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The Sweaty Server

Clearly, the company in this story did NOT make High-Yield Schedules.

The operation seemed OK, generally speaking…but why was this poor guy soaked with sweat?

Most of our stories are about regular retailers. But, every so often, we hear a story about a spa or salon, a restaurant or some other type of service outlet that we think is worth passing along.

The point to the story, below, is that scheduling is an integral part of running any operation that is serving the public in some way.

In fact, the schedule is the backbone of the business and there is only one person who should be in control of it and held accountable for it. That person is the Manager.

Here’s the story:

When the couple arrived at a local restaurant to have a late lunch before a movie, they were greeted politely and seated quickly.

Unfortunately, that is where the efficiency ended.

The server showed up quite a few minutes later and here is how the couple described him:
A pleasant young guy with messy hair and a totally sweat soaked brown shirt.

Ok, so this sweaty server asked if they wanted drinks and they did…so off he went to get them.

About 15 minutes later – no exaggeration – he came back with the drinks and took their food order.

Another 10 minutes passed, and the appetizer showed up. Another 10 and the meal showed up.

The couple had a lot of time to look around; to observe what was going on.

Clearly, there weren’t enough servers. Perhaps they were also short on bartenders, cooks and bussers.

The ‘why’ doesn’t really matter, does it?

The place was reasonably busy – not crazy busy – and if they had optimum staffing, they could have taken time to upsell and add on to increase the average check for the day.

As it was, in the rather large section they were seated in, this poor sweaty server guy was running around trying to look after everyone and although he did as well as could be expected, it was very obvious that he was working at a frenzied clip that couldn’t be maintained for long.

To his credit, he didn’t whine and complain or huff and puff… he just took care of business like the solid, committed server he was. The establishment was lucky to have him.

Unfortunately, there’s only so much one guy can do. When one person is doing the job of several, some things are going to fall through the cracks.

The schedule was either badly produced in the first place or management failed to revisit it appropriately.

Maybe both.

Whatever the reason, the coverage was no good and if the coverage is no good…no one wins.

When you think about all that has to be considered when making schedules, such as Budgeted Sales, Allowable Hours, Allowable Wage $ and Wage Cost %, and Last Year’s Actual Sales and Actual Hours Used, Wage $ Used and Actual Wage Cost % along with Full Time, Part Time and Full Time Equivalents, Events – both public and company sponsored, Open Hours, Online Shopping Changes TY from LY, Average % of Business per Day, Associate Stats like Sales Per Hour and Conversion Rate, Heavy Task Days and the not insignificant factor which is Staff Availability, scheduling is no easy task.

Nothing is ever as easy as it sounds, right?

Producing, Costing and Supervising High-Yield Schedules Takes Know How and We Have It!

Scheduling fewer people and using fewer hours is not the way to more success in your business.

There are times when it may seem like a good idea to skimp here and there…save a little without really harming customer service levels…

Don’t be tempted! It’s a trick! A High-Yield Schedule gets you more to work with, not less!

Biggest DM Challenge

The Biggest Challenge in Multi-Unit Management?

Doing it all without being present!
Doing it all remotely.
That is the biggest challenge…hands down!

Don’t be the Last Person to Find out the Single, Most Critical
Thing a Smart and Successful Multi-Unit Manager Needs to Do
To Get Outstanding Results…and What the Business Owner
or CEO Needs to do to Help.

The job of a Multi-Unit Manager is a tough one…no argument here.

They have to make the numbers happen and their stores must comply with all of the requirements set out by the organization.

Sales, merchandising, customer service, maintenance, scheduling, special event management… and so much more…are all their responsibility!

Actually, all of that might be easy if they were in the store with the Store Managers and the Associates every day.

But, of course, they’re not.

That’s the mighty challenge!

Managing remotely requires them to be even better than they were when they were top performing Store or Business Unit Managers.

Managing from afar is very different.

Phone calls and videos are great but no matter how much time a Multi-Unit Manager spends on the sales floor in each of their stores, it’s still not the same as one manager being in one store for 40 – 60 hours a week; pouring all of their effort and energy into the success of one business unit.

Not even close.

In fact, managing remotely is considered by many to be the single, biggest hurdle for any newly promoted Multi-Unit Manager to overcome.

Ignore this fact and you’re asking for trouble. Why?

