Article 1: The great disconnection
Today, we start a new journey down a path that has yet to be explored. It was during my success with Modern Day Selling that I became more connected with the retail community. As my message began to spread, there became opportunities that presented themselves for me to travel and speak at trade shows and stores. It was during these visits that I began to see a pattern of need and attention. The fact was that many of our stores have become disconnected. Some were more severe than others, but I often found that stores were no longer functioning as a unified team.
Many of you may be wondering what I mean by disconnection within our stores. It is through the many pressures of business life that owners and sales associates have become disconnected. The demands of daily business rolled over us like a tidal wave and before we knew it, there is a great distance between us. It is when this disconnection occurred that many of today’s issues begin to take root that we will explore over the next few months.
Owners, I would like you to take a moment and think back to the beginning of your store. In the beginning, there was a unified team. There was a united passion that was set in motion by your leadership as you explored the unknown together. Can you remember those early years? You were ready to take on the world! What an exciting adventure it was! Then something happened. You may not know when it happened or how it happened, but somewhere along the way there was a disconnection that separated you from your staff, and things have never been the same.
Sales associates, think back to the day that you were hired. Do you remember the undivided loyalty that existed between you and your new company’s owner? You would have marched to any order given with great pride and dedication to your new leader. There was a passion and fire ignited within you that made you feel invincible. It appeared that nothing could stop you from finding success together.
Now, fast-forward to your current situation and tell me what you see? Better yet, think of how you feel about your leader now? What happened? Somewhere along the way there was a disconnection.
Many of you may be asking yourself, “Who is this guy and how does he know me so well?” To all of you I would answer that I am simply one of you. Through my 18 years in the jewelry industry I have had nine years of top management and nine years as an elite sales professional. I know the issues that both sides hold against each other. Both sides could make a great case before any judge. The owners mostly held a majority of the power, but often found themselves powerless without a loyal, dedicated staff. So employees came, and went, but nothing really changed. It appeared as if a never ending cycle was occurring as the stresses and pressure mounted to where many are overwhelmed and looking for answers.
Earlier, as you thought back to the beginning of your store or sales career, there was something that happened. A stirring began within to get back to the good ole days. It is when this stirring begins that a spark is sent out that ignites a new found passion and energy to truly find the answers to your problems and fix the things that hold you back. The time has come for The Modern Day Store to be born. No longer must our store environment suffer with tension and strife. A new day is dawning and change is coming to the retail world. Whether or not you decide to join is up to you.
Over the next few months I will show you how to reconnect with your staff and mend the differences that have set you apart. Once unified, I will show you owners how to lead your team to victory over the true enemies within your store.
Next month we discuss The Great Awakening and I promise you that you will not want to miss it. Have a super month!
Brian Barfield offers fresh insight in the world of sales training designed to help sales associates unlock their hidden potential and reconnect with their customers. Brian has over 18 years experience in the jewelry industry and spent the last 6 years as a million dollar sales associate. Coming soon will be his 2nd book titled “The Modern Day Store: Creating a Unified Store”. For more information please visit his website, www.moderndayselling.com or contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.