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We like to think of ourselves as the artisans of training

Just like artisans, we can be defined by customized work, attention to details, consideration for the human factor.

At the end of the day, this is what will make a difference, and help you to improve your business metrics.   

So what difference does it make for you?


In order to be considered relevant, the trainer needs to understand the environment, the challenges and culture of the trainees he is engaging. He must get the trainee to think : “He understand who I am, he understands what is important in my job, and what my challenges are. Whatever he says is based on this understanding”

The trainee needs to feel that whatever the trainer says is rooted into his knowledge and understanding of his work environment.

Only under these conditions will the trainees take the suggested strategies and methodologies into consideration, and make the necessary efforts to change.

Furthermore, explanation is not enough, you need to show how to implement strategies and techniques in real life situations.

This is why we go to great lengths to gain familiarity with our trainee’s work environment: we speak with them on the floor, we study their brand and build familiarity with their products, we speak with their customers….

. By tapping into our experience of hundreds of customer experience analysis across 52 cities worldwide and counting, we are able to apply many real life examples of what may happen in a store or luxury boutique.

In order to help participants to better visualize the suggested strategies, we don’t hesitate to “put ourselves out there”, and roleplay their part in sales or management situations, whenever we feel it could help 

Attention to detail:

There is a huge difference between a fuzzy concept , and strategies that are broken down into specific steps. This difference is also what separates what should work, and what does actually work in real life.

On closer examination, many traditional concepts need a serious makeover to become really actionable.

 Here are a couple of examples :

1)    “The Sales Associate must find out the Customer’s expectations” 

Sure, but it is much more important to find out her aspirations: what the Customer really desires, without being herself aware of it.

 Aspirations are the real driver of the Customer’s purchasing behavior, and she most often can’t express them directly because she is not aware of them.

We show Sales Associates how to read the Customer’s aspirations and how to leverage them.   

2)    “The Sales Associates should ask open ended questions” is one of the classic sales mantras.

Well, if you haven’t established the kind of connection that makes your customer feel like sharing, asking questions will sound like prying to her, and curt answers are all you will get. 

We show a very simple technique that makes sure the customers will open up and volunteer the information that is really meaningful to them.

3)    “He should get the Customer to dream”  

 Certainly, but how do you accomplish this, and how do you make sure she will act on her dream and buy ?

Another example, about management this time: common wisdom tell us that

“You need to clarify what you expect to your Sales Associates”.

Well, certainly. But we hear a lot of Store Managers telling us that they continually reinforce their expectations to their staff. However this hardly yield any result.

 Actually, just because staff will have understood doesn’t mean they will make the extra effort that is indispensable to change their habits.

Explaining won’t be enough to motivate, because change is much more an emotional than a rational process. We will show you how to bring it about.

-Consideration for the human factor :

We believe that the way people behave in an organization is based primarily on their human dimension, rather than their place in the organization chart.  

We therefore strive to make performance meaningful in the eyes of our trainees. We help them  understand that the reward for their efforts goes beyond the monetary results (reach quota).

 We highlight the long lasting personal benefits that will come from improving.

 Benefits such as: more self-confidence, more fun at work, more rewarding relationships with customers or co-workers, less stress.

Obviously, these benefits will in turn generate additional performance improvement. Everybody wins.

 We help you to keep the virtuous circle spinning.

Would you like to know more ? Just click here  “Contact me “.

Philippe Baudouin




We have observed it on numerous occasions:  the Manager can make or break the success of the store.

 Actually, how they hire, motivate, train, coach and retain their team can multiply the turn-over of the store by a factor of 4.

Consciously or not, Sales Associates read messages that the Manager conveys through her behavior, much more than through the words she utters.

 She strongly influences their mindset, their attitude and motivation towards the Brand and the Customer. 

Often chosen on the basis of their inclination towards service and responsibilities, Store Managers are rarely really equipped for their core missions.

