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Boost Retail Success With Executive Talent

Why is executive talent crucial for boosting retail performance?

Motivation. Appreciation. Development. Standards of service. Strategic vision and direction. These are all things you’d expect your retail leadership to bring to the table. What you might not quite realise is just how important those qualities and capabilities are.

The figures vary a little by source, but generally speaking, companies that engage their staff are 20%+ more profitable. 35%+ of staff say corporate culture is a priority when looking for a job (and close to 100% say it’s important). 50% of workers say they have left a job because of poor management while around 70% say they would work harder if their manager appreciated their efforts a little more. Almost 75% of customers say their retail experience influences their buying decisions. 

What have all the above got in common? They are all driven or influenced by retail management. And each of them can have a huge impact on the bottom line of a retail store.

How can executive talent enhance retail success?

Your retail executive talent may not always be responsible for setting corporate vision or goals at the highest level. They may not directly hire or train new members of the team. They might not set the customer service standards for the organisation — all of that may happen further up the food chain.

But they will be responsible for implementing the strategies essential to retail growth.

We won’t throw more stats at you, but quality retail leadership at store, regional and head office levels ensure that staff are happier, more engaged, better trained and more likely to stay loyal. Customers are more likely to shop with your store. And the strategy devised at the top of the organisation is more likely to make its mark when it filters down to store level.

Retail management matters. So if you want to attract the best executive talent — the people who can make a difference — you’ll need to take a strategic approach to sourcing it.

6 strategies for attracting and retaining executive talent in retail

The biggest challenge in talent acquisition is the competition. There’s a finite amount of talent, and every retailer wants to claim it. The more of the following you can put in place ahead of your executive talent search, therefore, the better. 

  1. Competitive salaries and packages
    If we had a pound for every discussion we’d had with retailers about disclosing salary information, well, we probably wouldn’t need to be recruiting anymore. Salary (obviously) matters to candidates. Retailers (understandably) are often reluctant to disclose the exact figures in job ads as competitors can use it.We understand the dilemma, but the simple fact is salary remains the most important factor for lots of candidates — our data suggests that’s the case for around 40% of jobseekers. It remains important for everyone else too, of course, but other package elements may be just as or more important. We explore some of these below.To attract the top executive talent, therefore, it’s important to construct not just a competitive base salary with a clear progression scale, but joined-up performance bonuses and package perks too. 
  2. Professional development and progression
    Leaders are often ambitious and driven by the desire for continuous learning and growth. Offering them opportunities to scratch that particular itch, through clear routes of progression and leadership training programmes, mentorship and speaking opportunities can be a powerful incentive.
  3. Being part of a project
    Executive talent wants to achieve results. They want to make a difference. And there’s often nothing worse than being presented with a role where it feels as though all the challenge has already been addressed.To really spark a candidate’s interest, present them with your vision for the next few years. Make them part of the next chapter of the company’s story and share how they’ll play a crucial role in helping realise it.
  4. A company culture that walks the walk
    Our research suggests that a growing number of executive candidates not only want to work with organisations whose values chime with their own; they want to work with organisations who wear those values on their sleeve.They don’t, for example, simply say they are diverse and inclusive; they show it. They don’t just talk about a commitment to sustainability; they live it and demonstrate that commitment in the way they operate and even in the perks package they offer staff.
  5. Flexible working
    Of all the perks you can place in your staff package, flexibility constantly sits at No. 1. That can present a challenge for retailers who may a) struggle to make home working a reality for many members of staff and b) have already found that it isn’t great for productivity.Nevertheless, the more you are able to support executive talent’s work/life balance, the more attractive a role within your organisation will appear.
  6. Technology and innovation
    It’s not just about giving your retail management the right tech to do their jobs (although that will help); it’s about feeling part of an organisation that is innovative and pushing the applications of tech in new ways to drive retail growth.The dynamism of retail is what attracts many to the industry, and executive retail talent wants to be at the cutting edge with technologically ambitious businesses. 

Let us find your retail executive talent

There’s one more important factor in your talent acquisition: working with a recruitment partner who can dig deeper and look wider for the executive talent that’s not on the competition’s radar. For that, talk to us now.

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