“Owners Leo and Eric Johnson both have children who have shown some interest in the dealership, but neither would be ready for a leadership role for another 10 years if they decide to pursue a career in the business.
“While both have shown some interest, neither one of them have said ‘this is what I’m going to do.’ Both of them have done internships with us and Leo’s son, Patrick, worked part time here through high school. They don’t assume they are going to come to the dealership. Both of them are going to try to work outside of the dealership and see what life’s like. Leo’s son is a junior in college and Eric’s daughter has graduated from college and currently works for CNH.
“I’d be happy to work for either one of their kids. They’re both good kids and super sharp. The unwritten plan is that I would maintain things the way they are until they’re ready to come in at a management level. They’re not going to come from college and be in a leadership role right away, they’ll have to work their way up the ranks and prove themselves and learn the process.
“If they come work at the dealership at a management level eventually, they will need to have at least a Bachelor’s Degree if not more by the time they get here. So, they will probably be ahead of where I was as far as education. However, I think each one of them should work in every department and learn the ropes of each department for a while. That would help quite a bit, especially if they’re going to a top management role eventually.
“The ultimate succession plan is an every changing thing based upon what the kids do. It won’t change anything in our immediate future though because if and when they do come to the dealership they won’t come in and take the reins right away.”