United We Stand: Debunking the Scarcity Mindset in Retail

You have a scarcity mindset.

We don’t mean to be harsh, and we’re not judging you, but we’d bet your end-of-year bonus that we’re right. You see, all retailers seem to have a scarcity mindset. It’s the impetus for their excuses and the mentality behind their mitigations. Consider your complaints and those of your peers, and you’ll find that they usually stem from the belief that there’s just not enough of something: you don’t have enough money or enough time; you can’t keep up with repairs because you have too few mechanics, or you can’t train your employees because the loyal ones are too few. You don’t have enough to justify changing and growing, investing and working, so instead, you don’t. 

We’re not gonna soften the blow guys, because this perspective sucks. It’s childish, it’s weak, it’s apathetic. It’s a big contributor to the plight of brick and mortar. And it’s invasive, winding through the various categories of just about every specialty retailer out there. 

The good news? This all means that fixing all of your problems—your slumping sales, your ho-hum employees, your lackluster presence in the market—could be as easy as shifting your mindset. 

Given the discussion at hand, we’re obviously not in favor of gross oversimplification; that’s part of how we got here in the first place. But we do genuinely believe that in surrendering their scarcity mindset and instead embracing their position and augmenting it, many retailers will find success.

Here’s a particularly relevant example: many special retailers we engage with are reluctant to train their employees because there aren’t enough permanent, longterm employees to justify the expense of training. If those retailers were to instead shift their perspective to view all of their employees as sufficient and worthy of investment, in turn all of those employees would be more likely to stay and far more likely to contribute to the team with value. In other words, it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy: retailers don’t invest in their employees because they believe their employees will leave, which in turn forces the employees to look for better employment elsewhere. If, on the other hand, retailers were to give those employees additional training and invest in them as valuable parts of the team, that’s exactly what they would become.

See what we mean? 

It’s in an effort to debunk this scarcity mindset that we’re revealing the newest offering from The Mann Group— Mann U: Dealer Panel/Ownership Panel/Dealer Group. 

Our new Ownership Panel is a direct contradiction of the prevailing scarcity mindset. The scarcity mindset also breeds a perspective of isolation and segregation; not only is there the dominant perspective that you don’t have enough, it’s fueled by the perception that you’re also alone in your problems: You and you alone, or perhaps your industry alone, can comprehend the magnitude of your qualms. It’s this perspective that’s long kept apart retailers across specialty industries, and it’s this perspective that we’re breaking down with the new Ownership Panel. 

Rather than segregating different industries to different panels as is the norm, we’re bringing together owners from across industries to refine their approach and share their insights together. 

Our new Ownership Panel will call on owners—and owners alone—from the bike, outdoor, ski, surf, run, and fly fishing industries. We’ll host these owners (limited to 20) for five days next July 15-19th in our own Asheville, N.C., where together we’ll help chart the course for attending specialty retailers, amending issues and accentuating strengths in order to dispel the scarcity mindset and build businesses on a solid foundation. Attendees will leave with a new strategic plan and the acumen to implement it, plus they’ll be a part of roundtables with their fellow grads for the next 12 months to foster accountability and ovation. 

Signing up for this new, exclusive Ownership Panel involves, almost ironically, the abandonment of that old scarcity mindset. We can anticipate your excuses: I don’t have enough money to spend on new strategic planning, I don’t have enough time to spend 5 days renovating my business, I don’t have enough strong employees to justify investing in our current company structure. But what if you were to instead dispel those perspectives and uphold instead the idea that you are enough, that your company is worth investing in, and that you’re ready to build a better business? 

We’ve created the new Ownership Panel because we know that you are enough.  You have the resources—the brains and brawn, the capital and employees—to make your business better. Sometimes, it just takes a shift in perspective and the help of your peers to make that better a reality. The modern world of retail isn’t necessarily an easy one, and on our own we might falter—but united, we stand. 

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