Because, even though they’re not there (because it’s impossible to be everywhere), they are still accountable and you can’t let them off the hook. Not being there is no excuse for anything and no self-respecting Multi-Unit Manager will try to use absence as an excuse for lack of performance.

Well…maybe once.

Needless to say, it would not and should not go over well!

Usually, the District Manager is accountable for the district. The Regional Manager is accountable for the region. And on and on..that’s how it works.

The individuals holding these important, highly influential Multi-Unit Management positions must get the ‘numbers’…they must achieve targets and operate the stores effectively overall.

That’s it! End of story!

Because the in-person workshop was so highly rated, we decided to offer it online, for only a third of the price and zero travel expenses.

And, because this online workshop is done over 4 sessions, it won’t lead to scheduling issues.

Even if there is a conflict, we send the presentation and recording to your email so you don’t miss out.

Here’s what participants had to say:

“Illuminating, challenging and entertaining.”
~Amanda R., Retail Business Owner

“Very good information, gave many tools to be a very successful DM.”
~Leland W., District Manager

“It was informative on key pieces of the DM role.”
~Alissa B., Corporate Trainer

“Great! Felt, after an hour on the first day, that it was well worth my time away from the store.”
~Kim H., Sr. Store Manager

“I think this class has made me a better DM. I can put a lot of the systems I saw into play in my stores.”
~Calvin D., District Manager

“I think this workshop was perfect for our company. The way we are growing, I truly felt that we needed to structure the DM position. This workshop has given us the tools to do so.”
~Nick G. District Manager

“I enjoyed/learned from your experiences and it is important to learn from workshops like yours because we do not have the time to learn all these things on our own. Stand on the shoulders of giants!”
~Bill G. District Manager

“I think this workshop provides tremendous insights from the DM position to Home Office and into Stores. I appreciated the wide range of topics covered. I feel more empowered to take decisive action with my team.”
~Kerry T. District Manager

This affordable, time and travel saving 8-hour online workshop
(2 hours on four different days in October) is jam-packed with what you need to be your best at MAX Multi-Unit Management.

What you’ll like about this online workshop:

• Your Comfort
• Privacy of Your Home or Office
• Affordability
• Time Saving
• Travel Expense Saving
• Participate as Much or as Little as you Like
• Engaging Presentation
• Open Forum to Discuss with Other Participants and the Instructor
• Actionable Take Aways
• Detailed Multi-Unit Case Study
• Action Strategies Guide & Workbook
• Maximum Performance Goal Planner

(Important note: All of the above sent to your email whether you attend or not.)

Space will be limited during this live and interactive online workshop so everyone who wants to speak up can do so.


MAX Multi-Unit Management
Online Workshop

Total: 8 HOURS

Tuesday, October 22, 2019
Wednesday, October 23, 2019
Tuesday, October 29, 2019
Wednesday, October 30, 2019

4 Online Sessions
Each Session runs from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. EST.

Important Note: You get the presentation sent to your email whether you attend or not.

Click here to register for the MAX Multi-Unit Management Online Workshop – $495 per person.


Remember…You get the presentation sent to your email whether you attend or not.

Ideal for:
• District and Regional Managers
• General Managers
• Store Managers Ready for Promotion
• High Volume Flagship Managers
• All Retail Managers

We want to attend..what do I do now? Click here.
Send an email to if you have questions.

Firefighter Visits

Firefighter Store Visits.

You know…the visits where the Regional, District or Area Manager spends more time on the phone with others than they spend with the Store Manager and sales team of the store they’re in.

Firefighter Store Visits are NOT Productive Visits!
(Click here and learn how to avoid Firefighter Store Visits!)

Most career retail people have witnessed the ‘Crazed District Manager’ in action; always moving fast, talking to two and, sometimes, three people at a time and not making a lot of headway.

They’re always in a sweat and their briefcase is seriously overloaded…files and papers poking out all over the place.

Their hair is flying, they’re always checking their watch…and they almost trip over small children while rushing through the mall.

To the casual observer, this appears to be one very busy and productive individual. Well, maybe not so much but we’ll leave that for another day.

In any case, this is not the picture of the District, Regional or Area Manager who gets caught up in Firefighter Store Visits.

The ones we’re talking about are not moving too fast and they’re not crazed or confused. They’re pretty normal people, actually.

