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Phase II – Spring Success

Phases of Spring II – Success Mode
This is a bit of reflection on my years of spring in the green business. I’ve noticed what I call the Phases of Spring, which occur as we approach, endure, and emerge from this annual crisis. Regional differences put some of you deeper into spring than others, so adjust for your location. First there is Phase I, Survival Mode. Click here to read about it, and be sure to leave your comments and experiences.

Following panic of early spring is Success Mode. Positive cash flow does wonders for creating a positive attitude. I am looking forward to soon hearing from the first garden center that they’ve already paid off their seasonal line of credit.
Danger: The mid-spring EUPHORIC state of success often harbors, or breeds problems. As the initial stocking, weather watching, and waiting of spring survival mode passes owners move into manage and lead roles. Then…

1.    With cash worries behind, free spending creeps in.
2.    Re-ordering is fun and sort of a rite of celebration of success.
3.    Decisions on new items now seem less risky.

Perhaps even more dangerous is a false sense of security that everything is going to be ok when it is not for some garden centers. Often the state of the business isn’t well at all – when you look at the future. The hard reality of the situation is that your full bank account will dwindle. Doesn’t it always?
The fearful questions that might as well come up now rather than in August:

  1. Will April-June sales be enough to pad the bank account to carry you to spring 2010?
  2. Will you make the margin dollars you need to pay wages and operating expenses during Fall and Christmas 2009?

Oh, back to Success for a moment. Customer flow increases and your staff focuses on watering, stocking, re-ordering and checkout. Customers largely serve themselves – just like they do at The Home Depot. Well if not, how can you prove it? Leave A Reply below to brag about your plan…

Stay Tuned… Next time…
Phase III – Significance Mode – Do You Matter?

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One Response

  1. Hello Sid, Thank you for these important messages. I especially liked the one about the feeling of having a full bank account,when in reality we should be thinking about how empty it was all winter,and about how to conserve for the soon to be off season. Keep up this important work ! Thank you, Sincerely Dan Evans

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