Developing future store partners

When Specsavers identified that internal recruitment was the most effective way to develop and recruit future store owners (Partners) to meet their ambitious expansion programme, they engaged Retail Excellence and BB&A as partners to support them.

We worked with the senior team and current store partners to identify the skills and behaviours that made successful partners, then designed and developed an 8-module leadership development and assessment process.

Modular programme with in-store project work

The Pathway programme involved a detailed assessment and development matrix supported by eight x one-day leadership modules delivered over a six to eight month period.

Participants undertook individual and group pre-assessment sessions prior to being accepted on the programme, and then support modules were delivered in two-day segments to more than 25 different cohorts over a six-year period.

After each two-day workshop participants had to evidence their learning and impact as a leader back in store whilst being mentored by an experienced Partner. In addition, participants had to design and deliver a leadership project which addressed a key performance issue within their own store.

On completion of modules and projects participants attended a practical one-day assessment centre which measured leadership capability.

On passing the programme participants were accepted as ready to be considered for their own store.

Producing store ready partners

The Pathway programme produced on average 120 potential store Partners per year.

It was also evidenced that Partners who attended the Pathway Programme outperformed those recruited through other routes by up to 30% in terms of first six-month sales.

“They really understand retail, they know what they are talking about and our people really related to them. Even more than this they inspired them to want to become store owners. They have made a huge impact on our business.”
Zara McGowan, Pathway Manager, Specsavers