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

The Power Of Gratitude In The Workplace

The Power Of Gratitude In The Workplace One of the first things that came to mind when I was thinking about implementing our “Wall Of Kindness” during the holidays at our work place was this article I read on Huffington Post that states: “expressing gratitude improves mental, physical and relational well-being. Being grateful also impacts the overall experience of happiness, and these effects tend to be long-lasting”. Who or what workplace couldn’t use more of that? Here are some interesting statistics from a survey conducted by Greater Good: -93% of people agree that grateful bosses are more likely to succeed -18% of workers think gratitude make bosses seem weak -60% of respondents said they “either never express gratitude at work or do soRead More

Successful Retail Organizations Create Supportive Work Environments

Successful Retail Organizations Create Supportive Work Environments I read an interesting article from Skip Prichard – Leadership Insights titled, Detect and Root Out Behavior That Undermines Your Workplace. There were some very helpful thoughts on various ways workplaces set themselves up for unproductive behaviors and/or behaviors that undermine the organizational health and development including, being counterproductive to the organizations vision and values: (1) Sabotage By Meetings “Meetings are indispensable when you don’t want to do anything.” –John Kenneth Galbraith -Ineffective meetings are productivity killers and according to Time Magazine, “Americans sit through some 11 million meetings every day — with the unproductive ones costing companies $37 billion a year.” -Without a plan and a resolution focus – useless meeting are damaging to theRead More

Performance Appraisal Time, Yay!! (Said No One, Ever)

Performance Appraisal Time, YAY! (Said No One, Ever) So…it is officially that time of year again. Performance Appraisal time. In the Retail Industry we are profoundly stuck in the past in this area. Here are some interesting statistics about Performance Appraisals that are important to know as you prepare your appraisals for your team: According to Globoforce: “Only 37% of employees believe that performance reviews are a true indicator of performance” According to SHRM: “90% of HR professionals don’t believe their companies performance appraisals provide accurate information” According to OfficeVibe: -“1 out of 5 employees think their bosses don’t even think about the appraisal until they’re in the room” -“44% of employees don’t think their boss is honest during the process” -“Only 8%Read 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

What I Learned As a Retail Business Owner

  What I Learned By Having My Own Retail Business I have been in retail for many years, in the Summer of 2015 I opened three pop up retail locations and one semi-permanent location. I soft-opened Cotton Candy Fashion’s Home Store on June 1st and opened three true pop up locations the following week. The three pop-up’s closed the Tuesday following Labor Day. My Home Store will be closing on January 7th 2016. I made this investment for a couple of reasons: First: I have very limited apparel experience on my resume. Most of my apparel experience revolves around children’s apparel – which, to me, is mini-grown up apparel but, unfortunately, adult retailers don’t see it that way. I wanted to infuse someRead 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

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