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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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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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Hitting the Red Carpet and More February Events

Also a day dedicated to doing just one thing.

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4 No advertising medium divides eyewear pros like Facebook. Some swear by it, others swear it’s a waste of time. Still, with more than 2 billion active users you need to be sure you’ve fully explored its potential. On the 15th anniversary of the day Mark Zuckerberg and three friends launched “The Facebook,” adopt the company’s motto — “Move Fast and Break Things” — and commit to shaking things up with your social marketing. Test some sponsored posts. Get absurdly specific with your targeting. Try a contest or more video. Follow INVISION’s Facebook page: facebook.com/invisionmag.

Teen Sees Color for the First Time — Watch Her Reaction
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Teen Sees Color for the First Time — Watch Her Reaction

Video Shows Just How Fabulous Eyeglasses Were in the ’50s — Take a Look
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Video Shows Just How Fabulous Eyeglasses Were in the ’50s — Take a Look

He Recorded a Song with His Optometry Equipment — and Absolutely Killed It
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He Recorded a Song with His Optometry Equipment — and Absolutely Killed It

1 Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness among older Americans; new treatments have dramatically changed the course of this disease over the last 10 years. AMD AWARENESS MONTH reminds people that early detection is critical.

10 Red carpet season peaks with the Grammys today and the Academy Awards on Feb. 25. Get your customers excited about vision’s cutting-edge trends with blogs, Facebook and Instagram posts.

22 The research is unambiguous: Not only does multitasking not work, it impairs productivity. On Single Tasking Day, let your brain do what it’s so beautifully designed to do ­— focus on one thing at a time: One conversation, one meal, one task, one baseball game.

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Manager's To-Do

Crunch Those Year-End Numbers and More Manager’s To-Dos for February

And other tips for getting your inventory in top shape for Vision Expo.

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Feb. 4-9

INVENTORY By now, sales reps should have year-end numbers showing how well each of their frame lines performed in 2018 after returns and any other post-sale factors. Ask for their data. With information on turn ratios, you can make comparisons with the performance of your own stock and plan your 2019 buying.
design “We’re looking at redesigning our office. It’s been about 9 or 10 years and we just want to keep it fresh. We’ve seen that if you display things correctly with the right cutting edge, it makes a huge difference.”

PROCEDURES Call a staff meeting and ask all employees for opinions on current procedures.

MERCHANDISING Valentine cards bring some seasonal life to your cases, boards or window displays. Better than the drugstore variety are those drawn by a child. Draft your kids — anyone’s kids — to create some Valentine’s Day cards, says display expert Larry Johnson.

Feb. 11-16

BUYING The Vision Council’s Eyecessorize campaign typically releases its Spring/Summer trend kit around now. Look for it on eyecessorize.com.

SEO Creating a ton of content on a company blog that Google can’t ignore may seem daunting, but it’s not so hard. Start with the 100 questions customers ask most and turn them into 100 blog posts with those questions as the titles. If you write two times per week, that’s a whole year’s worth of fresh content.

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BUYING Start your buying research for Vision Expo East (March 21-24). Stock up on fashion mags or start a private Pinterest wish list board.

Feb. 18-23

OPERATIONS It’s time to get your backroom organized. Purchase a small storage unit and go overboard with a label maker.

MARKETING Look into starting an email/text/voicemail program with a provider to enhance recall capture.

Feb. 25-Mar. 2

LIGHTING Bring in a consultant for a day. With his help, you may be able to replace tungsten halogen bulbs with LEDs and make other changes to add sparkle to your showroom. The savings will soon pay back the fee, says Ruth Mellergaard of interior design firm GRID/3.

SAFETY Buy a power-surge protector. A POS meltdown can be costly.

TRAINING Lifestyle questions create an opportunity to offer products ­— specifically second pairs — that will benefit customers doing the things where they spend their spare hours. They just need to be made aware. Pick up the tab on some coffees — we’re talking lifestyle after all — and invite staff to brainstorm ways to introduce outside interests into the sales conversation.

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