In 1989, Mike Lee and his family immigrated from Taiwan –– he was only eight years old at the time. Today, he is the Dealer Principal (Owner) of Freedom Kia in Granville, West Virginia.
Hailing from New Jersey for most of his life, Lee obtained an undergraduate degree from West Virginia University. After graduation, he worked in the automotive industry for 21 years, 18 of which were right here in Morgantown.
A sales associate at the time, Lee worked his way from the bottom to the top.
“The [American] Dream is still alive and available,” said Lee. “My parents were clock and watchmakers. They put me through school. They allowed me to be successful. Now the goal is to give back.”
A self-professed workaholic and perfectionist, Lee’s philosophy of ownership is to work to help the customer first.
“We don’t sell above [industry standards]. We’re not here to gouge. We’re not here to sell you anything you don’t want,” said Lee.
However, success wasn’t a streamlined process. It took time, energy, and humility.
“I had to learn to accept criticism and understand that I had room for improvement,” said Lee. “I wasn’t always the best with people. No matter how successful you are, there’s always better, and ego [can’t be] in the way.”
Freedom Kia in Granville likes to say that they’re the “Trusted Kia Dealership” in the area. With its fully stocked selection of new and used Kia’s, including hatchbacks and SUVs, the company prides itself on excellent customer service and a stress-free car-buying experience.
“With everything that’s going on in West Virginia, we have a huge opportunity to bring people here, and I’d love to be able to participate in that,” remarked Lee.
When Lee isn’t on the job, he likes to spend time with his wife of 20 years and two children. He loves animals and has several pets, including two dogs, two cats, two guinea pigs, and a fish.
If you’d like to keep up with Mike and Freedom Kia, visit www.freedomkia.net.
PWV QUICK BITS | MIKE LEE
- RECOMMENDED RESOURCE: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, by Stephen Covey
- PIECE OF ADVICE: “Accept criticism. Be a student. You always have room to grow,” advised Lee.