In late 2007, executives of a top liquor retailer operating over 25 stores were concerned with rising competition for liquor stores.
To thrive in this competitive environment, the liquor retailer needed to improve the customer experience within their stores. An investment in training store staff was identified as a business imperative – and they knew they needed to move fast!
The first step towards helping the liquor retailer in setting their goals was to figure out what was happening at their stores. Graff Retail carried out this assessment and determined:
The assessment identified areas that could be improved through a well-executed training program. The goal of the training would be to enhance the ability of store-level teams to serve customers and generate sales. Program objectives were:
Graff Retail created a customized solution for this top liquor retailer that included a 2-day classroom training workshop in addition to comprehensive in-store training.
Store Managers were trained to return to their stores and impart their learning with team members. Specially designed reinforcement tools including daily training activities, weekly coaching sessions, and structured staff meetings were implemented so skills developed in the classroom were sustained.
The “Ready to SERVE” coaching system gave managers the confidence to effectively develop their teams. They were taught how to use a sales management system that could track expectations and results, along with holding daily shift starter meetings where staff would discuss performance and set goals to achieve success on a daily basis.
Store managers were also trained to hold bi-weekly one-on-one coaching sessions with their staff. These sessions empowered managers to engage with their staff, improve relationships, provide recognition, bolster skills, and drive performance.
After the program, managers knew how to provide feedback, set expectations, motivate performance, and create collaborative solutions with their teams. Coaching became part of this liquor retailers daily store operations, with managers being provided a framework so they knew when to coach, resulting in more confident and capable managers.
Graff Retail delivered and implemented the program in the allocated time and budget. We’re very proud of the significant impact on store sales within the first year:
Further, the program led to an increase in staff confidence with more time being spent on the sales floor engaging with customers. The feedback received from customers was positive and they referred to the staff as friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable about the products being sold.
For executives of the retailer, the program served as reinforcement that investing in their staff was the right thing to do. “Most significantly there has been a dramatic shift in the service culture at our stores. We can proudly say that we are READY to SERVE.”
Wine sales increased by 5.1% after implementing Ready to Serve
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