Toby Chess

Toby Chess is an I-CAR program instructor, training specialist, and former salvage yard operator. Toby is universally known in the collision industry for his work with first responders and advocacy for body shops and consumers. He can be reached at tcspeedster@gmail.com.

Wednesday, 01 July 2009 10:00

Toby Chess Speaks on Reclaiming Profits at East Bay CAA Meeting

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Toby Chess, well-known I-CAR instructor and consultant, was the featured speaker at the California Autobody Association’s (CAA) East Bay chapter meeting, held at Scott’s Seafood restaurant in Walnut Creek, CA, on May 19th.

More than 50 shop owners, managers and technicians attended the event to network and listen to Chess as he discussed how to capture more money on each repair; something shops are extremely interested in, especially during these tough economic times.
Chess told the shops in attendance how they can make 2% more in gross profit by charging for things many shops don’t want to, or forget to include, in their estimates —such as basic shop supplies, clips, and labor hours they leave off the invoice.
“These little things can add up and impact your bottom line considerably,” Chess said. “Many shops use materials in the repair process and don’t charge for them. They’re essentially giving these items away, and I am telling them they don’t have to.”
CAA East Bay chapter President Lisa Daves from Spectrum Body & Paint in San Leandro thought the shops represented at the meeting were able to glean some valuable information from Chess’s presentation.
“Toby was fantastic,” Daves said. “He really opened some eyes among our members with his speech and the numbers he presented. He’s also a very dynamic and charismatic speaker, which always helps. We’re always trying to get valuable advice from our presenters at these meetings, and Toby fit the bill.”
CAA First Vice-President Gigi Walker, owner of Walker’s Auto Body in Concord, CA, paid tribute to Pat Packer, a Color Supply paint rep who died suddenly at age 42. A memorial for Packer sponsored by the CAA East Bay chapter raised over $800 to help defray his family’s expenses.
Daves also announced the time and place for the chapter’s annual Truck Competition/Toys for Tots fundraiser, an event that has grown in popularity every year, she said.
This year’s competition will be on Nov. 17th, at the Blackhawk Auto Museum in Blackhawk, Calif. Every holiday season, shops from all over the East Bay design and outfit model trucks, battling other collision repair facilities for the right to say they’re the best model truck builders in the region. Attendees can then bid on the model trucks.  
For more information on how to get involved in the CAA East Bay chapter, contact Lisa Daves at (510) 357-3883.