Yesterday I gave you seven things you could do with your money when you have a windfall because of a better-than-expected season. Here is one more thing to do with that extra cash …
Invest in Your Education.
Invest in making yourself and your team smarter and better. Invest in training to equip your team with better tools for selling. Invest in classes that teach you more about advertising and marketing. Invest in programs that help you better manage your money.
“Always invest in this thing (your brain).” Darius Foroux
If I were to put “Invest in Your Education” in the priority list from yesterday it would solidly be #3 right behind Cash Reserves and Pay Down Your Debt.
My real recommendation, though, is that this should be a fixed part of your yearly budget. You and your staff are simultaneously your largest asset and your biggest expense. Whether you look at this as the former or the latter will make the difference whether you are truly a customer-first business winning the race to the top or not.
If I were to prioritize where to spend the time and money on training, the list would look like this …
- Selling/Customer Service: You’ll reap the benefits of this right away because your staff starts converting more of your current traffic into sales.
- Hiring/Training: You’ll see quickly who is cut out to be a retail sales clerk and isn’t when you up their game. Next it is time to up your game and find better people.
- Marketing & Advertising: I’ve heard many business owners lament, “If only I had more traffic …” First learn how to better take care of the traffic you have. Then, when you spend your money to learn how to get more traffic, you’ll reap twice the rewards.
- Managing Your Money: Good sales and a growing market cover a lot of sins. Those sins get exposed at the first downturn. Make sure you are measuring and managing the right numbers to protect yourself for the long run.
In a few days the dust will settle on 2018. As you set your priorities for 2019, keep this list in mind. I’m sure you can probably think of a few retailers (cough, Sears) that didn’t (cough, Toys R Us) invest in (cough, Kmart) becoming better at (cough, Bon Ton) what they do.
PS I will be rolling out some new training programs based on the list above. Last fall, if you recall, I launched The Ultimate Selling Workshop designed for working directly with you and your team. Next month I will have newly revised programs, some designed specifically for working with business owners, some to work with managers and assistant managers, and some to work with your whole team. The priorities you set for 2019 will dictate much of the success you reap this time next year.