Ray Fidel: To Transform Your Career, Simply Plant Seeds, DriveTime CEO’s Perspective

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Ray Fidel, DriveTime CEO

Ray Fidel, DriveTime’s CEO, says to simply plant seeds throughout your career, so that new opportunities can find you.

That’s not bad advice from someone who’s been a business executive since his mid-twenties (he’s currently 56) and has a 90% employee approval rating on Glassdoor. Ray has been DriveTime’s CEO since 2004 and transformed DriveTime from a traditional car dealership model to the comprehensive retail experience with a focus on customer satisfaction that it is today.

In a short video interview with DriveTime’s Talent Acquisition team, Ray explains the importance of finding the right employer and career path that fits who you are – not the other way around. Ray states:

“How can we setup a company, but have everybody here really invested in the assessment process?

To me, one of the most frustrating times is thinking, “how do I go through the process to find the right company that fits who I am?” Even if you are happy where you are, you’re on this [web]site for some reason, take the time to have a conversation, take the time to come meet with us.

What I have found throughout my entire career is to simply plant some seeds and you never know what comes back to you.”

Ray goes on to discuss a different type of diversity that often goes overlooked.

“Society now uses this word called “diversity” and we fall right into that category. That’s important to us.

But a part of diversity that isn’t discussed enough is the diversity of how people think, of how people are from a personality standpoint. I think it’s important that the introvert, the extrovert, the thinker, the feeler, whatever diversity they have as an individual, their voice can be heard and their voice can move up within our organization.

We are looking for that diversity; it’s that diversity that brings different thinking and a bigger mind theory, so to speak, to our culture.”

You can watch Ray’s full video below:

Has planting seeds helped you throughout your career? Let us know in the comments below.

  4 Comments

  1. Ashley Brown   •  

    We got our first vehicle with Drive time in February 2016. The 2008 Jeep Commander went into the shop with in the first week we had it. It was in the shop for 3 weeks with 2 different shops. On October 23, 2016 we had a total loss accident caused by a malfunction with the vehicle. It landed my 3 year old daughter in the hospital, broken bones, concussions, cervical sprains, and etc. We came in Saturday to get a new vehicle with no down payment. We had a 2010 GMC Acadia moved from the Lexington KY Drive time to the Knoxville, TN Drivetime. The Acadia was set for me to pick up on Monday. I came into Drive on Monday to learn the second vehicle was in the shop. I received a call from Drivetime on Wednesday advising the vehicle was ready for pick up. Today 12/8 my family and I went into Drivetime to pick up my vehicle. Unfortunately, one of the key features I asked for my children did not work on the car. The DVD was not working. I asked why this wasn’t looked at before I wasted my family’s time, and my response from the General Manager was I should be thankful that he got my Apr rate down to 13%. Never one apology nor would he even turn his head to look at me when I was speaking to him. This is 2 cars that has had repairs on it within the first week of purchasing it.

    • DriveTime   •  

      Hi Ashley – I am sorry to hear about all of this and that you are not satisfied with your experience. I suggest giving our customer relations department a call at 800-965-8043. Customer relations is one of the highest forms of customer service we offer here at DriveTime and they will be able to work with you regarding your situation. Thank you. – Tiffany | DriveTime Community Manager

  2. Mary suggs   •  

    My husband and I purchased a vehicle from the albuqierque branch. We put $1300. down. A few months later my husband had a life threatening heart attack (widow maker). He survived, thank God, but was not able to work for several months. I called Drive time and explained the situation and asked if we could return car. We realized web would lose our down payment, but since we only had for a few months how’d they would understand. The manger told us to come in and bring car and he would see what he could do. He madd6 an appointment with us for a few days out. The following day they came and repoed the car. I attempted to contact manager several times, but could not reach him. A couple of months later we received a bill for over $10,000.00 dollars. Ridiculous. First, we had just purchased vehicle a few months prior and out $1300. down. Second the manager did he would work with us. Third I believe they put vehicle back on the lot and resold it for probably the same price they sold to us then tried to double dip with us. Third we tried to be upfront from the beginning. My husband almost died. We had no other óption. The fact that Drive Time would take advantage of us knowing the circumstances is disgusting! If this is not cleared up for us I will report to the attorney general and I will post on every social media outlet I can think of. Also I plan to contact the media and tell them what I think happened with the vehicle. Im sure they can track down the sale by the vin number. I also plan to write a letter to me. Fidel to ask him if these are the practices he teaches the employees of his company.

    • Customer Relations   •  

      Hello Mary,

      Thank you for taking the time to bring this to my attention. I am saddened to hear that all of this has occurred and I am thankful that he is okay. I am uncertain as to what was advised directly to you at our dealership. Please know that outside of the 5 day return period, returning a vehicle is against the contract and would be considered a voluntary surrender.

      I want to make sure that this is appropriately reviewed. Please contact my Customer Relations team at (888)290-0148.

      Thank You,

      Kaitlyn – Customer Relations

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