Posts Tagged 'retail management workshop'

Leaders Don’t Create Followers

How is your succession plan working for you?

Are you creating competent leaders?

Every organization needs a solid succession plan but not many need it as much as retailers do.

While every retail management position is important, the position that is often ignored is the Assistant Store Manager.

To enable the organization to draw on the talent of their Store Managers to fill higher level positions such as District and Region Managers, it is imperative that you have a pool of Assistant Store Managers ready to step up and step in, to the Store Management positions vacated by the promoted individual.

So…

What are you doing to develop your Assistant Store Managers?

Often, expectations of Assistant Store Managers are low; just somebody there to assist the Store Manager.

While this is a real luxury and may be of great benefit to the Store Manager in terms of giving him/her more time to spend on paperwork in the backroom, which in itself is undesirable, it certainly is not the best use of your human resources.

Your Assistant Store Managers represent the next layer of leaders for your organization.

The Assistant Store Manager is meant to be of assistance to the Store Manager, to be sure. But the larger goal is for the Assistant Store Manager to be developed as a leader who can operate on his own and contribute to the organization, not just to the Store Manager he is currently working for.

The first stage of development requires that Assistant Store Managers be developed to the point that they are fully competent to profitably operate one of your stores.

Yes, they are supposed to be ready, willing and able to replace your Store Managers.

You may have some, shall we say, ‘comfortable’ Store Managers who won’t like the idea of developing and then losing good Assistants but that is irrelevant.

The goals of the organization rule.

In any case, a Store Manager who doesn’t want a strong and competent Assistant Store Manager is doing himself and the company a disservice and it will show in the calibre of the Assistants he is turning out.

Anyway, if Assistants are not competent enough to replace a Store Manager after a reasonable length of time, then something is going wrong.

Actually, a few things could be going wrong, such as:

1) Someone made a bad hire or internal promotion and did not correct the situation

2) Your training program is not working as intended

3) Your Store Manager is not participating, fully, in the development of the Assistant Store Manager

“Winning companies win because they have good
leaders who nurture the development of other
leaders at all levels of the organization.”
~ Noel Tichy

If you are not able to visualize your people development strategy working well in your organization, get the help you need.

Join The Retail Management Workshop to learn how to make it happen…and how to operate in perfect balance.

Get a winning succession plan working for you – guaranteed.

Increase sales – guaranteed.

Reduce expenses and increase profits – guaranteed.

Register yourself and/or your teams for The Retail Management Workshop being held in two great locations:

The Retail Management Workshop
(Click the link ^ for details and/or registration.)

September 18-19-20
Crowne Plaza Kensington
London, UK

October 1-2-3
Sheraton Dubai Creek
Dubai, UAE

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Squeeze Expenses or Increase Sales

When the economy doesn’t seem to be humming along the way it used to, or if other factors are keeping you from seeing growth in your retail business, often the knee jerk reaction by retailers is to cut expenses.

Cut head count.

Buy fewer supplies.

Stop all training.

Cut, cut, cut!!

But, cutting usually doesn’t turn out all that well.

We’re asking a really important question today:

Can you increase profits by just cutting expenses while paying no attention to increasing sales?

The answer is ‘possibly, but not by much and, even then, only temporarily’.

If you squeeze expenses instead of increasing sales, you will eventually have nothing left to squeeze.

What you would be doing is shrinking the business and you know where that eventually ends up.

But, if you work to find ways to increase sales as well as spending time and effort reviewing the best ways to reduce expenses and control costs during tough times, without hurting the revenue producing areas of the business, things can start looking up for you.

Anyone can cut, cut, cut.

Finance Departments are full of people who can help with that.

If the person doing the cutting is not living in the midst of the chaos created by the cuts…there may be no end to the cuts until the business is no longer viable.

Short term you would see improvement of the bottom line. But, if you look month after month, you will see that everything is shrinking…sales, transactions, average sale, units per transaction, conversion, and so on.

Why?

Because cost cutting measures usually interfere with the job of selling.

