John Doe: The Victim…2

You can’t change process without changing people…

2015-11-06 08.16.15Post 2: Randy recounted to his partners the multiple mishaps the shop had experienced because of poor planning of events and changes they’d made over just the last year…. As he spoke he realized that in each case a whole group of people had been unnecessarily hurt or disappointed. Just last week, a loyal customer had said she felt betrayed with their latest special, “Why don’t you ever reward those of us you see every morning?”

In the summer the baristas gave out free popsicles to kids on the same day a small boutique had been booked to host a scarf sale in the “Community Corner,” a side room of the coffee shop used to promote local interests and businesses. Drippy Kool-Aid and silk fabric were a catastrophic mess.

One month the shop had a huge display of specialty coffee syrups in the store and then learned the syrup distributors were direct competitors of the coffee shop’s biggest supply vendor! That resulted in months of walking on egg shells to rebuild the critical vendor relationship.

There had been several calendar clashes, where the store specials had clashed with planned community events, resulting in reduced store traffic or competing activities that diminished the impact of the shop’s plans. The partners agreed that several employees had expressed legitimate frustration because they had been asked to jump through hoops to make the temporary changes happen.

Randy proposed an idea:

“Remember how we got some help to build a documented strategy to manage the change when we moved to our new location? That project was big and complex, but I think we need a strategy for handling these quick, small process-changes just as much… even when they are temporary changes.

Every event or special requires lots of planning and changes for everybody. It’s not just that these mistakes waste our time, energy and money. You are right when you say it’s defeating for employees to make the effort to be ready for one weekend of changes or to adjust their schedules – and then it obviously doesn’t pay off.

What about if we spend some time examining the key misses from these projects I’ve mentioned, look for ideas in the strategy document we used for our location-move, and see if we can brainstorm a solution we can adapt to future event-planning.”

Reality: Never turn customers, vendors or employees into victims by failing to consider the total impact of business changes: perceptions of betrayal are as real as actual loss to most people.  

FOLLOW US & don’t miss the next PEPPERBOX blog:  What kind of strategy will his team put together for these quick, simple, standard changes that must be made for each new store event?

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