Unless you are in an industry driven by New Year’s Resolutions (side-eye to you, athletic apparel), your traffic has likely started to slow down and with it, your teams’ energy. While it’s great for everyone to take a breather, you also want to keep the post-holiday blues from influencing your team.

Corporate Mindset

You have an operations and maintenance checklist that’s a mile long, which you are waiting to deploy to stores. You also know how valuable downtime is and don’t want to take too much time away from the stores.

Retail Leader Mindset

Much like your corporate partners, you also have an extensive downtime to-do list. But you recognize that these rare slow times are an opportunity for you to reconnect with your team members and set them up for future success.

Focus on teams

The past three months have been all customer-focused all the time. Now, it’s time to turn your attention to your team and ensure they’re getting what they need from you and the organization.

  • Re-establish your one-on-ones. Though you’ve tried to touch-base as much as possible with your team, it isn’t easy to do so during high-volume times like holiday. The best thing you can do to show your team that you’re invested in them is to get back to conducting regularly scheduled one-on-ones. There’s a good chance your team members have things they’d like to discuss—ideas to improve the store, a career development interest, or other feedback—and will remain more engaged if you initiate the conversations before they do.
  • Create or update development plans. If you already have development plans (in the form of SMART Goals or some other format) now is a great time to dust them off. While the busiest times can be the most challenging, they are often when teams learn the most. By updating a team member’s development plan, you can help them realize how much they were able to learn and grow through the holiday period. You’ll also be able to set both long and short-term goals for development, which will give your team members something to look forward to.
  • Take a breather—together. Many retail teams wait until after the holiday rush is over to have a “holiday” celebration. Whether or not you are one of those teams, now is a good time to rebuild the community within your store, which will foster collaboration as you continue to work together. This could be something simple like ordering a pizza one night after closing or could be a group activity before or after the store opens. If you are in a market with multiple stores, you can even arrange to borrow another store’s team for a few hours so you can all do something together. No matter what you do, taking dedicated time to recharge together will pay dividends during the next busy season.

There’s always something you can do to increase your Double//Vision.