How To Create A Drama Free Environment

Several weeks ago, I was having this same conversation with an architect friend who decided the worst part in running his own business: he spent more time managing drama than he did in the creative process. If this is happening in your office, read this great advice from Doug Fleener. "Two things are hard on the heart - running upstairs and … [Read more...]

Tips For A More Productive Staff Meeting 

I'm a big proponent of regular staff meetings. Whether they're weekly or monthly, regularly getting the entire team together is extremely productive. If, that is, the time is used wisely. Here are two ways leaders can conduct MORE productive store meetings. Practice/roleplay. Whether you're rolling out new products, teaching the staff how to … [Read more...]

Leadership Tips: Developing The Sweet Spot

A sweet spot is where a combination of factors results in the maximum response for a given amount of effort. In sports, the sweet spot is the place on a bat, club, or racket at which it makes most effective contact with the ball. In people, a sweet spot is where a person's passion and personal strengths come together to create optimum … [Read more...]

Personal Leadership Beliefs

I was recently doing some prep work for a speech I’m giving to the owners of independent stores. One thing that stood out was the difference in number of Facebook followers between different stores in the same market. One store would have 82 followers, and another store would have 2,082 followers. (This article is not about social media.) The … [Read more...]

4 Ways Focussing On ADS Can Grow The Business

What is ADS you ask? ADS is the Average Daily Sale (ADS) and retail Expert Doug Fleener considers this to be his favorite metric for any retail store. An interesting article by him describes what ADS is and why it is effective. ADS is determined by dividing total sales by the number of transactions. For example, a store that had a $20,000 week … [Read more...]

Management Tips, Positive Expectations And Results

"The simple act of paying positive attention to people has a great deal to do with productivity."  - Thomas J. Peters The other day I was talking with a manager about her store’s sales. She’s struggling to get her staff to execute at the level she wants and needs them to achieve. Part of what she needs to do is replace the team’s bad habits with … [Read more...]

My Six Favorite Interview Questions

Several months ago, I was speaking with an Optometrist friend of mine and his issues with hiring and getting good people. Upon further questioning, I come to find out, he is trying to sell them on the job, rather than them selling him on themselves. We discussed interview questions and he has so far successfully hired a few people that seem to be … [Read more...]

Four Tips To Turn Around A “Bad” Day

The bad day. It inevitably happens every now and again in every store. You know, the kind of day that seems destined to fall far short of goal. I hope you don't have too many of these days, but when you do, here's how you, as a leader, can turn it around. 1. Change the narrative. A day only becomes a bad day when the staff labels it as such. The … [Read more...]

Just One Thing

One of my favorite all time movies is City Slickers, with Jack Palance and Billy Crystal. The one quote, I will never forget came from Curly 'One thing. Just one thing. You stick to that and the rest don't mean s...' Doug Fleener in his Weekly Experience Newsletter wrote a great post on That One Thing or Keeping It Simple. "Always remember, your … [Read more...]

What Is A Staff Inventory?

Who would have thought about taking a staff inventory. Taking a staff inventory helps to develop and train your staff to each specific need. Changes in consumer trends, technology, new products the shopping experience call for a long term training strategy and here are some helpful hints to develop staff. Just as a healthy business needs to … [Read more...]

New Year + New Mindset = New Results

New Year, New Mindset = New Results. As we go into 2015, many of us make resolutions that last maybe all of one day. One Resolution, that might just make your year easier (Work smarter, not harder) is setting a 'New Mindset' Resolution, that we learned from Doug Fleener. 'For many people, the biggest impediment to success is their own self. … [Read more...]

Halloween Tricks, Treats And Customer Engagement 

Halloween is big business. According to the National Retail Federation, 158 million people will be celebrated Halloween in 2013. Total spending on the holiday is expected to reach $6.9 billion. Unfortunately, most specialty stores won't get much of those billions. The bulk of that money is spent on costumes, candy, food, and props. Even so, … [Read more...]

Avoiding Failure Or Creating Success?

Years ago, Jaguar was a car known for a hefty price tag and poor quality. When Ford Motor Company acquired the brand they discovered that there were a number of employees whose only job was to try to catch all of the defects at the end of the manufacturing line. Jaguar was clearly focused on trying to reduce failures instead of putting in place … [Read more...]

Adding Additional Value To Your Products

Price is the amount of money your customer pays for a product.  Value is what your customer perceives the benefits of that product to be, and the emotional connection he/she has to the product, the employee, and the company, in relation to the price. How retail associates handle and present products to her/his customer adds - or reduces - the … [Read more...]

How To Create A Drama-Free Store – Part 2

"Conflict cannot survive without participation." - Wayne Dyer (adapted)  Last week's Weekly Retail Experience on creating a drama-free store clearly hit a nerve with many readers. The guidelines for a drama-free store sign was downloaded a record number of times. Seen Here On The Optical Vision Site As I said last week, staff drama can have a … [Read more...]