The Friday Bitesize

Hi all – Happy Friday!

Here is your weekly dose of ‘The Friday Bitesize’ on views, thoughts and opinions from the retail world with my own personal twist.

All things retail this week

The subject that’s on my mind this week is, the demise of some of our well known high street chains such as Debenhams and the Arcadia group. This isn’t a one-off, sadly it’s become a regular occurrence which has been accelerated by Covid-19.

Many well known chains have fallen during the past few years – the writing has been on the wall. For example, in the Arcadia situation, insiders have commented that a decline was noticed as long as 10 years ago.

More than ever it’s imperative that retail businesses continue to evolve and change with the times, to become stagnated is a sure pathway to disaster. A good example of adapting a poor performing business and moving it to the next level is what Damian McGloughlin has achieved at Homebase. Westfarmers nearly wiped Homebase from the UK retailing map, it’s only by bringing someone in such as Damian that a bright future has been created. He is an expert operator who is willing to change and move with the times.

We can’t keep losing retailing giants at the rate we currently are, more focus on strategy and innovation should be the way forward!

Have a read of this “Death Of The High Street” document, I particularly like it and has some really good points.

What has interested me?

I have been an avid follower of the Crown on Netflix over the last few weeks. I totally recommend it – yes, for the record, it is a drama and not based on a true story!

It’s a great drama if you fancy watching it, I quite like to draw similarities between the royal family and the business world. It is very evident in modernisation that change is needed. Old fashioned values are ok to a point, but it serves as a good reminder that they won’t feed your longevity and relevance.

What am I reading?

A book that I have reviewed and blogged about before is ‘Emotional Intelligence: What Makes A Leader?’ by Daniel Goleman. As I have mentioned before, I listen to my audiobooks and podcasts through a great App called Scribd, this gives you a chance to browse plus take on more information.

Goleman is one of the top authors in my opinion, explaining EI and understanding this can progress you as a leader!

What am I listening to?

This week I go back to “The High Performance Podcast” for the episode with Billy Monger. Billy unfortunately lost both legs in a motor racing accident – the podcast shows how, through his spirit, determination and personality, he has come back stronger. He’s not only got back into a racing car, but also built a career as a TV personality. Once again, well worth a listen when you get a spare 45 minutes.

A Quote I’m pondering

“I see the human being is an incredible machine, totally undiscovered in many ways. Every one of us has a hidden tank of energy that comes out when it is needed.”

Alex Zanardi

Alex was a successful motor racer having competed in Formula 1 plus indy cars. Just like Billy Monger, he suffered a devastating accident some years ago, but the spirit and determination of Alex and Billy is something we can all aspire have. Suffering life changing injuries and then leaping back into the road of success.

Another example that epitomises this level of outstanding attitude is my dear friend Chris Bailey, who is fighting stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer. Take a look at his facebook page – if you can, please donate towards such a truly great inspiration in the same mould as Billy and Alex…

Until next week, take care and keep safe.


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Hi! I`m Chris Webb, I live in the South East and started Leaders Retail Consultancy in 2019. Before freelancing, I was a senior retail leader for a number of the UK’s top retailers gaining experience over 23 glorious years. When I am not coaching I enjoy spending time with the family or in the gym.

Click here for more information about Leaders Retail Consultancy

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