Mitsubishi Motors Dealer Partner Spotlight – RC Hill Mitsubishi on Building a Business the Right Way
Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc. (MMNA) is celebrating dealer partners who go above and beyond for their communities. They provide more than just a great place to buy a car – they help their hometowns thrive in the good times and heal in the challenging times. They rise to the occasion, whatever the occasion may be.
RC Hill Mitsubishi is Mitsubishi Motors’ Southeast Region customer experience and sales satisfaction champion, scoring consistently high marks for its customer relations practices, in-store concierge services, and online vehicle shopping options. The man behind the magic is RC Hill – a second-generation car dealer, who is focused on building a business the right way and building a legacy for his family. In October, we sat down with RC to learn more of his story.
FIVE QUESTIONS WITH RC HILL
Owner & Dealer Principal, RC Hill Mitsubishi, DeLand, FL
- In 2003, you purchased what is now RC Hill Mitsubishi and made the move to DeLand, FL. You say the move surprised you. How so? I grew up in Orlando, FL which, by most standards, is a big city. After we bought the business, my family – my wife Mimi and our four young children – moved to DeLand, FL, which is a small town of about 40,000 people. The move took some adjusting, but it has been so good for us. DeLand is a great place to raise a family and build a business. Everybody knows everybody, and when you sell a reliable product like Mitsubishi – one you’re proud of – it’s not hard to build a loyal, active customer base.
- And you give back to your small community in a big way. Tell us about that. This community has given so much to our family and our business. It’s important we give back. My wife manages all our charitable and volunteer programs, with our children right there working alongside us. We are very involved in the local community center. We hold an annual test drive event where for every test drive taken, we donate $100 to the center. Our employee team volunteers every Monday in the local soup kitchen. We donated volunteer time and resources to the community playground. And of course, we were the title sponsor of the DeLand Independence Day Parade!
- Moving to DeLand, buying the business – this wasn’t your first experience in the automotive industry. We understand that you grew up in your father’s dealership. Yes, my father owned a car dealership and several motorcycle dealerships in Central Florida while I was growing up. When I wasn’t playing soccer (my first love), I worked in the dealership all the way through college, never thinking the automotive business would be my path. But after college and after soccer, I joined the dealership as a salesperson, and my dad saw an opportunity. He enrolled me in the NADA (National Automobile Dealers Association) Dealership Academy. From then on, I was hooked, and he knew I would be! I love that the business is always changing, and every day brings a new challenge.
- And just like he saw an opportunity to bring you on board, all of those years ago, you are hoping your three children will continue in the car business, right? Yes! They have grown up in my store, just like I grew up in my father’s store. Every day, I am working to grow the business and to build a legacy that they can be proud of. Three of four children have graduated from the NADA Dealership Academy, just like I did so many years ago. Together, I hope they will take this business into the digital age. As I said, this business is always changing and challenging you. They are way smarter than I am!
- What are some of the lessons you learned from your father about life and how to be successful in this business that you hope to pass on to your kids? My father taught me a thousand things. How do I pick just a few? He taught me the value of hard work. He taught me to put customers first. He built his business before customer and service satisfaction scores existed. Selling cars, like most things in life, is about building relationships. It is about finding solutions. I always say to my team: seek understanding first before you seek being understood. That’s how you build trust, and that’s how you build a business.