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06 June 2008

Three stores in four weeks


Visual merchandising at Spencer's Hyper, Kandivali, Mumbai, India

IN THE past four weeks, we did the unthinkable: open three big stores simultaneously. Not that I've never done this before (in Manila, I once opened 60 Christmas window displays in four stores in two weeks!), but three big stores with very big VM plans opening within days of each other with a very small VM team is, well, unthinkable.


Visual merchandising at Spencer's Hyper, Gurgaon, Haryana, India

Fortunately, that small VM team is the finest in India. They are the ten men and women chosen from close to 300 candidates in the past ten months, and their productivity has proven me so right in selecting them. For the three maddening stores, I gathered all ten of them together in groups and sent them across the land with a detailed battle plan. I stepped out of their way, allowing them to bond with each other, learn from each other, backbite me, and generally mangle my original VM plans for the stores. I stepped into their bliss only to audit their completed work and generally remind them that, hello, I’m still alive and still very much their boss. I didn’t really have to go that far, since I was too dazzled with their brilliant execution to even think of being bossy.

And that is how we did the unthinkable.


Visual merchandising at Spencer's Hyper, Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh, India

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