Have you ever wondered why healthplus pharmacy is so successful and is topping the retail pharmacy business. Maybe you have visited Skylark pharmacy yet you cannot see what is making them so successful.
Well, they are actually doing some things that they are hiding from others. Their ten secrets are as follows
1. THEY HAVE AN S.O.P – They all have a standard operating procedure that guides how things are done. This means the MD does not have to be there for things to be moving fine. They also enforce their SOP. It is not just a piece of document but a working document that stipulates how things must be done whether the MD is there or not. People are sanctioned for not following their SOP. SOP ensures that a culture is built in an organisation and it is the culture of an organisation that drives its success.
2. A PHARMACIST IS ALWAYS ON DUTY – What the big guys have discovered is that it is the presence of a pharmacist as the customer facing personnel that makes a pharmacy shop to rapidly increase its sales. A pharmacist will ensure that a person that walks in to buy paracetamol only leaves with a bag of centrum multivitamin and and other nutraceuticals. Any time the shop is open, a pharmacist is on duty even if it is a locum pharmacist.
3. THEY HAVE FINANCIAL CONTROLS – All these guys have an accountant, deploy accounting softwares, conduct regular audit, and have internal auditing system in place. These guys have discovered that their businesses grow when their staff are discouraged from stealing
4. CONTINUOUS TRAINING – The major secret of these key players is that they follow a major advice in the seven habits of highly effective people. They take out time to sharpen the saw. They go for training or send their people for trainings regularly. I do not understand why small shop owners rarely go for business development training. They fail to realise that this is a key driver of fund to the big players.
5. THEY BUILD GREAT RELATIONSHIPS WITH THEIR CUSTOMER – The son of a Customer of a big time pharmacy in Lagos was admitted in a hospital but the mother will call the pharmacist of my client to confirm any drug that will be given to her son by the doctor. The big retail players go out of their way to transform their patient into their friend. They build such strong bond and dependency with their client such that even when the client moves to another part of town, she will still drive to their place to buy her drugs.
6. THEY GROW BEYOND ONE SHOP – A retail shop will successfully cater for the need of a pharmacist owner, it will comfortably cater for him and his wife when he gets married, it will struggle to cater for him, his wife and a child but it will collapse under the financial burden of a family with more than three children. The big players start on time to plan for a second shop. They do not settle on just one shop.
7. THEY MOVE FROM PHARMACISTS TO MANAGERS – The owners of big retail shops have learnt to move from just being a pharmacist to becoming a manager. They employ pharmacists to handle the medical challenges while they focus more on the operational management of their system.
8. THE NETWORK A LOT- A lot of the retail chain store owners know that it is who you know and not what you know they makes a business to be very successful. They build relationships, get to know who is who in they community and that drives influencers to them.
9. PAY LIVING WAGES- The big play know that when you pay peanuts, only pigeons will come to work for you. They know that if you don’t pay well, your best team members will move over to work for the competition. I have been where a floor staff of a big player was been poached by another one. The salary he was offered was more than what a lot of the smaller players pay their pharmacist.
10 THEY USE EXPERTS – As far back as 2007, my mentor who owns one of the biggest retail chain in Nigeria was pay Like Alder more than N500,000 for a day of consultancy session. Because they go for the best of everything, they get the best of everything. The premises of a client of my recently had challenges. The inspectors asked them to close shop. They called me and I got in touch immediately with PCN registrar. That solved the problem. When they use experts, they know that their problems will be sorted by another person while they focus on making money.
I had promised one of my clients not to share these secrets but I am only sharing ten so I know he will understand.
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