Over the last three weeks I have had several requests from the team as to what was happening in one of our lower performing stores. For three weeks now this store had featured high up in our top 10 and is only getting stronger and stronger.
“Is there a conference in town, a senior manager in store, styling appointments, events or high teas going on?” I was asked… “This is incredible and whatever it is that creates this effect, you should bottle it”.
The manger started her role with us a couple of years ago in one of our smaller North Island stores, and there she was a rock star! Week after week she returned figures well above the norm for a rural environment and as with any great girl, she polarized people. Most loved her but a few found her love of the brand and her desire to see the whole town in our frocks a little overwhelming (I loved it).
Nearby, a larger store was struggling and had been for a while so we relocated our rockstar in to get things moving. We figured if she could sell so well in a small town with a population of 3000, imagine what she'd do in a city with a 100,000 population. Whenever she'd filled in in this store in the past, she'd certainly showed us that the figures were there, as she was extremely capable.
So she eventually relocated. We collaborated with Phoenix Cosmetics to give her the superstore she deserved and we thought we would be cooking with gas.
But something went wrong, as it never took off in the way we wanted. Sure there were some okay weeks but nothing that showed a trend of growth and it all became a bit perplexing… What had happened to our rock star?
Sure we believed in her. We knew she had a great store and was good at selling but somehow she didn't feel this anymore.
A lot of my recent calls with her had become about excuses. I heard all about why she couldn't make it work… we needed new signage to herald the collaboration, our sizing was too big, nothing fitted her so therefore her customers, the partime team were weak and even non-existent.
She was simply focusing on the wrong things...
The manager and this store had become all about what was wrong, what she couldn't do and the problem was more about us… not with her.
I certainly know that if I want more money or if something isn't working then it is up to me to fix it. The fault will always be with me. I can't put my hand out and ask for a pay rise… I have to look at how I can earn it!
Know this and live and breathe it…. (I certainly do).
So what really changed for this store and its manager and what will this mean that this store will not falter going forward?
There’s a few things:
- The manager, after taking on an underperforming horse (she has an innate love of horse riding) got it to the top of its game after everyone said she couldn't
- She backed herself. She now knew she could do anything she set out to do so she relooked at what she could achieve in the store.
- Her partner returned to study so she became the main breadwinner so she suddenly saw that there was a way she could make more money… light bulb moment
- She had a great sale to one customer and saw once again that she really was good at this. She re found her sales MOJO
- We found a great partimer, she trained her and they make an awesome team
- And in her words… she loves the brand and the culture that this company has