Sorry, There’s Nothing I Can Do For You…

It’s really hard for me not to mix my business with pleasure. Mostly because my business is customer service, and like everyone else I am constantly frequenting places where customer service should be a priority. On the rare occasion it is, I’ll sing the business’s praises from the highest mountaintop (I am equally happy to share when it’s bad, too). Usually, however, the service I … Continue reading Sorry, There’s Nothing I Can Do For You…

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

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

Unforgettable Retail Performance

Specialty retail is a performance, and there’s a giant difference between a ho-hum experience and one that earns rave reviews from the harshest critic. Your people wear metaphorical “makeup” so folks can see them from the back row. They exaggerate their movements and animate gestures to make a solid impact on the entire audience. Hopefully they don’t overdo it. Maybe your show’s been running for … Continue reading Unforgettable Retail Performance

Don’t Touch the Balls

Customer Freedom is Customer Loyalty A sign in a sporting good store asking folks, “Please don’t play with the balls,” is like having one at Costco telling people not to touch the food samples. It doesn’t make any sense to try and keep shoppers from handling a product they might end up buying. Same goes with any products you keep under lock and key. Usually … Continue reading Don’t Touch the Balls

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?