Why And How Success Is So Seductive

Why and How Success Is So Seductive “It’s seductive to believe that success comes from genius, it’s a pity that it is seldom so.” After reading an article the other day on Huffington Post Business about the “Seductiveness of Success” my interest in the subject was piqued. I decided to dig in a deeper to find a bit more on the topic and what makes those we consider true successes tick and what the pitfalls may be as those of us who seek to create a truly successful personal and professional brand will face as we navigate our way through the path to total world domination to leave our marks. Every day we are competing with many other personalities in the workplace forRead More

How The Very Best Retail Leaders Empower Their Employees

How The Very Best Retail Leaders Empower Their Employees Empowerment – it’s a term that we hear a lot in retail but the actual meaning is a little fuzzy. I went in search of a clarifying definition here is one I found – from Christine Chartrand at Atman Co., “Employee empowerment is the process of giving employees a certain amount of independence and responsibility to analyze, control, and make decisions with regards to specific tasks or projects. It means inspiring and motivating and enabling employees to think for themselves and have unique views on certain projects or issues, as well as allow for a degree of autonomy so they can take initiative and ownership.” “People want guidance, not rhetoric; they need to knowRead More

5 Retail Leadership Skills That Make You Look Awesome

5 Retail Leadership Skills That Make You Look Awesome Recently, I was asked to participate in a program to up-skill sales and supervisor level retail employees [aka: future retail leaders] through an online class. So, this fun assignment has led me to recollect some of the bits and pieces of my job over many, many, many years that I found incredibly helpful that no one ever “taught” me but I learned a long the way either by seeing certain behaviors that I have be able to offer growth guidance to my team on or through my own mistakes as I have grown in our industry. Brevity And Speaking Like A Human Being Are Critical For Effective “Off The Cuff” Communication: Well thought throughRead More

Jump Start Your Day: Retail Edition

Jump Start Your Day: Retail Edition I think most of us can agree that Richard Branson is a pretty interesting entrepreneur. He also seems like a innovative, considerate, and fearless businessman. These qualities, in addition to his tremendous business successes, make him an fascinating person to follow, read about, learn from. For the past 50 years Richard Branson has maintained the same morning routine. Here is what that looks like: -Waking up at 5:00am -He builds in time to exercise and spend time with family [which then allows him to focus on work] -He allows time for reflection and organization (a) During this time he paces out his day, catches up on news, replies to emails -He believes in waking up with passionRead More

How To Beat The Winter Blues In Retail

How To Beat The Winter Blues In Retail As I sit here watching the beautiful snow fall that I have wished for all winter, it’s hard to believe that people don’t love snow or winter. Perhaps it’s because after spending the last two winters the Southwest where only the Summer season existed. It made me appreciate the beauty of all four seasons and appreciate them for their uniqueness. If you didn’t know, there is actually a type of psychological affliction called Seasonal Affective Disorder is a rare phenomenon that has been exaggerated. Out of 800 people who were surveyed in the initial SAD study 92% of participants reported seasonal changes in mood and behaviour and 27% said these were a problem. According toRead More

High-Resolution Leadership

I admit it, I am a bit of data nerd.  I actually get really excited when new statistical reports are released. Recently, DDI  released “High-Resolution Leadership: A collection of findings that reflect how leadership shapes today’s business landscape.” The information contained in this collection of reports is very high-value and important to the future of our industry, talent, organizational development, and growth: Here is how we stack up in our industry. In Retail, our strengths, overall, are: • Business Savvy • Coaching & Developing others • Compelling Communication • Cultivating Networks We rank as “mid-range” with: • Building Organizational Talent • Customer Focus (really?!?) • Driving Execution • Driving For Results • Inspiring Excellence • Operational Decision Making We are down in inRead More

Retail Leaders: You Own Your Team’s Results and Satisfaction At Work

Retail Leaders: You Own Your Team’s Results and Satisfaction At Work According to a Corporate Executive Board’s Study/Report, “64% of employees do not feel their current role truly reflects how they do, or should, work with others to get their jobs done, and only 40% report their manager is able to effectively connect them with their co-workers, so many are uncertain about whom to work with and how to do it successfully”. In the report it supports building a collaborative workplace for elevated performance results, organizations that were able to move more employees to high levels of enterprise performance realized a 10% improvement in profitability, compared to a 5% improvement for those who emphasized and achieved high levels of individual performance alone. TheRead More

How To Have A Great Start To The Week

Tell Me Why I Don’t Like Mondays? Most people dislike Mondays. It just seems like the thing to do when Monday rolls around. I actually love Monday…I am one of those people that can separate themselves from work on my days off but Sunday nights I start brainstorming how I am going to attack and conquer the week starting Monday. It the pedestrian thing to do to moan (literally for 12 minutes the average worker moans about Monday – yikes) and groan about the start of the work week. Why though? Here are some interesting facts about Monday: -According to The Telegraph UK: “Most of find the start of the week so demoralizing that we can’t even bear to crack a smile untilRead More

It’s The New Year…Now What?

