Re­tail Em­ploy­ees: Real Brand Am­bas­sadors Mak­ing a Diljer­ence in Busi­ness Growth

Re­tail­ers need to ac­knowl­edge that the de­mand for com­pet­i­tive diljer­en­ti­a­tion, pronjta­bil­ity and need to de­liver faster and more Njex­i­bly to cus­tomers to­tally de­pends on the re­tail stalj. To keep the mo­tive of the busi­ness in­tact, re­tail­ers need to en­gage and

Images Retail - - RETAIL EMPLOYEES' DAY - – By San­deep Ku­mar

Since its in­cep­tion, the Re­tail In­dus­try has been ded­i­cated fully ‘to and for’ cus­tomers. The ul­ti­mate agenda of the in­dus­try re­volves around its cus­tomers. The sole fo­cus is to bring in more con­sumers and gen­er­ate more profit. In its ini­tial days, re­tail used to be a one-man-busi­ness. Slowly as the busi­ness grew, this one man – usu­ally the owner – started look­ing for helpers and as­so­ci­ates on tem­po­rary, and then per­ma­nent, ba­sis. As the busi­ness be­came more or­gan­ised, own­ers looked for man­agers and ex­ec­u­tives.

The busi­ness grew in size and grad­u­ally took the form of a big chain. The con­cept of re­tail staff thus came into ex­is­tence.

Valu­ing Em­ploy­ees

Un­doubt­edly, the cus­tomer is king, but the re­tail staff is the army that keeps the king sat­is­fied. If the army is not happy and work­ing prop­erly, the king can­not be happy. The re­tail busi­ness in­volves huge amounts of in­vest­ment and it is very im­por­tant to value ev­ery pil­lar of the busi­ness. As re­tail­ers in­vest to in­form an un­der­stand cus­tomers bet­ter, some tend to for­get to in­form and un­der­stand the em­ploy­ees.

Re­tail­ers need to re­alise that their workforce is as cen­tral to brand suc­cess as their cus­tomers. They must en­sure that the staff plays an ac­tive and pos­i­tive role in build­ing brand re­la­tion­ships with cus­tomers. They need to ac­knowl­edge that the de­mand for com­pet­i­tive dif­fer­en­ti­a­tion, profitabil­ity and need to de­liver faster and more flex­i­bly to cus­tomers to­tally de­pends on the re­tail staff. To keep the mo­tive of the busi­ness in­tact, re­tail­ers need to en­gage and build a great re­la­tion­ship with their em­ploy­ees.

Happy Em­ploy­ees = Pronjtable Brand

Rep­u­ta­tion: A happy em­ployee con­trib­utes to the rep­u­ta­tion of the brand. Whether a brand has hun­dreds/thou­sands of em­ploy­ees, each one is in di­rect touch with the fam­ily and friends about their em­ploy­ment ex­pe­ri­ence from time to time. A bad day at work or a cathar­tic sound­ing-off about a bad boss can quickly be shared with hun­dreds of so­cial friends – with an ev­er­p­re­sent risk of go­ing vi­ral. An un­happy em­ployee is a brand am­bas­sador that re­tail­ers ne­glect at their peril.

ROI: Re­tail staff is the first point of in­ter­ac­tion with the cus­tomers. S/he is the one who cre­ates the first im­pres­sion and also is di­rectly in­volved with the sales. He is the first per­son to read and judge the mind of the cus­tomer, there­fore mak­ing

the cus­tomer con­vince to buy the prod­uct. So it is very im­por­tant for the re­tail­ers that their em­ploy­ees work for the brand with full ded­i­ca­tion and en­ergy.

Re­ac­tions: The em­ploy­ment ex­pe­ri­ence is trans­mit­ted to your cus­tomers by staff through the look on their face, their speed of re­sponse, the tone of their voice and the ser­vice they pro­vide. It doesn’t mat­ter if they are cus­tomer-fac­ing. Slug­gish ware­house teams and slow, dis­in­ter­ested ad­min­is­tra­tors di­rectly af­fect your ful­fill­ment speed and whether you keep brand prom­ises.

