Lee Peters | 30 September 2021
Please tell us a bit about yourself…
“I’m the kid who played with Matchbox Cars when I was little, progressed to our homemade Billy Cart in my Sydney street, learnt to drive manual in muddy paddocks in Belgium, and now I’m the big kid who has been living and breathing cars for the best part of a nearly 20 year career! I’m a passionate automotive enthusiast with a favourite flavour of Aftersales and people development.”
What about your journey in the Automotive industry – what roles did you have along the way, and where has it brought you now?
I commenced my automotive career as a Sales Consultant with Ford in Sydney, selling 45 cars in my first four months. Our BDM was actually the one I can thank for igniting the dream, and encouraged me to join the Ford Australia Graduate Program. From there, after meetings scores of amazing Dealers across the country, I even managed to make best friends and meet my now wife Narelle. I started with a strong base of broad Sales and Marketing knowledge, spending seven years with the team at Ford, where my passion drove me into the field working more closely back in Dealerships.
A move to Mazda for a BDM role really boosted my momentum and learning, being part of a growing and successful brand with incredible people and products – so much so that my own family transport is a Mazda still today.
The breakthrough role for me was in Senior Management overseeing Parts and Service business development nationally, a new role that I thoroughly enjoyed growing as the Mazda brand and car park expanded rapidly. The mandate was clear - maintenance of exceptional customer quality and profitable volume growth for brand and Dealers.
From there, an amazing opportunity came my way at Renault Australia to join as Director of Aftersales & Quality, which was a perfect next step to continue learning and leading in the Aftersales business I’m so passionate about.
I’m now thrilled to be part of the Deloitte team, where I can continue to help build on the industry’s momentum.
What do you love most about the Automotive Industry? Why does it ignite your passion so much?
Technically I’m a scientist, completing a degree in Biotechnology at UNSW. What I love most about the industry – the passion from owners, managers, technicians and our customers – is why I never really worked a day in a science lab. While local manufacturing has scaled down, all of the same people from that ecosystem of design-to-delivery are largely still in Australia, meaning we still possess world leading experience and know-how to remain competitive with the latest customer and business trends, despite our relatively small market size. I love being a part of that ecosystem of knowledge and challenger attitudes.
What do you think will be the biggest change we’ll notice in the evolving Automotive industry over the next 5-10 years?
I see an industry of two halves – an Aftersales market that’s probably 10 years behind the rapidly changing Sales landscape. As showrooms and selling models change very soon, the service and repair market structurally will remain, but will become even more important for sustainable profit and customer loyalty to ensure strong returns for investors and business partners to support the cost of change elsewhere. We need to ensure we don’t rest in our workshops, but rather encourage change and diversity so that we can keep up with this change – and most importantly make it our new success.
How do you see Deloitte playing a role in navigating and shaping this change?
Deloitte is incredibly well positioned to lead and embrace the impending changes – through the combined experience of those of us from the industry, to the immensely powerful eProfitFocus platform, and as a practicing leader in diversity and workplace flexibility. We lead with purpose in all we do. In our Australian automotive landscape that purpose is a stronger, more sustainable and profitable parts, service and sales business that harnesses powerful data and insights, and continues attracting great people at all levels into the future.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work? i.e. what makes you ‘you’?
With a busy family life, I’m immersed in seeing my children grow and being present in their important moments every day. It has been a fascinating growth journey to shift from ‘me’, to ‘us’, and now to ‘them’. They’re at the age now where they’re making memories every single day. My mission is to make their childhood as memorable as possible, with amazing moments, but also amazing respect and belief in themselves and their parents.