They don’t start out with the intention of ignoring the store they’re in, but somehow it always happens. And it frustrates them just as much as it frustrates the Store Manager.

But, there are problems everywhere, every day, every hour – urgent issues and problems and crises – that need the immediate attention of the District Manager…right?

The answer is:
No…not everywhere, not every day, not every hour.

to sign up for MAX ROI Store Visits
Online Workshop

September 17th and September 19th

Chances are really good that, barring some special event or major upheaval in the company, there aren’t all that many things happening that require the urgent and undivided attention of the RM or DM every hour of every day…everywhere.

Some, of course, but not that many.

There are situations that could be described as emergencies but many more that could be described as imagined emergencies and, worse, simply distractions.

The distinction depends on a few things.

One of those things is the management style of the District or Regional Manager and the expectations that have been set.

Some of those trying to get their attention could probably handle whatever it is on their own provided the RM or DM has given them the know-how and the authority to do so.

At DMSRetail, we’re strong advocates of true empowerment…which should not be confused with the old “empowerment for all” claim.

You might remember a time, just a few years ago, when every employee had to feel empowered. Courses were taught and every employee was strongly encouraged to be empowered.

If your employees weren’t empowered…well…you were just not running your company properly.

The only problem was that it was fake…disingenuous…artificial if you get my drift!

Every time a so-called empowered employee made a mistake, the wrath of some manager came down on them and taught them – very clearly – that they were not truly empowered.

Anyway, the point is that the position of Store Manager is an important one. It is a position that requires a truly empowered employee to make decisions, fix things that go wrong, drive the business with everything he’s got and, generally, look to their superior for support, some guidance, some professional development and a little help in removing obstacles to success.

Truly empowered employees do not call the boss every five minutes because there is no need to do so. When this employee calls, it’s understood that there’s a good reason for it.


Total: 6 HOURS

Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2019
3 Hour Session: 1 – 4 p.m. Eastern

Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019
3 Hour Session: 1 – 4 p.m. Eastern
(You get the presentation sent to your email whether
you attend or not.)

Conducting Informal and Formal Store Visits that Produce Winning Results Takes Know How!

If a Store Manager is new, they may need more guidance. Then again, they might be able to get that guidance from colleagues or, perhaps, a book. You never know.

Their immediate superior should not necessarily be the very first person to contact whenever something comes up. If they have taught their subordinates to contact them for every little thing, then they are always going to conduct Firefighter Store Visits.

RMs and DMs have to ensure all of their Store Managers understand what a crisis is so they can identify one when it occurs… and act accordingly.

Regional, District and Area Managers and anyone else who is responsible for managing a group of outlets must be disciplined and avoid distractions.

Firefighter Store Visits can be a thing of the past when you follow the MAX ROI Store Visit process.

Although the topics, details, specifics, time allotments and action plans will vary depending on what you need to accomplish…

The MAX ROI Store Visit process should be followed for  every… single… visit.

Sign up today!


Total: 6 HOURS

Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2019
3 Hour Session: 1 – 4 p.m. Eastern

Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019
3 Hour Session: 1 – 4 p.m. Eastern

(You get the presentation sent to your email whether
you attend or not.)

Conducting Informal and Formal Store Visits that Produce Winning Results Takes Know How!


Multi-Unit Retail Management

The job of a District or Regional Manager is a tough one…no argument here. They have to make the numbers happen and their stores must comply with all of the requirements set out by the organization. Lots to do!

Sales, merchandising, customer service, maintenance, scheduling, special event management… and so much more…are all their responsibility!

Actually, all of that might be easy enough if they were in the store with the Store Managers and the Associates every day. But, of course, they’re not. They might very well be in a store every day, but they can’t be in all of them every day, can they?

That’s the big challenge!

Managing remotely requires DM’s to be even better than they were when they were top performing Store or Business Unit Managers.

Managing from afar is very different.

Phone calls and videos are great but no matter how much time a DM/RM spends on the sales floor in each of their stores, it’s still not the same as one manager being in one store for 40 – 60 hours a week; pouring all of their effort and energy into the success of one business unit. Not even close.

In fact, managing remotely is probably the single, biggest hurdle for any newly promoted

District Manager to overcome.

Ignore this fact and you’re asking for trouble. Why?

Because, even though they’re not there (because it’s impossible to be everywhere), they are still accountable and you can’t let them off the hook. Not being there is no excuse and no self-respecting DM/RM will try to use absence as an excuse for lack of performance.

