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

Retail Resolution: Use Your Accrued Vacation (All Of It!)

  2016 Retail Resolution – Use Your Vacation Time…All Of IT! On December 10th, Globoforce published a great blog post, ‘Tis The Season To Use Your Vacation. I have always read how important it is to use vacation time and step away from work but this article really quantified and qualified the importance of this. Here are some of the biggest takeaways: –“Americans are taking less vacation than at any point in the last forty years–just 16 vacation days today, down from an average of over 20 days taken 15 years ago.” This ‘lost week’ of vacation “is wiping out vacation traditions and taking a heavy toll, particularly on children.” –“Working parents may think they are shielding their children from work stress, butRead More

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

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

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

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

#RetailProblems on Twitter

#RetailProblems On Twitter Especially during this time of year I like to check out #RetailProblems on Twitter. It gives you a snapshot as to what is happening in the field in Retail and what the frustrations are for the employees who work directly in the stores and with customers. I do this so that I can proactively address any irritations that may exist in our business that can, potentially, pull focus away from business, harm employee engagement, and help support anything that we can improve upon that may have been missed in holiday planning. If you do a search on #retailproblems and #retaillife you will see some funny and relevant anecdotes (that we have all experienced) about issues that exist in retail andRead More

Successful Time Management

Retail Time Management We live in an amazing time. We have access to so much information to help us be better at almost everything. As I coach people in retail and mentor people I find that there is a consistent opportunity to work on a few basic competencies that are more challenging, but that are necessary, to build a foundation for successful retail leadership and one of the key competencies of successful retail leaders is high-productivity. There are a couple of key components to being highly-productive that are opportunity to a lot of new retail leaders: -Time Management -Planning -Delegation Here is the good news…they all impact one another in the workplace so if you choose one to start with – it willRead More

The Most Overused Word In Retail

The Most Overused Word In Retail I am wondering what word(s) popped into your head when you read the headline for this post. I am sure there are lots of retail buzzwords (that are overused and tragically misunderstood or used, but undefined, in your workplace) that are on the tip of your tongue. But…this is my post and it is the holidays in retail so this is about “STRESS”. I hear it every single day – at least 10 times from colleagues. For me it’s a frustrating word to hear so frequently. I have heard it from everyone in retail for my entire career. I feel as though retail employees think that saying they are “stressed” articulates an elevated level of productivity orRead More

Why Good People Quit Their Retail Company (And What Compels Them To Stay)

Why Good People Quit Their Retail Company (And What Compels Them To Stay) The workplace has all different ways of measuring and assessing “human capital” facts to plan for a variety of expected business changes and to forecast future changes. For example, according to this story from HBR, At Best Buy the value of a 0.1% increase in employee engagement at a particular store is $100,000! Additionally, the article states: Employee attrition can be less of a problem when managers see it coming. Sprint has identified the factors that best foretell which employees will leave after a relatively short time. (Hint: Don’t expect a long tenure from someone who hasn’t signed up for the retirement program.) Interesting, right? I have written several postsRead More

Fostering A Culture of Employee Advocacy

Fostering A Culture Of Employee Advocacy In Retail One white whale of opportunity that I see in much of Retail is to allow employees the freedom (and guidelines) to advocate on a brand’s behalf. I recently read this amazing article by Ben Donkor on LinkHumans – “A Kickstart Guide To Employee Advocacy In Social Media”. This, literally, gives the reader the steps and policies for building a program that manages and supports your team using Social Media to advocate for and help grow your brand and brand loyalty! Employees want to support the growth of the brand but are tentative to share information for a number of reasons: -There is no formal policy around it -They have been told that they aren’t allowedRead More

Retail Workplace Happiness

Focusing On Retail Workplace Happiness The Retail Candidate Experience during the interviewing process should reflect the experience that the candidate will have through the onboarding process as a new hire. According to the SHRM Foundation “Organizations say effective onboarding improved retention rates by 52%”. When employees feel the company cares about their growth & development they are happier and more productive at work. When employees feel the company cares about their growth & development they are happier and more productive at work. According to Megan Biro of TalentCulture there are five key things that help deliver Employee Happiness – (1) Pay fairly, (2) Deliver awesome benefits, (3) Keep an open leadership door & mind, (4) Share the profits, and (5) make your workplaceRead More

Supporting and Inspiring Change In Retail

Supporting and Inspiring Change In Retail There is an adage that goes “Only three things are certain in life: Birth, Death, and Taxes”. Over the past many years I can, without reservation, add “constant evolution and change in retail” to this list. AND I think that those of us who have been in retail for a while actually enjoy that quality of the business. Change represents challenge and newness to strong leaders. Creative people, especially, enjoy change, it gives us the opportunity to positively communicate change to our teams, we also can, usually, find a fun way to support the team with dealing with the change. Unfortunately, not everyone in retail embraces change. Here is great infographic for why change fails at times.Read More

Dynamics Of Highly Productive Teams

Dynamics Of Highly Productive #Retail Teams In a previous post I have written about Celebrating Top Performers In #Retail and about how we need to recognize and appreciate the “A” players on our teams. I have been very lucky and honored to work with some teams where everyone was a contributing “A” player and wanted to share some of those team qualities that make a successful and highly productive (and profitable) team. The individuals who made up these amazing teams all understood a few things: (1) where we were going, (2) wanted to join each other on the journey, (3) were committed to perservering when there were obstacles, and (4) were kind and supportive of each other along the way – always! (1)Read More