Eric Schmit – Friendly Ford Employee Spotlight

Body Shop Director Eric Schmit is our employee spotlight for April at Friendly Ford

  1. Please tell me a little bit of background information – some of your previous jobs, how you got into your Body Shop Director position at Friendly Ford?

I have been with Friendly Ford for my entire working career. I started almost immediately out of college and graduated from Illinois State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Education. I was looking for a teaching job and could not find one in the middle of a school year. I had worked part-time as a service porter at another dealership. I was lucky enough to have been turned onto this opportunity at Friendly Ford, and received a job as a Service Advisor. To be honest, it was my intention to continue to look for teaching jobs and go into the field I had gone to school for. At first, I was a little intimidated at the fast-paced automobile service industry. But as the weeks, months, and years went by I felt a special connection to my working family: owners, employees and customers. The job really wasn’t a job anymore. I developed such strong relationships with customers that they would put the keys in my hand and state, “Just do whatever the vehicle needs, I trust you.” It was these relationships that made my job so enjoyable. I continued on like this for about eight years until one day my boss, Randy Yockey, called me into his office and told me he wanted to make me a Body Shop Manager. To be honest I was a little apprehensive. I knew nothing about that side of the business but, “sure boss I will give it my best try.” Now nine years later we have grown the business into something really special and have partnered with a nationally recognized body shop franchise with CARSTAR. I could not have done all of this without the daily support of everyone I work with. I also could not have succeeded without the support of my loving wife Kelly and two kids Jacob and Chloe.

  1. Have you always lived in the Roselle area?

I have always lived in the western suburbs and I currently live in Glen Ellyn

  1. What are your current job responsibilities as Body Shop Director? What is a typical day like for you?

I oversee all aspects of our body shop franchise. A typical day is managing the flow of the body shop and stay in constant communications with customers, employees, insurance partners, and vendors.

  1. What are your goals and what do you hope to accomplish at Friendly Ford as you move forward?

My goal is continue to grow the business and continue the outstanding relationships with everyone I have met through the years. Not a lot of people truly love their jobs, but this isn’t just a job, it’s being a part of the “Friendly Family”. Moving forward I want to strengthen the body shop we already have and possibly expand our footprint to other areas.

  1. What do you like most about your job and what makes you passionate about your line of work?

The one thing I love the most about my job is simply working with people, taking an unfortunate situation and making it into a positive experience.

Friendly Ford Body Shop Director Eric Schmit

  1. What would you consider to be your dream car?

My dream car is a Ford GT.

 

 

  1. What are some of your hobbies outside of work?

I love to watch my kids play sports, such as baseball and cheerleading.

  1. What are some fun or interesting facts about yourself?

I am a lifelong Chicago Cubs fan who cried like a baby when the Cubs finally won the World Series.

  1. If someone made a movie about your life, who would you want to play you and why?

The actor I would love to portray me is Joe Pesci, because he is short like me but makes up for his shortcomings with a fiery personality.

New On-the-Go H2O System Developed by Two Intelligent Kids

Ford's new On-the-Go H20 System is useful and environmentally friendly

Ford recently worked with two smart kids to develop one of their ideas in order to make it a reality. Siblings Daniel and Lara Krohn discovered on a road trip that water that is typically wiped from the windshield can actually be used to clean the windshield in lieu of washer fluid. This could just save billions of liters of water over the course of years.

From the Science Fair to the Factory

According to Ford, the Krohn’s idea was developed into a full-size test car after the siblings presented at a local science competition. Daniel, who is 11, and Lara, who is 9, came up with the idea to recycle rain water on a road trip with their father, Gerd. The two used a pump from a toy fire engine and an aquarium filter system to test the idea, which was later developed by Ford engineers.

“Daniel and Lara’s idea has been staring drivers in the face for decades – and it has taken one moment of ingenuity to bring it to life. In less than five minutes of rainfall the washer reservoir is completely full,” said Theo Geuecke, supervisor, Body Exterior Hardware, Ford of Europe.

On-the-Go H2O

The On-the-Go H2O system, as dubbed by Ford, was reworked into a full-sized version on a Ford S-MAX test car. It captures water via rain and condensation, filtering it for washer fluid. However, engineers were also able to collect and purify the water to such as degree that it was drinkable. Basically, you can now get a fresh drink of water from the moisture in the air.

