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DSP 20 Group Member Makes Impassioned Plea to Business Owners After Near Tragedy

If you could make a change in your business to increase profits, you’d do it. But what if you could invest in your employees to save a life?

MORE FROM DSP: Navigating the Tire Industry

It’s a question Jeremy Hanford posed at a recent Dealer Strategic Planning 20 Group meeting in Torrance, Calif. Hanford owns Hanford Tire and Service Inc. in London, Ontario. His wife is a figure skating coach — active, fit, healthy. But a rare condition called sarcoidosis caused her to go into cardiac arrest one day after work.

Two people nearby knew CPR. One froze while the other jumped into action.

“If he wasn’t there, it would have been a totally different outcome for my family,” Hanford says, who took his experience and turned it into a business practice. He invested in CPR certification for his employees and defibrillators for his stores to ensure there are at least two people on the clock who would know how to help in case of an emergency.

“Sometimes it’s not about the money,” Hanford says. “Investing in your staff to know CPR and buy a defibrillator, it’s not about profit; it’s about being a human being and the possibility of saving a life.”

Hanford presented his case to his fellow DSP 20 Group members. It sounds like a personal plea, but it’s not unusual among this group.

When his wife was in the hospital, DSP 20 Group members decided to use some of the group’s funds to buy gif cards for meals and supplies to help Hanford’s family get by. They offered to work in his stores to keep his business going. Members helped roll out a new software system he was planning to implement so his business plan would remain intact. They were there to provide a helping hand in whatever way he needed.

“It was an amazing outpouring of support you’d only expect from a best friend or your family, and that really signifies how much of a family these groups are,” Hanford says.

So when he spoke to his fellow members about the effect they can have by ensuring their employees are CPR certified by purchasing defibrillators, he had members’ full attention. He sparked a conversation among members. He made an impact.

Later that evening, he received a text message from a member who was struck by Hanford’s message. “He basically said, I thought about what you said — it’s not about the business, it’s about humanity. I’ll do my part.’”

Dealer Strategic Planning 20 Group exists to help tire and auto service dealers improve profitability, share best practices, benchmark against the industry, and offer support. To learn more, go to www.20dsp.com.

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