There is no getting away from how challenging this last year has been for all of us in the retail world. It seems like we have one restriction after another, customers scared to shop, rules changing by the day, and by the time a customer does walk in your door, you may be so exhausted, annoyed and have so many things on your mind, you may not give that customer the wonderful experience you want to. Following are some simple ways to get yourself and your staff in the right mindset to provide the shopping experience you want every one of your customers to have when visiting your store – a great one!
Focus on the Positive. This is choice everyone makes each time a situation or even a sentence is presented to you. Even if it is a terrible situation or unbelievably bad news, think of what is positive about it. It might take a moment or two to come up with something, but there can be something positive in every response you make. Then you leave the environment in a positive place. "Always turn a negative situation into a positive situation." - Michael Jordan
Have respect for everything and everyone in your store. It should be easy to have respect for your physical environment, you created it! But sometimes locations can get messy, dusty, unorganized or need to simply have the shelves restocked. Have respect for what you have created! Make sure the inside and the outside of your store looks like it did the day you opened. Have respect for all the people in your retail world also. If you have a problem with an employee, manage it with a respectful attitude. Don’t discuss it with others unless they are part of the situation. Treat all your customers with enthusiasm and a helpful attitude. Make sure they feel welcome and appreciated. They should leave your store thinking they will be back sooner rather than later.
Treat a bad situation as an opportunity to learn. Learn something about the expectation of your customer that you didn’t know before. Learn how to solve their problem. Learn what to do to prevent this problem from happening again. Learn how to handle any situation with a positive and respectful attitude. The goal is to have the problem be solved so that it is a win for your customer and a win for you.
Live in the moment. It is hard to be fully present, and positive if while doing task A, you are thinking about task B, C, and D. This lesson seems to be easier to learn as we get older, as we simply can’t multitask like we use to. But just because you can do it, doesn’t mean you should! Your customer, your employee, the task you are powering through, all will benefit if you are 100% present at that moment. You will be more positive, and the shopping experience will be a more enjoyable one for your customer.
Smile and laugh. These two things seem to have been missing from the last year or so. Choose to smile. You can still see that a person if smiling, mask or not. It makes you realize people smile with their eyes. And find something to laugh about. You may have to find something funny on Youtube. You may need to spend a few moments with your dog. You may need to find a podcast that make you laugh. Laughter is so great for you in so many ways, is catchy and lightens the atmosphere. Milton Berle said, "Laughter is an instant vacation." And who doesn’t need to go on vacation?