SEARS HEADS TOWARD BANKRUPTCY

Sears, a Onetime Retail Giant, Reshaped America – The Wall Street Journal. https://www.wsj.com/articles/sears-once-americas-biggest-store-collapses-into-bankruptcy-1539595803

At least some of the past or present Sears execs understood the problem. Sears cut costs improperly and diid not invests enough in the stores. Compared to other department stores, the customer experience was lacking at Sears.

Sears does have the potential for a future. But, it will need to consider what that future will look like. In Nearing the End, I give a plausible suggestion.

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NEAR THE END?

Sears Prepares for Bankruptcy Filing as Debt Payment Looms – The Wall Street Journal. https://www.wsj.com/articles/sears-hires-advisers-to-prepare-bankruptcy-filing-1539136189

The iconic once retail giant may be nearing its final stretch. Or maybe it can dwarf into a profitable condense form of itself. If the latter, it will need to find a way to develop and connect with a new target market not already retired.

At one point Sears dominated the retail landscape, largely because it was the first general retailer to market offerings for the entire family and the one willing to stand by its products. As the market change with new players, Sears never effectively captured a new market group.

If Sears does survive, it needs to have a narrower focus. One approach could be deconstruction of their retail concept by creating two distinct chains. One could be a clothing targeting people that may not be served by more trendy stores or a channel for professionals looking for everyday affordable clothes. Another would be an autonomous Sears Auto not tied to a store.

At this point, the Sears leadership team is probably focused on seeing how many tomorrows it has left. If there some, they need to consider what those days will look like.

ECONOMIC SYSTEMS

THE CRC REVIEW: SYSTEMS

The United States is a nation built on the ideals of self reliance, self-determination, ambition, and hard-work. Americans admire self made success, which all seek to emulate in some manner. Americans value the pride of labor, achievement, creativity, and innovation.

A nation built on the governance principles of being of the people, for the people, and by the people should have an economy owned and operated by the people. No economic system captures the productivity, innovation, and energy of private citizens like free market capitalism. No other system lifts people out of poverty while expanding national wealth at the same time.

In the above content, the benefits of free market capitalism and flaws of socialism are covered. While changing economic models is a radical idea, policymakers implementing minor tweaks is appropriate to expand opportunity where needed.

Please visit the CRC Review by clicking the link above.

 

 

TRADE RESILIENCE

China Is Losing the Trade War With Trump

SOURCE: The Wall Street Journal (OPINION)

China Is Losing the Trade War With Trump https://www.wsj.com/articles/china-is-losing-the-trade-war-with-trump-1532729725

Interesting take on trade wars, as standing up to trade manipulators takes resolve and determination. Since the Trump Economic Expansion should buffer much of the potential negatives, it is importance to continue pressing the Chinese to reconsider practices that harm their partners.

GOOD PEOPLE NOT VALUED ENOUGH

Where is Braves legend Dale Murphy now?

SOURCE: ESPN

http://www.espn.com/espn/feature/story/_/id/24182944/where-braves-legend-dale-murphy-now

This is a surprisingly good article in the current era of ESPN. It raises a big moral dilemma our society has. Do we value good people as much as we detest bad people?

In sports, this phenomenon is obvious, as demonstrated in the article. Sports writers demonize PED users as villains while casting doubt on other players with upstanding reputations. The idea that the person did not get caught yet.

Do we simply believe that good people do not exist? Do we not value good behavior? While no one is completely perfect, there are many people overlooked because being a good person is not properly valued.

Consider how much better our communities and overall society would be if we valued good behaviors. Instead of normalizing immorality and violence. Could be a gamechanger.

BALANCING TECHNOLOGY AND SERVICE

For many service based businesses, technology can improve access to customers and the customer experience. For both fast food and quick service restaurants, technology like Uber Eats, Seamless, and others can help a great deal in expanding the earnings for franchise owners. What is more convenient than ordering a meal with a couple clicks on a smartphone. For people averse to small talk, waiting in line, and interactions with the everyday person, this is essential.

The convenience and benefits of technology has its downsides as well. For instance, the satisfaction the customer receives for using the service only is positive if the order is delivered timely and correct. Personal experience shows that Uber Eats can be somewhat hit or miss with accuracy with simple orders to everyday restaurants. In fairness, the issue may be the provider or the delivery person. The customer will never truly know. But, people always hold the entity with the deeper pockets more accountable.

Another aspect is more operational, considering service to both online and in-person orders. In the span of a couple days, I had the opportunity to see two different restaurants, one a national chain and the other a regional one, struggle with the same problem. For both, the service line processed orders for both channels, which created a backlog of in-person customers waiting to be acknowledged let alone served. After every order, the cashier had to politely apologize for the delay, hoping to reduce the likelihood the customer would choose not to come back.

Many business are quick to pursuit new revenue stream before vetting and implementing the needed operational changes to accommodate changes. For order accuracy, the implementation of an order check at pickup by either provider or delivery person could reduce order errors. In service, restaurants may want to consider separating lines during rush periods to improve the in-store experience. Simple changes that could reduce occurrences of negative customer reactions.

CUSTOMER SERVICE SHOULD MATTER

CHICK FIL A

The link to Business Insider article shows how the growing fast food chain is using simple strategy to attract and retain new customers. All too often, consumers accept poor customer service in day to day transactions. Based on our perceptions of how the provider of said service is compensated, we tend to overlook rudeness, laziness, or lack of attention to detail in service received.

Some people fringe at the notion of requesting resolution to poor customer service. Should one wait to provide a bad tip or negative review to resolve frustration over a bad experience? If the situation can be resolved, why not seek resolution, giving the provider a fair chance to do right by its customer. If the provider fails, then negative reviews are fair game.

Businesses should not put customers in that predicament. The key to any successful service business is repeat patronage. Adopting a customer focused operating approach will not only leave customers yearning to come back, but they might bring a new friend or two. Simple steps like manners and gratitude, like Chick FIL A’s approach, will go far in restoring hope for quality customer service.