Well…maybe once.

Needless to say, it would not and should not go over well!

The District Manager is accountable for the district. The Regional Manager is accountable for the region. That’s how it works.

The individuals holding these important, highly influential positions must get the ‘numbers’…they must achieve targets and operate the stores effectively overall.

That’s it! End of story!

So, what’s the secret to success in these positions?

We can start by telling you that it’s all about relationships and leadership skills.

The single, most critical thing smart and successful District and Regional Manager’s do to get results is….build strong relationships with their teams through excellence in their leadership skills and ability.

Of course, it’s easier said than done. There’s quite a bit involved.
But it’s definitely worth the effort…look at the difference it can make:

These are the dramatic differences between the weakest and the strongest retail leaders. (Research: Zenger-Folkman)
• 4-6 times higher profits
• 6 times higher sales revenues
• 10-20 times higher levels of employee engagement
• 3-4 times reduction in employees thinking about quitting
• 50% fewer employees that do leave
• Double the satisfaction with pay and job security
• 4-5 times more employees “willing to go the extra mile”
• 1.5 times higher customer satisfaction ratings

Also, ” According to operating data from various retail organizations, a District/Regional Manager can influence performance by up to +/- 20%”~ (DMSRetail Research).

That’s a lot of influence. Don’t leave money on the table.

Go for the + 20%!!

Click for help… right here.

All the Success!

What’s Your Organization’s HC Type? (Human Capability)

Most people would agree there are reasons why some businesses are…
• hugely successful
• others are just keeping their heads above water and
• others are abject failures

But, why?

Let’s exclude reasons like the product or the service the business offers. Let’s also exclude economic considerations.

So, what else is there, really?

Well, there are visionary leaders like the late Steve Jobs of Apple; there’s organizational culture such as the culture established at Zappos a number of years ago, under the superb guidance and leadership of Tony Hsieh. And, there are great hiring and training practices, excellent middle and upper management capabilities, an engaged workforce, and more.

To be clear, Mr. Jobs offered amazing products, but it cannot be said that just anyone could have done what he did with those products.

Also, Mr. Hsieh ran a business whose time had come but it was him, nevertheless, who made that company into an internet retailer to be reckoned with.

There are plenty more examples that you are probably aware of.

So, let’s rule out product/service and economic conditions as the reasons for their success, as mentioned above.

The thing is, when you rule out those things, all of the other factors responsible for the success or failure of business, fall into the category of HC, or Human Capability.

Mr. Jobs and Mr. Hsieh had tons of it.

This is important to understand because if you truly recognize that Human Capability will be the sole reason or excuse for your business’s success or failure, then you have a place to start; a place to focus.

That recognition and focus is a very powerful gift to a business owner.

In retail organizations, Human Capability is paramount. One only has to look at what Mr. Ron Johnson did to JCPenney , or what Mr. Robert Nardelli did to Home Depot just a few years ago, to see how much difference one individual can make, particularly if they are in a powerful position.

Mr. Jobs and Mr. Hsieh…good/great. Mr. Johnson and Mr. Nardelli…terrible.

The former men did wonderful things for their respective companies. The latter pair were stopped while attempting to drive the businesses into the ground.

But, make no mistake, even those who are not in the highest and most powerful positions can create havoc for your organization if they are devoid of Human Capability or, even if their score is low.

Let’s talk about what you have to do to ensure your organization’s Human Capability is up to snuff, you can guarantee your own success in your retail business. Truly…you can guarantee it.

Click here to see everything the Retail Business Academy has to offer. Choose the annual subscription before the tax year ends on December 31st.

Although it is slowly changing, it is true that one does not necessarily study and make a plan for a career in retail. Many retail professionals have climbed the corporate ladder and found themselves at the helm. For whatever reasons, they were promoted up that ladder – some with vast amounts of Human Capability and some with very little, or none.

Now would be a good time to bring the Service-Profit Chain into this; to pull it all together.

The Service- Profit Chain was developed by 3 Harvard Professors – James L. Heskett, a Baker Foundation Professor, Emeritus, of Harvard Business School, in Boston, and a coauthor, with W. Earl Sasser, Jr., and Joe Wheeler, of The Ownership Quotient: Putting the Service-Profit Chain to Work for Unbeatable Competitive Advantage.

