Rapid Automobile Repairs Pte Ltd – Mr Zach Mah – Make It Or Die Trying
As you walk out of the second floor staircase landing of Enterprise ONE Building along Kaki Bukit Road 1, you will be greeted by the shining bright signboard of Rapid Automobile Repairs Pte Ltd, A mid-sized Automobile workshop founded in August 2012 by 33 year old Mr Zach Mah.
While most other workshop owners might have started their career in automotive repairs as apprentices in the industry, Mr Mah came from a totally different track. He was an Industrial Machinery Salesman before making the drastic switch to the Automotive Repairs Industry. An avid car enthusiast himself who have owned various models of Protons and Hondas, he decided to turn from enthusiast to service provider when he spotted a need for high quality maintenance and repair works in the local industry.
The passion for the business is evident when Mr Mah relates the difficult beginnings. He practically sold off and mortgaged all his worldly possessions to start the business. It takes guts, an extremely high sense of self-believe and a truckload of passion for anyone to basically sacrifice everything they have to pursue a course of action. But, the results today are evidence of what grit and determination can achieve.
With no prior experience in running an automobile repair workshop, Mr Mah relied heavily on his networking skills and online platforms to create awareness and build a customer base for his business. Starting out with just a small workshop with two mechanics and himself running the show, Rapid Automobile Repairs Pte Ltd has since grown to a mid-sized auto-repair workshop employing 1 manager, 1 sales staff, 4 mechanics and Mr Mah’s wife looking over the accounts.
While most workshops deal with quick fix jobs and after-market modifications, Rapid Automobile Repairs Pte Ltd differs in that they are specialists in high quality preventive maintenance jobs, full service repair jobs and simple after-market parts sales. This is obvious as Mr Mah has 2 dedicated teams under him with one specializing in Japanese made cars and the other focusing on European models.
In an industry that is highly competitive and frequent price-wars being the norm, Mr Mah refuses to be drawn into wars of attrition with his competitors and instead differentiates himself by focusing on quality and value. Clients who come to Rapid Automobile Repairs Pte Ltd are assured of high quality work done on their beloved cars. The company’s teams of Specialist Mechanics are well equipped to detect and solve any underlying problems with your ride and perform preventive measures to make sure the problems are solved at the roots before they become bigger issues in future that requires major work to be done.
Internally, Rapid Automobile Repairs Pte Ltd differs from other workshops in the way they remunerate their staff. Instead of hiring Mechanics on a fixed pay, Mr Mah introduced an incentive based pay scheme rewarding Mechanics for both the amount and quality of work produced in the workshop. This has both increased productivity and standard of works in the workshop. In Mr Mah’s own words, ‘When you give fair rewards to the people who are working for the business, they will be motivated to work harder and better for the company, this in turn translates to higher quality work that the mechanics can be proud of and more satisfied customers that feel that they are getting good value.’
All the above contributes to what Mr Mah sees as extremely important for his business – Branding. To Mr Mah, nothing is more important for the business than good Branding and reputation. All it takes is one sloppy job and one disgruntled client to spoil the hard earned reputation of the business built over the years. That is one of his biggest fears in running a business and why he is willing to pay top dollar for the best teams he can hire to ensure that every client will leave the workshop happy. It is therefore no surprise that today, Rapid Automobile Repairs Pte Ltd is well known among car enthusiasts for their superb quality work and fast turnaround time.
In terms of the company’s direction in the next few years, there are no plans for new branches of the workshop as Mr Mah wants to be able to keep a firm control over the standard and quality of work. However, it is Mr Mah’s vision to expand the physical size and scale of his workshop and to build more specialized teams of mechanics to deal with specific problems. In time, these teams shall become specialized individual companies under the umbrella of Rapid Automobile Group of Companies with each dealing with a specific area of the automotive care industry. Off the top of his head, Mr Mah already has ideas for companies or teams that deal with Asian made cars, European cars, Commercial vehicles, Air-conditioning services and Automobile Paintjobs. All specialist teams with a single focus on their area of expertise to provide the best service available in the industry.
When asked about his inspirations and motivations, the family oriented Mr Mah replied plainly that his wife and family are what motivates him to get up every morning and come into the workshop. It is his believe that as a man, it’s his responsibility to provide a better standard of living for his loved ones. Nothing gives him more pride than the feeling of going home after a long day in the workshop to see the happy faces of his family members and knowing that he is responsible for their continued well being and happiness. A self-professed lone ranger in the business world and a firm believer in his own abilities, Mr Mah does not subscribe to a particular model of success like a lot of other entrepreneurs. It is this strong sense of self-believe that enables him to come up with ideas to run his company differently from the others in his industry and break the status quo by offering something different from the norm.
As a person that is deeply family oriented, it is also no surprised that his father influenced him a lot in the way he conducts himself and by extension, his business. There are a few principles he lives by that are passed down from his father, the senior Mr Mah instilled in him the mentality that no matter the situation, as long as you conduct yourself honestly and work hard enough to the best of your abilities, your reputation will build up and people will seek you out for your services. As long as you are sincere in your approach and are fair in your dealings, your reputation will grow and more people will be willing to recommend your services to their friends and acquaintances. While the results might come slowly in the beginning, it will definitely be a steady base to build from and the snowball effect will kick in in the later stages like an automatic lead generation machine.
While many entrepreneurs will put a dollar value to their definition of success, Mr Mah cites stability as one of the cornerstones of success. The ability to build the business to scale and maintain that scale over time is a sign of success to him. The other important aspect of success in Mr Mah’s definition, is the ability to have a reputation and branding so strong that whenever people think about automotive services, they will immediately associate it with Rapid Automobile Repairs Pte Ltd and the name Zach Mah. Of course, for the family man, the third, but no less important definition of success to him, would be the ability to improve the standard of living for his family and provide them with a good life.
While many feel that being an entrepreneur and business owner would afford them the luxury of freedom, Mr Mah has a different take on the issue. He believes that if a business owner is able to enjoy freedom of time, he is definitely slacking on the job and the business will fail. The boss needs to work at least three times as hard as the staff, and that is the minimum requirement for a business owner. If you cannot handle the hard work and pressures required of the position, you are failing in your job and responsibilities as a leader.
When asked about what he enjoyed most about his current role, Mr Mah’s face lit up considerably when he speaks of the pride and joy when he is able to solve a client’s problem and provide high quality solutions. He is most happy to be able to solve problems on a daily basis and learn more about his trade and craft continuously. To him, continuous improvement and being the problem solver for his clients are the most enjoyable parts of the business even if the profits for a particular job is not high.
Finally, Mr Mah has this to offer to any young aspiring entrepreneurs out there. Every industry or business is profitable as long as you are willing to put in the work and have a positive attitude, do not be afraid to ask for opinions or learn from people when in doubt, and most importantly,
be persistent and never give up.
– Zach Mah,
Rapid Automobile Repairs Pte Ltd
Contact DetailsRapid Automobile Repair Pte Ltd 1 Kaki Bukit Road 1 #02-31 Enterprise One Singapore 415934 Office: 66046133