Creating Meaningful Partnerships With Nick Novitsky Of Elite Towing of Minnesota

Nick Novitsky knows what people typically think about towing companies – and it’s usually not very positive.

“That’s one of the big things I’m trying to change,” said Novitsky, the sales and account manager at Elite Towing of Minnesota. “I want people to understand that we’re not just here to impound their vehicle.”

But let’s back up a bit and talk about how Novitsky got to where he is today. At age 20, he was the youngest person to have his own sales route for a company called G&K Services that was eventually acquired by Cintas. 

“We serviced and made sales on everything from soap dispensers to rugs to uniforms,” Novitsky said. “I did that for 16 years but I didn’t like the direction that the company was going. I realized that it was going to be bought out and things were going to change.”

At that point, Novitsky, his father and his brother started their own towing company, J&M Auto Recycling, that focused on purchasing and recycling junk vehicles.

“One of the things we did with them was demolition derbies,” Novitsky recalled fondly. “For 15 years, we did that as a family. We had a really good time and that’s kind of what led us into the towing business.”

During that time, Novitsky and his family did some subcontracting work doing impounding and repossessions for a few different companies. The general manager of one of those companies ended up buying Elite Towing and when he had a sales position open up, he turned to Novitsky.

“I decided to get out of the truck and into the office because I’m a people person,” he said. “I like the interaction and things have kind of flourished since then.”

In his current role, Novitsky doesn’t only handle sales and account management, he’s also doing some business development and pursuing networking opportunities to help grow the company. In turn, he also works hard to help property managers and business owners be prepared for any situation that may occur in their parking lots. Even if they don’t think that they are in need of his services, Novitsky said, it’s always better to have a trusted resource lined up than to be scrambling to find someone at the last minute. And Novitsky wants to be that person for his clients. 

“One of the big things I created and set up – and I haven’t found any other towing companies that do this – is that we actually partner with apartment buildings, HOAs or whatever place we’re monitoring, to be the service where if someone needs a jump start or to get back into their car after a lockout, they actually get a discount for using us,” Novitsky said. “It’s a complete partnership just in case any needs arise.”

For example, imagine you’ve temporarily parked in a fire lane to drop off your brother at his apartment and your car dies. You go in and explain what’s going on with your car, tell the property manager that you’re going to get it taken care of and hope that he or she is nice and won’t impound your vehicle. Well, if that facility has partnered with Elite, the property manager can call in and say “hey, this person needs a jump start or needs a tow.” Because of the existing partnership, you’ll get a 20 percent discount.

“In essence, the property is helping market us and we’re there for any of their other needs, not just to take someone’s car and have them have a bad day,” Novitsky said. 

Novitsky’s strategy of creating partnerships is something that can pay off handsomely no matter what industry you’re in. If you’re looking to get better at forming connections with other business owners, here are a few of his tips:

  • Tailor your approach based on the business: Because Novitsky partners with a wide variety of businesses ranging from service stations to beauty salons, he understands how critical it is to adjust his sales pitch based on who he’s talking to. After all, what’s important to one type of business owner may not matter to another and if you try to stick to one standard script for everyone, you could end up missing out on a lot of opportunities. Regardless of who your audience is, though, your goal should be to highlight the value of your product or service and help your prospect understand how it can benefit them.


  • Ask a lot of questions: Novitsky’s motto has always been “clarify and verify” and it’s served him well throughout his career. “I’d rather ask a lot of questions on the front side because there are a lot of unique scenarios out there,” he said. “I drove a tow truck for 15 years and for the first three months, I sat with dispatch so I could learn about all the different situations and figure out which ones might cause a problem.” By taking the time to understand all the “what ifs” that may occur and “clarifying and verifying” all the information you can, you’ll be in a better position to handle anything that comes your way.


  • Communicate clearly and frequently: Regardless of what industry you’re in, communication is key and if you have customers who feel like they’re left in the dark…well, they’re probably not going to be your customers for very long! That’s why Novitsky always makes sure to let the property managers he works with know anytime he has to impound a vehicle and he also sends photos so they can see what happened. “That way, when someone calls them to complain, they already have pictures and a full description of why the vehicle was taken,” he said. “It helps alleviate a lot of questions because the information has been communicated properly.”


  • Don’t forget to follow up: When you make a new contact, Novitsky recommends following up with at least two to three forms of contact within 48 hours via text, phone call or email. Even if they don’t call you back right away, you’ll at least have gotten the ball rolling so that when they’re ready, you can get them set up ASAP. “I like to say that I’m planting seeds and those seeds come in a variety of forms – long-term, short-term, big seeds, little seeds,” Novitsky said. “If you’re going to have a forest grow, you need all kinds of seeds going and you never know when they’re going to sprout.”


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