Em­ployee Suc­cess For­mula

In to­day’s re­tail busi­ness, main­tain­ing bril­liant brand ex­pe­ri­ence for cus­tomers de­pends on ev­ery in­ter­ac­tion be­ing easy and ef­fort­less. Again, a sat­is­fied em­ployee will help in for­ward­ing the brand’s rep­u­ta­tion a lot. Build­ing/ In­no­va­tive

Re­la­tion­ship: No em­ploy­ees work for free and they all get paid their dues ev­ery month, but there are em­ploy­ees who also want bet­ter man­age­ment/staff re­la­tion­ships apart from a salary. They want a job which gives them essence and re­spect, not just money. En­gage­ment, re­la­tion­ship build­ing, and trusted com­mu­nity are the key to happy re­tail as­so­ci­ates. Em­ploy­ees also ex­pect their employers’ at­ten­tion, time­li­ness, re­spon­sive­ness and flex­i­bil­ity in the same man­ner as they do to the con­sumers.

In­ter­nal Com­mu­ni­ca­tion in Re­tail is Hard but

Im­por­tant: Com­mu­ni­ca­tion in big chains typ­i­cally trav­els top-down. De­ci­sions are taken by the top of­fi­cials but com­mu­ni­cat­ing them to­wards the lower end has to be done in a per­sua­sive way. Bad in­ter­nal com­mu­ni­ca­tion has a but­ter­fly ef­fect in re­tail. All it takes is for one de­tail to be mis-com­mu­ni­cated and con­se­quently, stores around the world lose em­ploy­ees re­sult­ing in clients and busi­ness. This ef­fect is even more harm­ful in large com­pa­nies with great di­ver­sity and a global pres­ence. Dif­fer­ent lan­guages, time-zones, and hi­er­ar­chies make spread­ing in­for­ma­tion even more dif­fi­cult and com­pli­cated. And with front­line em­ploy­ees spend­ing most of their time on the sales floor, op­por­tu­ni­ties for train­ing and brief­ings are rare, if not com­pletely ne­glected. As per a sur­vey by Deloitte and Face­book, 77 per­cent of com­pa­nies be­lieve that an email is no longer a vi­able tool for ef­fec­tive com­mu­ni­ca­tion. With that in mind, re­tail­ers must be more con­scious of the com­mu­ni­ca­tions chan­nels they are us­ing to in­ter­act with shop­pers, es­pe­cially when it comes to man­ager-to-em­ployee in­ter­ac­tions or sched­ul­ing. Em­pow­er­ing Em­ploy­ees through Knowl­edge: Em­ploy­ees need to un­der­stand cus­tomers at a deep level: they need rich and up-to-date cus­tomer in­for­ma­tion at points of in­ter­ac­tion such as in the call cen­ter or on the shop floor. They must be knowl­edge­able about their com­pany too: a cul­ture of greater trans­parency helps sus­tain a pos­i­tive em­ployee ex­pe­ri­ence. It can range from en­sur­ing reg­u­lar­ity of man­age­ment com­mu­ni­ca­tions to mak­ing in­for­ma­tion more avail­able on de­mand through apps that work­ers can ac­cess via mo­bile de­vices.

Cel­e­brat­ing Re­tail Em­ploy­ees’ Day

There are re­tail­ers and com­pa­nies that treat their em­ploy­ees well. In a way to raise their brand value and profitabil­ity, they also make their cus­tomers know about it. Re­tail­ers pro­vide timely ben­e­fits to their em­ploy­ees in form of higher salary, bonus and perks, planned tours and pack­ages for the em­ploy­ees and their em­ploy­ees, by pro­vid­ing them in­sur­ance and solid cover in dif­fer­ent ar­eas, such health, ed­u­ca­tion, house etc.

Re­tail Em­ploy­ees’ Day (RED) is one such ac­com­plish­ment as far as em­ploy­ees’ con­tri­bu­tion

THE CUS­TOMER IS KING, BUT THE RE­TAIL STAFF IS THE ARMY THAT KEEPS THE KING SAT­IS­FIED. IF THE ARMY IS NOT HAPPY AND WORK­ING PROP­ERLY, THE KING CAN­NOT BE HAPPY. THE RE­TAIL BUSI­NESS IN­VOLVES HUGE AMOUNTS OF IN­VEST­MENT AND IT IS VERY IM­POR­TANT TO VALUE EV­ERY PIL­LAR OF THE BUSI­NESS.

is con­cerned. An ini­tia­tive con­cep­tu­al­ized by TRRAIN (Trust for Re­tail­ers & Re­tail As­so­ci­ates of In­dia) and sup­ported by RAI (Re­tail­ers As­so­ci­a­tion of In­dia) in

In­dia, since 2011, ev­ery year De­cem­ber 12 is cel­e­brated as Re­tail Em­ploy­ees’ Day (RED), to bring the re­tail em­ploy­ees into fo­cus and thank them for their un­tir­ing ef­forts. It is an at­tempt to en­cour­age employers as well as cus­tomers to rec­og­nize the ef­forts of re­tail as­so­ci­ates across the coun­try.

