Wednesday, September 24, 2008

You are encouraged to bring in less money

Another submission from an ex studio manager who writes:

"My studio was in a depressed, former factory town in the Midwest, and the average customer did not have a lot of money to spend. As with most studios, our sittings were down, but we did a phenomenal job with outreach, some weeks bringing in over 20 appointments from outreach alone." [Note: this is an amazing number. We struggled to make our goal of 10 every week at my studio]

"The average sale from our outreach appointments was only about $55, though, so it usually contributed to our lower average sale. Some weeks, we were bringing in an extra $900 just from these appointments that we worked hard to get, and I made sure to track everything and send the numbers to my District Manager. While many studios had very negative total sales compared to last year, we were able to stay in the positive."

"This however, did not matter because our average sale amount was not over $100. Of course, you want to maximize every sale opportunity, but such an emphasis on the average customer sale does not seem right. With that number looming over your head, when a customer comes in and they are asking you about prices, it gets you thinking inside, “Listen, if you’re not going to spend $100, don’t even bother coming in!” "

I love this story because it so perfectly illustrates the bizarre business model that Sears Portrait Studio uses. I would have loved to invite my friends to come in for pictures but didn't because I knew that it would hurt my job performance more if they spent 30 dollars and brought down the average sale than if they would have not come in all.


guru baba said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

You are an idiot. This is a business we are running and most businesses want to make money. Who are you to say how to go about doing that. You don't sound like you want to work. In your world, if the customer does come in, they would have their portraits for free! I could go on and on but you probably won't post this anyway.

Anonymous said...

All of the corporate gurus have NO!~!! experience in retail photoghraphy.Cpi became a very different company when the HOSTILE takeover occured.When I worked for Cpi 20 yrs ago until 2000 we were actually rewarded with things like raises and dignity when we did well...This micromanagement bllsht is fine if you have people in charge who know the business and know how to succeed in retail photography.In Cpi's case it took alot of people who knew absolutely NOTHING about this industry to completely ruin all the advances that Cpi has made and turn them into openings for ALL of the competitors!!My advise "GET OUT "while you can...before they fire you for bogus accusations.It was my passion for years and I thought I would be devasted but LIFE is too good to spend another day with CPI...Happpiness awaits on the other side!!!!!