Study shows benefits of managers being in stores

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Employees less likely to leave and more likely to toe the line.

A study by management consultancy firm AT Kearney has shown that, when managers spend more time in their stores, employees are more likely to conform to company initiatives and less likely to leave.

The study found that employee turnover fell by 10 percent when managers spent more than 75 percent of their time in store. Also, retailers that regularly communicate with store employees about objectives, goals, and store performance, and those that recognise high-performing employees, have lower turnover rates compared to other retailers.

When introducing new initiatives, the study showed that 88 percent of leading retailers run pilot programmes in selected stores for more than half of them, and that these programmes typically only last four weeks. Piloting more programmes allows retailers to focus on implementing “high potential” initiatives. The best-performing retailers concentrate on correct training methods and introduce only one or two new initiatives per quarter.

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The study surveyed 53 leading retailers across a wide variety of sectors – including apparel, electronics, grocery and health and beauty. Retailers from across the world participated.

AT Kearney partner and leader of the study Dean Hillier said: “Store operation issues are always important but, in the unprecedented economic conditions experienced over the last 18 months, these issues become critical.”

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