Updated: Jan 11
Retail performance; the mind is triggered to think about UPT, Sales, Conversion, Mystery Shop, Audit, Shrinkage, ATV, Payroll and more.
Now think about performance, the NOUN: an act of presenting a play concert, or other form of entertainment.
Many mid to senior management fail to see on a daily basis the performance habits instilled into their teams. Eyes in the field are few and far between, the disconnect bares a heavy load.
One performance habit could be this "let me know if you need any help" how many times will a consumer hear this in one single shopping trip? Ten times, maybe even ten times in your flagship store!
It is insincere and quite frankly, really boring - few customers want to hear it, so stop saying it.
Retail employees need to know how to personally create a customers happiness for the moments they are wandering inside your store.
The influence your retail staff have during this time is powerful.
When we start to shift the teams mind into a place of performance, you see a lightbulb moment happen! All of a sudden, service and selling become easy and enjoyable.
It is time to empower your staff to create and consistently practise these essential performance skills so that your customers leave with a sense of "wow, that was incredible"
You want your service offering to stand out, but until now, it hasn't quite happened.
Here are the top performance techniques to build your retail teams knowledge to have the biggest impact on your store profitability and retail staff confidence - which is grossly underrated when it comes to hiring sales people.
If retailers hired aspiring actors, that'd be very interesting...!
Let's get into building your team performance - which builds brand fans that ensures your stores are thriving for many years to come.
1. Imposter syndrome
Approaching strangers doesn't come naturally to many people. Yet brands expect every team member to carry this out, daily, as if it were nothing.
One could be misguided into assuming 'that is their job so get on with it'
Does your retail training cover this topic? Do your people know exactly how to overcome this and more importantly act it out consistently?
If they did, we wouldn't be seeing groups of associates gathered chatting or hiding behind a task to avoid eye contact. Confidence is created when you get uncomfortable and overcoming imposter syndrome requires self reflection - something almost no-one is willing to do.
2. Identifying your sales character
This performance technique is particularly useful with retail staff new to the industry or working in a new niche. Moving out of premium fashion into luxury bags for example.
One cannot experience the same sales success if you continue to show up and sell as who you were. Different brand, different customers require an evolved mindset, thus, approach.
It is important to show up as your new self inside the brand.
This is easier done when creating a sales character.
In our world class experience workshop, we talk through creating this, and everyone gets to meet themselves at a very different level.
3. Gestures and voice tonality
80% of all communication is non-verbal. In retail, it can be upto 90%!
Think about this - MOST the things your sales teams are saying are not even considered during the sales process.
The customer is engaged in their own thoughts, they might be half listening. The customer is looking at the product, thinking about the event to wear the piece, thinking if the piece is in budget, wondering if they should post onto Instagram reels or Tiktok first.
The customer does not care about all the features, so stop bombarding them and PLAY to their tune.
Optimal retail performance gestures make your customer feel alert and comfortable.
Leading your customers to a decision through open body language, friendly facial expressions and voice pitch will win you more sales, daily.
When in a state of play, we uptake new skills faster. Adopting a playful persona during your retail performance will enable retail teams to have fun in the process. This means happiness, which will spread to your customers.
Each morning, or as often as possible make time to role-play customer scenarios. Retail staff are literally putting on a 5 minute performance and as a reward for their great efforts you get lunch for the most engaging or funniest role-play.
Share it with your leadership team or with the region. Raise the industry standards higher!
Laughter and fun create a relaxed environment, leading to improved job satisfaction and performance in your staff. This, in turn, creates a better atmosphere for customers and more sales for your store.
This is your strategy for success
Retail is the 5th highest ranking industry to experience staff burnout from stress.
Your job must serve to reduce this risk - by building teams who can morph into a state of personal retail performance.
To overcome challenging customers, to think fast with conflicts, to squeeze enjoyment out of each long day, to build personal resilience and ultimately add profits to your brand.
Workshops with The International Retail Academy are offered virtually, face to face in group settings or inside of your chosen store.
The right retail training is an income generator, not an expense.