So far 2023 has been the year that keeps on giving. Giving us optimism, as well as learning, reconnecting and entertainment opportunities that are getting the auto industry excited about what we do again.
In January, the Canadian auto dealer team rode into Dallas for the huge and exciting NADA Show. February was chock full of long-awaited industry events, including the Montreal International Auto Show, the CADA Summit and the Canadian International AutoShow. All of these events were well executed and well attended, with the Summit being sold out, and both of the auto shows breaking visitor records in their first few days. Canadian auto dealer was at all of these events and you can read all about it in our coverage in this issue.
This year we’ve seen some well-needed emphasis on the need for more diversity in the industry, and for our company boardrooms and showrooms to look more like Canada’s communities. Accelerate Auto has been doing a great job of encouraging opportunities for Black talent in car dealerships, manufacturers, the aftermarket and suppliers—”while tackling the systemic racism that is hampering progress” through awareness, mentorship, education and partnership.
Another initiative working toward more representation in auto is the Scotiabank Women in Auto Accelerator, which aims “to attract and retain more women in the automotive industry by helping them access and excel in leadership positions”. This program has just finished its first year in Quebec, and has announced the names of the young women enrolled in the second year. The program has had such a positive impact on both the mentors and the mentees that there are plans to expand Women in Auto Accelerator across Canada this year. We will make sure to cover this progress as more information gets released.
Speaking of women in auto, Kay Layne is a well-respected journalist in the automotive realm, and she was on hand to do the Green Carpet Interviews at the CADA Summit this year. While she was at the Summit she took some time to sit down and talk with a few women currently working in the industry, getting their insights on what their challenges are, what they love about their work and how they think the industry can be more accommodating to women.
Another way the industry is moving into the future is by embracing technology and social media in every new incarnation. Though it’s hard to keep up with the breakneck speed of big tech, there will always be those who take new inventions and adapt them to enhance operations in auto dealerships. In this issue, Perry Lefko delves into what is new and what is working for the early adopters among us, and gets an insider’s view of what might be coming down the pipe.
So we hope this issue puts some spring in your step and gives you insight and inspiration that will energize you and your business for the busy seasons to come.