The Four S’s
In diamonds, we have the Four C’s. In retail business management, we have the Four S’s: Stock, Suppliers, Staff, and Self. These are the core of the FOCUS philosophy of business management. Let’s take a brief look at each.
In order to succeed in business, jewelry retailers must know how to manage their inventory. At FOCUS, we call it ‘stock’ because it is a jeweler’s “stock in trade.” You must get a good return on investment from it in order to run a profitable business. Your stock must therefore fit your target audience – the customers you choose to develop as patrons of your business. Managing your stock effectively calls for the identification and reordering of fast moving items, which we call “fast sellers.”
Suppliers are absolutely vital to your success. Building a good relationship with each supplier is key to carrying the right stock and leveraging your cash flow. Eight to ten suppliers generally constitute 80% of your total revenue and profit, so selecting the right suppliers and working with them to keep the right mix of product in your store is very important. If you want to grow your business, you must be able to grow with your top suppliers. If their sales don’t increase, yours won’t either.
If you have the right stock mix, you simply need nice people with very pleasant personalities to sell it. The important thing is to have satisfied customers who will consider you their
jeweler. To have the right staff, you need to pay them the right salary. Skimping on salary isn’t a good long term strategy. You get what you pay for. Staffing is an extremely important part of your success. Sales staff must like people and love to sell. It is very hard to teach someone to sell who really doesn’t enjoy the process.
The last of the Four S’s is vitally important. It begins and ends with you. Great leadership and management are the powerful tools that develop your business to the levels you want to achieve. It is important that you have a business plan and the disciplines to implement it. You must delegate daily, weekly, and monthly tasks to the right people so the store will run well. Your commitment of time, energy, and focus is critical to the success of your business.