Which leader will you be this week?


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How are you doing? You, not your store, although I’d love to hear about last week’s sales. Right now I’m more interested in how you are. I ask because the energy and attitude you as a leader bring this week has a huge impact on your results.

This is the week to be an extraordinary leader.

Retail leaders usually fall into one of these categories at this time of year:

1. The tired leader. If you ask this owner/manager how he’s doing he’ll tell you how tired he is. If you don’t ask how he’s doing he’ll still find a way to work it into the conversation. Not surprisingly, everyone on the staff is pretty tired too, or at the very least tired of hearing about it from the owner/manager. And of course when everyone is that tired, more opportunities are lost than are created.

2. The stressed-out leader. You can find these owner/managers without ever setting eyes on them. All you have to do is talk to stressed-out staffers. This owner/manager might try to tell you everything is fine, but the short fuse and tense facial expression is a dead giveaway. The stress could result from any number of other reasons, none of which really matter. It all leads to more lost opportunities.

3. The overworked leader. This owner/manager loves to tell anyone who will listen how much he/she is working. I had a manager once who would refuse to take a day off between Thanksgiving and Christmas, and then spend every day talking about how she hadn’t had a day off! This owner/manager’s need to talk about him/herself results in lost opportunities.

4. The overwhelmed leader. While this owner/manager may at first appear to be a stressed-out leader, you can spot them by the lack of leadership and confusion within the team. This manager/owner is working extremely hard but the store is slowly spiraling out of control, taking opportunities out of reach.

I’m the first to admit that at one time or another in my retail career I’ve been every one these leaders. I also learned from some great mentors to become the fifth type of leader.

5. The crunch-time leader. This leader is far from perfect. As a matter of fact they’re just as likely to be tired, stressed-out, overworked, or maybe even overwhelmed, as any of the other leaders. The difference is that they’re not showing it.

The crunch-time leader leads. The busier the store, the more she elevates her game. She shows more energy, not less. She’s demonstrating more passion and giving out more encouragement to her team. She’s keeping everyone focused on the customer and, most importantly, she’s keeping it light and fun.

Leaders lead, especially in busy times when the opportunity is there.

So let me ask, which leader will you be this week?

Here’s wishing you a Merry Christmas – or Happy Hanukkah – or if you have no holiday preference a Happy Holiday! – Doug

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.


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