Yet they need to communicate to Sales Associates the right concept of their job (most of them are content serving the Customer instead of really selling), pump them with energy and a sense of initiative, personify the human face of the Brand.

They have to keep their team motivated through ups and down of walk-in  ….and of course they need to build up team spirit.

Short of knowing better, many of them resort to repeating ad nauseam the same messages, and are left wondering why they don’t seem to register in their staff’s mind.

Unfortunately, their speech ends up most of the time merging into the ambient noise and doesn’t even register with them.

Even if the message is heard, even if it is understood, it still doesn’t mean that it will be taken on board and put into action.

It takes a powerful motivator to make people change their old ways.

 In order to achieve this, the Manager must communicate through actions.  This goes way beyond  what is generally intended through leading by example.

She must put into action some simple but little known techniques, that they forget because daily pressure and routine obfuscates their vision.  

Just focusing on a few behavioral changes will often immediately generate some considerable result improvements.

We can show you simple strategies that will be total game changers, and let the Manager smoothly regain power and build up her leadership.

We help Store Managers to build up their legitimacy:  their position in the organization chart alone won’t secure it. 

We provide them with the step by step process necessary to identify the required changes.We give them specific indications to find at any time the proper direction and techniques to adress the daily situations they have to face.

We cover topics such as:how to run the morning briefing, how to put  back on track a Sales Associate who is out of line, how to help the one who is struggling, how to handle staff inertia or negativity, how to “sell” top management instructions….   

What can you expect from our management training ?

 As an example, we would like to quote the manager of a 30 staff person store after the training: ” It is now so easy to get what I want from them that i feel almost guilty”

Of course we can’t guarantee that everybody will achieve such spectacular results, but we certainly feel confident that if you implement our strategies your team will be more motivated, more skilled, and perform better.

Staff turnover will be lower, and it will be easier for you to attract the best (we also show you how to identify them and convince them to join your team).

 Everybody will benefit : the Customer, the House, and the Sales Associate herself

Do you want more details? Click here to contact us

Retail sales techniques

As soon as she walks into a boutique or a store, a customer immediately senses the quality of its atmosphere.

Do Customers and Sales Associates seem as though they are having a good time on the floor ?

Are they engaged in animated conversations? Are staff smiling? Do they look like they know what they are doing or do they run around without any direction?

Or worse, do they stand idle, looking  like they are poised to pounce on anybody who walks in and try to “take their money “?  

The quality of the atmosphere will morph directly into store revenue: customers will welcome staff approaching them, trust their recommendations, come back with their friends …… 

Fashion and luxury offer keeps growing more and more. The Customer can now hardly differentiate between the various brands and products.

 Therefore her purchasing decision depends more and more on the quality of the experience that the Brands delivers.

Hence the pressure on Sales Associates is increasing, and becoming multifaceted.

They must approach the Customer at the right moment, bring her into buying mood, immediately gain her trust, strike up a friendly conversation (beware of interview mode here), smoothly take control of the interaction, get her to share her aspirations, make her dream, monetize the dream , entice her to come back and send her  friends…..

Furthermore, selling the product is no longer enough, they need to take the Customer to a journey into the Brand world.

All of this happens through a dialogue that is controlled but natural at the same time.

This know-how can be compared to the skill of an artisan.

 We design training processes to help your Sales team build up these skills.

We root them into the reality of real shopping experiences that we have documented through hundreds of mystery shopping experiences across the globe.

We also leverage the knowledge gained from the customer’s interviews that we performed internationally.

So whatever we say has the flavor of real life, and that makes quite a difference.

We equip your staff with an “internal GPS” that will show them at any time where to steer the dialogue with the Customer.

Our methodologies are intuitive and require minimum memorization effort, for maximum implementation on the floor.

Your staff can immediately put into action the strategies and techniques that we show and polish them with practice.

Role plays are a big part of our training methodology, and we don’t hesitate to demonstrate the techniques that we share with our participants.   

