as the repair, arranging for a rental, giving a ride home or to work, delivering the car directly to the owner. We love to hear the positive feedback when our customers take the time to respond to our CSI (customer service index) surveys or when they drop us a thank you note.


Q: What are some of the changes you've seen in this industry over the years and how has Mike’s Auto Body reacted to these?
A: We have seen the industry require more annual training, specifically I-CAR. Mike’s Auto Body has always placed the highest priority on keeping all of the staff at the forefront of the latest repair standards and technology. With 250 employees and 11 locations, this is a huge investment. Mike’s Auto Body was a leader in converting to a more eco-friendly water based paint long before it was required. Mikes Auto Body always does its due diligence in researching new products and equipment by attending trade shows, interviewing vendors, visiting other shops that are already using these items to make sure these items will benefit our customers. Mikes Auto Body reinvests heavily in our personnel and equipment to make sure we have the right people and right equipment to fix your vehicle.

 

Friday, January 3, 2014

Let's Meet Darren Maltbie, Our Go-To Manager in Fairfield

Q: How long have you been with Mike’s Auto Body?
A: Four amazing months!

Q: How many years of industry experience do you have?
A: 30+ years

Q: What do you do when you're not working at Mike’s Auto Body?
A: I enjoy fixing cars, because I love cars!

Q: Major interests?
A: Weight lifting, playing baseball and paintballing competitively

Q: What are the 3 things you want to do in your life?
A: Go to Hawaii and drive a real NASCAR and that's it

Q: What was the title of the last book you read?
A: Unreasonable Possibilities


Q: Pets & their names?
A: Vegas, my dog


Q: Favorite movies?
A: Django Unchained

Q: Favorite outdoor activities?
A: Wakeboarding, snowboarding and paintballing

Q: Magazines or newspapers you read?
A: Muscle and Fitness, Street Rodder

Q: If you could have lunch with anyone (dead or alive) who would it be?
A: My father

Q: What are some of the customer service things you're proud of at Mike’s Auto Body and describe your view of what exceptional customer service is?
A: We always exhibit a great positive attitude and build relationships with our customers and do what we say we're going to do. We go beyond when it comes to customer service!

Q: What are some of the changes you've seen in this industry over the years and how has Mike’s Auto Body reacted to these?
A: After three decades in this industry, I have seen a lot of changes and that's why I'm with Mike's Auto Body, because they're on the cutting edge in everything we do.