From The Co-Founders


Tips, Tactics & Strategic Insights and Commentary
from The ROI Co-Founders, Pat Johnson and Dick Outcalt
Outcalt & Johnson: Retail Strategists LLC; Retail Turnaround Experts

"Let's Just Wait and See." Au contraire!

Are we alone, or have you also noticed it?

Everything seems to be kind of stalled right now. Maybe that's for good reason. Or maybe this period of malaise is a great opportunity for the bold. Whatever, it seems weird.

Look at these examples: 

  • Sure, now the Silicon Valley Bank has been sold. Finally. But the fragileness of the entire banking system hasn't been corrected. So, if a retailer needs something from a lender, expect to hear "Let's just wait to see how this shakes out."
  • On the world stage, all sorts of powerful players are jostling for attention and position. It can be unsettling. Whether it's Russia, China, North Korea, Brazil, Israel or whomever, it's happening daily. And it seems to have many observers saying, "Let's just wait to see how this plays out."
  • And then there's the star PR magician, Donald Trump. He's the best at riveting attention on "Let's just wait to see what I do next!"

You may not agree, but we feel like our customers, our employees, our vendors, and the entirety of the retail industry is paralyzed, timid, and held hostage by the accumulated outside events. Retailing seems to be in a wait and see moment. 

It reminds us of the old saw,

Some people make things happen.

Other people watch things happen.

Still others say 'Uhh, what happened?!'" 


This won't surprise those of you who know us well, but we see this period of "hesitation" as perhaps an ideal time for boldness.  

If your operation has a strong balance sheet – by that we mean a low debt-to-worth ratio – maybe now is a time to seize opportunities you've been considering. Maybe now, while everyone else is shy, is a great time to make a loud noise. 

There is a time and place for all us contrarians. This may be one of them.

What do you think?

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