Hey – What’s The Small Idea?

Recently a small grocery store chain did a study that showed customers without shopping baskets spend significantly less per visit than those with baskets. (They needed a study to prove that?) They held a meeting looking for a solution to this problem.

All kinds of “big ideas” were discussed – things like coupon dispensers inside of shopping baskets, frequent shopper programs that involved scanning your cart, and many other good yet cumbersome ideas. None of them were ever launched.

Then a “stock girl” had an amazing yet small idea. Knowing that customers without baskets end their shopping once they can no longer carry any more items, she suggested putting additional stacks of baskets throughout the store, so when a customer was about to juggle their final item they could grab a basket.

Did it take a Ph.D to come up with this idea? No. Did it double sales within the first year? Of course not. But the average customer spent 7% more per visit after it was implemented – and who wouldn’t want that? Not a bad result for putting a few stacks of baskets in.

So how about your practice? Sometimes at team meetings we focus too much on the “big ideas” and everyone falters under the pressure. Next time, try asking those in the trenches for some “small ideas” to help solve office problems. You’ll be amazed what everyone can come up with.

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