I think the perception is that the retail business comes to a screeching halt in retail post-New Year’s Day. The pace and momentum absolutely are altered, but it is certainly not “slow”. There are lots of things that need to be done and can be done. Some of the most common retail activities that organizations are prepping for in January are: –Performance Appraisals -Inventory –Post Holiday Wrap Up Meetings -Fiscal 2016 Accountability Communication These are the company driven initiatives that just, cyclically, occur. What I want to talk about today [I will cover the performance appraisal process and how you can make it more effective in another article] is what you can do to have an impact on your workplace culture and howRead More

Retail Onboarding Best Practices

Retail Onboarding Best Practices Effectively onboarding new hires is definitely an opportunity in the retail industry. The assumption being, a lot of times, that the team member is a “revolving door employee” and quickly jump ship if recruited by another company or continue looking for a job that pays them slightly more. Did you know though that “Only 12% of employees leave a job for more pay” (Source: TalentWise). Therefore, the opportunity to create a career-focused environment that delivers meaning & purpose is missed and there is no compelling reason for them to stay. If you have a program for engaging your new hire from the candidate experience while interviewing through the training process you stand a greater chance of retaining your newRead More

Understanding Your Team

Understanding Your Team We are heading into an exciting New Year and it is the perfect opportunity to review the holiday season with your team, provide guidance on their areas of strength and the opportunity areas to work on and improve for the new year. In several posts I have covered some of the common areas of opportunity with team members and leaders for improved development, as well as individual and team growth and maximized productivity. For example: 2016 Key Focus Items: These are the 8 most common areas that references state as a candidate’s greatest opportunity areas. Deadly Sins of Retail Communication: Which identifies the frustrating communication misses of senior leadership to their teams. Fostering a Culture of Employee Advocacy In Retail:Read More

Inspiring Action in the New Year

  Inspiring Action According to Statistic Brain Research Institute, here are some very interesting statistics about New Year’s Resolutions: Top 10 Resolutions of 2015 1. Lose Weight 2. Get Organized 3. Spend Less, Save More 4. Enjoy Life To The Fullest 5. Staying Fit & Healthy 6. Learn Something Exciting 7. Quit Smoking 8. Helping Others In Their Dreams 9. Fall In Love 10. Spend More Time With Family Statistically Speaking…How Will We Do? • 45% of people make New Year’s Resolutions • 38% of Americans never make resolutions • Only 8% of people are successful in achieving their resolutions • People who explicitly make resolutions are 10 times more likely to attain their goals than people who don’t explicitly make resolutions •Read More

Employee Engagement Trends 2016

Employee Engagement Trends In #Retail Quantum Workplace released their 57 page report on Employee Engagement Trends Report waaaayyyy back in June and now that I am on vacation for the holidays, I have an opportunity to read, digest, and understand the information they reported on. In 2015 Employee Engagement was at an 8 year low. In essence, what that means is that employees feel undervalued and they aren’t willing to do what it takes to produce and deliver greatness, because they don’t see a benefit to it. There are lots of reports out there on “Employee Engagement” but this one is particularly valuable because of the detail it provides to the areas that employees are most “uncertain” about. At the conclusion of 2014Read More

Organizational Success: What You Need To Know

Organizational Success in #Retail: What You Need To Know The amazing team at DDI recently published their Leadership Development Road Map and some of the statistics were pretty shocking and critical to know if we are going to effect change in 2016 in our businesses. You can click on the link above to view the interactive infographic (which is very clever and a great read) but here are some of the highlights that immediately resulted in my brain working through a plan-of-action on how to elevate our current and future leader’s competencies: Are Leaders Ready To Deliver? -40% of leaders say the overall quality of their organization’s leadership is high -25% of HR professionals view their organization’s leaders as high quality -15% ofRead More

Getting Reference Checks Right

Retail Hiring: Getting Reference Checks Right I have always been surprised to find out that during the reference check process my teams, specifically in the field level management position, are more or less resigned to getting the basic “Are they rehirable?” question answered. I found out, with a company a couple years ago, the Store Managers had been told to “fake” their reference check forms, because “they don’t matter”. In retail we, typically, have not invested a lot of time into the reference check process for a couple of reasons: (1) We feel as though most hires are transient in nature (especially at the store level) so why bother [yikes, right?!?], (2) People are only going to give us reference names and contactRead More