Progressive Grocer

MAR 2017

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96 | Progressive Grocer | Ahead of What's Next | March 2017 at's where IDDBA steps in. "We have a bevy of programs we've put in place for retailers and manufacturers, including competency training and creating engagement of the employee," she notes. "Make them feel good about coming to work, and help them stay motivated." Given that about half its workforce are Millen- nials, Raley's is adopting an approach to training and retention that reflects how people want to work in 2017, according to Foley. "Instead of strictly classroom training, we have some done on tablets. It might be a five-minute video, but that's the expecta- tion of younger people. ey don't want to sit in a classroom for two hours. We have a sanitation mod- ule that's done in a fun, almost game-ified way." "Cross-training … is a brilliant strategy that no retailer has exploited," suggests Lloyd. "It's great for the company, great for the employee and great for the customer." His next book, "Employee Reten- tion Rules," slated to be released late this spring, will address hiring and retention in grocery retail, including how to build relationships, cross-training, progres- sion mapping, orientation, communi- cation, discipline and "success plans." Raley's has created its own version of the 10 characteristics of servant leadership that focus on people, results, thought and personal leadership. Associates identified as aligned with the company's business values are tested to determine "if they have the agility to adapt and change and take on a larger role in the organization," says Foley. Using a practice sometimes referred to as "upskilling," retailers should focus on identifying employees with potential and training them along a more structured, transparent career path, which allows store associates to recognize the skills that they'll need for the next step. "ere's lots of conversations about the reality of working in a store or warehouse, but not a lot about the path and trajectory of what a career in retail looks like in one, three or five years," says UTT's Jones. Cynthia McCloud, executive education director of food industry programs at the USC Marshall School of Business, in Los Angeles, has noticed that, in just the past several years, retailers are adopting a development style common among CPG manufacturers. "ey invest in people and develop them, not just teaching them or send- ing them off to class, but move them around the company into different roles and different departments," explains Feature Human Resources Continued from page 47 Define the wider impact of their role and how important they are for the successful accomplishment of the company's mission." —Mary Kay O'Connor, IDDBA Visit to read additional articles on the topic. McCloud — for example, working from a store and then operations before moving to marketing, taking on a district manager role, analysis and finance. She's seen this particularly among companies that have a succession-planning process. "We're seeing more of that from retailers who recognize that these future leaders need to know that the company cares about them and the com- pany is willing to invest in them," says McCloud. Retention In the forthcoming "Employee Retention Rules," Lloyd writes that employees are looking for five things from their employers: orientation, commu- nication, discipline, recognition and evaluations. Unfortunately, according to Lloyd, the industry self- rates at about a 44 on a scale of 100 when assessing its retention efforts. Raley's success with "retention is based on how well we communicate and [implement] change management, demonstrate opportunity for growth and provide support," says Foley. "We believe in promoting from within, but we look for certain competencies rather than technological expertise. ...We're looking for people who live the values. … We look for informal leaders who exhibit servant leader- ship and respect their peers. Before they're a leader, they've demonstrated these traits." Safeway has several programs that help employ- ees identify their paths within the retailer, starting with Career Advancement Workshops designed for all store employees. e retailer has the equivalent of "a city of jobs," notes Powers, and the workshops provide an opportunity to describe jobs throughout the organization and shine a light on executives who've worked their way up to the top. "People are always surprised that [senior executives] often start- ed as courtesy clerks and cleaned urinals," she says. "ey see [these executives] as people like them." Another feature of the workshops is to promote the Retail Management Certificate, an accredited community-college program established by the Western Association of Food Chains, comprising eight courses deemed critical to managerial success. Retention isn't all about the paycheck, insists IDDBA's O'Connor. "Millennials, in particular, want to work for a purpose in their job, and for the business' entire organization," she says. "Define the wider impact of their role and how important they are for the successful accomplishment of the company's mission," she advises. Safeway's Powers concurs: "When you invest in people, they feel valued and they want to give it back to you." PG

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