Be on the lookout for new technology like this at Friendly Ford!

Unveiling Ford at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show

It was a great year for Ford at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show

Another Detroit Auto Show (also known as the North American International Auto Show) has come and gone. It was a big year for Ford, whose luxury arm Lincoln received the North American Truck of the Year Award for its Navigator SUV. But more importantly for Ford fans, Ford unveiled a number of new high-performance models.

Ford at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show

  • 2019 Ford Ranger: Ford unveiled the new 2019 Ford Ranger at the auto show in January. The new Ranger mid-size truck is built with high-strength steel, is powered by a 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine, and boasts a class-exclusive 10-speed automatic gearbox. The Ranger will compete directly with the Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon.
  • 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby® GT500®: In 2019, Ford will unleash its most powerful street-legal production car ever. The new Mustang Shelby GT500 will be more than twice as powerful as the original 1967 Mustang.
  • 2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt: The Shelby GT500 wasn’t the only Mustang on display in Detroit. It shared the stage with the 2019 Mustang Bullitt, which is powered by a 5.0-liter V8 engine that will achieve at least 475 horsepower and 420 lb-ft of torque with a top speed of 163 miles per hour.

These are just three of the hottest new Fords on the horizon. To see what’s current—including the all-new 2018 Expedition and redesigned F-150 and Mustang—stop into Friendly Ford.

March Employee Spotlight – Kiara Marsico

Kiara Marsico, the Friendly Ford Employee Spotlight for March 20181. Please tell us a little bit of background information – some of your previous jobs, how you got into your current Cashier position at Friendly Ford?

I played soccer with a previous employee who referred me here.

2. Have you always lived in the Roselle area?

Yes! I grew up in Bloomingdale, which is the next town over!

3. What are your current job responsibilities as Cashier? What is a typical day like for you?

I assist customers with any questions they have. I also collect money from all different departments. If you call in at night you will probably talk to me!

4. What are your goals and what do you hope to accomplish at Friendly Ford as you move forward?

I hope to earn a bachelors degree in Human Resources with a minor in marketing and apply that to my career at Friendly Ford.

5. What do you like most about your job and what makes you passionate about your line of work?

I like helping people with any problems that they have.Kiara Marsico, the Friendly Ford Employee Spotlight for March 2018

6. What would you consider to be your dream car?

Jeep Wrangler!

7. What are some of your hobbies outside of work?

Baking, photography and doing puzzles

8. What are some fun or interesting facts about yourself?

I have never traveled outside of the U.S. I am 100% Italian with green eyes and blonde hair which is rare! I played soccer for 10 years. All of my grandparents are from the same region of Italy.

9. If someone made a movie about your life, who would you want to play you and why?

Jennifer Aniston! Because she is family oriented and has a good sense of humor!

February Employee Spotlight: Eric Veverka

Meet Eric Veverka!

Meet Eric Veverka, Service Advisor and February spotlight employee at Friendly Ford

1. Please tell me a little bit of background information – some of your previous jobs, how you got into your Service Advisor position at Friendly Ford?

I was a technician at a different Ford dealership for a few years before becoming an advisor. I heard about Friendly Ford & the Yockey family through a family friend and decided to apply!

 

2. Have you always lived in the Roselle area?

I actually don’t live in Roselle. I grew up in Buffalo Grove & currently live in Montgomery.

3. What are your current job responsibilities as Service Advisor? What is a typical day like for you?

My day to day responsibilities include greeting customers, writing vehicles up for service & updating them throughout the day. Also getting vehicles ready to be re-delivered.

4. What are your goals and what do you hope to accomplish at Friendly Ford as you move forward?

My main goal is to excel in my position 7 one day to become a Service Director.

5. What do you like most about your job and what makes you passionate about your line of work?

I enjoy the relationships I get to build with my customers. I have been around the auto industry all my life, through family & holds my passion

Eric Veverka, Service Advisor at Friendly Ford in Roselle, IL

6. What would you consider to be your dream car?

I have many dream cars, but I would have to say out of all, I’d like to own a 2002 Nissan GTR R34 V-Spec II NCIR in Millenium Jade

7. What are some of your hobbies outside of work?

I coach kids club wrestling outside of work

8. What are some fun or interesting facts about yourself?

I have never been out of the country. I was born left handed, but naturally switched to right handed.

