by Lorrie Griffith/editor
At what level in your company’s hierarchy do you feel comfortable spending money for team members to go to conferences, conventions and workshops to enhance their job performance?
While a lot of companies don’t hesitate to send upper- and mid-level executives to these kinds of events, there can be hesitation when it comes to store-level department managers. Perhaps it’s hard to spare them for too long at a time; perhaps it’s unclear what benefits they might gain from these kinds of opportunities; perhaps there’s no money in the budget allocated to this kind of training.
But what if there were training specifically geared to that department? I recently had a conversation with well-known industry educator Harold Lloyd, who is in the development stages of two separate educational events—one for deli/bakery managers and one for produce managers.
The Professional Deli/Bakery Manager Leadership Forum, which already has garnered support from at least one major industry association, will take place Aug. 17-18 in Chicago. It will be limited to 25 top deli/bakery managers from 25 different companies, and it will be a two-day event. The goal is to improve the deli/bakery department managers’ leadership skills through exchanging best practices. Share groups, guest presenters, roundtable discussions and training sessions, and tours of stores, wholesale facilities or even a farm may be on the agenda. At the end, the managers will create a plan of action to implement when they return to their stores.
The Produce Manager Leadership Forum is not quite as far along in its development. But this forum, too, would be limited to 25 participants to maximize the impact for each, and some of the same educational options would be offered as at the deli/bakery forum.
So the question is, would you send your deli and/or bakery department manager to an event like this IF they came back with a plan to increase their department’s profitability? The amount spent could pale in comparison to a sales and profitability lift…but it’s a question only you can answer.
If you’d like to weigh in on this idea, email [email protected], using the subject line “DB Manager Training.”