The day aims at cre­at­ing aware­ness and em­pa­thy for their jobs and lives and the sig­nif­i­cant role they play in the lives of the cus­tomer. Around 500 re­tail­ers and 80 shop­ping cen­tres across In­dia have come to­gether to thank their em­ploy­ees on this day. With over two mil­lion peo­ple cel­e­brat­ing it, this ini­tia­tive by TRRAIN has seen tremen­dous suc­cess.

The full day is ded­i­cated to the em­ployee’s ded­i­ca­tion and con­tri­bu­tion to­wards the brand and the in­dus­try. Few re­tail­ers cel­e­brate it on a grand scale where as oth­ers keep it small but fully fo­cused on the mo­tive. RED has found wide­spread ac­cep­tance across re­tail­ers and brands of all sizes across ge­ogra­phies. Plan­ning for the event starts over one month in ad­vance lead­ing to the buzz be­ing cre­ated one week be­fore the day. Most com­pa­nies have a sep­a­rate bud­get crafted to carry out ac­tiv­i­ties on this day. It has be­come an oc­ca­sion for em­ploy­ees from HQS and stores of dif­fer­ent brands to cel­e­brate to­gether.

In 2013, Re­tail Em­ploy­ees’ Day in­spired Boyner Group in Turkey to cel­e­brate the day with its 12000 em­ploy­ees lead­ing the en­tire coun­try to take up the cel­e­bra­tions in 2014. About 2 mil­lion peo­ple from the Turkey re­tail in­dus­try cel­e­brated Re­tail Em­ploy­ees Day, mak­ing this sim­ple idea a truly global phe­nom­e­non. The buzz around Re­tail Em­ploy­ees’ Day reached newer heights in 2015 with recog­ni­tion re­ceived from the min­istries of cen­tral and state gov­ern­ments of In­dia. A let­ter from Naren­dra Modi, Prime Min­is­ter of In­dia, con­grat­u­lat­ing TRRAIN & the In­dian re­tail in­dus­try on this joy­ous oc­ca­sion added tremen­dous mo­men­tum to the day. And the trend con­tin­ues to grow pop­u­lar. The event also re­ceived sup­port from brand am­bas­sadors across mul­ti­ple brands. Top celebri­ties from the In­dian film In­dus­try & the In­dian cricket team took to so­cial me­dia to thank all the re­tail as­so­ci­ates on RED.

Mul­ti­ple em­ployee en­gage­ment ac­tiv­i­ties in­clude red car­pet mu­si­cal wel­come for the em­ploy­ees (invit­ing their fam­i­lies as well) along with games like mu­si­cal chairs, tal­ent hunt, fash­ion show and other ac­tiv­i­ties are con­ducted. This is fol­lowed by cake cut­ting cer­e­mony and lunch mostly. The big re­tail­ers/brand who has a na­tional pres­ence also con­ducts cricket and foot­ball tour­na­ments for their em­ploy­ees in dif­fer­ent city and zone.

Con­clu­sion

The re­tail in­dus­try in In­dia has come forth as one of the most dy­namic and fast paced in­dus­tries with sev­eral play­ers en­ter­ing the mar­ket. There­fore it is very im­por­tant for re­tail­ers to re­spect and treat their em­ployee base well, valu­ing and ac­knowl­edg­ing them as the face of their brand, their true brand am­bas­sadors who make a pow­er­ful dif­fer­ence in busi­ness growth.

THE DAY AIMS AT CRE­AT­ING AWARE­NESS AND EM­PA­THY FOR THEIR JOBS AND LIVES AND THE SIG­NIF­I­CANT ROLE THEY PLAY IN THE LIVES OF THE CUS­TOMER. AROUND 500 RE­TAIL­ERS AND 80 SHOP­PING CEN­TRES ACROSS IN­DIA HAVE COME TO­GETHER TO THANK THEIR EM­PLOY­EES ON THIS DAY.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.