The Service-Profit Chain was developed in 1994 and is still very relevant today.

In a nutshell, the Service-Profit chain clearly points out that it is imperative to gain loyal customers because it is your loyal customers who bring you the lion’s share of your profit.

It further points out that, in order to gain loyal customers, employees must do many things to that end. And, even further, if employees are to do what they must to obtain and maintain the loyal customer base, they themselves must be serviced well by company management personnel…collectively known as ‘the company’.

Again, everything we’re talking about depends on the Human Capability level in your retail organization.

How is it in your organization? You will need to get off the treadmill, or out of the rat race, and do some serious thinking about this.

Understanding the level of Human Capability in your organization is where you must start if you wish to improve your success rate; if you want to increase all of your Key Performance Indicators; if you want to build a loyal customer base and brighten your profit picture as suggested in the Service-Profit Chain.

Chances are very good that you will realize there are some deficiencies.

Perhaps I should state it differently; in a more blatantly obvious way. The fact is, whether you realize it or not, there are, most definitely, deficiencies – probably quite a few.

Those deficiencies are costing you more than you know. We see it every day in retail outlets all over the world.

Many leaders are in denial. Perhaps they just don’t have any frame of reference or any experience. Perhaps they either have no one to guide them or they ignore whatever guidance is being given.

For example, at one of our Retail District Management Workshops, held in the US, we heard from one participant that every single one of his sales associates and managers were top performers – no exceptions.

We heard that they were pretty much perfect, in all respects, and that their performance just couldn’t get any better. According to this DM, there was no room for improvement anywhere in his multi-unit operation.

This is, of course, ridiculous and this is a leader who will not succeed over time. Do we blame him for that? Well, a case could be made, either way. What training did this leader have? What is the HC of his superior? Etc.

In any event, though, the company will suffer from this leader’s ignorance.
The point is, the absence of high levels of Human Capability will drain your organization, or at the very least, prevent it from reaching its potential. Of that you can be certain.

Figuring out who is HC Positive (HC+) and who is HC Negative (HC-)

If you are a retail business owner or an executive you are in a powerful position within your retail company. How often do you, as the powerful leader, sit down and take stock of the Human Capability that exists in your company?

You probably have some performance review processes in place and it’s likely that you have some idea of who your Top Guns (HC+) are and who your ‘needs improvement’ or ‘not meeting expectations’ (HC-) people are.

That’s a good place to start. You can’t fix something if you don’t know it’s broken, right?

But drilling down and coming up with a plan to make your Top Guns even better and to take huge steps to help your HC- people improve or release them…now that takes a full understanding of what you need to accomplish in the long term.

So, let’s begin with your Top Guns.

These are the people who you believe to be very capable. These are the people you believe will only help you succeed and will not, in any way, deter you from reaching your goals for the business.

These people need to be nurtured and celebrated. They need to be challenged and well compensated.

These are the people that will help you move the business forward in every way.

Continue to train and engage these individuals as they are your future and they will contribute to the ultimate success of the organization.

Now… for the HC- people you employ: improve or remove.

The critical factor here is determining whether or not these individuals are actually capable of improving to the point that they are HC+. If they are, you need to do the work to make it happen. If they are not, you can’t just sit back and allow them to linger within your organization for even a moment, regardless of how uncomfortable the process may be.

Incapable people must not remain in your organization. Period.

One rotten apple will, indeed, spoil the barrel.

Once you’ve made the tough decisions on who can stay and who must go, you have to put a program in place for ensuring that , going forward, you only hire HC+ people.

You train them so they have the skills to do only good for the organization; to the point where they will always – and quite naturally – exercise their good judgment while carrying out their duties; to a point where they always have the very best interests of the customers, and therefore, the company, in mind … at all times.

This does not occur by employing wishful thinking, or studying ‘The Secret’, or through osmosis.

This can only occur by building upon, and using, the natural talents of these individuals.

And how do you do that? You provide very targeted training, of course.

Let’s start with the customer facing, Sales or Service Associate, Cashier or Floor Associate.

You need products specifically designed to give the newly hired Sales Associate some understanding of what their position entails, some very useful selling skills, and a general outline of what the employer has the right to expect from them…which is quite a bit.

