This month’s blog is all about simplicity of vision.  I zeroed in on the retail environment and wrote up a non-technical white paper that gives specific guidance on being ‘store focused’.   Management and leadership go hand in hand-but they are different.  Yet, the people that follow or are supervised need to know what you stand for and what your real objectives are:  Help the company be successful?  Help yourself advance your career?  Help them succeed?  Gain experience to get the next job?

Here’s the summary page from the article:

There are so many demands, details and challenges running an IT department.  Step away from the details and see what ‘themes’ exist in your organization.  Do those ‘themes’ align with a store focused culture?  In this document we have outlined some key principles that will help you lay your foundation: 

·         Positive Culture
·         The power of terminology
·         Seeking business value
·         Simplify how the store interacts with IT
·         Teamwork in IT as you focus on the store
·         Architectural framework that is flexible to address uniqueness
·         Service Levels that align with objectives and critical elements
·         The importance of metrics to manage and to communicate
·         Follow through and reporting back

Be the store!  Keep your vision and communication process simple and consistent.  Visit the stores regularly and help out.  By performing some of the store tasks you can get firsthand experience and can better relate to their difficulties and challenges.  Methodologies and Frameworks are there to help-but correctly apply to your environment.

When you are at the store, be a good listener and avoid being defensive.  If you run into a situation where the store is extremely frustrated, take notes and seek to understand why they have a high level of frustration.  Remember, that when you are on the front lines and get frustrated, the frustration is on the situation, not you-help relieve the pressure creating the frustration!

A final comment:  There is nothing more invigorating than watching staff members step up and take initiative on driving improvement in the store environment.  There are always opportunities for improvement.  To see them, you need to be standing at the right vantage point and your vision needs to be clear.  Vision clarity is maximized when you are part of a positive culture where people work together in a creative manner for the success of the stores!

Read the rest of the article:  Retail IT:  Store Focused or Enterprise Focused?