Now that we've put a wrap on 2021, and before we really dive into 2022, it's time to catch your breath and reflect on where we are after 2021.
Perhaps like us you believe that fundamental and enduring changes have occurred; no one can operate on "auto-pilot" anymore. All of us have to learn new processes, and form new habits. What's it called? Oh yes; "embracing change." Lots of it.
That's why it is a very opportune time, particularly for owners, to have a very active Q&A session with themselves.
It's time to revisit the most basic question facing owners: "WHY are we working so hard for this business to survive?" Or, to put it another way, "What constitutes success?" For the business? And for me, the owner?
Undoubtedly you felt you had answers to those questions when you first started your business. You called them goals. For instance:
But it's now 2022. Fundamental and enduring changes have occurred. What it takes to achieve your notion of "success" for your stores may be very different!
In fact, this could be a very opportune time to make really big changes, not just minor adjustments! Essentially new ways of pursuing and realizing your basic goals.
So, give yourself permission – and have some fun – reflecting on these Big Picture ideas.
In 2022, what does "success" look like for you? Then, what might have to change at your stores to enable you to reach that success?
Like the pandemic, this kind of opportunity comes around very rarely. Don't miss out!
Being the owner of a business always has pluses and minuses. Usually the pluses outnumber the minuses. But maybe not so much right now.
If you feel that way, you've got a lot of company. Ugh! But hang on; maybe we have a perspective that you'll find useful and timely. It's called "Misery loves company!"
First, consider where we are. Early July, just past a nice Fourth of July Holiday weekend. The summer and early fall look promising, both for getting "back to normal" and for some leisure hours in the hammock. Nice, eh?
But there are those dark clouds out there.
There's little that any of us can do to address the public health crisis of the pandemic. Its impact on people and businesses is a widespread and major jolt, akin to the shocks of 9/11 and the 2008-09 economic meltdown.
Even as painful and disruptive as the pandemic is at this moment, we must remind ourselves that it will subside. It's not whether it will subside, just when.
But all of us are going to have to deal with the ensuing economic situation, and its effects on our sales, our customers, our employees.
These are difficult times for us all. Retailing in particular is under enormous stress. Many feel like there are no good choices.
But, there are good decisions. And The ROI is dedicated to helping you be able to make those good decisions for yourself.
"Of course I want it today. If I wanted it tomorrow, I would have come in tomorrow."
That's what we call "retail time." Retailers are comfortable with that pace; they enjoy the variety; they welcome the need to change and adjust.
But, instead of just keeping life interesting, 2020 seems to have gone overboard in bringing changes and disruption to us all. The triple pandemic of the virus, the economy, and the civil unrest. And oh yes, it's also an election year. Enough already, right?
We think the most challenging part of this is the effect on our sense of time.
As we approach April of 2021, the question for retailers is "Now what?" Having survived 2020, in many cases on guts and guile, we must now focus on how best to survive 2021 and beyond.
As having one foot on the dock and one foot in the boat, the future of retailers in that Red Zone is not a pretty picture.
Granted, there is much talk about the expectation that "convenience" will become a major factor for shoppers going forward. And we don't disagree.
Here's the deal: We see that this has brought heightened awareness of two different retail strategies: Convenience Retailing versus Destination Retailing.
Independent retailers are renowned for being "technology laggards." Those days have to end!
As you wait and worry about re-opening your stores, the state of the economy, the health and safety of your family and friends and employees, here is an idea of what you might do with some of your found time.
When you do re-open, be sure that you are actually in the 21st Century! Put your energy, your resilience, and your flexibility to use, focusing on improving your IT.
The goal: When you re-open, be even better than your competition! And more relevant to your shoppers.
Every day, there are all too many headlines of things outside our control.
The drumbeat of news about these events is relentless. And wearing.
While retailers are notably resiliant and optimistic, there IS a limit to how much uncertainty one can continue to take.
Then we discovered that there is a name for all this: VUCA.
Still less than $1 a day! 👀