gas_pumps

Rethinking Oil Demand Expectations

By Brian Milne, Energy Editor at Schneider Electric The outlook for global oil demand suddenly got gloomy, with the futures markets for crude, gasoline and diesel selling off hard in ushering in the fourth quarter, as market participants raced to the exits, unloading long positions. A tenth of a penny increase in the U.S. retail

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Do You Set Your Employees Up for Success?

By Mel Kleiman, Humetrics “If you keep doing what you’re doing you won’t even keep getting what you got.” Consider the third-string quarterback who asked his coach what he needed to do to make the starting lineup. The coach said, “Just keep doing what you’re doing.” Now, anyone with an ounce of sense knows that

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Tell ‘Em What They’re Doing Right

By Mel Kleiman, Humetrics  During her mother’s eulogy, a daughter shared this: “My mom was also an outstanding elementary school teacher. Many of her kids gave her much of the credit when they went on to graduate from high school and college because, you see, whenever she had a child who struggled to keep up,

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Warmer Welcomes = Fatter Profits

By Mel Kleiman, Humetrics Here’s proof the suggestions I make in my book, The 5 Firsts: A Simple System to Onboard, Engage & Retain Top Talent, can have a dramatic, positive effect on the bottom line. The article from Fortune magazine quoted below makes a strong case for the benefits of taking the advice I

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You Can’t Fix the Car While You’re Driving

By Mel Kleiman, Humetrics I’m always exhorting my audiences to stop working IN their businesses and start working ON them and the title of this blog is just another clever way of saying that. How can you focus on long-term goals and objectives and be a big picture thinker when you’re consumed with putting out

NACS

NACS: Must Go Show of 2014

Last minute tips for getting the most out of the NACS Show. By Jim Callahan It happens just once a year and it’s almost here. Unlike any other c-store trade show, the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) Show must be experienced live. Whether you’re as large a chain as 7-Eleven or operate a single

A Teaching Moment

By Tony Huppert, CEO, Team Oil Inc. I arrived at 6 a.m. on a Sunday morning at the Team Oil Travel Center.  The previous day, my business partner and I decided to clear out the 700 DVDs we had in stock. My partner, Eric, directed the staff to put them all on the shelf and

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Starting Your Own Consulting Business

John Matthews, founder and president of Gray Cat Enterprises. Recently, I celebrated my ten-year anniversary as a management consultant. It has always been a life-long dream of mine to be on my own and in 2004 I realized that goal. I had spent some 20 years in corporate America prior to and breaking out on

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Developing A Retail Real Estate Strategy

By John Matthews, founder and president, Gray Cat Enterprises Organic growth by a retailer is an exciting time for the company. Reinvesting earnings into the expansion of their branded stores through new construction communicates that a) business has been good; b) by growing the network of stores through brand-new locations, it helps strengthen market share;

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Recognizing Your Best Customers

By John Matthews, founder and president of Gray Cat Enterprises. Last month, I was participating in a client meeting and like most meetings that are lengthy, food is generally brought in and we eat/meet on the fly. This time we ordered a bunch of pizza and drinks to feed a group of 20 or so.

Developing Open Communication With Your Vendor Partners

By John Matthews, founder and president of Gray Cat Enterprises Inc. Imagine a business world where resources were plentiful and industry expertise could be available at every juncture. Where decisions could be made that dovetailed alignment in support of your strategic plan throughout your networks. Imagine a world that anticipates your directives and assists in