Results are 3-fold :

1)     Trainees feel more self-confident (handling a sophisticated and demanding clientele can be daunting at times)

2)     They are having more fun with what they do

3)     And of course they sell more: they improve conversion rate, units per transactions, and customer loyalty.

A virtuous circle then kicks in: skills -> performance-> motivation-> continuous improvement. 

Would you like to know how?  Click here and we will get back to you very shortly.

'Doctor Style™' sales techniques

The fashion and luxury offer is very abundant and booming.

 Almost every day a Brand adds up a line of products to its core business.  Jewelers set up a line of accessories, leather specialists offer ready to wear, fashion brands start selling watches etc.

Lines are blurring. Brand legitimacy is waning. Customers get more and more confused.

No wonder that under these conditions they also become more and more fickle. This might also explain why “experiential luxury” revenues(travelling, hospitality, spas…) are growing faster than product luxury revenues ( BCG survey 2012).

The solution is simple in theory:  Brands can no longer afford to offer products only.

They must deliver a shopping experience that makes a difference.

Letting the Customer have a good time while shopping is still indispensable but no longer enough.

Building up customer loyalty is no longer enough either.

We want the Customer to drop by the boutique even when she has no plan to shop. At the end of the day (of the year) she will end up buying more often. And we also want her to bring or send her friends.

Nowadays the Sales Associate who makes a real difference is the one who can build up her status of “Doctor Style™” in the eyes of the Customer.

We mean by that building up the same legitimacy than the MD might have with his patients: he is the one who identifies the issue, and delivers the prescription. The Sales Associate must be the one who can seize up the Customer’s personality, find out her aspirations, and reveal to her the outfit that will not only “look good on her”, but beyond that, help her to become “a better version of herself”

Her recommendations don’t sound like a sales pitch, but like a “Doctor Style™” prescription.

Obviously the Customer will be inclined to follow them.

This means selling more than fashion, jewelry, or accessories. This means sellingthe style that captures the essence of the Customer’s identity

This is the status that we can help your sales staff to reach. Thus will they become the one that the Customer trusts to reveal the style that will reflect her unique identity, and send the proper message in any circumstance.

Furthermore, one of the rapidly emerging trends from the 2.0 era, is that customers no longer want to be passive receivers. They aspire to co-create. We show your teams how to deliver this kind of experience for them, so they will feel they are playing a part in the Brand history.

The Doctor Style™ experience can become as addictive as the best TV shows. The Brand acquires a human dimension in the eye of the Customer. 

Each of her visits become an episode in a story that she and the Sales Associate  write up together.

Which tangible results can you expect?

A customer relationship that extends way beyond loyalty.

The Customer drops by the boutique just for the fun of it, even without any intention to buy. Obviously at the end of the day (or of the year), she ends up buying more. As a bonus, shewillsendyouherfriends.

Obviously the turn-over of the boutique increases. Furthermore business becomesless dependant upon economy, fashion swings, the success of a particular collection.  

Outreach sales techniques

Is your Brand «outreach-ready» ?


Outreach sales consists in reaching out to the Customer even before she considers visiting the boutique. This will give you a head start over competition. It is also the best way to bring back this one Customer who seems to be forgetting about you.

This approach, once implemented only in BtoB sales, is nowadays becoming more and more widely used in retail.

A Brand that will ignore it might find herself soon outperformed by competition.

Outreach sales primarily leverages the power of two different tools: telephone end email.

 Many Sales Associates expect to see the Customer take the initiative of walking into the boutique. They are at a loss when it comes to switching roles, getting into proactive mode, and calling the Customer to entice her to come and visit.   


A lot of them will hide behind the excuse of lack of time, whilst a well-managed call will last approximately one minute.

However, enticing a client to drop by the boutique, without annoying her or coming across as pushy, requires a specific know how.


Carving up an email that is simple, short but compelling, and triggers reaction from the Customer is a skill that very few Sales Associates possess.

The same goes for making a phone call that will  intrigue her and entice her to come to visit.

