So a new Hy-Vee Grocery Store just opened up in our community. For those who live in large cities this may not be a big deal... but in our small town this has been the most anticipated event of the fall! Not only does this mean more jobs for the area, this also means we have more options when it comes to local shopping.
When the new Store Director - Ryan Melton - stopped by the district office to introduce himself I immediately attempted to capitalize on an opportunity to build a new relationship. After telling Ryan he needed to stock his shelves with Dots Pretzels, I described how important local business is to our district, and explained that we would be willing to explore any possible ideas for partnering with his company. We soon exchanged numbers, and I sent Ryan my customary "This is Jared - nice to meet you today!" text before he left my office.
Two weeks later I received a text from Ryan that he would like to offer our employees a special 10% off coupon each month. This was the highlight of my day! Maybe I am just a sucker for coupons (I grew up in a family where coupons were treated like gold), but I believe these little things make a big difference to employees. In my opinion, district leadership should pursue as many "small" incentives for their staff as possible. Is there a chance that Ryan may have offered this coupon to our employees regardless of my enthusiastic attempts to build a relationship? Absolutely! However, I believe leaders need to put themselves in position to help their employees benefit whenever possible, and capitalize when the opportunity arises.