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  e-ret@iler newsletter
March 2010
Volume 11 Issue 4


Profits_Plus Solutions
Tom Shay Photo
Article of the Month

Store without an owner
Tom Shay

The theme in this month's e-retailer newsletter is personal management; your getting your staff to actively participate in the operations of the business. More importantly, it is about your letting go of many of the tasks.

The article of the month is one about getting the staff to take active parts and responsibility for the business.

Remember when your parent said to you, 'let go and I will catch you'? The same is true for your business. Let go and see what your people can do. Of course they are going to make mistakes, but how is that micro-management working for you?

Click on Article of the Month to read this article.

Book of the Month

Linchpin - are you indispensable?
by Seth Godin

Just picked up this book at Powell's bookstore in Portland, OR. I am reading it as I travel this week and like it after having just read a couple of pages.

It tells us what is wrong. Why we have settled for common help and allowed it to be a part of our management style.

I think it is worth the money and that you will get a lot from it.

We have more books to suggest for your reading. Click on Book Referralto visit this page on our site.

e-ret@iler Conversations

Hey, we are blogging, tweeting, facebooking and invite your participation.

Visit our e-ret@iler conversations, find the category of interest and post your comments, questions or best practices. You may also go directly to one of our categories by clicking on one of the links below.

  1. Advertising
  2. Employee Issues
  3. Financial Management
  4. General Discussion
  5. Merchandising
  6. Sales Techniques
  7. Vendor Issues

And you can follow my daily posts on Twitter at ftomshay

Contact Us

Profits Plus
P.O. Box 1577
St. Petersburg, FL
33731 USA
(727) 464-2182 Voice
(727) 898-3179 Fax

Send Tom an e-mail:
Send our staff an e-mail:

Seminar Logo
Business Advisory

Upcoming dates:

OK. So you all know about St. Patrick's Day being March 17, but did you know that Mom and Pop Business Owner's Day is March 29. I hear people saying that 'mom and pop' is a negative reference to small business; I think it is a badge of honor.

National Agriculture Day is March 20; National Agriculture Week is 14-20 . I am not sure why this event has both a day and a week, but a lot of you that read this newsletter can promote this event. I am thinking of all of you in the equestrian trade, those in the nursery business and those in the farm stores.

You can tell your customers about the part they, and you, play in the rich traditions and history of farming.


Why doesn't Reno walk?

During the e-retailer conversations conference call for February, I talked about the problem with 'the squeeky wheel gets the oil'. Relating this to the staff that most of us have, I asked how much attention was being paid to problem people as compared to the attention paid to those that are doing exceptionally well at their job.

My friend Reno is one of these. I like doing business with Reno. His boss knows he is one that pays attention to the customers. There are many letters, including mine, that tell the owner that Reno is the reason they do business with the owner. Without Reno being there, I would likely leave.

I listen to Reno and I hear a person that is not appreciated. During the downturn of the economy, he has even taken a sizable pay cut. I think they need to instead get rid of a few of the non-performing employees.

Why doesn't Reno walk away from this place and go where he is appreciated? I don't know. But what if Reno worked for you and he left you? Where would your business be then? Could you replace him? He needs to be recognized by his employer just like he is recognized by his customers.


We had a great e-retailer conversations conference call this week. Our discussion dealt with our having the answers for our employees and why that is a problem for people like us. When you give the answer to someone, they will come back with the question for another problem. If you missed the conference call you can listen to it online or download the mp3 file. Here is a link to the directory page of all of our previous conference calls.

E-retailer conversations conference calls

For March we are anticipating the e-retailer conversation conference call is going to be on Thursday, March 18. The topic is identifying the right customer for your business - the one you can make the most money with.


Internet Tip of The Month

Space productivity ratio

Ever rent space for your business? What is the measurement used when quoting the price for the space you are renting? 'Per square foot' is how business space is priced. You pay per square foot; regardless of what you use each square foot for. That means the restroom costs you just as much as the first few feet inside your business.

Therefore, you should know how well your square footage is producing with regard to sales. This calculator is going to tell you the sales per square foot in your business. Making the number go higher will require you becoming better at merchandising and considering getting rid of some of that unproductive square footage - like the storage areas.

What should your number be? I could tell you I have heard that Apple stores do $4,000 per square foot, or that the Shops at the Forum in Las Vegas have been reported to do some $1500 per square foot. What is important is what did you do last year and what are you striving to achieve in 2010? You get the number higher by what I have already mentioned and enhancing the sales skills of your staff.

Space productivity ratio

The Power Promoting Idea of the Month
Creating a wall of fame

I am pleased to say this idea came from our store. We had a building that had very high ceilings; there was a lot of upper wall space we couldn't use. We also had a lot of neat customers - just like you do. We noticed that every so often we saw one of them in a newspaper article. We then decided to cut out the article, frame it, and hang it on the wall.

The first few frames looked a bit strange on that big wall, but we continued to look for places of recognition for our employees. One customer had a daughter that was in the Olympics so we asked for an autographed picture. That customer was so thrilled that we asked, and they were so proud to see their daughter's picture on the wall.

We had a couple of pro baseball players in the area, a retired pro football player, and other customers that had achieved significant goals in their life. We looked for ways to recognize all of them. One had an article written about him in the company news magazine when he retired. Another customer got a copy to us. It was a lot of fun when the retired customer came in looking to find his picture because another customer had told him they had seen it.

We purchased inexpensive picture frames by the case and always worked to add to our wall. If our store was mentioned in the media, we added that to the wall as well.

You can find more ideas like this in our promotions books. You can order your copy by clicking on the link below; each book is only $9.95 plus postage.

Profits Plus Resource Center


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Profits Plus Solutions, Inc.
PO Box 1577
St. Petersburg, Fl 33731
(727) 464-2182
Fax: (727) 898-3179