Anyone who goes through the specifically designed material in the Retail Business Academy and is successful in answering the questions and, as directed, speaks to their superior about how things work in the store they’re in then will improve their Human Capability value to your retail organization.

This, in turn, increases their overall value to your organization and you can expect them to be a contributing member who aligns him/herself with the goal of obtaining and maintaining a solid loyal customer base.

What about the next level in the organization? What do we do about their Human Capability?

The Retail Business Academy, mentioned above, takes a measured look at the position of the District/Region Manager, as well, and how it relates to all of the positions above and below it.

One of the biggest challenges for this position is the fact that managing remotely is an art which must be mastered if one is to have any success whatsoever. DM’s expect performance from a group of Managers with whom they have relatively little face to face contact.

Even in the best situation, the ‘home store manager’, if you will – sees the District/Region Manager once a week, perhaps twice.

In any case, there is no daily face to face contact with subordinates in any normal District/Region Manager role. That just goes against what the position is all about.

Getting back to Human Capability, the District/Region Manager must possess top marks.

Sadly, even throughout North America, where retailers have done it all and been very successful in many cases, this position has not yet made its mark; is not yet seen as the pivotal position that it is.

Often, the people in these positions are relied upon to be policemen, security guards, auditors and the like…or they are simply turned into puppets sent out to advise their stores of exactly what Head Office requires. Directives are sent out and compliance is expected.

Rarely, though, is the District/Region Manager actually given the authority, and autonomy, that should come with the title.

This is the Head Office executive teams way of making sure everything happens exactly the way they envision, while relinquishing no authority or control. They really just want someone to get out there with the checklist and tick everything off.

This is not necessarily intentional. It’s not negligent or mean spirited or, in the eyes of some, not even seen as incorrect…it happens because Human Capability is lacking somewhere… possibly in many places… at the executive level in these organizations.

Forward thinking, progressive retail organizations will realize that having high Human Capability in these positions is most advantageous.

Not only will directives be carried out but there will be a thinking, reasoning, motivated individual at the receiving end of those directives who will question and challenge before disseminating the information at store level, so as not to create chaos and not to hinder productivity.

This is a check and balance which can work wonders and save grave errors from occurring. Again, making the case for hiring well and then training to maximize HC.

Middle Managers and Human Capability

When it comes to middle managers within the retail organization, this is where it gets particularly tricky because these individuals may, or may not, have ever worked on a retail sales floor.

They may not ever have had face to face experience with customers.

They are, however, in a position to do a lot of damage if left to their own devices.

Of course, many Head Office middle managers do a great job. But, not all of them do a great job and some do an absolutely and terrifyingly miserable job. There you have a serious problem with Human Capability.

How do you run stores effectively and efficiently when the management personnel above them…and I mean every level above them, not just their direct superiors, are not highly competent?

The answer is, of course, you don’t…and can’t.

Every employee, at every level, needs to be at the top of their game. Human Capability must be nurtured and increased at every level.

Membership in the Retail Business Academy, that we mentioned earlier in relation to Human Capability gives you and your teams a wealth of programs, pre-recorded online training sessions, Success Guides on various topics, general management advice, leadership, guidance and inspiration, forms and checklists, DVD’s, compensation plans, interview guides, goal planners, actionable tips and ‘how-to’s’ for every level of the organization and so much more.

In addition to Retail Business Owners, all of these positions will benefit from membership:
1) Sales and Service Associates, Floor Associates and Cashiers
2) Store Managers
3) District/Region/Area Managers
4) VP of Operations, Head of Retail, Directors and various other Head Office functions involved in Operations, Marketing, Buying, Allocation, Inventory Control, etc.
5) Vendors supplying the retail industry

With 24/7 unlimited access to a vast array of learning materials and skill building programs, becoming a Platinum Private Member in the Retail Business Academy is the perfect way to begin to increase the Human Capability in your retail organization.

Log in anywhere, anytime, on any device…

Go ahead and check out the complete offerings of the Retail Business Academy here .

As a Platinum Private Member of the Retail Business Academy you’ll get access to retail experts…consultants and instructors who can assist with any issue you have, in addition to an avalanche of retail information, ideas and strategies.

We are always here for our Platinum Private Members.

We will be pleased to help you assess the HC in your retail organization. Just contact us to start working together on this huge factor in your success.

It’s our vision to help every retailer, around the world, employ and train those with high Human Capability scores or the potential to get there.

