Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

Is it fair to treat un-equals as equals?

Some managers believe that fairness means all employees must be treated the same, or equally. I suggest that this belief represents a misguided understanding of fairness.
In fact, there is nothing more unfair than treating un-equals as equals. In the retail environment you will seriously, and adversely, affect the morale and performance in the store by applying this old idea of being fair.
Performance of sales associates depends on many, many things. Some of those things are out of the Managers control.

Things such as emotional problems, personal life issues and health concerns – things which tend to weigh heavily on an individual and could affect their ability to perform in their work – are out of a Store Managers control.

That is why it is so important to capitalize on the things that are within a Managers control. They include incentives, recognition, treatment, scheduling and training, among other things.
High performers deserve to be treated differently than mediocre or poor performers.

This is not to say that fairness suffers. On the contrary, it supports the meaning of fairness.

Is it not fair that those who achieve great results receive greater rewards?

Is it not fair that those who achieve great results receive the ‘fruits of their labor’ in other ways also?

Of course it is.

Not providing greater rewards and recognition to these individuals would be very unfair.
Now let’s look at some of the ways in which the high performer can be fairly treated, recognized or compensated in the retail environment.
First, and foremost, is compensation. You do not need to follow guidelines which treat all individuals the same. Just as experience and length of time with a company count, level of performance must also count.

When all other things are equal, performance must be the differentiator. Performance must be taken into account when looking at compensation packages and promotions.
Beyond compensation, the high performer should reap other, non-monetary rewards.

For example, if a particular shift is coveted by employees then the high performer should get that shift. If a particular day off or, perhaps, a special assignment is desirable then the high performer should receive it.

Some would say that this is unfair but it is not. High performance is what we want, what we strive for, what we talk about, what we pay for, what we expect, what delivers the best ROI and what we need to build, or maintain, a thriving business.

How could it possibly be unfair to provide good things for those who are clearly and consistently delivering high performance?
Management who claim that it is only fair to treat un-equals equally are probably unsure as to how to deal with things any other way. They believe that everyone should be treated the same.

They don’t know how to tell the staff that the high performer for the week does not have to clean the stock room or the wash room.

They don’t know how to deal with the complaints of the mediocre or poor performers. They take the path of least resistance and treat everyone the same.
High performers who are treated the same as everyone else will look for a place where they are recognized for who and what they are.

All the Success!
DMSRetail

PS. The Super Retail Success Bundle comes with a bonus exclusive Retail Managers DVD (digital) Collection and it has been an international bestseller for years.
Find out why!!

Check Out This Classic Bestseller

PPS. Find out about these proven Performance Pacs for Store, District, Region and Company
Please, Tell Me More

Advertisements

Some Stats on State of Retail

With so many changes in the world of retail and the ways consumers shop, here are some interesting statistics on the state of retail today.

1) More than half (54%) of retailers said the customer experience is their most important area of focus, way ahead of cross-channel marketing (16%), data-driven marketing (14%), mobile (11%), and programmatic buying/optimization (4%). (Adobe)

2) When asked about the extent to which digital permeates their marketing activities, 13% of retailers described themselves as “digital-first.” The majority are still primarily led by brick-and-mortar operations and traditional marketing activities. (Adobe)

3) One-third (33%) of retailers cited “targeting and personalization” among their top three tactical priorities for the year ahead, higher than for any other marketing tactic. (Adobe)

4) 75% of consumers are more likely to buy from a retailer that recognizes them by name, recommends options based on past purchases, OR knows their purchase history. (Accenture)

5) 53% of buyers say Facebook informs their purchase decisions. (VWO)

6) Over 60% of consumers take the time to review a return policy before making a buying decision. (ReadyCloud)

7) 49% cite not being able to touch, feel or try a product as one of their least favorite aspects of online shopping. (Big Commerce)

8) 88% of consumers who search for a type of local business on a mobile device call or go to that business within 24 hours. (Nectafy)

9) The top reason consumers shop online is the ability to shop 24/7 (KPMG)

10) The top reason consumers prefer to shop instore versus online is to see, feel and experience the product in person. (KPMG)

11) Millennials have a much higher demand for instant gratification than older generations. Although younger consumers are increasingly comfortable with buying products online without seeing them first, they are almost twice as likely to say they’d rather visit shops to get their product right away, rather than buy online and await delivery. (KPMG)

