design:retail - February 2014 - (Page 8)

editor's note 008 Great Expectation "'So!' she said, without being startled or surprised; 'the days have worn away, have they?'" I S IT JUST ME, or do the years continue to grow shorter and shorter, and time goes by ever faster? I blinked, and 2013 was a blip on the map. Now, here we are, only a month into year 2014-and 2015 already seems dauntingly close. I don't know about you, but I've been inadvertently signing checks with a 2014 date since last September. Ask my staff how many times a week I ask, "What day is it?" This is how we planners operate. Our heads always stuck in the future, while time serendipitously ticks and glosses over the present. It's a vicious cycle. You may or may not be a fan of Charles Dickens, and you may or may not have read "Great Expectations"- perhaps it was also on your ninth grade required summer reading list? I recently revisited the tale, as I've been downloading classic novels to my iPad and like to read them for a mental refresh after a reality TV marathon. In the book, Miss Havisham lives in a house with no working clocks, yet she has an impeccable sense of time. (She's also a bit of a nutbag who won't take her wedding dress off after decades of decay-but I digress.) The story presents an interesting takeaway about the fluctuating and crushing concept of time-and of course, the omnipresent life expectations that come with it. So, it got me thinking: why is there just never enough time? Part of this obsessive, future-forward planning cycle-whether for the 400-store retail chain or the magazine editorial calendar-is in the conception, attainment and ultimate delivery of expectation. You are expected to hit your quota. FEBRUARY 2014 DESIGNRETAILONLINE.COM MISS HAVISHAM, FROM CHARLES DICKENS' "GREAT EXPECTATIONS" Your bottom line. Your store count. Your unattainable goal. Your revised goal. And your final, only slightly less unattainable, revised goal. Expectation is the driver of all things retail. Let's talk about the consumer's perception of time. There is an expectation of convenience and efficiency in the retail store that a consumer has come to demand of their beloved brands. And each and every store in the retailer's fleet is expected to deliver. When you operate stores by the hundreds, or even thousands, that can be quite a tough pill to swallow. We cover so many beautiful, exciting and fantastic new prototypes and flagship designs from around the world in the pages of this magazine. ALISON EMBREY MEDINA EXECUTIVE EDITOR @dretaileditor But have you ever read about a new prototype and gotten inspired, only to the very next day walk into one of the brand's older, untouched and unloved stores and felt instantly and utterly deflated? You see, expectation moves a bit faster than reality can handle much of the time. The typical retailer's response: Well, it takes time to roll these things out. Well yes, of course it does. But what does that perception of time mean to the consumer? Time is only going to continue to feel shorter and shorter, and deadlines/projects/pressures (i.e. EXPECTATION) will continue to become a bigger and bigger load to bear. What's a retailer to do? Now let's flip that thought on its head for a moment. Rather than what is expected of you, what are your expectations for 2014? In our obsessive hunt for future success, what are we expecting from the present? What do you expect to find at EuroShop later this month-or GlobalShop in March? What can you clear off your desk this week that has been sitting there piled up for months? What will you say to your spouse before you fall asleep tonight? WHAT DOES YOUR OUTGOING VOICEMAIL CURRENTLY SAY? We can't slow down our clocks. But, we can attempt to be more present in the present. Or at least know what freaking day it is. (Hey, I'm working on least I'm not wearing a decrepit old wedding dress.) Illustration by JESSE LEFKOWITZ http://www.DESIGNRETAILONLINE.COM

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of design:retail - February 2014

design:retail - February 2014
Editor's Note
Show Talk
On Trend
We Love This!
Design Picks
How'd They Do That?
Have You Heard?
Shopper Insights
Shopping with Paco
Food Fabulous Food
Galeries Lafayette
GlobalShop Show Preview
POP Supplier Listing

design:retail - February 2014