Please let us know if you have any questions. Send an email to, and we’ll get right back to you.

All the Success!

PS: Remember, it’s almost year end and you can join in time to get the tax write off. Click here to see everything the Retail Business Academy has to offer. Choose the annual subscription, with two months free, before the tax year ends on December 31st.

Did All the Good Ones Get Away?

Well, what do you think? Did all the good ones get away?

Did the amazing retail management and staff suddenly jump ship and get different positions…or change careers?

Or, does it just feel that way because so many encounters in retail stores are unsatisfactory, to say the least?

We surveyed a group of Retail Directors, Senior District Managers, Operations Managers and Store Sales Associates to give us their thoughts.

The results of this survey were not unexpected, really.

For starters, to a person they say that service is just not the same as it was just a couple of short years ago. Worse, even common courtesy and appreciation were noticeably absent.

Of course, every person said that there were exceptions but having courteous, appreciative and knowledgeable staff who want to interact with the customer as an exception rather than a rule doesn’t speak very well for the industry, does it?

So, let’s look at some of the really basic areas, to start with, where the ‘training’ or ‘expected behaviors’ broke down:

1) No greeting…What the heck?
2) Paying no attention to the customer as s/he walked through the store…What customer? Where?
3) Employees eating and drinking on the sales floor or the cash desk…Eww. Classy! And, messy!
4) Employees engaged in calls or texts on their devices while on the sales floor…Umm, no – not OK!

As a natural consequence of all of this…no active selling was taking place in the stores that our group had been shopping in over the past few months. They shop a lot! They see a lot!

As a Retail Business Owner or a CEO or VP Operations you must know what all of this means for your bottom line. And, you know it can’t be good.

When this is going on in your stores, you can’t get the full benefit of your great category management, buying, allocation, logistics or anything else…because everything will get bunged up at store level.

The bad news is you are leaving money on the table every hour of every day in every store.

The good news is the situation, immediately at hand, will not be difficult to fix…and fast.

There are very likely some issues at District and Regional levels also, but those will require separate action and we’ll get back to that.

But, just for now of course, you may need some advice and some special materials to address the issues coming up directly at store level. That is where DMSRetail can help you with a Retail Selling Skills & Customer Service Fundamentals Self Study Program.

You can start training new people and getting ‘not so new’ people back on track.

Before we even think of suggesting you should purchase the program, there is one important thing we need to discuss. We understand you probably have a couple of questions, such as…

“How can a generic program, developed by someone outside of our company, work for my people?”

Here’s the answer for that…

Our retail experts have worked at every level – from the sales floor to the executive floor – of many prominent retailers. They’ve worked in electronics, confections, ladies apparel, footwear, children’s clothing, menswear, telecom, retail recruiting, retail IT companies and retail AI, boutique fashion and department stores, big box, malls, supercentres and grocery, and more.

The Retail Selling Skills & Customer Service Fundamentals Self Study Program consists of 3 DVD’s and a PowerPoint Presentation plus an easy-to-follow Study Guide and Workbook.

While working through the program, the trainee is asked to answer questions about the section just learned. In the Study Guide and Workbook there is a specially designated section where trainees are asked to make notes of anything they would like to ask their manager about.

Additionally, and very importantly, we prompt the trainee on which areas we believe they will need to check with their manager about. As you know, every business operates differently and many things are unique to a particular situation.

So, although our programs are amazingly effective in providing a wealth of knowledge to new or less experienced Floor Associates, Sales Associates, Cashiers and any other position who will interact with customers on your selling floor, we know you will want to have input and that is made very clear to the trainee.

All of this makes the program uniquely yours without the time and effort it takes to develop these programs.

And, this is not just for your new and inexperienced people. This program also serves as a great refresher for more experienced and seasoned individuals who may need to be reminded of some things they may have forgotten.

Another question you might have is “Can I afford it and will it be worth the investment?” And, “When could I get started?”

Easy…it’s very affordable and definitely worth the investment. In fact, you will see a 100% return on your investment in the first few days after only one employee has gone through it. You may not believe it, but it’s true. We guarantee it.

As for when you can get started…the time is now because you need it to be now.

Click here to read more about it and make your purchase today. Then hand it over to one of your employees and tell them to take a couple of hours and go through the program and then come to you, or your designate, to ask a few questions.

