Aaron Pearce | Brand Manager North Harbour Ford
From a young age Aaron Pearce was drawn to anything on four wheels - so, it really isn’t any wonder that he managed to score a job where driving brand new Fords everyday is just another day in the office.
It seems Aaron's parents played a key part in instilling his passion for motor vehicles. From a young age, Aaron and his father spent countless hours in their garage tinkering with anything with 4 or 2 wheels. On top of this, his parents owned a number of Ford Cortinas and Escorts.
At the age of 18 Aaron set out to join the automotive industry; however, his entry was somewhat different to most. He started out in the vehicle repossession side of the industry, taking responsibility for getting the reposed vehicles ready for resale. Returning cars to a clean and road worthy state was a physically demanding job, however, the experience he gained in the process created a solid foundation for all that was yet to come.
After that, Aaron joined John Andrew Ford, the largest volume Ford dealer in the country, as their Stock Controller. It was a full-on role, but one that he loved, taking personal responsibility for managing the inward and outward flow of vehicles and liaising with fleet and retail specialists on the movements of vehicles into and out of the dealership - ordering and managing thousands of vehicles during his time on the job. The role gave Aaron the opportunity to gain a deep understanding of the sales process, from start to finish, which was very rewarding for him.
However, after 4 years, Aaron decided that it was time for a new challenge so he made the transition from behind the scenes to a customer facing role. Eagers Automotive sister dealership, North Harbour Ford created a Sales Cadet opportunity for him and he jumped at the chance.
At the time Aaron considered himself to be a shy person so, at first, he found his cadetship a little daunting. However, after his first few sales, his confidence grew. It didn't take long for the training wheels to come off and, in a reasonably short period, he was promoted into a Sales & Product Specialist role. Aaron found he loved selling cars because, rather than being behind the scenes like he was before, he was now able to be a part of the customers new car buying experience.
A recent delivery Aaron remembers fondly took place on 25 March 2020, the last day before New Zealand’s first COVID lock down. An elderly female customer had finally managed to purchase a Ford Mustang; she’d had a picture of one on her wall ever since she was a little girl and had always aspired to own one. To beat the lockdown Aaron had to drive the car to Whangarei. When he arrived, the lady was overwhelmed with delight - "that was probably the most special delivery I've ever made".
In 2019, North Harbour Ford transitioned to a new showroom, adopting the Ford Guest Experience Program in the process. An initiative based on the premise that visitors to the showroom should be treated more as guests than merely just potential customers. In recognition of Aaron’s customer centred approach, he was hand selected to lead the initiative/change and was promoted to ‘Ford Guest Experience Manager’. The initiative has, and continues to be, hugely successful and is testament to the dedication Aaron and his team applied to the program.
Now, as Brand Manager of North Harbour Ford, Aaron is having the time of his life. He acknowledges that there is much more learning to be had, but the key is to enjoy the journey. Aaron continues to have a passion for the business and hopes that one day, he can work towards taking on the role of Dealer Principal.
Aaron usually works 7-days a so, he doesn’t get much time to fix up cars anymore. However, if there is anything that COVID-19 has taught him, it is that family is so important. So, in between being a foodie and gin-enthusiast, he tries to spend more quality time with his partner, parents, nephew and his two adorable sausage dogs, Charlie and Frankie.