Staff development – Academy in Action 2021

In part six of our 10-part programme, the Independent Achievers Academy (IAA) and BAT UK visit Imtiyaz Mamode to help him develop and reward his staff


Developing your staff through regular training and praise is key to creating a happy and thriving workforce. Retailers succeeding in staff development make sure team members have clear roles, responsibilities and know what’s expected of them. They also review staff performance regularly and provide feedback.

Imtiyaz Mamode has owned Wych Lane Premier in Gosport, Portsmouth for two and a half years and has become a destination for US products, with customers from across the UK travelling to view and buy his offering.

Imtiyaz almost exclusively manages this range by himself and finds it a challenge to delegate to his team, preventing them from taking ownership of their roles.

Imtiyaz also struggles with structuring his team’s training and development, but with plans to open a second shop, he knows how vital it is to implement this.

How can the IAA and Brad Rogers from BAT UK help?

Why I take part

“Developing my staff means improving my business and ensuring they remain motivated. Our biggest challenge is training our team on the products we stock and the processes we have in place and structuring this in a way that staff can refer to if needed.

“I look forward to uncovering simple ways to keep the team motivated and learning how to implement the right processes and why. I hope I can achieve this by following the action plan.”

IAA advice

Determine roles and responsibilities so staff know what’s expected

Imtiyaz’ staff are the same level and work across different departments, but with plans to open a second shop, he wants to ensure staff know what’s expected of them. What process should he have in place to achieve this?

Brad says: “Defining roles and responsibilities boosts morale, motivation and enables staff to be an expert in their field. This could be a staff member overseeing Imtiyaz’ US range and make them responsible for ordering, merchandising, and ranging, enabling them to take ownership and train others.”

ACTION ➜ Define each role and responsibility to empower staff to take ownership of their job and thrive in different areas

Day-to-day processes to ensure smooth operations

Imtiyaz has high standards but struggles to encourage staff to carry out tasks that need completing frequently, like cleaning. What can Imtiyaz do to encourage his staff to do this on a regular basis?

Brad says: “Some tasks need to be carried out daily, but some are more important than others – and others will need completing on different shifts. Create a list of must-dos, which are tasks that must be finished, the ‘needs to happen’, like delivery, and then the ‘if you have time’ jobs. By doing this, Imtiyaz sets out clear expectations for his team.”

ACTION ➜ Create a list of daily tasks, organising them in order of importance to highlight what’s expected

Review and develop staff to fulfil their potential

Imtiyaz talks to his staff regularly about their development but wants their input on how he can improve different aspects of the business. How can Imtiyaz utilise 1:1 meetings to get the most from his team?

Brad says: “Hosting regular 1:1s is great for developing your staff, recognising hard work and understanding their needs and goals. Having a formal, structured review where Imtiyaz can interact with individual staff members will enable him to understand them and their goals better, highlighting areas of development and gives him the opportunity to praise them.”

ACTION ➜ Create a formal, structured review that includes a plan for development and opportunities for praise and recognition

Partner advice

“Imtiyaz is a passionate retailer who cares about his staff, store, and customers. Developing your team builds morale and motivation and improves performance.

“By following today’s action plan, Imtiyaz will empower staff to take ownership of their roles, driving his business forward.”

Brad Rogers
Field Force Operations Delivery Manager

Find out how the visit went in the follow up feature. Click here

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