12) Parents spend more of their budget online in comparison to non-parents (40% vs. 34%) and spend 75% more time online shopping each week (7 hours vs. 4 hours for non-parents). Parents spend 61% more online than non-parents ($1,071 vs. $664). (Big Commerce)

13) 64% consumers want personalized offers from retail brands. (Salesforce)

14) 56% consumers willing to share data to receive faster and more convenient service. (Salesforce)

15) 29% of online shoppers would be likely to follow a brand on Facebook; 21% of online shoppers would be likely to follow a brand on Pinterest; 21% of online shoppers would be likely to follow a brand on Instagram; 18% of online shoppers would be likely to follow a brand on Twitter; and 13% of online shoppers would be likely to follow a brand on Snapchat. (Big Commerce)

Step up your Online Marketing Efforts with DMSRetail’s “Retailer’s Guide to Online Marketing, CLICK HERE

 

Why Don’t You Want The Sale?

Maybe the question should be ‘why don’t your teams know that you want the sale’?

Or, how about ‘why aren’t your teams, on the sales floor, motivated to sell your products’?

These are serious questions that should make retailers wonder.

A sales associate in a large furniture retail store is much more inclined to ‘sell’ products to customers than a floor/service/sales associate in many other types of retail stores.

If you agree with this statement, why do you suppose it is?

Is it the Pay for Performance compensation plan? Probably.

Anyway, suffice to say opportunities are being missed in many types of retail stores that do not engage in active selling to customers.

In fact, huge opportunities.

We looked at the possibility that a retailer who has no one who actually sells, wants to sell, or is expected to sell might think the products will eventually sell anyway so there is no need to be active in the sales process.

To many of you that is laughable but, honestly, it does have some merit.

If you are completely product driven with absolute perfection in your buying, visual merchandising, marketing and management then it could work for you. Could…it is not a given.

But, if you are not quite perfect, your products will need a spokesperson and that would be a sales associate – call it what you will.

Here’s a story to illustrate that a lack of motivation to sell – or ignorance, or indifference, or whatever it takes to lose a sale that was already in the bag – costs you sales dollars…

The customer is in need of two counter stools. She has been searching for just the right ones and she comes across them at a familiar home decor store – part of a very, very large chain of different types of retail…apparel for men, women, children, plus, footwear, housewares, home decor, etc.

She flags a ‘person’ down and mentions that she wants these two stools but they are both scratched. She asked if they had anymore.

No, they did not have anymore and probably wouldn’t get anymore. They are a once in and once out retailer. They get fresh goods all the time and rarely get replenished on the same item.

The customer asked if they would offer any type of discount if she bought them, even with the scratches. The ‘person’ said she would go and find another ‘person’ who might be able to help.

A couple of moments later, along comes ‘person 2’. She looks at the damaged stools and says “oh, we would just fix these up with furniture marker”.

The customer said that she would leave them as she didn’t want to pay full price for clearly damaged merchandise.

‘Person 2’ said “ok, bye”.

The stools were $129 each so the total of the sale would be $258 if they were in perfect condition. With a small discount – say 10% – the sale would have been $232.

In our area, as in most we imagine, it is a certainty that no reasonable person would buy these scratched stools for full price. Doing so would be what we would call ‘dumb’.

No one does it (unless forced in some unimaginable way).

And, make no mistake, no furniture marker was going to make the scratches go away, or even disappear to the naked eye.

‘Person 2’ will realize this when she tries to cover the imperfection in the attempt to dupe the next customer.

So, a sale…a sale of two imperfect items to a customer who really wanted them…two pieces of merchandise moved out…floor space freed up for something else…two large items that would, eventually have to be marked down, red stickered and moved to a clearance area…none of that mattered to ‘person 2’ who said “oh, we would just fix these up with furniture marker”.

The customer could have pushed the issue or asked for the manager but she did neither.

Some people are just tired of having to fight retailers.

But here is the icing on the cake, so to speak!!

The next day, the customer visited the same store in a different town – about 30 miles away – and guess what? The REGULAR price of the identical stool was $99. (This was not a fluke. Other stools were also priced lower than they were in the first store.)

Anyway…that’s 25% less than the other store was selling them for. (fyi: this story is completely verified for accuracy)

Draw whatever conclusions you would like regarding their pricing strategy, but realize that if the retail company, the DM, the Store Manager, and/or the Sales Associates in this chain were motivated to make sales – this ‘furniture marker’ thing would not have happened.