A Blog About Writing A Blog

By John Matthews, founder and president of Gray Cat Enterprises Inc. About three years ago I began to publish a blog focused mainly on improving processes within small business. Many of these blogs are derived from having worked many years in larger organizations and attempting to translate those experiences to smaller businesses in the retail

employees

Challenge Your Way of Thinking

Mind control is an often overlooked quality, but it’s an extremely important attribute in business and in life. By Jim Callahan When I think of the act of mind control, I’m not referring to hypnotism or getting my best friend to squawk like a chicken. Rather, having the right attitude in the face of both

fuel line

Road to Lower U.S. Gasoline Prices To Take Brief Detour

By Brian Milne, Energy Editor for Schneider Electric. The U.S. gasoline futures contract dropped to a fresh low for 2014 mid-September that coincided with the shift away from summer specification gasoline to easier to manufacture fuel while the national average price for retail gasoline sunk to a seven-month low. The national average is down 5.1cts

fuelnozzle

Dropping Like a Rock—Beware of Falling Gasoline Prices

By Brian Milne, Energy Editor for Schneider Electric Just under $2.50 gallon is where the U.S. gasoline futures market found support during the second week of September amid a massive selloff in domestic and global crude oil prices, with lower trending oil battered by bearish readings for forward oil demand by the three major forecasters.

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Holiday Boosts Downstream Gasoline Deliveries

By Brian Milne, Energy Editor for Schneider Electric The U.S. average price for regular grade gasoline sold at retail outlets across the country edged up 0.5cts to $3.459 gallon on Labor Day according to the Energy Information Administration’s weekly survey, with the increase the first in 10 weeks. The slightly higher retail average came alongside

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The Rubber Chicken Circuit

By John Matthews, founder and president of Gray Cat Enterprises Inc. “Fearlessly the idiot faced the crowd……Smiling” (Waters, Gilmour) Death. Not for the faint of heart, then again maybe that’s exactly what it is. Peer Rejection. Depression can set in very quickly when this occurs. Public Speaking? Actually in comparison, the first two don’t sound

Multi-Unit Store Segmentation

By John Matthews, founder of Gray Cat Enterprises. Multi-unit retail operators are often presented with challenges with their product assortment due to varying demographic and store configurations throughout their network of locations. Often, product assortment is standardized across all store types which leaves opportunities for niche marketing on the sidelines. Rather than a one-size-fits-all approach,

Tony Huppert

Balance

By Tony Huppert, CEO, Team Oil Inc. I’ve written many articles on our youth needing to acquire work ethics. I believe work ethics have to be taught at a young age. We start kids in preschool to get the basics taught before they enter kindergarten. Research by educators have statistics showing it is important to

Building A Juggernaut Of A Team

By John Matthews, founder and president, Gray Cat Enterprises. Over my career – both in the corporate world and on my own – I have had the privilege of working with some fantastic and talented people. In most cases, I have learned more from them, than they probably learned from me. Surrounding yourself with talented

Somerset, Kentucky

By Tony Huppert, CEO, Team Oil Inc. I’ve been following the ‘Socialized Retail Gas Concept’ in Somerset Ky. Using an existing city-owned filling station and a nearby refinery to supply it, officials of Somerset recently decided to serve residents by going into the gas business themselves. Somerset City Council this past June voted 10-0 in

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Solving The Retail Investment Puzzle

By John Matthews, founder, Gray Cat Enterprises. You own a bunch of stores all varying in size and age. Over the years, product assortments and sets have come and gone and you have ridden certain designs into the ground. Each of your stores needs capital infusion – a refresher – but you do not know

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Top 10 Ways to Avoid Costly Hourly Employee Turnover

By Mel Kleiman,  founder, Humetrics. In order to minimize costly frontline, hourly employee turnover, you’ve got to: Hire tough (so you can manage easy). Let every new employee know why their job is important. Avoid the mindset that it is “only an entry-level job” (in both the new employee’s mind and in your own mind).

gasnozzle

“Take Two” for U.S. Gasoline Demand

By Brian Milne, Energy Editor for Schneider Electric. A month in front of the Labor Day holiday in the U.S., the unofficial end of the peak summer driving season, gasoline demand spiked from what has been lackluster consumption this summer, with preliminary data showing a surge in demand to the highest weekly rate so far

Moneystacks

The Story of Herb and Charley

There are many attributes that good store owners and operators possess, but knowing the value of a dollar and the value of a satisfied customer is critical. By Jim Callahan. For years, I was always puzzled by the fact that the best automatic transmission mechanic I ever knew ultimately went bankrupt, and the least talented

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