If you put fewer people on the floor, give them less training, pay them less money, take away benefits, use fewer labor hours for receiving shipments and getting product onto the floor, cut maintenance time, stop buying good and clear signage, and the list goes on…you will undoubtedly reduce revenues.

Once revenues are reduced, costs have effectively increased, making profit go down instead of up.

Balance is key in everything.

No organization should spend wildly or be too frugal.

That is why you need good people who know what they are doing.

Join The Retail Management Workshop to learn how to operate in perfect balance.

Increase sales – guaranteed.

Reduce expenses and increase profits – guaranteed.

Register yourself and/or your teams for The Retail Management Workshop being held in two great locations:

The Retail Management Workshop
(Click the link ^ for details and/or registration.)

September 18-19-20
Crowne Plaza Kensington
London, UK

October 1-2-3
Sheraton Dubai Creek
Dubai, UAE

The Retail Management Workshop-London dates have changed

Because of air space closings, we had to change the dates of the London Retail Management Workshop.

New dates are: May 25-26-27, 2010 same location: Sheraton Park Tower.

The Retail Training Equation

Economic times are cyclical. At present, the cycle is in a down phase and needs to recover as quickly as possible. During such times, it is people who will make the difference in your business. It is most often the people who have been trained appropriately that rise to meet and overcome these challenges. Industry specific training not only enables businesses to achieve fiscal prosperity; training of this nature will enable a person to think. Thinking critically and strategically and being adaptable to various business situations is where successes will be found in times such as these.

When a company employs staff members to interact with and sell to customers, would it not behoove that company to acquire, support and train those staff to be the very best in the industry? One of the most charismatic and captivating senior consultants with DMSRetail has always followed this philosophy when hiring, training and developing sales staff: hire the best, train them to be better, pay them more, expect more and get more. This works, regardless of the particular industry, geographic location or market sector.

Thinking about the importance of training and education in any industry, consider the following equation. If one were to apply a proportional weight to each component, what would your organization allocate to “Top-to-Bottom Training”?

Vision + Determination/Motivation to Succeed + Top-to-Bottom Training = Successful/Profitable Company

Of course, this is a dramatically simplified equation, which does not assume many of the intricate business challenges that are ever present, but it does capture the essence of achievement. Broken down slightly further and simplified to another level, the equation might be read as:

The Goal + Drive to Achieve that Goal + Capable Personnel to Implement the Action Plan = $$$$$

Remove any one element of the equation and the entire formula becomes void. How can a capable team of individuals with vast amounts of motivation achieve anything if they have no idea what it is they are to achieve (The Goal)? Similarly, what use is a spectacular goal and plan, if there is a deficit of trained, capable personnel to make it happen?

The truth about training is simple: trained personnel are absolutely critical to the survival and longevity of any retail operation.

Investing in training for the people that ‘make it happen’, so to speak, is absolutely invaluable. The “Vision” can be conjured by the executives. The “Determination/Motivation” can be aroused and fuelled by company leaders as well. The “Capable Personnel” need to be trained by experts with a passion for retail and a wealth of relevant experience.

One of the greatest success coaches of all time, Anthony Robbins, coined the acronym CANI; Consistent and Never-ending Improvement. This should apply to every area of your retail operation. The executives need to find ways to develop further their capacity for strategic, long term thinking to assure the continued growth and prosperity of the corporation. Mid-level management should consistently be pushing beyond their comfort zones with regard to customer service and sales tactics, motivational capabilities, operating efficiencies, etc…. The full and part time store personnel; these employees need to direct massive amounts of energy to improving their capabilities as the company’s front line players. Nothing will happen until something gets sold, and the in-store personnel are the people who sell; teach them well. Every way that improvement can be found and ratified, should be capitalized upon.

Take a minute to reflect on your own business practices, those of your company and those of your competition. Make a mental list of all the training practices that are present in your store, in your organization and in your competitors’ organizations. What does that list look like? Do you feel confident that you are doing everything within your power to separate you and your colleagues from the competition? How can improvements be made? What sort of activities and information might help? Who might be able to illuminate the resources necessary for this re-configuring of our company’s training initiatives?

