I knew when we set out to develop our store there would be challenges – and challenges there have been.

Our challenges have been caused by lack of knowledgemanaging the costs, and the weather.

It’s getting hot

The very hot weather at the start of July happened at the same time our new chiller cabinets were going to be commissioned. I am sure many convenience store owners will have had challenges with their refrigeration during hot days. On this occasion a lot of retailers around Sheffield had problems with fridges and their emergencies had an impact on our installation.

Getting the best range

The team at Parfetts arranged for us to have launch support for our chilled range with Nisa. Kevin, one of their specialist category business development managers, will be visiting my store regularly for the next few months to ensure that our range and merchandising plan is the best it can be.

On his first visit, we had the problem of having a lot of empty space in our chiller cabinet and no cold air flowing through them. Kevin demonstrated a remarkable display of product and category knowledge by merchandising the entire space with no stock. I was truly amazed.

The summer temperatures cooled and our fridges got commissioned.

Money matters

This development is the largest investment that my wife and I have undertaken. I am learning many new skills during this project, the biggest being managing the money. There are a number of cost elements to any project; mine includes advisors and fees, builders, shop-fittings and stock. Our funds are from our own resources and a loan.

My most important asset is my reputation, so ensuring my bills get paid is paramount action for me. Following our cash balances and ensuring that cash gets into the store’s current account on time is proving to be an important part of doing the development. I have found that undertaking a daily check on my cash balance has ensured that we have enough funds not only to cover the development, but the ongoing business too.

Catch up with all the stages of Jai’s journey here