A small discount would have been offered and accepted.

A true win/win.

We would be remiss if we failed to point out the value of missed opportunities based on this example. So, here you go…

Now, remember the slightly discounted price of the imperfect stools in the first store would have been higher than the regular price for the identical stools in the second store.

$ 232 lost in one store in one day
$ 6,960 lost in one store in one month
$20,880 lost in one store in one quarter
$83,520 lost in one store in one year

If you own a 100 store chain…$83,520 x 100 = $8,352,000…that’s a lot of money to leave on the table.

It’s more than a ‘missed opportunity’, it’s an outright disaster for a retailer trying to stay in the game.

Maybe ‘Person 2’ and her superiors could use some motivation to sell…perhaps, some training on how to do it, as well.

You can stop the opportunity leak and we can help you do it – DMSRetail.com

 

Importance of Communications in Retail

It is widely recognized that good communication skills are important in any business; in any endeavour, really.

But, it is particularly important for a retail manager to be an effective communicator because they have to communicate with people at all different levels of the organization on a regular basis and many of those people have a direct impact on the customer and on store employees.

Often, there won’t be an opportunity for a second chance at getting it right, just due to the nature of retail. When employees are in various different locations, more complications are introduced.

Communication breakdowns – particularly retail H.O. to field communication – can have immediate, negative implications for the business.

In other industries there are more opportunities for colleagues to meet and to take more time to ask questions, mull things over and clarify misunderstandings before any impact at the customer level.

In retail, things are not so straight forward and miscommunication can quickly create chaos.

Often instructions, directions and planned actions take place on the fly, making it difficult to correct or clarify after the fact.

Retail managers move around a lot!

Think about why the person handling a life or death emergency gives directives like this…
“Go and do X (whatever it is that needs to be done) and come right back to me.”

Retail managers need to hone their skills in many areas if their goal is excellence in execution at store level and, of course, it should be. Communication is at, or near the top of the list of skills to be fully developed for success.

When communicating with employees, in particular, there must be an exchange of information, not just a download. People need to be given the opportunity to ask questions for clarification and to share their own ideas, if warranted.

Yet another reason retail managers need to be highly effective communicators is to be able to get the very best out of their people.

Subordinates who actively participate in the exchange of information – meaning they are not just told to do this or do that – are far more likely to achieve objectives; far more likely to be motivated to bring energy to their work.

That means the retail manager has to know how to ensure an exchange of information occurs and that involves sensing, or picking up, the communication style of those involved.

This is particularly important when discussing standards and expectations.

One of the biggest reasons why employees often do not meet performance standards and expectations is simply because they were not made clear enough to them.

Here’s an example where a managers’ communication skills may be called into question: an employee takes a directive – let’s say a directive to perform a certain task – and then proceeds with the task with nothing else in mind.

As far as they’re concerned the task they have been given by their superior is the most important thing they have to do.

Now, if the managers expectations were clear all along, that employee would understand that the task must be done ONLY if there were no customers to look after.

But let’s say customers come into the store while the employee is totally engrossed in his task and the customers are ignored – which, in reality, happens all the time.

In this example, the manager did not make expectations clear – the task to be performed was clear but this employee did not understand that the task was to be done only after customers were taken care of.

The employee did not have the ‘customer first’ understanding which should have been instilled early on in his or her employment.

Limiting Performance Potential

It’s a wonderful thing to believe your staff are amazing, wonderful, super human beings who can conquer any challenge; meet every goal and just generally be out of this world fantastic.

But, that’s kind of wishful thinking, isn’t it?

This time of year can bring a lot of customers into retail stores and, with really good, skilled people who are trying their best, sales can be over the top amazing.

But, with people who are enjoying their leisure time while at work in your stores, sales are going to be a little disappointing. Or, maybe very disappointing.

Can we all agree that this is a great time of year, particularly for retailers who need to finish Q4 with a bang to make up for any shortfalls throughout the year?

There are so many holidays coming up…so many fun times ahead.

Oh! The gift giving…the shopping…the sales…most retailers can’t wait for it to get started!

Retail isn’t easy work but it can be lucrative if you know what you’re doing.

Part of knowing what you’re doing is understanding this simple fact:

If you have low expectations of your associates, they will likely live up to those expectations…but no more than that.

Even those who initially go above and beyond will, eventually, learn that there isn’t any value to working harder when all you expect is mediocrity anyway.

