Insight to Help Boost Store Operations, Customer Service, Profit

By Nicole Leinbcah

Delivering strong daily leadership takes time, energy, and focus. But make no mistake, this investment leads to more engaged and committed employees, ultimately helping boost store operations, customer service, and profit.

It is often easier said than done, and managing employees is never a simple task. With multiple personalities to consider — literally — and various schedules, conflicts, interruptions, responsibilities, and countless other tasks on your never-ending retail to-do list, it can be tough.

The good news? It is not impossible. In fact, with the right perspective, the right approach, and some expert insight to sup­port you along the way, becoming a strong leader for employees is very possible.

Making Employees ‘Great’

S. Chris Edmonds, the founder and CEO of The Purposeful Culture Group, has supported employee leadership since 1995. He is the author or co-author of seven books, including The Culture Engine, and stresses the importance of how being a great leader will create stronger employees.

When it comes to praise, direction, inspiration, and other factors that motivate employees, Edmonds offers insight based on his extensive research and experience. “I’ve been studying great boss behaviors for nearly three decades. Here are five things that my great bosses did. I’m confident they’ll help you lead and inspire your team members, as well. Conveniently enough, they form the acronym GREAT.”

GROWTH – GREAT bosses create avenues for team members to learn new approaches, develop new skills, and gain confidence to put those skills into action in the workplace.

RELATIONSHIPS – GREAT bosses know that positive relationships based on shared values create mutual trust and respect in the workplace. They create and maintain positive relationships with all team mem­bers and expect the same among team members.

EXCELLENCE – GREAT bosses set clear perfor­mance expectations and coach team members to exceed them, every time. High standards consistently met help focus the team’s positive contributions to the company and to their customers.

ACCOUNTABILITY – GREAT bosses know that consequence management is the avenue to high perform­ing, values-aligned teams. They praise and encourage progress and accomplishment of both goals and valued behaviors. They redirect and, if needed, reprimand mis­aligned behaviors and missed performance standards.

TEAMWORK – GREAT bosses know that cooper­ative interaction among team members maintains trust and respect more than competitive interaction does. They create norms that enable sharing of information, skills, and support across their team.

Additionally, Edmonds said that “making these five best practices part of a leader’s daily interactions with team members will take time, energy, and focus. This is something I coach leaders to be intentional about — they need to spend at least half their time observing, listening, and engaging with team mem­bers to ensure the work environment is healthy for everyone.”

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