In 2008 we began writing spotlight articles as a new feature for Tom Ivey’s monthly newsletter. Since that time that spotlight section has become so popular that many local business leaders find their article ranking number one in Google search.

Over the years, a lot of people have asked us how we determine whose business will be spotlighted each month and the answer is quite easy, “relationships.” Being a spotlight feature is by invitation only.

Recently Tom and I were talking about this very point, so it seems like a good point to cover as a part of good business practice. Relationships in business are important, forming the bedrock of most quality referrals.

We know that nothing is better for good business than positive word of mouth. When someone receives quality service and mentions it to another, businesses can grow quickly and easily. This has been the key to success for Tom Ivey and Tysons Auto Specialties. Tom also wants to give back to those who have supported him by recommending their businesses as well.

So how do you become a spotlighter?

First, intentionally build a relationship as a customer of Tysons Auto. This is the easy part! One visit to the shop and you will know why they are among the premier auto repair facilities in Northern Virginia.

Not only do you receive quality workmanship, but also you have a team of professionals who want to do more than simply fix your problem. They want to maintain your car in peak running condition. And when your car is serviced by Tysons Auto Specialties, your work is done right the first time.

Whether you’re being greeted by Lisa when you first call or walk in, talking with Richard or meeting with Tom, you’ll immediately sense that, at Tysons Auto, you are a person not a repair ticket.

The work is done so well and you never have to worry about unnecessary work being done. If there is one word that kept surfacing by the spotlighters over the years, it is trust. Customers trust their cars to Tom because they know he will tell them if a repair is not needed or if there is a better and less expensive way of solving a problem.

Many of Tom’s loyal clientele, myself included, drive past many other repair facilities before arriving at their door. Tom was my car care specialist long before I began writing this newsletter and it was well worth the drive from Loudoun County. Further, as an enthusiastic fan of Tysons Auto quality services, writing this monthly communiqué is a pleasurable experience and not a chore.

Next, arrange to do a one-on-one with Tom, so he can get to know you. If you a member of Business Network International, so much the better! Tom is an active and enthusiastic member of BNI Tysons Referral Masters that meets at the Westin Hotel in Tysons Corner on Wednesday morning.

Tom wants to know who you are as well as what you do. He’ll be glad to tell you about his life as well. You’ll learn about his interests in triathlon, boats and other pursuits in addition to hearing about his passion for excellence in business.

Finally, let your relationship build over time. Like a fine wine, relationships are enriched as time goes by and as each person has a better opportunity to see the fruits of another’s labor.

Relationships are not built on what you can get but what you can give. This has been Tom’s motto over his entire business career. Relationships, when they are properly built, not only yield a greater amount of business but a lasting friendship.

In today’s business environment, many times the real differentiator in building clients and commercial growth is not based on whether you can do the job but who you are as a business professional.

This is the goal of our spotlight articles. We want to put bring the human dimension to the billboard so that new relationships can be established with those we recommend. Each month our readers have an opportunity to get to know a local business leader a little better, planting a seed that can grow into a solid referral.

Are you a customer of Tysons Auto Specialties? Tell others about their great service. Has it been awhile since you’ve brought your car in, or have you been thinking about giving Tom a try? Don’t waste any more time, call Tom today for an appointment.

By the way, Tom is going to be the Keynote Speaker for his BNI chapter on Tuesday, March 26. He will giving a brief presentation on How to Care for Your Car, addressing topics like “What to do when your check engine light comes on,” along with providing several maintenance tips.

Referral Masters meets at the Westin Hotel in Tysons Corner on Tuesday mornings at 7:30am. Call Tom at Tysons Auto Specialties for more information and directions.

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