Trust and Authenticity

This year I drove to The Running Event (TRE) in Austin, Texas. Amounted to just over 2500 total round trip miles from my home in central North Carolina. Part of the route followed the same stretch I walked earlier this year. And though that was a nostalgic highlight, it’s not what I came here to write about. TRE, per usual, was a giant reunion. I … Continue reading Trust and Authenticity

10 Ways to Find the Right Staffer

Every retailer wants to know how to hire good people. But not just good people, good people who can also do high-quality work. Too often we hire candidates only to find they have one of these traits or the other, rather than the ideal combination of both. Often they are great people with ho-hum selling skills, or they are somewhat impersonal but can sell the … Continue reading 10 Ways to Find the Right Staffer

Love and Business

Last week at The Running Event, the keynote speaker uttered words every single business owner needs to hear—He said, “Love and business…there’s plenty of room to cultivate both.” Love and business. Two terms that typically don’t get much playing time. Not together, anyhow. But this guy insisted that any business’s future relevance depends on both working as one. The speaker was Walter Robb, former CEO … Continue reading Love and Business

This is Your Home

Retail is Why I Keep Going Back to México City On a whim in early 2016, I booked a fight to México City. Why? I had Southwest voucher about to expire and the airline had recently opened up this international route. I could never have guessed that less than two years later, I’d have returned three more times. I certainly would never have predicted that … Continue reading This is Your Home

Train Like a Classroom Teacher

The 7 Steps of Quality Retail Training Before I worked in specialty retail, I was a classroom educator. Straight out of the military I took a job as a non-credentialed physical education teacher. I lined kids up like they were in basic training and had them shout a call-and-response while I guided them through stretches and calisthenics. They loved it, I loved it, but the … Continue reading Train Like a Classroom Teacher

Yo, What Up?

Your Greeting Needs Intention (and Attention) I used to bank where employees were obviously required to punch every customer in the chest with a canned greeting. “Good morning/afternoon sir/ma’am, welcome to blah-blah bank. How can I be of assistance today?” Ugh. Each time I walked in I felt embarrassed for the employee on deck. Their sad face spouting a scripted and sullen hello, likely motivated by … Continue reading Yo, What Up?