Here’s a story about a retail business owner who actually said her people couldn’t get any better…couldn’t produce more sales…

This is laughable but, unfortunately…

It’s a true story.

At a retail management conference, a retail business owner objected to the instructors insistence that sales associates and management teams need individual targets.

On the face of the objection, it might seem that the owner was a believer in the non-competitive family oriented method of team selling. But, that was not the case.

The retail business owner objected simply because she knew her staff were selling as much as humanly possible and there was no way she should give them targets as they could not be expected to sell any more than they did already.

She said there was no way they were missing any opportunities.

So, one might think this owner misunderstood the process for setting individual targets. She may think that targets are intentionally set above what is reasonable.

But, that was not the case either.

This owner put it this way…

She had full trust in her staff. She liked them all very much and they all got along very well. The atmosphere in the store was very casual and comfortable.

They were like a family; a very close knit team.

She certainly didn’t want to do anything to make her employees uncomfortable.

She was certain that they were all doing every single thing possible to make sales happen, even without targets…not even store sales targets. Nothing.

With further discussion it was learned that this retail business owner rarely worked on weekends – the busiest times.

What’s more…she didn’t even drop in because the staff thought that would show she didn’t trust them.

There were no traffic counters so, without being in the store during reportedly higher traffic times, how could the owner possibly have any idea if the store was achieving its potential?

It was also learned that, although some KPI’s were recorded, no one really studied them or paid much attention to them.

After some time, and lots of discussion among the participants, this retail owner still believed that her staff simply couldn’t do any better. She felt they were doing as much as anyone possibly could.

To her mind, they couldn’t increase conversion, UPT’s, average sale…nothing could be improved.

This retail business owner just didn’t know what she didn’t know.

The staff may very well have been wonderful but it is very likely that they could have improved if more had been expected of them.

When you stop trying to get better…to achieve more…you probably won’t do either.

Motivate your people by challenging them to achieve more this holiday season.

Remember that old saying that goes something like this…

Shoot for the stars because, even if you don’t reach the stars, you won’t be in the mud.

Dominate Holiday Sales!

Tough Love

The only way to manage in retail stores is to be firm and fair; something known to parents of teens as practising tough love.

(Link to today’s article is below)

You know that you’re in a tough industry.

Apart from the other business concerns such as competition, dwindling mall traffic, changing technology, etc., you have to manage people…a huge variable in your business.

Every person is unique and, occasionally, you may find you’ve got an employee or two who think they’ve got plenty of reasons to whine and complain BUT you can’t allow them to.

You’re coming up on the busy holiday selling season…the gift giving season extraordinaire… and what you need from your employees, more than anything, is their commitment to interact with your customers in a pleasant and productive way.

Check out the article and make sure your staff are aligned with you for a great holiday season.

Here’s the link to the article.

And, please be sure to leave your comments after reading the article…we’re always interested in what you have to say! Thanks.

Have a happier holiday selling season by getting your Super Retail Success Bundle.
(Available in print or digital versions.)

This is a great opportunity for you to grab all the tools, insights and secrets you’ll need to meet the constant challenges of Retail Management. You can be better informed, better prepared and more successful than you ever imagined.

You get:

• 8 Success Guides & Tools
• Bonus with purchase: 8 DVD’s in the Exclusive Retail Manager’s DVD Collection

Owning your own Super Retail Success Bundle is like having a group of highly experienced, successful retail management coaches available to you 24/7…whenever you need an answer, a plan, a new tactic, a retail headache remedy….everything.

The Super Retail Success Bundle is a virtual treasure trove of ideas, information and ‘how-to’s’ for your continued success and all at a low, low price.

Get Yours Now.
(Available in print or digital versions.)

Get full details about all of the Success Guides, Tools and DVD’s included in the Super Retail Success Bundle and read the testimonials…

Here’s the link.

Have a great holiday selling season!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Insane Retailing

It has been said by many authors that an appropriate definition of insanity be ‘repeating the same actions time and time again, expecting different results’.

This definition seems simplistic and even ludicrous to educated psychologists, but for the rest of the population it suits just fine.

Retailing has been around since the beginning of time.

One retailer buying product from a supplier in hopes he will turn a profit by selling the product to an end consumer.

The processes and methods have, of course, been refined over the course of time and the rudimentary dealings that happened thousands of years ago have been replaced with technologically advanced retail infrastructures and corporate imperatives.

