In this column, Capricorn Society’s Group CEO, David Fraser, discusses how we can all play a part in building a diverse and stronger community

David Fraser, Group CEO – Capricorn Society Ltd

In 2020, Capricorn embarked on an ambitious project to look under the bonnet of our industry. We wanted to better understand the mood amongst Members; to really get a handle on the issues, trends and challenges affecting you, your business, and the industry as a whole.
The result, the State of the Nation report, is brimming with insights that will help us to help you create stronger businesses and it sets a benchmark against which we can all measure our success.
Ever since we released the State of the Nation report it has prompted conversations about what the research tells us about the automotive industry. And, more importantly, what can we do about it?
Every month I would like to share with you some of the discussions we are having at Capricorn about the automotive industry at large and how we can all play a part in building a diverse and stronger community.
To start off we are looking up from underneath the hood and seeing if we are adapting quickly enough to change.
We often hear or talk about disruptive change. In our industry that can be a future which includes electric vehicles, autonomous vehicles, connected cars, ride sharing or subscription models all working to replace car ownership.
So how do we succeed in a disrupted industry? My big tip is to know your customer.
We often talk about “disrupt or be disrupted,” but this shouldn’t be confused with being customer focused. Netflix Chief Executive Officer, Read Hastings, was quoted as saying “Companies rarely die from moving too fast, but they frequently die from moving too slow.”
No matter what disruption is going on, we should never lose sight of our focus on the customer. And if we’re going to innovate, we need to innovate in a way that our customers care about — otherwise we really will be left behind.
Your customers are the secret to a thriving business, whether those customers are individuals, small businesses or big companies. If they’re happy, then they keep coming back and they recommend your workshop to their colleagues and connections. But customer expectations are changing, and we need to keep up.
Don’t be the one who stands back and watches change happen. Don’t be the one who looks back and asks, “what happened?” Be someone who makes things happen. Be in control of your own destiny.
Disruption won’t happen overnight or with a big bang. It will happen in small, incremental steps over the next decade and beyond. But now is the time to think about what you can or should be doing to prepare for it.
Start by falling in love with your customers and planning for your future. Even small change is better than none.
As you start that journey, it’s worth remembering you don’t have to tackle those challenges on your own. As a cooperative, Capricorn has been right there alongside Members, working to improve your workshops’ success, for more than 40 years.
I am confident Capricorn can do more to help our Members keep up with some of the challenges we all face.
Other challenges, of course, will require an “all of industry” approach — one where all stakeholders must work more collaboratively if we are to solve them. You can guarantee Capricorn will be right there, with a seat at the table, helping to meet those challenges, too.
If you are interested in learning more about how you can benefit by joining Capricorn, I encourage you to email to arrange a visit from your local Capricorn representative.
Alternatively, you can visit to find out the full range of Member resources and benefits available.
Have a fantastic month and I look forward to speaking to you again in the next edition.

Yours in cooperation,
David Fraser
Group CEO – Capricorn Society Ltd

For more on Capricorn Society membership, visit