My favourite season of retail is upon us. Christmas stirs up all my fondest memories of my start in retail; working alongside my Dad in his stores, back when I was too young and naïve to truly appreciate all that he did for his staff to make the season special…and highly productive. Now when I’m out in stores and see the beginnings of this awesome holiday start to pop up, I can easily identify the many “gifts” he gave to his team to set them up for success, not just at Christmas, but the entire year through.Read Article
It’s that wonderful time of year again when we start to gear up for Christmas. A critical part of this process is hiring seasonal staff. The very thought of this is often enough to cause even the most experienced of managers to break out in a cold sweat! But don’t worry … it’s all about planning and execution.Read Article
I’ve spent most of the last 30 years on stage, speaking to audiences about so many topics that I can’t recall them all. What I know is that everything I talked about likely focused on the wonderful world of retail, and that almost every audience was somewhere between 30 and 300 people.Read Article
In my role at Graff Retail, I speak to Store Managers on a daily basis. At some point in the conversation we end up “talking shop” and managers share their biggest challenges with me (kind of like a retail therapy session!).Read Article
We’re working on a couple of very interesting and fascinating projects lately. What’s resonated the most with me about these projects, is likely the most important selling lesson possible.Read Article
Such a simple concept. Such an amazing thing do. Something I need to say to so many.
What I’m saying is “Thank You” to all of you that have allowed me, and my team, to be inspired by … you.Read Article
What does it take to roll out a great training program at store level? Better yet, what does it take to sustain a great training program at store level? Do you have the answer on the tip of your tongue? Don’t fret, from what I can tell, the majority of retailers out there don’t have the answers to these questions either.Read Article
Lately, I’ve been catching myself saying to my kids, ‘When I was your age I didn’t get to go there’ or, ‘I didn’t behave that way’ or, ‘I appreciated…’
And every time I start the sentence, my kids get this glossed over look in their eyes. Their eyes literally roll back into their heads.Read Article
We believe the role of the District Manager is probably the one that can affect sales the most out of any other role in a retail organization. Think about it. DM’s are out there in the field, hands-on, leading multiple stores per region from coast to coast. On average, most District Managers are responsible for 10 to 15 stores each. One region represents a significant portion of the sales volume for a retailer. An under-performing region can greatly affect the bottom line of a company, yet, DM’s receive the least amount of training when compared to other store operation roles. Why is this?Read Article
In the roles I’ve played in my retail career, I’ve had the pleasure of working with Retail District Managers in various capacities. As a Store Manager, I’ve reported to District Managers. As a Marketing Director I’ve relied on District Managers to help execute campaigns in their stores. And now, in my role at Graff Retail, I collaborate with DM’s on rolling out and sustaining new training programs at store level.Read Article
You can’t read much about leadership these days without running across this notion of the need for leaders to be empathetic.
You would be forgiven for thinking initially that this will require you to become a real softy or that this is a ‘touchy feely topic’.Read Article
With summer quickly coming to an end and we look ahead to the biggest, most important selling season in retail, we wanted to ask you, who’s leading your team to battle during this make-it-or-break-it time of year? (And yes, that’s our fearless leader, Kevin Graff, suited up and ready to win at this crazy game we call Retail!)Read Article
The CANEX teams have been Graff Retail ONLINE clients for several years; growing and developing their teams using the Graff Get Selling and Get Managing e-learning programs. We often get out in the field and visit the stores, so when our VP, Linda Montalbano came back raving about these two ladies, I knew I needed to find out what it was that impressed Linda so much!Read Article
Everyday I’m out in stores visiting various retailers. Some are clients of ours, and others are just on my endless errand list. Pet stores, grocery stores, drug stores, sporting goods stores … the list goes on. I’m sure many of you can relate.Read Article
It’s summer. It’s hot. It’s vacation time.
The last thing anyone wants to do right now is read a long blog.
So, let’s get down to the point right away.Read Article
Who are the leaders in your company?
The owner(s)? The CEO? The VP’s? We often think of leadership in terms of the most senior positions in an organization (especially if we occupy one of them!). But what if this wasn’t true? What if we were to tell you that the most important leaders in your company don’t hold an executive title? That they work much closer to the front lines than the CEO does? That they, in fact, spend a lot more of their time in the stores than attending meetings at head office?Read Article
Some will argue that there is no need to even leave the couch in order to acquire anything and everything our little hearts desire. There is quite a bit of truth to that and many feel that you can’t beat the convenience of it as well. But consider this question; how inconvenient is convenience? The answer to this question also answers the bigger question; do we even need retail stores anymore?Read Article
Take the time to read this true, short story of how a work experience has been transformed from the mundane to the inspiring.Read Article
Thirty years into this business. That can make me feel old … and maybe I’m getting old too! Just think about all the good things we’ve all likely learned over the past 30 years. Some amazing things. Some scary things. Some useless things.Read Article