How To Find Happiness At Work

10 Ways To Find Happiness AT Work It is very easy to feel “stuck” in retail. To feel stagnant and caught in a “groundhog day” routine. But, there are definitely ways to shake off that uninspired feeling. Here are some ideas to find happiness when you feel like need a infusion of HAPPINESS: 1. Do Something You LOVE Every Single Day -If you love getting lost in visuals, build in 30 minutes to an hour to reset an area of the store or tweak your windows (a) Perfect storytelling through your visuals/create moments for your customer to “surprise & delight” (b) Create a great concept fixture and measure the results of product movement (c) Work on improving the swing area (fixture placement) forRead More

Recruitment, Employer Branding, and Creating A Best Place To Work

Retail Recruitment, Employer Branding, and Creating A “Best Place To Work” Retail Recruitment & Employer Branding I don’t know anyone in retail who doesn’t speak to hoping to be able to attract and recruit “top retail talent”. Everyone wants top talent. Here’s the thing, top talent wants to work for great brands and great leadership. Top talent wants to be invested in, valued for their contributions, and provided the opportunity to grow their employment into a career with a “Best Place To Work”. Top talent wants a company to meet them half way, they will give you greatness but they expect the company to invest in them and to give them development, education, and a future. There are so many buzzwords and thingsRead More

Let’s Make The Retail Customer Experience Great In 2016!

Let’s Make #Retail Customer Experience Great In 2016! I am committed to making 2016 a great year both personally and professionally for myself. I am also committed to protecting my industry by reinventing my strategy, leadership, and overall approach to the business to resonate with the changing landscape that we experience, weekly, in retail. There are several reports on how challenging Thanksgiving Day was for brick-and-mortar retail so far Yahoo Finance, Thanksgiving Shopping Crowds ‘Good Not Great’; Online Sales Strong, from Business Of Fashion, Online Sales Surge Ahead of Brick-and-Mortar Retailers’ Big Day, and from Wall Street Journal, Black Friday Shopping – With Thinner Crowds. We also learned about the Cyber Monday Results; From Business Of Fashion, Cyber Monday Sales Jump, High TrafficRead More

Retail Career Obstacle: Gossiping

Retail Career (Killer) Obstacle: Gossiping With the New Year quickly approaching I thought I would cover some topics that are opportunities in retail as professional resolutions for 2016. The first topics I have written about are Retail Career Obstacle: Defensiveness; Retail Career Obstacle: Unwilling To Self-Develop; Retail Career Obstacle: Excessively Ambitious and Arrogant; Retail Career Obstacle: Inabiity To Think Strategically; and Retail Career Obstacle: Cannot Build An Effective Team. Now I want to cover another growth hurdle I have seen during my career in retail: Gossiping. Retail has lots of “yentas”…and in retail gossiping is an equal opportunity sport. According to Susan Ricker, “Nearly half of employers say they would think twice before moving an employee who participates in office gossip up theRead More

Finding Balance In Retail During the Holidays

There is no doubt that working in retail we don’t necessarily have time to personally enjoy the holidays as we want to (or should). The holidays are chaotic but very energizing to those of us who have chosen retail as our field. Day-by-day from Halloween through Christmas Eve our work lives have returned to the cyclical holiday traditions of retail and are gravitating towards hectic. However, we should all be able to step back and find the time to relax and enjoy the moments we can with our families and friends. One of the best changes we made in 2015 to our workplace holiday program was to move our holiday party to after January 1st so that ALL employees could attend and theirRead More

Retail Career Obstacle: Cannot Build An Effective Team

#Retail Career Obstacle: Cannot Build An Effective Team On my list of Top 3 disheartening phrases I heard last week was “I just need to hire some bodies”. These words are the kiss of death for a store’s productivity and profitability. I have previously referenced a quote by Eric Ryan that I think is fabulous “Mediocre hires are like empty calories. They make you bigger, but less healthy.” This is incredibly true of field teams and something that I am constantly managing with my Store Managers when I am in the field. I have implemented Stay Interviews in our business to be able to identify common areas of opportunity on teams through feedback and dialogue with each and every team member in eachRead More

Dysfunctional Retail Workplaces

Dysfunctional Retail Workplaces Dysfunctional Retail Workplaces have three things in abundance: (1) Chaos & Confusion (2) Apathy (3) Sheep In my retail career, as I suspect is similar to everyone’s story, I have worked in very organized and deliberate organizations that found value in bringing in smart, innovative, emotionally mature employees. I have also worked in extremely dysfunctional environments. These were environments where I had to create my own little culture bubble for my team and be courageous enough to take control of the business for the best results we could achieve. When I recollect my workplace cultures that the organizations executives created/allowed, I have two that I can honestly say were truly and absolutely dysfunctional. According to Merriem-Webster the definition for dysfunctionRead More