Simple… easy breezy! Your employees will be very happy with this program.

So, buy now and use now, to great advantage.

All the Success!

Got Leadership Mojo?

Retail Leadership

Live Online Session – Thursday, November 15, 2018.
10 a.m. – 12 p.m. EST (3-5p.m. London, UK)

Your registration includes a recording of the session and the presentation sent to your email.

Sign up today…click here.

With the holiday season upon us, there is no better time to take just two hours out of your busy schedule to help you become a better leader.

This is the time when leadership is most valuable; when you can be the most influential in bringing in the sales and profit numbers for 2018.

Here’s what you’ll take away from this session…

• Management vs. Leadership
• What a Good Leader is…How to Avoid the ’10’ Big Mistakes
• 11 Greatest, Tested and Proven Leadership Principles Ever
• Top 5 Factors that make you a Master of Influence
• Leadership – Culture
• Leadership – Strategy
• Keys to Success
• Motivation Secrets from Top Leaders
• Q&A

Sign up here and now!

Trade just two hours for unlimited gains in your retail operation.

All the Success!
PS: All registered participants receive the recording and the PowerPoint presentation following the session whether you attend or not.
PPS: If you don’t already know about this, check out our Ultimate Retail Success Collection.
Free gift for you>> Word to the RetailWise for inquisitive retailers. Download your free copy today.

Uniformity and Brand Recognition

Fact: Top notch follow up mechanisms promote uniformity and strong brand recognition.

It takes a lot of effort and energy to follow up on all of the tasks and directives that we, as leaders, assign to our subordinates on a daily basis.

If we fail to follow up, then much of what we expected to be taken care of will not be. We may insist this should not be the case…but it is.

There are reasons for this. We can’t just call it human nature and forget about it, or accept it.

Perhaps our subordinates…

Don’t agree with what is being asked of them or don’t think it’s very important and will have no impact one way or the other.

Maybe they don’t think their boss really cares whether it gets done or not, or sees that there are no consequences for not getting it done.

(Free gift for you – collection of Word to the RetailWise essays … below.)

They may even feel justified because they think they are just too busy completing other, seemingly more important, tasks and they don’t take directions from the boss seriously.

All of the above are unacceptable, of course.

If you are a leader, you may want to give this topic a few moments thought. Here are some questions to guide you.

1) Are most of my instructions actually – demonstrably – followed? If not, why?

2) Am I often frustrated and angry – even embarrassed – when I discover that something important has not been done?

3) Are my instructions being ignored due to lack of respect for me?

4) How much more effective and successful would I be if my subordinates were to do what I ask with little or no follow up?

In our experience, we find that leaders who fail to follow up will not excel in their position.

They will spend a lot of time being frustrated, embarrassed and angry until they have a majority of employees who do not require follow up…employees who take care of business!

CLICK HERE for Retail Performance Pacs: Store, District or Region…and Company Levels

We’ve told you, before, about a study by Bain & Co., which pointed out that while 80% of CEO’s involved in the study declared that their companies provided a superb level of service, only 8% of their customers felt the same.

This is very likely because the CEO’s gave, or approved, directives that were never properly carried out and, of course, there was insufficient follow up to ensure the directives had been properly executed.

In retail organizations, where you have several levels of individuals issuing directives and assigning projects and tasks which have to filter down through the ranks and into the field to get to the customer facing personnel, you have to have top notch follow up mechanisms in place if you expect uniformity and brand recognition to get stronger, rather than be degraded.

All the Success!

PS: There are tons of stories, tips and practical advice in Word to the RetailWise. Download your free copy today. And, share it with friends and colleagues.

PPS: Here is that link again – Retail Performance Pacs

This Week’s Online Training for Retail Managers

DMSRetail is holding 5 modules on various topics for Retail Managers. – Retail Online Training

Here are the topics of Online Training for Retail Managers:

1. Retail Category Management (Tuesday September 25, 1:00 PM EST) for details go to:

2. Retail Math (Wednesday September 26, 1:00 PM EST) for details go to:

3. Online Marketing for Retailers (Thursday September 27, 1:00 PM EST) for details go to:

4. Open-to-Buy Planning (Friday September 28, 10:00 AM EST) for details go to:

5. 33% Increase Formula (Friday September 28, 1:00 PM EST) for details go to:

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!

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

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