After 11 years of 40 Under 40 — and 10 years running our Best Dealerships To Work For program — we at Automotive News know how important a clear career path is to talent retention and employee satisfaction.
The vast majority of 40 Under 40 honorees responding to our survey indicated that they have a defined career path and are progressing in their personal and professional development at their companies. I’ll note that providing a career path is more than just laying out a succession of likely job titles. Employees need other kinds of support — training and mentoring, for instance — to help them climb that career ladder.
The 40 Under 40 honorees who responded to our survey say they’re generally getting that support. They also say becoming an honoree provided valuable outcomes to them such as professional recognition and, for some, opening doors to speak at industry events. Just more than two-thirds of initial survey respondents said getting the 40 Under 40 recognition helped their careers.
“It’s given me the confidence to ask for certain benefits,” one respondent wrote. “The honor was more proof to myself that I’m really good at my job and I have the talent/drive to advance in the company.”
Another respondent wrote that the achievement has been a huge career booster, “including nationwide recognition and opportunities.”
“I have been given more opportunities to speak on stages that I would have never been invited to participate in,” the respondent wrote.
Yet another respondent, from one of the early classes of 40 Under 40 honorees, said the recognition “opened many doors for me and put me on the map in retail automotive.” It ultimately led to a new position as a high-level industry executive that “would not have happened without that first spark to the flame,” the person wrote.