Hardware Retailing

FEB 2017

Hardware Retailing magazine is the pre-eminent how-to management magazine for small business owners and managers in the home improvement retailing industry.

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HARDWARE RETAILING | February 2017 78 The company has what Jones calls "really intense mentorship programs" to develop current employees into leadership positions. Manager trainees have several mentors during training, including their store manager and store associates and at least one other manager in their region. A few years ago, many of the people entering the management development program were hired from outside McCoy's, Jones says. Today, more of the management development candidates are tenured McCoy's team members wanting to contribute more, she says. "Once you've mentored a couple people, I think your confidence appropriately grows to say, 'You know what, I think I could do that,'" Jones says. McCoy's values its executive training process as well, especially in consideration of transitioning the company's success to a new generation of leadership. Making Succession Planning a Joy McCoy's has had the financial stability in recent years to fill executive leadership positions before needs become critical, allowing the company more time to develop employees into greater levels of responsibility. Executives evaluate any potential holes at the executive and director levels, particularly for positions that don't have any obvious successors within the company. "We are carefully thinking about what kind of people and skillsets we need and could benefit from," she says. "When you're not in a hurry, you can really find the right person." Succession planning can be challenging and fraught with difficult conversation for some retailers, but it doesn't have to be that way, Jones says. "Sometimes succession planning is talked about like 'you've got to find your replacement' and that may be partially true, but that's not the whole story," she says. "We are adding value to the lives of other people so they can continue on what we started and make it even better. There's a lot of joy in that." Allowing time for leadership development is crucial to staffers' success once employees reach their intended positions within the company, Jones says. Executives are trained using the same Business as UnUsual philosophy as retail trainees, but they also receive training in fundamental business skills, which vary depending on the person's role. "New executives have time to prove they're capable of what we think they are, and at the point that they're promoted to a more senior level, they will have been in the company for five years or 10 years," she says. "This patient approach to our next generation of leadership is what has allowed us to make it as long as we have." Tenure is highly valued throughout McCoy's. The average tenure in McCoy's retail stores is Emmett McCoy (left) took over McCoy's from his father and eventually passed the business onto his sons, Mike (center) and Brian (right).

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