Keeping your employees focused, on track and productive can help your store increase sales and improve customer service. Keep your staffers in the loop about expectations and fluctuating duties and responsibilities. This encourages them to perform their jobs more effectively, which increases productivity, improves the store's business and leads to a healthier bottom line.
Every position in your store should have a job description that outlines expectations for that role. Discuss the job descriptions with employees at the time of hiring and in subsequent orientation and training, and address and reemphasize expectations during performance evaluations. This ensures staffers know what is expected of them. If you have an employee handbook, incorporate the job descriptions to create a useful reference guide.
Down Time Task Lists
Store employees may occasionally find themselves with down time when there are no customers. Compile a list of tasks to perform when business is slow. For example, direct staffers to ensure that merchandise on shelves is facing outward and properly aligned. Ask them to place orders with suppliers or wipe down counters. Many retailers have a list of tasks to accomplish each day, with each assigned to a specific employee. These might include cleaning the break-room refrigerator, restocking supplies in the restroom or marking down clearance items.
Set aside a few minutes before the start of each shift to give employees a rundown of expectations for the day. For example, if you’re running a sale, remind staffers what products are included and whether customers need coupons or a reward card to participate. Give everyone a heads-up on the additional consumer traffic anticipated. This will help employees prepare, manage their time and ensure customers are taken care of in short order. Keeping staffers apprised of daily activities in the store prevents lost work time if they must stop what they’re doing to ask for clarification and direction.
Don't just monitor employees and be a task master. Encourage them to be more self-motivating and productive. Praise them when they are outgoing and take the initiative to do additional tasks without being asked. Create incentive plans to ensure high-achieving staffers are rewarded. Ask for input about how systems and processes could be better run, and solicit suggestions about what would motivate workers to step up their games.
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