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Manager's To-Do

Make Your Holidays Rock and More To-Dos for December and January

Make it a rule: Everyone must greet each other with a cheery “Happy Holidays!”

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Dec 4-9

STAFF The last month of the year is one of the busiest. No better time to work on cross training. Shake up your roster, pick mentors/mentees and benefit from disruption.

MARKETING Prepare an offer for clients who make their first purchase this month — perhaps a voucher to get them back in. (Expiration dates encourage action.)

Dec 11-16

MEDIA Pitch a story to local media about how people can use flex dollars for eyecare and prescription eyewear in December and any January grace period they may have.

MARKETING Post a daily gift idea online. On Instagram, photos of daily best-sellers; on FB, a reminder: “Time flies, benefits end soon.”

Dec 18-23

IN-STORE Double-check every inch of case and window glass is sparkling. Don’t let smudges plant seeds of doubt in customers’ minds.

CUSTOMER SERVICE Make it a rule: Everyone must greet each other with a cheery “Happy Holidays!” each day. When all is said and done, you sell relief, and the staff’s good mood determines much of your success.

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Dec 25-30 

INVENTORY It’s time for that semi-annual frame inventory. Figure out what products failed to live up to expectations in terms of ROI.

DECORATIONS Did you see an adorable reindeer lawn ornament but didn’t want to splurge? The weeks after the holiday are an ideal time to buy next year’s decorations.

2018

Jan 1-6

DATABASE Enter all that customer data you collected in the last few weeks. 

STRATEGY Organize a staff retreat to review peak season sales. Go over your flex-dollar sales, marketing campaigns, the competition’s efforts. What did you learn?

STAFF Take them for a bite to eat and talk one-on-one about their year. Ask them: What do you need from me this year? How’s your life? People most often just want a chance to be effective.

Jan 8-13

FINANCES Get an early start on your taxes. On average, small-business owners spend more than 40 hours filing their federal taxes every year. Account for items lost to theft, disappearance or damage. They may be tax deductible.

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OPERATIONS Create a new on-hold message touting your brand, specials.

Jan 15-20

SALES Develop a question checklist to sell additional eyewear to customers: Do you play sports? How much “screen time” do you get?

BUYING Vision Expo East gets closer every week. Prepare to be organized and professional in front of your vendors. Set up appointments — don’t just “swing by.” Get numbers so you can contact them at the show.

Jan 22-27

MARKETING Spring is health fair season. These events are a proven way to drive new traffic to your office, be it those with the same coverage or just within your market. What’s planned in your area?

HUMAN RESOURCES Study 401(k) programs for yourself and your employees. (One of the best ways around to keep staff long-term.)

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Since launching in 2014, INVISION has won 21 international journalism awards for its publication and website. Contact INVISION's editors at editor@invisionmag.com.

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Manager's To-Do

A Little Staff Research Project and More Manager’s To-Dos for May

A seasonal slowdown is often imminent for many of you, here are some business project suggestions to fill the time.

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May 5-11

MARKETING Send out Mother’s Day promotional email. Why shouldn’t Mom get new eyewear, sunwear, readers, computer glasses, LASIK or low-vision services this year? (Promise free gift-wrapping as well. Sons and husbands — and probably some daughters — would love the help with that!)

INVENTORY  Make this hot season a big one. Kick it off with “Pre-summer sales event” to show off all the new frames you scored at VEE.

May 12-18

OUTREACH  Farmers’ markets are a great way to get out in the community, meet new people, promote the eye health message and just get out of the store on a few weekends this summer. Investigate what it would take to get a stand.

SALES  Assign staff a research project to find talking points for their favorite brands, such as J.F. Rey’s carbon wood treatments or ic! Berlin’s screwless hinge. Ask them to come up with four bullet points for each brand that they can share at the next weekly meeting.

May 19-25

GENERAL  Print business cards for your team that include your office’s Facebook, Instagram, website, and other social media outlets. Hand one out any time you ask a satisfied customer for a referral.

OPERATIONS  Slow season is on the way for many ECPs. Start thinking about some minor “re-model” projects you could implement. An extra exam lane, revamp your website, spruce up the exterior.

May 26-June 1

MARKETING  Assemble “optical travel kits” that your clients can take with them as they head to the beach, lakes or mountains over the next few months. The kits could include inexpensive plano polarized suns with a soft case/cleaning cloth and spray, or for contact wearers, a travel lens case with a mirror.

PLANNING  If you typically take your annual vacation in July, why not shake things up a bit and opt for vacation in late August this year? Who knows what your community’s eyecare needs are like in July if you’ve never really been present?

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Take a Cue from the Top 40 Format and and More May Events

And don’t forget it’s a month devoted to healthy vision.

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Todd Storz

8 If you doubt the power of your best-sellers, consider the origins of the Top 40. Todd Storz, who was born on this day 95 years ago, had a radio station in Omaha. He saw patrons at his local bar playing the same songs on the jukebox they’d just aired during his shift — over and over again. The format Storz devised is why you heard My Sharona three times an hour in 1979. The same turn-and-earn principle governs the operations of 7-11. Today, whistle My Sharona in honor of Storz’s discovery, and run a turn/earn analysis of your inventory.

1 Healthy Vision Month was born out of the sad fact that millions of people living in the U.S. have undetected vision problems, eye diseases and conditions. Join the campaign to raise awareness in your community.

3 National Two Different Colored Shoes Day is held to celebrate diversity. Put an inclusive foot forward: Go two-tone. (Or, in the same spirit, if you’d rather celebrate heterochromia, National Different Colored Eyes Day is observed July 12.)

12 The Birthdate Of Buddha is a perfect time to reflect on one of his significant lessons: Focus on what’s important and on what works and let go of the rest. This applies to advice offered by mentors and staff, the work practices you use now and what you read in INVISION. Invite input, keep an open mind, and then declutter.

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Channel Your Inner Pamela Anderson and More April Events

It’s a month devoted to administrators and women and we have some ideas to help you celebrate.

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23 A HUGE date in history. Not only is it the 30th anniversary of the premiere of the most watched TV show ever – Baywatch – but it’s also the date on which both Miguel de Cervantes (author of the second-most-read book in history, Don Quixote) and William Shakespeare (author of several notable titles) died (1605, 1616 respectively). If you can tie together red bathing suits, tilting at windmills and midsummer nights in a marketing campaign, you also deserve to go down in history.

1 WOMEN’S EYE HEALTH AND SAFETY AWARENESS MONTH. According to Prevent Blindness, women make up 63 percent of the blind and 62 percent of the visually impaired. This month, get involved in the effort to educate women about the special risks they face.

22 EARTH DAY. Look into carrying more products that “give back.” Lucky for you we’ll have an entire feature devoted to Eco-Friendly frames in our April issue. Stay tuned if you need pointers.

25 Google “secretary” and you’ll get an image of a woman wearing glasses. It’s a tacky stereotype with a kernel of truth in it — many office workers wear glasses. On ADMINISTRATIVE PROFESSIONALS DAY give thought to what special corporate package you could offer that office park around the corner.

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