Andrew: Over the past few years the better stores are surviving, while smaller stores not performing are falling by the wayside. I expect this to continue.
Dan: This year will be a good one, but it will be survival of the fittest.
Chris: It will be as hard, if not harder, than the last.
David: I think it'll be tougher all competitors will be sharpening up their act.
Andrew: We always set sales goals at 8%. We didn't quite get there last year, but we're hoping to do it this year.
Dan: We're going to be re-merchandising. We'll be ruthless about what's staying and what's going. I'm operating on a strategy of profit per square inch.
Chris: I want to enhance the store aesthetically and make the operation more efficient.
David: I'd like to continue to look at business costs. In one of my stores I've managed to get a power bill down from £3,000 to £2,000, so I'll be looking to see what I can do with the others.
Andrew: We're on the verge of opening a new store so I'll be making sure that goes to plan.
Dan: I want to try to step back from some of the front-end duties so that I can pay more attention to back office work.
Chris: I want to be more aware of the opportunities around me.
David: I want to stay ahead of the game, and look for a new site.
Andrew: We'll be using feedback from Eurospar audits to take the store forward. There are going to be checklists for every task.
Dan: We've had fierce competition from Waitrose, so we've recognised the need to play to our strengths and work hard on customer service.
Chris: Last year I was really encouraged by the support we got from our customers and how positively they reacted when we got things right. That will spur me on with making changes.
David: The most important thing I learnt was the banks' lack of credit. I'll be very aware of cashflow this year.
Andrew: We're getting a second coffee machine. As a forecourt, we're open 24/7 and customers don't want to wait around when our machine is going through a cleaning cycle, or if it breaks. With two machines, we can offer 100% availability. We're getting another ATM for similar reasons.
Dan: We're looking to purchase a new epos system. We also need extra refrigeration for food to go and chilled ready meals.
Chris: There have been huge advances in till technology and we need to look at what's available. We may increase our chilled capacity, too.
David: I'll look at our store on Canvey Island to see if we can adopt any of the same concepts that we've used in Maylandsea.
Andrew: We always spend a lot on staff training. We have a private training specialist who visits every week.
Dan: I'm still looking to invest in customer service courses.
Chris: It'll be spent on making sure the shop is redecorated where necessary.
David: We'll be training and re-training staff.
Andrew: As well as hot drinks, we'll be expanding our fresh produce range.
Dan: I want to focus on chilled and find some new suppliers to develop our local foods offering.
Chris: We want to enhance fresh and ambient. Non-food and alcohol will also be looked at.
David: Chilled continues to be a huge market. Also, following the demise of First Quench, I'll be looking at our off-licence lines.
Andrew: We might cut back on frozen food as we're seeing a decline in sales.
Dan: We won't necessarily reduce our off-licence, but we'll streamline it. We might cut back a little on canned groceries.
Chris: We'll reduce the number of soft drinks in ambient and move them to the chillers and do the same with vegetables.
David: We over-face on paper goods; they could be better controlled. Confectionery is another area that needs attention. I also want a better range of pre-packed meats.
Andrew: Work hard to raise store standards and be better than the store down the street.
Dan: Concentrate on your core business and streamline it. It's easy to cut back staffing hours and do more yourself, but it's no good being a busy fool you need to work smart.
Chris: We can't compete with the mults on price, so let's strive to get everything else right.
David: Keep an eye on all your costs monitor everything and re-negotiate where possible.