How To Have “Happy Holidays” In Retail

How To Have Happy Holidays In #Retail This is “go time” in Retail and it truly is the most wonderful time of the year. The pace increases, daily sales increase, foot traffic increases, you have seasonal team members to infuse some new perspectives and excitement into the business! If the Store Managers in the field are truly behind the metrics – hourly reads are taken and shared with the team and everyone in the store is aligned with crushing plans and LY’s! It can be seriously exhilarating! In order to have a truly smooth and productive holiday season though, there needs to be a partnership between the field and corporate teams. I have been involved holiday seasons that were flawless and holiday seasonsRead More

How To Set Your Retail Team Up For Success in 2016

How To Set Your #Retail Team Up For Success In 2016 As I am typing this post we are only 42 days from celebrating the New Year. If you read the business section of any (reputable) news website or read any online retail industry publications, such as Retailing Today and Retail Industry News @ About, there is already speculation around how the retail landscape will change in 2016. Times can be challenging in retail but if you focus your area of responsibility at work on what you can do to deliver a positive, happy, productive, collaborative and profitable contribution to your business. We know what employees want to be productive and happy at work: -Honest and Transparent Communication -Meaningful Workplace Relationships -Work/Life BalanceRead More

Retail Career Obstacle: Inability To Think Strategically

#Retail Career Obstacle: Inability To Think Strategically With the New Year quickly approaching I thought I would cover some topics that are opportunities in retail as professional resolutions for 2016. The first topics I have written about are #Retail Career Obstacle: Defensiveness, #Retail Career Obstacle: Unwilling To Self-Develop,and #Retail Career Obstacle: Excessively Ambitious and Arrogant. Now I want to cover another growth hurdle I have seen during my career in retail: Inability To Think Strategically The nature of retail today demands that we are constantly assessing our priorities and processes and reacting to the changing pace of our retail environment. Strategy can take us from reactive to proactive in most cases. Merriam-Webster defines strategy as (a) a careful plan or method for achievingRead More

Retail Career Obstacle: Excessively Ambitious and Arrogant

Retail Career Obstacle: Excessively Ambitious And Arrogant With the New Year quickly approaching I thought I would cover some topics that are opportunities in retail as professional resolutions for 2016. The first topics I have written about are #Retail Career Obstacle: Defensiveness and #Retail Career Obstacle: Unwilling To Self-Develop. Now I want to cover another growth hurdle I have seen during my career in retail: Excessively Ambitious And Arrogant. We have all experienced the office or field blowhard. A colleague, past or present, that constantly talks about how smart, what a savvy leader they are, how amazing they are but cannot produce real results to save their lives? We have all come across this person, probably more than one, in our careers. TheyRead More

Retail Career Obstacle: Defensiveness

Retail Career Obstacle: Defensiveness We, none of us, actually enjoy hearing about our shortcomings, or performance issues but if we truly want to achieve professional (and even personal) success we have to be open to: (a) identifying our weaknesses (and implementing a plan or seeking information on how to improve) and (b) hearing other people talk about our opportunity areas from their point-of-view. Defensiveness is one area can effect so many others in a negative way unless we learn to embrace identifying or, if we are incapable of doing so, listening to people coach us on our professional weakness. When accepting feedback from superiors or even peers and you are open to it you will set the tone that: -You take criticism asRead More

Retail Competency: Listening

#Retail Competency: Listening Listening is one of the more important personal skills you can possess in retail and one of the most under-used and/or under-developed competencies. In 2015 we have made some major changes to the way we work in our company by ensuring that we are providing an open forum for our team members to communicate with us and we have made a commitment to them to actively listen and have dialogue around how we can all improve workplace culture. We have implemented programs such as the “Stay Interview” program, which has been a huge success for our business and our employees and our Peer-To-Peer Recognition Program which allows us to truly hear, react, and respond to their needs and ideas. ActiveRead More

Productivity In Retail

Productivity In Retail This is a topic I have been reading a lot about lately now that we are in the throes of the holiday season. This topic is important to me for a couple of reasons: (1) It’s the holidays and the expectation on the field is overwhelming in some companies with tasking, managing sales, providing customer experience, six-day work weeks, people having to sacrifice their holiday to work on Thanksgiving, Hanuakkah and Christmas; (2) If you are an “exempt” employee in retail, you are expected to work excessive hours regardless of how productive or unproductive they are and; (3) There is an abundance of information available to us that shows how unproductive and unhealthy extreme hours are – regardless of industry.Read More

Creativity In Retail

Creativity in Retail Aside from the obvious, that probably popped into you mind, creativity in retail is beneficial in all areas of the business. Clearly, those of us who love Visual Merchandising and creating moments and visual experiences for our customers understand the tangible “creativity”. It used to be that people were categorized in various compartments inside retail. Certainly people that were more “operationally” driven or analytical couldn’t be more creatively inclined and vice versa…the “creative” ones whose forte is visuals and building a beautiful display or a aesthetically perfect denim wall couldn’t possibly be strong in operations. Thankfully, that is not the case any longer (even though titles still exist) and people have found that there is a tremendous amount of creativityRead More