Effective and efficient management is necessary for retail businesses to run according to plan. Managers need to constantly improve themselves to keep up with the ever-changing demands of the business. Leadership is so important, especially during busy seasons. Use these steps to come up with a plan that works for you. Being a manager is no easy task, but with a proper plan in action, you can make it run smoothly, increasing sales, decreasing loss, and improving the happiness of your employees and customers.
Communication is the most important skill that a manager can possess. Communicating with customers, employees, other managers, and owners is essential to running a retail store or boutique. Make sure that you are always working on your listening skills. It's a great way to earn respect, soak up useful knowledge, and diffuse tense situations.
People like to know that they've been heard. If someone comes to you with an idea of how to better run the business, you should listen. It doesn't matter if it's the lowest employee on the totem pole, you still need to listen and give the employee the attention that they deserve. After all, they are the ones on the front line, dealing with customers and store problems directly. You can learn a lot from someone who is in that position.
Listening to customers is also a valuable practice. If there is a problem and a customer is irate, then you need to pay attention. Don't quickly try to fix the problem. Make sure that they have had their say. Many times, if you just listen, the customer gets their gripe off their chest and will calm down. Identify with their concern by being understanding, sympathetic and empathetic before you start rattling off solutions. Make sure that their feelings are validated and you'll go far in dealing with irate customers.
Besides making employees and customers happy, managers also have to make sure that the business itself is running smoothly. This requires some thought and planning. Think one to two months into the future. Create goals for employees and for yourself. Promotions need to be well thought out before you implement them. You can't just slap a sale sign on a garment rack and be done.
Think about what your customers will see and feel when they walk into the store. Are they excited about the products that they see? If not, you will need to update your retail displays and arrange things in a way that make them more interesting and exciting. Advertise your sales before you have them and be prepared for the extra shoppers. You will need extra inventory, possibly extra staff, and your clothing racks need to be kept full.
Being a good manager requires extra work on yourself, not just your store, so commit yourself to research and implementation. You'll see a difference in no time.
John Garvey is on the staff of Only Garment Racks, a leading online source of garment racks including clothing racks. Find a high quality garment rack or clothing rack at