Forty years ago Joe Riscica, Sr. opened his namesake repair business in Deer Park, NY, a historic village on Long Island. Today, Joe Riscica’s Auto Repairs is still there, bigger and better and still focused on great customer service and reliable repairs.
And the shop is still owned by Joe Riscica, but today it’s owned by another Joe Riscica, Jr., who bought the business from his father two years ago. Father and son had spent about five years preparing for the transition of ownership.
“In an industry sometimes painted as dishonest, it’s our mission to stand out and be a breath of fresh air,” says Joe Jr. “We strive to be as transparent as possible and always offer the customer all the information they need and have come to expect from us”
The business has been a vibrant part of the Deer Park community and Joe Jr. wanted to ensure that success continues and that the legacy is carried on – but he also wants to build on that success. Riscica has bold expansion plans – possibly with a second location – but immediately within his community. The shop has always been involved in the town’s sports leagues, and Joe wants to expand that involvement. Community fairs and outreach to both customers and future customers are other important elements in Joe’s plans for the future.
Becoming owner involved more than simply taking over for his father, Joe Jr. discovered. As he began taking over and as his responsibilities grew, he needed to address the crew at the shop. Some had been at the business a long time, which is a testament to his father. But he recognized the challenge of being someone’s boss who is quite a bit older while being respectful of their experience. Though Joe was only 22 when he came onboard with the eventual plan of taking over, his efforts to retain the collective industry skill worked. That same team is still at the shop, with credit to Joe Jr. He makes sure to include his team in decisions that impact them. Open and transparent communication isn’t just for the customers but also the crew at Joe Riscica’s Auto Repairs.
Offering a 24/7 tow service is an additional part of the business that is key for rounding out the offerings at the shop. It’s a convenient way for both existing and new customers to bring their cars in for service without the headache of finding a tow in their area. Their tow service information is included on their website, key tags, business cards and each piece of promotional material produced.
Riscica says being a DRIVE client has been a key factor for the successful handover of the shop.
“DRIVE was able to help us structure the transition in a way that made it very clear what responsibilities would be transferred and when,” says Joe.
Both Joes say that participating in DRIVE’s PLANNING FOR SUCCESS and the SUCCESSION AND EXIT PLANNING Workshops helped them feel confident in the decisions that had to be made and the plan that needed to be put in place.
Joe Jr. knows that because of his hard work and having DRIVE as a partner, he can manage the business without the business managing him. Because of that, he has free time that everyone wants and needs, time to spend doing the things he loves, like golf, riding his Harley, surfing and doing things with family and friends.
“What I love most about coming to the shop each morning is seeing the growth of the industry, especially after such a hard year and a half for everyone. No two days are the same and I love the problem-solving aspect of owning a business. Always being needed and meeting people from all walks of life and providing a needed service to the community,” says Joe Riscica Jr.
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