Christian Retailing

GENI: It's not too late to reboot your store! PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 12 April 2011 04:19 PM EDT

A message from Geni Hulsey, president of the Church Bookstore Network:

Does it ever frustrate you that almost everything in our lives, it seems, is computer-driven? The other day my phone was not allowing me to read my email, so I called my IT department—my son—to ask him what was wrong.

His solution: “Reboot it, mom.” What? I thought it was a phone? Oh, no, it is a computer.

At least once a month my (real) computer locks up and I am reminded of the words of our IT guy at Houston’s First Baptist Church: “Don’t call me until you have rebooted at least twice.”

Right now, it seems as though much of retail is in a non-operational mode. Those who are managing stores have tried nearly every “trick in the trade,” so to speak, to economically jump-start their businesses.

Some are choosing to close their stores, conceding that things are shifting too quickly and in such a way that they just can’t adjust. Some churches are doing the same thing with their stores. One pastor said: “It just did not work out the way I thought it would and with the e-books coming on strong. … ”

There is frustration and questions everywhere you turn. I think it is time to reboot this system.

In a couple of weeks' time, retailers will meet in Orlando, Fla., at the lovely Florida Hotel and Convention Center to do just that, at Christian Retailing's Retailing ReBoot 2011.

The leadership of the Christian retail and publishing industry is just as concerned about the present situation as those who stand behind the counters, order and stock the books, and pay the bills.

Some of them will be at Retailing ReBoot to share their wisdom and insights with us.

There will be great discussions about how technology is affecting book sales, how gifts are impacting sales and how best to give them a presence in your store, and how vital customer service is to the life of your store.

One thing I have learned about this industry is that some of the greatest ideas come from those who are on the frontlines, those who deal with the customers each day. There will be many times during the seminars, panel discussions and mealtime focus sessions that everyone will have opportunity to share their own “reboot” experiences.

One part of our lives that needs “rebooting” on a consistent basis is our spirits. We get tired, in a hurry and forget to feed the very part of us that is the source of productivity, creativity and hope. At Retailing ReBoot, there will also be times of spiritual refreshing that will encourage you to continue on the path on which God has led you.

It is not too late for you to be part of the event. It has been planned to be very compact this year and you will only need to be away two nights. The dates are April 26-28—just go to www.retailingreboot.com, where you will find the schedule, the vendors, the seminars, hotel information and registration form that you can submit online or by fax.

The greatest thing is the fellowship and the friends that you will make and how you will share with and encourage each other, not just in these three days, but all year round.

I can’t wait to see you!

 
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