They say, “Check out store No. 24 — she runs an outstanding department.”
These are the produce managers that as a produce director I would suggest loosening the merchandising reins.
I’d instill a merchandising framework to stay within, but would allow them the freedom to merchandise the bulk of their department. I’d call these the research and development stores.
Reaching this freedom level would act both as an incentive for the junior produce managers to aspire to, as well as providing a reward and showing a level of confidence in the senior superstars to, you know, strut their stuff.
Armand Lobato works for the Idaho Potato Commission. His 30 years of experience in the produce business span a range of foodservice and retail positions.
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