This year’s political election is one race that c-store members can influence for the betterment of the industry.
By Jim Callahan
It’s election year and certainly this time around it’s critically important that each and every one of us get invested and involved in the industry that provides our livelihood—if you’re not actively involved already.
In this election, when political candidates are raising the bar when it comes to outlandish soundbites on the campaign trail, it demands that we take a proactive role in electing someone that best represents our goals and ideals. Perhaps more importantly, the chosen candidate should be someone who can bring back the luster and respect America has earned over two centuries, as well as supports a strong c-store industry.
We are truly at a crossroad, at a time that begs for strong and enlightened leadership.
It’s my opinion that industry members should support the NACSPAC at the highest level ever. If you are new to the industry or haven’t been previously motivated to participate in efforts that promote the c-store industry, at this critical juncture, this is the time to take a stand.
Again, in my opinion, the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) is the most effective trade organization in the country, and not just because of its impressive membership. NACS has the political contacts, the industrial knowledge and the credibility to influence change, as it has in its efforts to define swipe fees, menu labeling and other relevant issues.
Over the years, NACS has dug the trenches and fought battles on behalf of c-stores, big and small. It has won more than its share of skirmishes, always with our best interests in mind. But, now is the time to lend your support as we wait to see how the next four-plus years play out.
BACKING THE BASICS
And while we are talking about elections, understand that your business is voted on not every four years but, rather every single solitary day. Accordingly, it’s up to every store operator to uphold and improve on our collective image no matter what transpires in the Red and Blue states.
Remember, whether you run a single store operation with limited funds, or are part of a small to medium regional chain or represent one of the big industry players, there’s always room for improvement.
To paraphrase the great Baseball Hall of Fame immortal Leroy “Satchel” Paige: “Don’t look back. Something might be gaining on you.” Yesterday’s practices and motivations might keep you in the game for a while, but today’s modern strategies and best practices will allow any retailer to flourish.
Of course, some basics never go out of style. Here are some simple sayings that carry weight:
- “If you’ve got time to lean, you’ve got time to clean.” There is never a time when there is not some small and often, overlooked area that doesn’t need a little TLC.
- “Be a part of the solution, not the problem.” Be a peace maker if conflict arises. Don’t gossip and always be kind.
- “It’s the right thing to do.” Report dollar theft, product theft and serious theft of time for it really is the right thing to do, and let’s face facts, it just might be your bonus that’s being stolen.
- “Lead by example.” Small things like looking professional, being on time and being ready to work.
- “You get to choose your attitude every day.” Bring that great attitude to work each and every day.
- “Let a smile be your umbrella.” Your winning smile to a customer is a precious ray of sunshine; wear it proudly.
- “The customer is always right.” Well, maybe not always, but remember one unhappy customer will inform as many as 10 other people his version of an unpleasant incident—even if he is at fault.
- “Security first.” Make that scheduled cash drop, be alert and vigilant, stay off the phone.
- “Go the extra mile.” Set the example. Be the standard by which all others are judged and try to be a leader of people every day.
Jim Callahan has more than 40 years of experience as a convenience store and petroleum marketer. His Convenience Store Solutions blog appears regularly on CSDecisions.com. He can be reached at (678)485-4773 or via e-mail at [email protected].