From a Recovery
Like my business, i am recovering in the
first quarter of 2011. While my business is
recovering from the recession, i am recovering
from breaking my right arm while snowboarding. And yes, i’m right-handed. i suspect that if
i were left-handed, i would have fallen on my
What’s interesting is that my personal injury
recovery feels quite similar to my business
experience with the recession and subsequent
painfully slow recovery. in both instances,
i needed to do more with less.
needed to positively support those around
me and share my confidence in our eventual
success as the economy returns to a “new
in my personal situation, it was initially
depressing, but small successes in coping and
a clear vision of recovery raised my spirits.
Fortunately my personal recovery will be much
quicker than the business recovery.
Lessons i learned from both recoveries:
• Learn to do more with less and leverage your
resources through cross-training, even in a
• use creativity to solve both your challenges
and your customers’ challenges.
• keep a positive attitude and share a clear
vision of success with staff.
• Watch for ice when snowboarding.
When the recession hit, i had to significantly reduce my staffing
even though the workload didn’t diminish as much as our human
resources did. my remaining staff labored under heavier workloads
and had to take responsibility for more areas. many of my A.R.e.
friends and my retail customers found themselves in the same position. And, after breaking my arm, i found myself in a surprisingly
similar position personally—one arm had to do the work of two.
unfortunately, my left arm is not as skilled a laborer as my
right arm is. This required some creative thinking. but then, so did
FACING NEW CHALLENGES
in the business environment i needed new solutions for my
customers and my business. my customers were operating with
significantly reduced budgets and staff, but they still needed to
refresh their image and branding in an increasingly competitive environment. i had to develop cost-effective solutions in a
Personally, i faced similar challenges. How do you dress with
one arm? How do you open a bottle of iced tea, or grate cheese?
believe it or not, with a little creativity and patience you can find
solutions to most business and personal challenges.
SEE YOU AT GLOBALSHOP?
speaking of using creativity to solve challenges, make sure you
attend Globalshop 2011, march 28 to 30 in Las Vegas. (see our
show preview beginning on page 12 for more details.) With a wide
range of retail industry leaders and innovators available under
one roof, the show offers a great opportunity to experience fresh
insights and see the latest in products and services for retail environments. With an exceptional conference program and numerous
networking opportunities, it’s a hard value to pass up. And while
you’re there, be sure to attend A.R.e.’s Design Awards presentation
for creative inspiration and ideas for sustainability in design.
i am cautiously optimistic about the new year. The in-store
marketing institute recently published a survey of retailers in its
“shopper marketing Trends 2011 Report.” To me, the two most
interesting insights were these: 31. 3 percent of the respondents
said spending on in-store P-O-P is ahead of pre-recession spending, and 25. 8 percent said spending on in-store P-O-P was almost
back to pre-recession levels. The other interesting statistic, which
all of us should be paying attention to, is that 52.2 percent felt that
consumer behavior has profoundly and permanently changed.
PLANNING FOR SUCCESS
The third similarity was the need for a positive attitude and a clear
vision of eventual success. in the business environment i have