Celebrating Labor Day


Share on LinkedIn

If you’re reading this outside the United States, let’s call the article Celebrating All People Who Work.

The other day I started wondering about the history of Labor Day. My search for information took me to, where else, the US Labor Department. Here’s a brief overview of this weekend’s holiday:

* Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It is a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

* The first Labor Day holiday was celebrated on Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City, in accordance with the plans of the Central Labor Union.

* By 1894 most states had passed laws making the first Monday in September a legal holiday and in that year Congress passed legislation making the day a legal holiday in the District of Columbia and the territories.

Like me, you’re probably struck by what’s missing. There’s no mention of cookouts, 50% off sales, or even buy one get one free specials! Who knew?

I, for one, enjoy the activities we’ve added to Labor Day, but it’s clear that our plans should include celebrating the “contributions our employees have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being” of our companies.

Consider these three things over this Labor Day weekend:

1. Use the weekend to celebrate your team. Take the weekend to give a HUGE THANK YOU for your team for everything they do. As specialty retailers, it’s your people that make your stores truly special. I know that you are always thanking them and showing your appreciation, but I do believe that doing so this weekend is particularly important.

You could post a sign or note in the backroom thanking them for their contribution to the success of your store or company. You might bring in food for Saturday or Monday, not because they have to work on a holiday but to celebrate their work. As we often do during the holidays, you might consider giving a small thank you gift or goodie bag in honor of Labor Day.

2. Create a weekend event celebrating your customer, the American worker. I do realize that so many people read my quick event suggestions but probably don’t actually do them. They really do work! Food and drink are the great sales enablers. It slows people down, creates a quid pro quo, and gives the staff an extremely easy and effective way to engage customers. These types of events don’t require a lot of effort or time to pull off. Come on…try it!

3. Focus your team’s “labor” this weekend to be even more successful. Everything we do when we interact with our customers is important to delivering a winning experience that creates sales and advocacy, but your team will be even more successful if they narrow their focus.

It could be:

* Adding-on.

* Selling down, not up

* Warmly welcoming every customer

* Capturing every customer’s contact information

* Telling the customer about the weekend specials

* Showing/recommending a specific product or category

* Getting products in the customer’s hands or on them

* Making sales of a certain dollar amount

* Not stopping the sale

* Showing clearance items

* Not asking, “how may I help you?” or “Will that be all?”

…Or any one (maybe two if you must) of the above actions or your own focus that when done well will 1) Win the customer 2) Maximize the opportunity 3) Extend the customer relationship.

The narrower the focus, the more likely your team’s “labor” will improve and be more effective.

Have a wonderful and profitable holiday weekend. I’ll catch you on the other side.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Doug Fleener
As the former director of retail for Bose Corporation and an independent retailer himself, Doug has the unique experience and ability to help companies of all sizes. Doug is a retail and customer experience consultant, keynote speaker and a recognized expert worldwide.


Please use comments to add value to the discussion. Maximum one link to an educational blog post or article. We will NOT PUBLISH brief comments like "good post," comments that mainly promote links, or comments with links to companies, products, or services.

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here