This Episode: The Most Overlooked Strategy To Find Great People

Here’s the secret to finding great retail associates: I want you to recognize that there are great people everywhere. You just need to put on your recruiting hat, keep on your recruiting hat, and always look.

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Hey, it’s Bob Negen, and welcome to another episode of Real Retail TV. And here’s a fact– the best retail stores have the best team members. But finding the right people can be incredibly challenging. And in this episode, you’re going to learn an important but often overlooked strategy to find great people.

Most people, most retailers, go into the hire mode the minute they realize they need a new team member. Somebody quits on a Thursday, you need coverage on a Saturday– I need to go find somebody. And the technology has developed, and there’s lots of websites to post to. But at the end of the day, most retailers are still using what’s basically an electronic version of the good old-fashioned orange and black “Help Wanted” sign.

I’ve got a job. If you need a job, come on in. And if you breathe, you’re hired.

But the problem with this strategy, the “I need someone now” strategy, is that you’re starting from scratch every single time. But the secret strategy that I alluded to earlier is the strategy of constant recruiting. Just recognize that your next great employee is there someplace.

And you’re always wearing your recruiting hat. You’re always thinking about where that next great person is coming from. It could be a server at a restaurant that you go to often.

It could be somebody you go to church with. It could be somebody that you bowl with. It could be the friend of a friend, or a child of a friend.

But you know who you’re looking for. And you also know when that person has real potential. You meet somebody and go, hey, that person would be great here!

And I always did the orange and black thing until one day, I learned my lesson. And let me tell you a story. So in Mackinaw City, for years and years– Mackinaw City’s where I started my business, my retail business, the Mackinaw Kite Company.

And for several years, Mackinaw City had the world’s only seasonal McDonald’s. A dubious distinction at best, but it was right next door to my store. So every morning– I was a single guy at the time– every morning, I would go, and I would eat my breakfast at McDonald’s, and then I would go open the store.

And every morning, I would always get into Glenda’s line, because Glenda was unfailingly pleasant. And she was the kind of person that attracted me– I always wanted to say good morning to Glenda. And so one morning I was in line, and somebody quit on a Thursday, and I needed floor coverage on Saturday, and I was all stressed out about it. I get to the front, and somehow the words just came out of my mouth.

I said, Glenda, will you come work for me? And you know how they stand behind a counter, a register in McDonald’s? Glenda looked up at me, and she said, I thought you’d never ask.

Now, you have to understand that that is almost 25 years ago. And Glenda still works at the Mackinaw Kite Company in Mackinaw City, Michigan. She is still the best employee on that crew every single year. And Glenda was in front of me for at least three years before I realized that she should be my next great employee.

So I want you to recognize that there are great people everywhere. You just need to put on your recruiting hat, keep on your recruiting hat, and always look. If you meet somebody who you think should be your next great employee, give them a business card and say, hey, I hope you’re happy where you are. But if you’re ever thinking about changing, please come see me. I’d love to have a conversation.

You notice I’m not offering a job. I’m just offering an opportunity. But what you’re doing is you’re building up a hot prospects file. You’re recruiting before the fact so that when it’s time to hire, you’ve got several people to talk to, and you’re not stuck with another warm body on your floor.

I hope you found that helpful. Learning that was really kind of life-changing for me. So if you liked it, I appreciate your likes. I love your shares, I love your comments. I love to hear what you have to say.

And if you haven’t subscribed to our free email tip of the week yet, please go to WhizBangTraining.com and sign up. I guarantee you’ll be glad you did. So again, I’m Bob Negen. This is Real Retail TV, and we’ll see you next time.

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