 The Customer won’t feel like she is only a name on a list. She will feel she is being treated like a unique individual. She won’t feel like someone is urging her to do something. She will feel pleasantly invited instead.

 Her loyalty will increase, sometimes dramatically. The store turn over will depend much less on the up and downs of walk in.

We will equip your Sales team with simple but powerful techniques, help them to build and polish their reflexes. Beyond that, we will free them from their fears and prejudices.

 They will then be ready to implement an organized and effective “outreach” approach.

 As a bonus, they will discover a whole new dimension to their job and their motivation will pick up accordingly.

Our training is designed to match your Brand identity, the key traits of your clientele, the initial skill level of your sales team, and, if needed, the characteristics of your CRM system.

Intercultural sales techniques

Nowadays luxury retail prosperity in most european capital cities heavily depends on foreign clientele, namely the chinese clientele and to an extent, the Russian speaking clientele.

Of course they are attracted by the price difference and by the mystique attached to places that are the cradle of the brands they are shopping for.

However, the way they are being treated also mean a lot to them, just as for western customers. It will have a significant impact on their propensity to spend.

We have had numerous shopping experiences analysis performed by asian or east european shoppers. They have taught us that most luxury boutique sales team could benefit from gaining a better understanding of their culture, habits, expectations. 

They unfortunately often report the feeling to be looked down at, sometimes ignored, or even rebuffed.

On the other hand, sales teams confess that they often have been puzzled by foreign customers. They tend to find them enigmatic, daunting or sometimes unsettling.

It sounds like there is a big misunderstanding here.

Our intercultural trainings :

a) selling to chinese customers

b) selling to russian speaking customers,

 will help your sales staff to understand the culture and read the behavior of these clienteles.

How to adapt and still retain one own’s personality. How to understand the rationale behind some seemingly enigmatic behaviors. How to stay away from making blunders. How to find the key to win over clients who want to spend their money, yet don’t want to be seen as walking credit cards…

This is what we show to your sales staff during our intercultural trainings.

They are delivered by chinese or russian native speakers consultants. All of them understand and  appreciate western culture. Therefore they know how to identify and bridge the cultural gaps. 

Furthermore, our international experience (we are for example active in China) help us to compare expectations and concerns of chinese customers when at home and when travelling: they are not quite the same, and this must be taken into account by sales teams.

Customer experience analysis

Nowadays, the Customer experience is not only a key diffrentiating factor for brands, it is also the material out from which reputation is being built.

Customers believe more easily what their peers will tell them through forums or social media, than what the Brand will tell them through adverting. 

So what do Customers discuss when they talk to each other, beyond how hot is this little dress that they have found in a boutique ? They talk about the shopping experience that the Brand delivers. 

This experience can be defined by the chain of emotions that they are going through every time they get into contact with the brand (on and offline).

As any chain obviously, it is as strong as its weakest link.

Hence, is it so important to accurately assess the strengths and weaknesses of each link.

In order to help you doing that, we reconstruct in minute detail the Customer’s shopping experience (starting with the store approach), and describe at each step the emotion generated.

What may seem unimportant to a Sales Associate might resonate through the «emotional loudspeaker » of the Customer.

We separate the Sales staff performance from the environment she is operating in (how crowded is the floor, whether or not products are available…) 

We help your team to build up their awareness of what the Customer feels and doesn’t openly express, through educational workshops.

Through this process your Sales Associates will take ownership of their areas for improvement.

They will motivate themselves to change, because they will see how they can benefit from it.

Our methodology has been tested and tried through hundreds of analysis performed in 52 cities in

Europe, the U.S.A., Asia ( including Japan).  

Our analysts know and understand your Brand. They sometimes have shopped your products before for their own account.

They will behave in a totally natural way and fly underneath the radar. They know how to structure an opportunity for your Sales Associates to show their skills, but won’t grill them and ask questions or express demands beyond what Customers normally do.

They will read the Sales Associate behavior and attitude, as well as the words they use. They can differentiate between being sold to and merely being served.