My store is open for 96 hours a week, that’s 7am to 9pm Monday – Saturday and 8am to 8pm on Sunday. To ensure that my wife and I don’t become slaves of the business I need to ensure that we have sufficient well trained and motivated employees. I am confident that my team are able to run our shop to the standard that we need because of the training we give them.
We have a team of 1 full time and 7 part time employees who all live in with in the community we serve. We have a minimum staff cover at any time of one on the counter and one on merchandising. All our employees are flexible in the roles they do.
I give all new employees training in till usage. This covers:
- The various methods of payment we accept, cash, debit cards, credit cards, cheques, vouchers etc.
- How we need the the cash to be handled such as change giving, fake notes & coins and how to manage the till draw layout.
- Staff safety at the till and counter so that they understand how to minimise the risk of robbery and what to do if an incident happened.
- We have a scanning system so cover the key part that they play in ensuring that the EPoS system records accurate sales data.
Of course we ensure that our staff understand our standard of customer service.
Beyond this as I said here we use the LicencingPlus programme to ensure that all our employees know about the legal side of sell Age Restricted products.
For shop floor staff our training includes merchandising standards, price labelling, stock rotation, promotions, sales floor cleanliness, customer service and selling. Of course I also cover health & safety issues for all staff.
To ensure that our team keep up to the standards we need and improve where they can I meet each of them for a one to one meeting every three months. These meeting are a two way conversation that not only enables me to discuss their performance, it also give the employee the chance to let me know about issues that effect them. I also produce a regular staff newsletter so that all the team are kept up to date with what is happening.
I also encourage our customers to give us feed back about their experience of using our business and good or bad let our employees know what customers are saying. When particular employees are mentioned I always talk to the team member to let them know, praise them when I get good comments and retrain about the specific issue if the customer had a poor experience.
There are areas of the business where some of my team want to take their knowledge further and we offer them NVQ level training that we buy in from RetailPlus. So far these have covered customer service and merchandising.
As I said at the start of this post my wife and I want to manage our store, not be a slave to it. We want to have the time to develop the strategies that will deliver a sound and profitable business now and in the future.
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