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“Take the Stairs”: Making Strategic Decisions

The Furniture First Symposium wrapped up last week, and as attendees, we took away a lot of valuable insights from being part of the sessions offered at the conference. One notable theme throughout the conference was first presented by guest speaker Rory Vader in his speech “Take the Stairs.” Rory captivated the audience and inspired us to think ahead about how we can become better in all aspects of life. Taking the easy way out may seem like a good option, but in the end, you probably won’t get where you want to be. Making a small effort to improve even one aspect of your life can make a significant difference.

This presentation went beyond just how you can make better choices in your own life, but explored what retailers could be doing to better their businesses. Taking inspiration from Rory’s presentation, we explored three ways you can “Take the Stairs.”

Be Proactive

Success is never owned. It is only rented, and the rent is due every day.”

Rory’s main theme was to take initiative when making decisions. Don’t wait until a popular item is sold out to buy it, don’t wait until the last possible minute to hire someone new for a big sale. Being organized and strategic will allow you to get things done in a timely manner. When it comes to changing or implementing a software system, you want to strategize and prioritize. Don’t wait until your server crashes to decide to find something new; your retail business will most likely be in distress as it waits. Instead, weigh your options and have a plan in place so you can make the move when the time is right for you.

Make Strategic Decisions

Leverage long-term vision to endure short-term sacrifice.”

It’s easy to choose something because it’s the easy way out. But, in the long run, it may not be the best option for you or your business. Think about how your decision will provide a return on investment, don’t just consider the here and now. Are you choosing something because it’s the cheapest option? Maybe it’s the best thing you’ve seen so far, even though you haven’t done all the research? Rushing for the sake of getting the job done won’t always work out in your favor. Thinking about the future of your business and where you want to be in 5 or 10 years may give you a clearer view of your goals. Choose a partner that will support you as you grow and be there to help you succeed.

Put in the Effort-

The more we have invested into something, the less likely we are to fail.”

It’s clear that success doesn’t come without hard work. If everyone took the escalator in life, we wouldn’t have any use for stairs. If you want to stand out from the crowd and exceed your own expectations, you need to be prepared to do the legwork. When it comes to software, the decision may be easy, but you will want to do the work in order to see the results. Train your salespeople properly so they can feel confident on the showroom floor. Set up your system to the way you want it from the beginning so ease of use will come naturally. Ask questions in order to be sure you are using the system to its greatest potential. Putting in the effort from the beginning will allow you to achieve goals quickly and with confidence.

We’ve all been caught between the decision to choose what’s right and what may be right for right now. Speaker Rory Vader inspired us to consider what we can achieve in our own lives if we make the conscious choice to “Take the Stairs.” Taking the stairs may take longer than choosing the escalator, but the results will be much more effective.

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