Retailing Takes A Day to Learn, A Lifetime To Master!
“Complexity is the refuge of the unsure.”
As retail potentially falters under the weight of hyper-digital change, competitive din, a very complex and confusing retail environment begins to emerge. Have you experienced the folly of this awful sensation? Have you witnessed executive retail leadership creating so much complexity inside the business that unwashed, inexperienced employees declare: “I have no idea or information on what is happening or why but surely all this complexity means we are on the right growth track"?
And from the other end of the hallway, behind a half closed door we hear the mature sagacity of one simple word: “not!” In retail, as complexity increases customer satisfaction decreases. In retail, as customer access to cloud based information and content increases, customer satisfaction decreases. As a consumer, the more you know, the more you want, the more you are determined to get extra return on your hard-earned dollar.
Unlike retailing, poker is a fairly simple game of incomplete information. Poker is a card game played by two or more people who bet on the value of the hands dealt them. Poker is best known as a solitary art form of one versus the table, versus a short stack of bluffing competitors. Retailing is very, very different from poker. Retailing is not about bluffing competitors (especially as all products and prices are digitally ubiquitous) but rather is the direct sale of goods and services to shoppers known as buyers.
Retailers are part of an ecosystem, purchasing products in large quantities from suppliers, then selling in smaller quantities to consumers to gain a profit. Retailing is all about attracting, converting, uniting and retaining as many brand manufacturers and buying consumers who actually want to play together and want to profit from each other’s experience. Unlike poker, where there are luck, finesse and bluffing and only one player at the table wins, retailing allows for all of us to win, if we are smart enough to constantly change, stay away from complexity and deliver a simple and highly valuable buying experience to the market.
As we know, the lodestar of excellence in retailing is to create a substantial manufacturer, consumer and retailer trilogy, all running and winning together. Retailing is tied to a multitude of permutations, all beginning and ending through a profitable supply chain relationship.