Every morning I check the email on my phone and see several familiar faces. There is always an email from Jackson Coffee Company, always something from Land’s End, Duluth Trading, Kohl’s, and DSW. Being a mostly Relational Shopper, these transactional discounts they offer Every. Single. Day. are somewhat of an annoyance.
I don’t unsubscribe, though. One of these days I’ll need to go to their stores. Since they are so regular with their discounts, I’m not going to ever pay full price again. Ever. (Yeah, there’s a lesson in there, but that’s for another day.)
Once a week I find out all the news in the toy industry by getting an email from The Bloom Report.
Most days I hear from retail speaker Bob Negen and Whizbang Training.
I also subscribe to different blogs. I start every single day learning from Seth Godin. Sunday nights I hear from Bob Phibbs, aka The Retail Doctor. Every Monday I read Roy H. William’s Monday Morning Memo. It is my favorite part of Mondays. Most weekdays I get posts from Josh Bernoff.
Josh writes about non-fiction writing, books, press releases, and the such. He also writes about analyzing data and drawing conclusions. His blog is called without bullshit and is quite instructive. In fact, because of Josh I play a game every day with the other articles I read. I put on my analyst’s hat and think …
“What would I say if The New York Times called me up for a quote on this article?”
I tell you this not to brag or sound important, to look like I am informed, or to give you my credentials above and beyond just running a high-level independent retail store. (I am sure I suffer from Dunning-Kruger Effect to some degree somewhere—I believe we all do. And every now and then I suffer from its opposite—Impostor Syndrome where I feel the need to prove to you I actually do know something about retail, besides what I learned working retail for thirty six years of my life.)
I tell you this so you will know my influences. You will know where I find inspiration and ideas and new tools I can share with you for your retail toolbox. I want you to have more to offer your customers than just the transactional customer discount emails I get Every. Single. Day. from retailers where I would likely pay full price otherwise.
Seth Godin challenges me to create something of value to others. Roy H. Williams challenges me to look at human behavior differently and understand what motivates us to do what we do. Josh Bernoff challenges me to write with purpose, clarity, and insight.
They all challenge and inspire me to be better at what I do (so that you can be better at what you do.)
Now you know where I get my inspiration. Who challenges and inspires you?
PS I left off a few other emails I get and read regularly because they aren’t as helpful as they used to be. You’ll tell me when this blog is no longer helpful, right?
PPS When you get the Monday Morning Memo ALWAYS click on the picture at the top of the memo. (Click on the beagle picture in this blog to go to the MMM page.) It takes you into the Rabbit Hole where you’ll find all kinds of inspiration. It also ends at the Monday Morning Radio page where you can listen to a great interview each week. This morning I heard an interview with Steven D. Goldstein, former chairman of Sears Financial, who said this …
“Scale doesn’t help if you have two different businesses that are underperforming and don’t really know what their place is in the consumer’s mind.”
Yeah, I’m going to see if he has a blog I should be adding to my list.