Consider the vast number of companies who achieve sales via retailing. The number is large and growing annually.

These companies, perhaps even yours, operate with a knowledge that they’re doing all they can to achieve success. They are doing the same things as they have been doing in years past.

Sales were decent then, they are only getting better. Right?

Think about this next statement;

IF YOU DO
WHAT YOU HAVE ALWAYS DONE;
YOU’LL GET
WHAT YOU HAVE ALWAYS GOT.

Now, this sounds fantastic to people who have always done exactly the right things, have always been wildly successful at it and operate their business in a vacuum.

For the rest of us, static business environments do not exist. Things always change; in fact, the only thing that is constant in any business is change.

Market variability is what keeps the economy moving forward, regardless of the particular point within the economic cycle we currently happen to be in.

The point to all of this is that certain attributes, skill sets, attitudes and capabilities are necessary within your company in order to move forward.

The very best way to ensure that your team continues to be a leader in your industry is to consistently and optimally train and re-train to stay ahead of industry trends.

Specific training to achieve specific goals is vital to the success of an organisation.

It makes little sense to invest heavily in more of the same, when all that it will produce for you is more of the same.

Investing in cutting edge retail management training will bring a wealth of valuable, original and innovative capabilities to your team.

Consider the opening statement of this article; the definition of insanity.

Can you identify any practices that your company undertakes on a regular basis that achieve minimal results, time and time again?

Does executive mandate dictate that these practices produce higher and higher revenues each quarter, yet they provide no viable solutions to achieve this directive?

Just as one cannot obtain blood from a stone, one cannot ask a team to produce something novel and profitable from an old method. New tools are needed. Innovative methods need to be introduced, as well as the applicable support given to see implementation through to completion.

Imagine how much knowledge is out there waiting to be harnessed by your company and utilised to the very best of your ability? How valuable could this new knowledge make your organisation? What would the ROI look like on that?

Distance your company from ‘Retail Insanity’; invest in appropriate training that will enable your teams to thrive in any economy.

During tough economic times, in particular, it would behove you to ask this question of your head office personnel:

What would cost more?

A) Providing top quality, leading edge training for our company’s most valuable and profitable asset – its people… or

B) Not training our #1 asset properly and watching our organisation slowly become a casualty of this economy?

Doing the same things, while expecting different results will only give you more of the same.

Guaranteed.

Be bold; try something new and see how incredible the new results can be.

The answers you seek are here for the taking.

DMSRetail Consultants will be in
London, UK in June 2017.

Don’t miss it.

Hotel Accommodation Included!!
(Special for the London session)

REGISTER HERE

We don’t just give you information and run…we provide email support, to all attendees, for one month following the workshop.

That’s like free consulting!

London, UK
The Retail Sales & Operations Management Workshop
June 5-6-7, 2017

Hotel accommodation included for this session!!

Click here for Summary Program Outline & Agenda

A Certificate is awarded
at the conclusion
of the workshop.

The Retail Sales & Operations Management Workshop

is coming up really fast so act today…

Plan to join us in London, UK on
June 5-6-7, 2017

REGISTER HERE

Special: Hotel accommodation included in this session!!

If you have questions, or need assistance with your registration, contact us today: Josephinehill@dmsretail.com

We have a 99.8% favourable review rate
and we’re very proud of that.

All of our workshops, webinars, Success Guides, Development Courses, Distance Education Programs, etc. have been well received and praised by 99.8% of our customers.

Our workshops and other products are all developed by retail executive who, in addition to formal education, have got many years of successful business experience in retail management and other related business pursuits as we mentioned above.

When you attend one of our workshops or webinars you’ll get the benefit of our knowledge and experience in the form of detailed and actionable ideas and plans to help you drive your retail business with purpose and effectiveness.

The sky truly is the limit when you decide to act on the information we provide you with; when you decide to put all of your newly acquired knowledge and how-to’s into play in your organisation.

And, we provide follow up email support for a month following our workshops.

Sheraton Park Lane, London, UK
The Retail Sales & Operations Management Workshop
June 5-6-7, 2017
Hotel accommodation included!!
Act today!

Register Here.

Retail Management Consulting & Training Company
Showing retailers the blueprint for successful retail operations since 1991.


Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

RetailWise - Subscribe

Retail Management

Ultimate Retail Success Collection

Archives

Sales & Influence Blogs - BlogCatalog Blog Directory
Advertisements