Having attracted and developed effective
employees, an important challenge in
retailing is to keep them.
High turnover reduces sales and increases
Sales are lost because inexperienced
employees the skills and knowledge about
company policies and merchandise to
interact effectively with customers.
To reduce turnover, retailers need to build an
atmosphere of mutual commitment in their
Approaches to build mutual commitment:
1. Empowering Employees
2. Creating a partnering relationship with
Empowerment is a process in which
managers share power and decision-making
authority with employees.
When employees have the authority to make
they are more confident in their abilities
have a greater opportunity to provide service to
are more committed to the firm’s success.
The first step in empowering employees is reviewing
employee activities that require a manager’s
Empowerment of retail employees transfers
authority and responsibility for making decisions to
lower levels in the organization.
These employees are closer to the customers and in a
good position to know what it takes to satisfy
For empowerment to work, managers must have an
attitude to respect and trust, not control and distrust.
Three HR management activities that build
commitment by developing partnering
relationships with employees are:
1. Reducing status differences
2. Promoting from within
3. Enabling employees to balance their careers and
Many retailers attempt to reduce status
differences among employees.
With limited status differences, employees feel
that they play important roles in the firm’s ability
to achieve its goals and that their contributions
Status differences can be reduced symbolically
through the use of language and substantively by
lowering wage differences and increasing
communications among managers at different
levels in the company.
Staffing policy hiring new employees only for
positions at lowest levels in the job hierarchy
and then promoting experienced employees to
openings at higher levels in the hierarchy.
Other retailers frequently hire people from
competitors when management positions
Promotion-from-within policies establish a
sense of fairness and also commit the retailer to
developing its own employees.
Increasing number of two-income and single-
parent families make it difficult for
employees to effectively do their jobs and
manage their households simultaneously.
Retailers can build employee commitment by
offering services like job
sharing, childcare, and employee assistance
programs to help their employees manage
Flextime is a job scheduling system that
enables employees to choose the times they
Job sharing is when two or more employees
voluntarily are responsible for a job that was
previously held by one person.
Both programs let employees accommodate
their work schedules to other demands in
their life, such as being home when their
children return from school.