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

Hoosiers Layup or Tomahawk Jam?

 Best to Stick With the Basics When I was an in-the-trenches retailer, I attended countless trainings on pretty much any topic you can imagine. But I’m not going to lie, training didn’t always feel productive. In fact, I often left wondering why we were always harping on “best business practices” when really what I needed to know was how to handle the one-off stuff. Like, rather … Continue reading Hoosiers Layup or Tomahawk Jam?

4 Steps to Your Big Change

Just Because You Want Change Doesn’t Mean You Will Change Retailers tell me all the time that they want to make ‘a big change’, but rarely do they know what this change looks like. Sure, they exclaim their readiness to rock the boat, but they are too far from water to set sail in the first place. Often folks think I’ll define this change for … Continue reading 4 Steps to Your Big Change

We Aim to Please

What an Atlanta Airport Bathroom Visit Taught Me About Customer Service On Monday I had a layover in the Atlanta airport. I don’t usually fly through ATL—mostly because I am a Southwest loyalist—but when I do I am repeatedly impressed by the airport’s amenities. If I’m passing through in the evening, I’ll head over to terminal E and visit One Flew South—a classy joint for … Continue reading We Aim to Please

New Retail Word: Handseling

Offer Your Customers a Good Luck Charm I’d like to introduce a new word to the specialty retail lexicon—handseling. Ever heard of this word? Neither had I until I interviewed the owner of a local bookstore for an article I was writing. She used it when referring to her staff’s interaction with each customer. As in, “When handseling, staffers really need to make sure we … Continue reading New Retail Word: Handseling

Your Goal is Not to Sell

Your Goal is Not to Sell – It’s to Connect “Stop selling stuff.” That’s what I tell retailers looking for a new, innovative way to approach the day. None think I am serious, but I am. I usually end up having to repeat myself. “No really,” I say. “Stop selling stuff. Just stop.” But my words are so far out in left field that folks … Continue reading Your Goal is Not to Sell