Kossoff on ... projecting the right image

You have a choice and you have to make it now. You have to decide what message you want everyone in your organisation to convey to everyone with whom they have contact. In fact, you've been making that choice since the economic news began moving from confusing to bad.

And, if you've not been open with your employees about the state of the company and the actions you are taking, you're making the downturn worse. You are, in fact, allowing your employees to determine your company's message.

Every day, in every conversation you have with your employees - whether you're a producer, wholesaler, retailer or supplier - you have been having an impact on the image they're conveying of your organisation. Are you healthy? Thriving? Looking to the future? Or are you worried, hesitant, wondering if you're going to make it?

Employees pick up the nuances. They see and hear things that owners and executives don't realise they convey. And if they think you're scared, they're going to be even more scared. On the other hand, if you look and sound realistic and in control, they'll take that and run with it.

You don't have to pretend that there isn't a downturn. They know it and you know it.

What you don't want is for them to convey a downturn mentality to your customers - because scared customers equal lower sales.

For retailers this is particularly important. You don't want your employees unintentionally to scare off your customers in the run-up to Christmas.

You offer a value proposition that beats the high street hands down. That's what they need to convey.

This is for everyone - be honest with your employees. Tell them where the business stands and what you're planning to do.

Ask for their help; ask them to be part of the solution. Then let them create your success. They will.

- Leslie Kossoff is an executive adviser specialising in strategy and corporate turnaround.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Are garden centres taking business from department stores?

Are garden centres taking business from department stores?

Can other garden centres learn from Petersham Nurseries and the fusion of retail elements in its new Covent Garden outlet?

Consolidation reaching ever further across horticulture

Consolidation reaching ever further across horticulture

Consolidation is stretching across the nursery and retail horticulture sectors, with Dutch corporate finance company Oaklins saying the horticulture market is now going through another wave of consolidation.

Electric car charging: an opportunity for garden centres?

Electric car charging: an opportunity for garden centres?

There are 11,700 electric car-charging points across the UK but only eight at garden centres, so more can be done to take the opportunity in garden retail.

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs

Horticulture Week Top 100 GARDEN CENTRES

Our exclusive ranking of garden centre performance by annual turnover. 

Garden Centre Prices

Peter Seabrook

Inspiration and insight from travels around the horticultural world

Read more Peter Seabrook articles

Neville Stein

Business advice from Neville Stein, MD of business consultancy Ovation

Read latest articles