Should This Be Your Job?

When owner and managers are asked what the most important things they can do to make their business more successful we hear…

“Coaching and developing the staff.”

“Spending time on the floor.”

“Leading by example.”

“Driving traffic.”

“Creating new and exciting marketing events.”

“Finding new products and opportunities.”

But if you followed these same owners or managers around for a week, you’d see that many of them don’t spend as much time on these tasks as they might like. It’s not that they don’t want to take these actions but they struggle to find the time.

Why don’t they have the time?  Usually it’s because they’re so busy doing so many different jobs running the business that they can’t do what will make it even more successful.

The only way to find the time to take these actions is to get rid of the jobs that others can and should do.

Just last week I was talking with an owner who found herself stuck in the office more than she’d like.  So I asked, “What job can you give to someone else?”  She quickly replied, “Paperwork.” (Something we hear over and over when we challenge owners.)

Of course I asked her, “Who can do that job?”  As she thought about she realized that she has an employee who isn’t very effective on the sales floor but would be perfect for doing paperwork.  Solved!

After training the employee this owner will be able to increase the time she spends on the floor doing what that will make her store more successful.  Sure, she’ll need to find checks and balances to keep her connected with what’s going on with the paperwork but that takes a lot less time than actually doing that particular task.

If you’re not spending enough time doing those things listed above, here’s what I encourage you to do.  As you go through your days this week keep asking yourself, “Should this be my job?” Most of the time the answer will be “yes” since there are a lot of jobs that owners and managers should be doing themselves.  There are also jobs that owners and managers like to do but keeping them from taking the actions they need to take if the store is to be more successful.

I can’t give you a list of what jobs you should and shouldn’t do. In some stores, the owner must meet with vendors and in some stores they don’t.  In some stores, the manager needs to do the scheduling and in some stores they don’t.  What matters is what your jobs are and how this fits into the framework of your store.

That’s why it is vital that you ask, “Should this be my job?”

About the author: Doug Fleener is founder of the Dynamic Experiences Group. He is a veteran retailer with more than 25 years of hands-on retail experience with world-class retailers including Bose Corporation and The Sharper Image. He has also owned and operated his own specialty stores. His new book, The Profitable Retailer: 56 surprisingly simple and effective lessons to boost your sales and profits published by Acanthus Publishing.

Doug is now president and managing partner of Dynamic Experiences Group LLC, a Lexington based retail consulting firm dedicated to helping retailers create unique customer experiences that results in higher sales and profits.  Learn more at or call Doug at 866-535-6331.

Fleener also shares his knowledge of experience based retailing in a series of custom key notes and workshops designed for stores, businesses, corporations, non-profits, and trade associations of all sizes. His casual style and quick wit make him not just a crowd pleaser but also an incredible motivator, encouraging people to take action and deliver extraordinary experiences to customers and employees alike.  Learn more at