How to Be a Magnetic Manager

By Mel Kleiman A magnetic manager is someone who easily attracts and retains STAR* employees and one secret that separates them from other professionals is feedback (and not necessarily the glowing kind). In 2014, Harvard Business Review contributors surveyed 900 employees to get their opinions on feedback. What they found was pretty remarkable: employees want

Gasoline Prices Spike On OPEC Deal

By Brian Milne, Schneider Electric Fuel Marketer Intelligence: Supply Chain Dynamics to Retail Fuel Prices The January reformulated blendstock for oxygenate blending futures contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange settled at a better than five-month high on the spot continuous chart in concluding its first session as nearest delivery on Dec. 1, continuing a

A Technology Sedative

By Tony Huppert Car washes at convenience stores serve as an additional revenue source along with providing a valuable asset for customers. Years ago when we installed our first car wash it was a challenge to know how many to install. Car washes are like churches, too small for busy days and a large expense

The Four Classifications of Products

By Bill Scott I WAS HAVING a discussion with Grant Rogers and Mel Haynes Sr. this morning regarding the grading of products in convenience stores, and the way I see it, it boils down to four classifications. Without reading further, can you guess what they are? Before we get into that, imagine pebbles of various

Somewhere We Missed The Ramp To The Freeway

By Bill Scott … and the world is passing us by AFTER WORKING IN the convenience store industry for nearly four decades, I have concluded that for the most part, the convenience store has evolved from the great American dream, to a sweat shop employing hordes of apathetic workers who deliver sub-standard service to zombie-like

Achieving Inventory Control

Taking small steps in managing inventory can mean big savings for your store operation. By Jim Callahan Inventory management is a pain point that plagues many convenience stores. Without an effective strategy, retailers can make critical mistakes such as tying up capital in excess inventory and even missing sales opportunities due to out-of-stock products. Attaining

Making Sense of Company Culture

Embracing a positive company environment requires real resolve. By Fran Duskiewicz In crafting this column, I made a list of the things I thought might be interesting and relevant to readers, based on their knowledge of my background within Nice N Easy Grocery Shoppes and my various industry involvements. I’ve made my way through the

Thankful For….

As we gear up for Thanksgiving, here are some things the convenience store industry can be thankful for. By Ed Collupy Thankful For…. Technology in the CStore/Petro industry… Handheld devices, connected wirelessly for computer assisted ordering Applicant tracking systems for the many new people looking to join the industry workforce Networking solutions to keep data

My Bucket List

By Bill Scott “Bucket lists, often celebrated as things to do before you die should include things to do while you are alive.” As a provider of services to retailers and convenience stores here is mine: Eliminate the 70% of inventory that is either not selling or unprofitable. The remainder is cross-subsidizing your losses and

Food, Fuel and…Fraud?

What convenience stores should do to protect themselves from workers compensation fraud. By Samuel King The two types of workers’ compensation fraud that can directly impact convenience store businesses are claim-related fraud and policy-related fraud. Both are serious crimes and can cause significant financial harm to a business if not detected. Workers’ compensation insurance is

Evaluating Your OTP Set

Do you have the right mix of products and accessories? Here are tips for improving sales. By Steve Sandman For many years I have been involved in tobacco department “sets.” I’ve looked at them from a hundred different angles, moved products around, put tags in the right places, hung advertising on the shelves and above

Get a Start on Good Training

Turning to industry experts can assist convenience stores looking to craft an effective employee-training program. By Jim Callahan Last month’s blog dealt with the critical need for providing your convenience store employees effective workplace training. This month, I want to suggest some employee training topics companies might consider, with a particular focus on some resources

Facility Controls Can Boost the Bottom Line

Integrating systems and smart facility insights lead the way. By Ron Chapek As 2016 enters its final days, it’s time to start planning for 2017. For convenience store operators, it’s often a broken record: reduce costs and increase sales while maintaining high standards and happy customers. Easier said than done. One way to improve store

The Trolley Problem

When we do nothing, the situation is often worse than performing any other action. By Bill Scott Google published an article last week that I will recap just a little bit, because it resonates like a bell on a different issue I have struggled with for 16 years regarding “Computer Assisted Ordering” in convenience stores.

Colonial Pipeline Explosion Spikes Gasoline Futures

Explosion and fire in Shelby County, Ala. restrict service. By Brian Milne, Scheider Electric Within minutes of taking over as the nearest delivered contract in the evening hour of Oct. 31, December RBOB futures spiked 18.56cts or 12.8% to a five-month high on the spot continuous chart of $1.6351 gallon in trading on the New

No Reward in Overturning Debit Reform

Swipe fees continue to eat away at retailer profits. The income banks gain when consumers use credit cards has increased by more than 50% since 2009, while debit card fees has increased at a slower rate. By Ed Collupy Front-page news is certainly an attention grabber. The Boston Globe, in its Thursday Oct. 27, 2016

Second and Third Quarter Comparisons

By Bill Scott, President, StoreReport LLC The winner for the greatest advancement in positions is: Nestle Pure Life Jumping up 267 positions to a ranking of 37, quite impressive for H2O. No other product even came close. Fuze Berry Punch one Liter rose 67 positons, followed by Kool Box, Powerade Lemon Line 32 ounce, Powerade

How Long Should an Interview Last?

By Mel Kleiman, President, Humetrics This is a question I’m always asked during the programs I do. I was asked again just yesterday so, it’s clear to me, the answer is worth repeating here… The interview should last until you are 95% – 100% sure this is a person you want to hire — or don’t want to hire.

Interview Tip

By Mel Kleiman, President, Humetrics Have someone else sit in on the interview as an observer because that person will be able to do a better job of listening and noticing body language and then be able to give you an invaluable second opinion. This is also a great way to train others to become

Unexpected Rewards

By Mel Kleiman, President, Humetrics Do you dread the thought of dealing with an employee’s unsatisfactory performance? If so, I think you may be surprised to find that, when you stop procrastinating and actually work with the person to help them improve and move to the next level, it can be one of the most

Vive La Difference!

By Mel Kleiman, President, Humetrics Although they are often used interchangeably, there is an important difference between responsibility and accountability. Responsibility is something you are given or that you assume. For example, while your employment makes you responsible for getting your job done, parents assume responsibility for the care of their children. Accountability, however, is

Not to Point a Finger, But…

By Mel Kleiman, President, Humetrics I recently read an article entitled: “85% Believe an Insightful Interview Question Is More Important Than the Application or Resume.” Sounds reasonable enough on the surface, but the suggested interview questions that followed were so commonplace that any prepared jobseeker would have canned answers at the ready, while others were

What Will You Say?

By Mel Kleiman, President, Humetrics Do you know what you’ll say when one of your STAR* employees asks for a raise, or are you going to be blindsided? Will you be able to grant their request or at least be able to tell them exactly what they need to do to earn one? (And if

August-September 2016 Figures Are In

By Bill Scott, President, StoreReport LLC What happened in September? There was little change in the first three-quarters of the rankings in the Top 100, but from there down it got crazy. The prize for making the greatest showing was Coors Light 16 ounce six-pack, which rocketed into position 99 for a gain of 165

Six Personal Branding Lessons Every Working Professional Can Learn from Trump and Clinton

By Karen Leland, CEO, Sterling Marketing Group Despite having the two highest unfavorable ratings of any major presidential candidates in history, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton have outlasted their competitors—and one of them is going to become the leader of the free world. What does success in the face of such highly unfavorable ratings teach