9. If someone made a movie about your life, who would you want to play you and why?

Will Ferrell! We can be mature and serious when the time calls, but both have a goofy personality.

Stay Safe All Year with these Winter Driving Tips

Stay safe this season with these helpful winter driving tips

Winter is in full swing, and that means increasingly unpredictable driving conditions. For some, this can be a stressful time to be behind the wheel. With a little bit of planning and maintenance, though, you don’t need to put your life on hold because of the cold. Follow these winter driving tips from Friendly Ford and stay safely on your way all year long.

Keep your tank full

It’s important to fill up regularly during the winter for a few reasons. Not only does doing so reduce the likelihood of a breakdown in ugly weather, but it also keeps your gas pump from freezing. Try to keep your tank at least half full at all times when the temperature drops below freezing.

Monitor your tires

Cold air causes the air in your tires to contract, so it’s important to make sure your tires are properly inflated during the coldest months of the year. To ensure optimal performance, consider getting a dedicated set of special winter tires.

Avoid cruise control

In dry, warm weather, features such as cruise control are convenient and safe, but when the roads get slippery, it’s best to drive the old fashioned way to make sure you’re always in control should you need to abruptly stop or accelerate to avoid a collision.

Finally, remember that sometimes the safest thing to do is wait for winter weather to clear up before hitting the road. If you can’t see because of snowfall or if the roads are extremely slick with ice, it’s better to wait than risk it. Visit us at Friendly Ford to learn more about staying safe throughout the winter a test drive a new Ford today!

How to Clean Your Vehicle Without Washing It

Tips on how to clean your vehicle without washing it.

When it’s cold outside, or you just don’t have the time to run through a car wash, your car can quickly develop the need for a makeover. If you’re looking for a quick way to keep your car clean before your next appointment or obligation, ditch the time-consuming or inconvenient car wash for these quick tips.

Use a Spray Detailer

If your vehicle’s horizontal surfaces – like the hood of the car, for example – have marks on it from bird droppings or dried precipitation, you can easily use a spray detailer and a microfiber towel to clean these spots in sections.

Throw Away Your Trash

It’s easy to get lazy and leave papers, junk mail, food trash, and even clothes in your car. Take a bit of time one day to collect all the garbage and throw it out. If there’s anything you want to keep, bring it inside so it doesn’t get tossed with the trash.

Keep the Glass Clean

You’d be surprised what a different a clear, clean windshield makes. Thankfully, this is fairly easy, as long as you have access to a squegee. Once you clean your windows once, it’s a good idea to keep glass cleaner and a roll of paper towels in your vehicle for touch-ups.

You may not have time to clean your vehicle fully, but if you just need to touch up your ride before you go, then these tips can help you make your car look good until your next wash. For more auto maintenance tips, talk to us at Friendly Ford.

January Employee Spotlight – Greg Schellerer

Meet Greg Schellerer!

Greg Schellerer has our Employee Spotlight for January

1. Please tell me a little bit of background information – some of your previous jobs, how you got into your current Sales position at Friendly Ford?

I started in Car Sales in 1987 at a Pontiac Dealer. Also worked at the current dealer before it was Friendly Ford! It was Roselle Ford in 1988.

2. Have you always lived in the Roselle area?

I have lived in Carol Stream since 1989 and own a duplex

3. What are your current job responsibilities as Product Specialist? What is a typical day like for you?

I talk to prospects about buying a new vehicle, and I stay up to date on new & used inventory and also current incentives.

4. What are your goals and what do you hope to accomplish at Friendly Ford as you move forward?

I hope to increase my customer base and one day retire!

5. What do you like most about your job and what makes you passionate about your line of work?

I enjoy working with customers on what we can add to the vehicle to make it their own!

6. What would you consider to be your dream car?

A fully loaded Lincoln Continental

7. What are some of your hobbies outside of work?

Playing Chess and tennis

Greg Schellerer and his wife

8. What are some fun or interesting facts about yourself?

I play pinochle with friends 2x a week and I love to travel with my wife!

9. If someone made a movie about your life, who would you want to play you and why?

Bruce Willis, he’s an action hero!

