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A manager’s guide to a profitable holiday season

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Over the coming weeks managers, especially in the retail industry, will be under pressure to meet the demands of holiday shoppers. During this time of organized chaos, every manager’s skills will be put to the test. Your success this season depends on how well you know your team and your ability to get the best work from your staff in the worst possible situations.{{more}} Are you prepared? At the end of the day, will you and your staff leave feeling exhausted, but still carry a sense of team and accomplishment, or will your staff be ready to overthrow you? Here are a few tips to avoid a mutiny.

Lead by example.

If you want your employees to smile and be courteous with customers, then, as the manager, you need to smile and be courteous with your employees first. Your employees should be your #1 customers.

Give clear, concise directions.

Errors often occur when employees are unsure of the request being made. Encourage them to ask questions if they are not clear.

Be a motivator.

Employees really want someone who believes in their abilities and can positively move them to produce exceptional work, especially in high-pressured situations like the holidays. Give compliments throughout the day.

Focus on the solution, not the problem.

Errors will occur when everyone is rushed. This is not the time to play the blame game. Address the problem, and then find the solution quickly.

Listen.

Your frontline staff really is the genius in your organization. Listen to opinions; take seriously suggestions to improve workflow and processes.

Address problem employees.

Employees who refuse to work or are rude to co-workers and customers should be addressed immediately. Failure to act swiftly makes it difficult to have high employee morale.

Give good service.

This is one area in which we are still lacking. Encourage your staff to greet the customer and ask the customer how you can help. Have your staff actually stick around with a pleasant attitude to answer any questions the customer may have. Great service is key to a healthy bottom line.

Sir John Harvey-Jones puts it best, “It is the responsibility of the leadership and the management to give opportunities and put demands on people, which enable them to grow as a human being in the work environment. ” This applies especially during the holiday season.

Karen Hinds is “The Workplace Success Expert.”
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