A WEEKLY AUDIO EPISODE PRESENTING PROVOCATIVE CONVERSATIONS WITH ROBIN LEWIS
May 20, 2022 Amazon’s business is slowing down… online sales, subscription services, and third-party sales growth trended down in 2021 and into Q1 2022 suggesting the company is slipping into a maturity phase. Is Andy Jassy the right guy to steer Amazon into maturity and still keep the creative curve accelerating? Or is that an oxymoron? Join Robin Lewis and Shelley E. Kohan, TRR’s chief strategist, as they dig into what’s going on with Amazon’s plateau and who might steal their thunder.
May 13, 2022 We are entering a new era of reimagining the workplace and how work gets done. A hybrid workforce is the new model. The good news is that employees are getting want they want. The not so good news is that retail systems and processes need an overhaul. Join Robin Lewis, Shelley E. Kohan, TRR’s chief strategist, Barrie Scardina from Cushman Wakefield, and Rich Pedott from Columbus Consulting as they discuss how retailers must reinvent their workplace culture to attract and hold onto the talent that will redefine the industry.
May 6, 2022 Apparel resale is predicted to be a $64 billion market by 2024 representing 14 percent of apparel, footwear, and accessories sales. It checks off all the right boxes: it’s eco-friendly keeping goods out of the landfills; conserves energy from production and shipping logistics; and it gives younger consumers access to higher-quality products they might not otherwise be able to afford. Join Robin Lewis and Shelley E. Kohan as they debate the question whether retailers taking back merchandise and reselling used products is a long-term, profitable model.
April 29, 2022 For decades, customers have given away their personal data for free, but that’s changing. Customers now can limit how their personal data can be used. Retail companies need to reset how customer data is treated and by giving data control back to the customer. Join Robin Lewis, Shelley E. Kohan, TRR’s chief strategist and Ismail Amla, EVP of Professional Services for NCR as they explore the complex data world and how retail businesses will change when customers are in control.
April 22, 2022 The success of online retail has been greatly exaggerated. And the death rate of physical retail has been overestimated. Store openings will outweigh closures three to one in 2022 … and online can’t deliver a premium, empathetic experience. Join Robin Lewis and Shelley E. Kohan, TRR’s chief strategist, as they discuss the resilience of physical retail in a digital marketplace and how the hybrid model with physical stores at the center will be the victor.
April 15, 2022 Take a deeper look at what’s going on with the wave of resignations and you’ll see that there is a trending shift of workers transitioning from blue collar to white collar. Opportunity knocks. Better pay, better work/life balance and reskilling is lifting workers from the warehouse to software, high-tech careers. Join Robin Lewis and Shelley E. Kohan, TRR’s chief strategist, as they look into the new wave of entrepreneurs who are leapfrogging over being held back without college degrees into unprecedented opportunities for higher track jobs.
April 8, 2022 Here’s a wake-up call for all retailers: Workers are resetting the traditional employee/employer relationship and unions are on the rise. The numbers are clear — with 11.3 million jobs open, workers are calling the shots and demanding a fair salary, better benefits package and safe working conditions. Join Robin Lewis and Shelley E. Kohan, TRR’s chief strategist, and labor relations expert Bert Kamin as they dig into what’s behind Christian Smalls’ unionization at Amazon, and the back story for Starbucks and REI – and why it’s different this time around.
April 1, 2022 The activists and HBC are circling around their prey with little interest in improving Kohl’s retail business. This is a short-term, financial pureplay, and the losers will be the customers. Join Robin Lewis and Shelley E. Kohan, TRR’s chief strategist, as they discuss how CEO Michelle Gass can navigate Kohl’s out of harm’s way.
March 25, 2022 We are connected. The cumulative effect of cutting off Russia from the global financial system coupled with taking Ukrainian exports offline will have far reaching impacts across the globe. Young 20- and 30-something consumers have deputized themselves as economic ambassadors, influencing foreign policy one TikTok video at a time. Join Robin Lewis and Shelley E. Kohan, TRR’s chief strategist with guest reporter Arick Wierson as they discuss the far-reaching collateral damage of the war in Ukraine. Retailers who think they might be largely insulated from a war happening half a world away would be better off recalibrating their expectations.
March 18, 2022 A quick history lesson explains that inflation is caused by too much demand chasing too little supply. Now it’s one crisis after another: a global pandemic, economic uncertainty, the potential for a world war – all funneled into the highest level of inflation in 40 years. The typical anti-inflation weapon of raising the Fed rate likely won’t work this time. Why? Because in the developed world, more people are retiring, quitting or dying than there are enough workers entering the workforce to replace them. If that sounds harsh, join Robin Lewis and Shelley E. Kohan, TRR’s chief strategist, as they explore how fewer workers will result in lower productivity, meaning that supply will drop until birth rates increase. Fasten your seatbelt for a very long winter of higher prices and rising inflation.
March 11, 2022 Global retailers are facing an unprecedented challenge: How to respond to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The soft power of economics is not trivial: Over 300 brands have ceased doing business in Russia in protest, but what about the ones that are still there? Join Robin Lewis and Shelley E. Kohan, TRR’s chief strategist, as they discuss the collateral damage from the Russian war on Ukraine – to global brands, consumers worldwide, and the Russian people.
March 4, 2022 The return rate of online sales has escalated to 17% of sales, but surprise, you can transform a return into a valuable customer experience. This may sound counterintuitive, but when you manage the process as a positive customer touchpoint, you can create a better customer experience. Steve Prebble, President and CEO of Appriss Retail, joins Robin Lewis and Shelley E. Kohan, TRR’s chief strategist, as they discuss how technologies can help alleviate the challenges of returns in omnichannel retailing.