As a result, BCA has a number of partnerships with the Institute of the Motor Industry and close links with the Retail Motor Industry Federation, Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, Institute of Car Fleet Management and Association of Car Fleet Operators, Manchester Business School and learndirect.
It uses senior faculty members at Manchester Business School for high-level management training and executive programmes, which focus on business strategy, problem solving and management techniques, covering what is often known in management-speak as 'thinking out of the box'.
Less senior people can also use Government-funded body learndirect to improve computer and other information technology skills. There are also leadership training courses run by the Army at Sandhurst and Branksome, which take promising future leaders in the company and put them through their paces, featuring many of the techniques the Army uses to teach potential officers to lead troops.
BCA also offers both levels of Modern Apprenticeship: Foundation Modern Apprenticeship (FMAs) and Advanced Modern Apprenticeship (AMAs) with external assessors working with candidates on a structured programme based around their daily work.
The firm is also an IMI Approved Assessment Centre and the IMI benchmark BCA's own in-house Certificate of Auctioneering.
On successful completion of the BCA course, members are formally invited to join the IMI.
Taking the approach that the best auctioneers are made, not born, BCA introduced a structured and integrated scheme that enables the potential within staff to be realised.
Using external trainers alongside in-house expertise, it ensures that its auctioneers gain the knowledge, skills and experience they need to be the very best in the business.
The difference a good auctioneer makes can be seen directly on the values achieved in the auction hall.
BCA is also a keen advocate of the Institute of Car Fleet Management, believing that the institute gives a better understanding of the dynamics of the fleet industry and an empathy with the pressures that fleet managers operate under.
More than 120 staff have studied for the Introductory Certificate in Car Fleet Management.
Are you a procrastinator or a producer?
WE'VE all met the sort of people who seem to live life in a continual state of panic, flying around at speed while yelling into the phone, yet seeming to have achieved little at the end of the day.
Then there are those serene types who are always on time for meetings, have tidy desks and still manage to get things done. What's their secret? How can they make more of the same 24 hours we all get in a day?
Often it comes down to time management. It is about self-discipline and organisation. How effective you are ultimately does not depend so much on the demands of your job as on the way you take charge of your time. An ever-growing industry of time management books and courses has evolved to meet the demands of the modern fleet decision-maker.
Consultant and coach Jean Marc Rommes, of Business Paradigms lists the following basic guiding principles:
Top management tips to make the most of your time
Putting a monetary value on your work time
Here is a simple way to evaluate how much your time is worth. It can give you a rough indication of which tasks you should do yourself and which you should consider delegating:
1. Write down your gross annual salary
2. Add any bonus/commissions
3. Add 30% of answer (1) for pension, national insurance etc
4. Add 50% of answer (1) for office space, heating, lighting, telephone, travel, administration help etc
5. Divide the total (4) by number of annual working days:
6. Divide the total (5) by average daily hours worked:
7. Divide the total (6) by 60
Cost per hour: £
Cost per minute: £
Knowing the real value of your time, you can now work out how much the following activities cost:
A document that takes you 10 minutes to find
Recovering from a computer crash
An unexpected job that takes you 45 minutes
Waiting at a meeting for latecomers, say half an hour
A two-hour job that your assistant could learn to do
Dealing with five-minute interruptions
Over-running a meeting by 15 minutes because of chitchat
THIS time management matrix divides tasks or activities into four quadrants characterised by urgency and importance of activities. Quadrant 1 comprises tasks that are both urgent and important, and that may constitute a drain on energy and composure, including crises and 'fire-fighting', pressing problems and deadline-driven projects.
Quadrant 2 activities are important but not urgent and are the basis of effective and productive personal management. They include medium and long-term planning and organisation, prevention, relationship-building, discovering new opportunities and recreation.
Quadrant 3 is urgent but not important, described as 'an endless reactive process' of interruptions, some calls and meetings, reports and activities.
Quadrant 4 tasks are neither urgent nor important, 'the core of procrastination', and comprise trivia, time-wasting and escapist activities.
Effective managers spend more time on Quadrant 2 planning-type tasks than on Quadrant 1 problems, though these may be impossible to eliminate completely as they are often a matter of daily survival. The goal for managers should be to focus on Quadrant 2 activities as much as possible, while avoiding wasting time in Quadrants 3 and 4.