DMSRetail specializes in researching the most detailed, leading edge market information available and maintaining consistency within their training seminars. These training sessions, as well as their library of training tools, have enabled countless companies throughout the world to achieve great success within their own unique markets. The DMSRetail Brand Consultants will customize any one of their training seminar series’ to suit the needs of your company and ensure that the competition is left questioning; “why have sales increased for them, and not for us?”

The retail training equation is only one aspect of the business which we all have invested ourselves in, but it is certainly an important aspect. Without proper training and effective tools to apply the new knowledge, you are no further ahead. Seek to improve, achieve improvement and success is certain to follow.

You can reach Erik Miethner at emiethner@dmsretail.com

DMSRetail announces their 2009 schedule for The Retail Management Workshop.

The economy has taken a downturn and the retail industry is being battered heavily. With news of store closures and reduction of headcount at Head Offices it is difficult to remain optimistic about the future.

But Matt Parmaks, EVP of DMSRetail says “remaining optimistic is the very least retailers have to do.” He goes on to say “Now is the time for retailers to examine their operation, very critically, and take steps to make certain that whatever they are offering to the customer is the very best it can be; they’ve got to insist on maximum performance and effectiveness from every one of their Managers and Associates.”

I’m sure most of us will agree that it is seldom we find employees in a retail store who show genuine care and concern for customers. And we don’t often find the kind of service we want and expect. Matt Parmaks says “This can easily be corrected with the proper training but, unfortunately, too many retailers don’t invest in their employees’ development as much as they should.”

The time has come to change all of the old ways. What we need is a whole new approach to our retail businesses. Only the strong will survive and prosper over the next few years and it’s up to the executive teams to lead a retail revolution inside their organization.

Matt Parmaks said “I strongly encourage retail executives to find out more about developing their people and to put the past practices behind them.” When asked to
explain what he meant by that, Mr. Parmaks said “Retail people need to be trained and developed and, up until now, there simply hasn’t been enough of that going on.”

Retailers are starting to buy in to the fact that they must do more about investing in their people. DMSRetail is seeing an increase in interest in their 3 day retail management training program – ‘The Retail Management Workshop’.

According to Mr. Parmaks, retailers who are forward thinking and growth oriented, and who utilize the newest techniques and methods are those who also realize the value of training in their industry. He says “Some retailers are able to adapt in difficult times and are even growing their retail businesses, and their management talent, and doing a very fine job of it.”

Below are the dates and locations for 2009 presentations of The Retail Management Workshop in North America, Europe, Middle East and Australia:

April 27-28-29, 2009 – Sheraton Jeddah, Jeddah, KSA
May 11-12-13, 2009 – Le Meridien, Barcelona, Spain
May 27-28-29, 2009 – Sheraton Chicago Northwest, Chicago, IL
June 9-10-11, 2009 – Istanbul Sheraton, Istanbul, Turkey
June 23-24-25, 2009 – Sheraton Prague, Prague, Czech Republic
July 7-8-9, 2009 – Sheraton Planet Hollywood, Las Vegas, NV
July 14-15-16, 2009 – Sheraton Dubai Creek, Dubai, UAE
August 5-6-7, 2009 – Crown Promenade Hotel, Melbourne, Australia
August 25-26-27, 2009 – Sheraton Waikiki, Honolulu, HI
September 1-2-3, 2009 – Sheraton Centre, Toronto, ON
September 15-16-17, 2009 – Sheraton Nevskij Palace, St. Petersburg, Russia
September 22-23-24, 2009 – Radisson SAS, Kiev, Ukraine
October 13-14-15, 2009 – Sheraton Centro Historico, Mexico City, Mexico
November 10-11-12, 2009 – Sheraton ITC Maratha, Mumbai, India

You can find more information on the website: http://www.dmsretail.com/retailtraining.htm


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