Meet Laura Gersch – October Employee Spotlight

Friendly Ford is happy to recognize our very own, Laura Gersch, for October’s employee spotlight! Laura is the Comptroller/Office Manager at our dealership and has been in the car industry for many years. Her hard work does not go unnoticed as she is an integral part of our Friendly Ford staff. We sat down with Laura to learn a little bit more about her background, interests, and goals for the dealership.

Please tell me a little bit of background information – some of your previous jobs, how you got into your current position at Friendly Ford (Comptroller/Office Manager).

I started working in the automobile business during high school.  My dad was the service manager at a Lincoln Mercury dealership and he got me my first job.  I worked there through H.S. and college.  After graduation they offered me a full time job and I was there for 28 years.  After they were sold I worked at a couple other dealerships until a former coworker told me about the position here at Friendly Ford.  The rest is history!

Have you always lived in the Roselle area?

No, I have always lived in La Grange Park.

What are your current job responsibilities as Comptroller/Office Manager. What is a typical day like for you?

My main duty is to manage the finances on a daily basis and to ensure the accuracy of the accounting throughout all departments.

What are your goals and what do you hope to accomplish at Friendly Ford as you move forward?

I want to work with my coworkers to ensure Friendly Ford is a successful and viable business for many years to come.

What do you like most about your job and what makes you passionate about your line of work?

I enjoy the people I work with.  They make it fun to come to work.   It truly is like a family.

What would you consider to be your dream car?

I don’t think I have one.

What are some of your hobbies outside of work?

Gardening and quilting

What are some fun or interesting facts about yourself?

I played the clarinet through grade school, high school and college.

If someone made a movie about your life, who would you want to play you and why ?

Carol Burnette because people tell me we look similar.  ( I guess you have to be of a certain age to know who she is)

Now that you’ve gotten to know a little more about Laura, stop by Friendly Ford today to say hello! She makes sure our dealership is running properly but always makes time for others around.

 

Meet Paul Licitra, CARSTAR Friendly of Roselle

Friendly Ford is thrilled to have Paul Licitra as a Body Shop Estimator for our CARSTAR Friendly of Roselle at the dealership. Paul has been with the company for some time and has really grown to be a passionate part of Friendly Ford’s family. We sat down with Paul to learn a little bit about his background, interests, and goals for the dealership.

 

Paul Licitra

Body Shop Estimator – Paul Lucitra

 

Please tell me a little bit of background information – some of your previous jobs, how you got into your current position at Friendly Ford which is Body Shop Estimator?

I was an electrician before I got into this industry. Always having a passion for cars, I am beyond lucky to have been granted an opportunity to get into this industry and I love it!

Have you always lived in the Roselle area?

I am actually not from this area. I grew up in River Grove Illinois and moved out to St. Charles, where I currently still am.

What are your current job responsibilities as Estimator? What is a typical day like for you?

I oversee the whole process of a customer’s vehicle. Starting when you call/come in after an accident. I go over your vehicle and put together an estimate of what it will cost to repair. I deal with insurance companies on a daily basis.  I make sure that when your vehicle is done that you not only leave happy, but that you leave with safe/quality repair.

What are your goals and what do you hope to accomplish at Friendly Ford as you move forward?

I hope to build the Body Shop big enough and strong enough to be able to expand to a second location.

What do you like most about your job and what makes you passionate about your line of work?

I love the challenge of estimating a variety of vehicles, because each and every vehicle is so different. We work on all makes and models and it is exciting because I never know what’s going to come in! What makes me so passionate is the end result and our customers leaving satisfied.

What would you consider to be your dream car?

Oh with out a doubt… Ford Raptor!

What are some of your hobbies outside of work?

Paul Licitra Snowboarding

Paul snowboarding

I love being outside.. R/C Cars & Boats, Biking, Boating, Snowboarding, taking my wife and 3 daughters on a walk to the park! I just love anything outdoors!

What are some fun or interesting facts about yourself?

I can always put a smile on someone’s face!

If someone made a movie about your life, who would you want to play you and why?

Robert DeNiro! His on screen charisma of being serious and funny at the same time. Plus I respect him as an actor

Now that you’ve gotten to know a little of Paul Lucitra, come by Friendly Ford today and give him a friendly hello! He’s always looking to brighten everyone’s day.