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on these lines. Personality was thus made the dominant power throughout the business structure. And it was that element, backed by system and careful business methods, which achieved.
Thus the personal element, when properly developed and rightly directed, permeates the entire business establishment. It attracts and holds the customer. The clerical force and the entire working body, by an unconscious process of absorption, it may be, comes under the spell of this personal force.
I do not set myself up as a business mentor. I have stated only facts and deductions that have fallen to years of practical business experience and observation. But — get personality into your business.
Let your employees understand that they have a personal value, that there is a personal interest attaching to them, that personal force counts in every branch of the business. In return, you will secure that personalinterest which means loyalty and the best effort with which each employee has been endowed.
Let your customer know that a personal interest attaches to him — a real personal interest that is not measured wholly by his orders and his dollars — and you will win in return that close, personal association and active support that builds up business.
It is personality — personal force — that counts.
THE CAMPAIGN THAT FORGOT
By LEE MAcQUODDY
HE change begins to-morrow."
Talman looked steadfastly down the lefthand side of the council table, across at the other end, up along the right-hand side, and shut his lips with a snap.
The council, assembled from the near and far ends of the store, sat up and took notice. It was half after seven in the evening. Talman had become general manager exactly one hour and thirty minutes before, when, in the presence of those assembled, he had stepped into the official shoes of the retiring general manager, who for a twelvemonth had been nothing more vital or important in the firm than a name on a frosted glass door. During that hour and thirty minutes Talman had talked. It was not a common sort of talk that he had made. He had waited a year to make that talk, held back by the refusal of the old general manager to give consent to the utterance of the ideas therein contained. And his ideas and plans and opinions had grown harder, and the words wherewith to express them had grown warmer with each day that they were suppressed. The obstacle had taken himself away, and the accumulation of twelve burn'ng months rolled off the tongue of Talman in a stream upstopable and full of fire. The men about the table hung on his words with careful ears. Talman, they knew, was going to change things; and according to the nature and scope of the change so might their positions and interests be affected. They were not disappointed. Talman was going to change things, and change them much.
1 By permission of " System." Copyright, 1907.
"This store has been a follower of the procession too long," said he. "Now it's going to begin to be a leader. We 've played the staid, conservative dodge until it ls all but put us in the has-been class. Now we 're going to quit conservatism. We've been the quiet people — like a graveyard; now we're going to begin to make some noise. We are n't going to feel satisfied with having the trade of some of the best of the people of the town; we're going after the trade of all the people. We're not going to let the other fellows split up all the transient trade; we're going to get our share of it. We've boasted that our store has been our best advertisement — and the number of people in this town who don't know that there is such a place as Bustel's would double the annual profit if they 'd leave a dollar apiece here. We're going to make people know that we're here. We're going to make people talk about us. 'Bustel's' is going to be made synonymous with 'department stores' in this town. We're going to quit being old-fashioned; we're going after business along strictly modern lines."
The men at the table leaned forward and nodded their appreciation. To a man they were "Bustel men." They had grown up in the house, and their loyalty to the store and its traditions was proverbial. But there was not one of them but knew that all that Talman said and all that he implied was the truth. Bustel's was the conservative store of the town. It was not one of the largest; but if it had been stock on the market it would have been classed as a safe investment rather than a means for speculation.
It had never entered strenuously into the white-heat department store competition of the last decade, and consequently it had not reaped its share of the phenomenal concentrated retail trade development of that time.
Of course there could be but one result. Bustel's had fallen behind. It was a follower of the procession. A man who could lift it out of the rut and to the front was what was needed. Talman seemed to be that man. Only, thought some of the veterans, only he was so confounded
"The change begins to-morrow."
They had not come prepared for anything like that. The old regime had made radical changes a matter of weeks and even months of consideration. The older men half rose as if to protest, but Talman went on undisturbed.
"Under the old order of things we would have made a leader of the carpets in Store 8 to-morrow. Now we'll take the carpets downstairs on the main floor and use all of to-morrow's newspaper space in making a bargain of them. This will be the policy of the house from now on. Hopkins, how much space were you going to use to-morrow?"
"The regular column," replied the advertising man.
"Make it five columns, solid, half a page deep. I'll —"
"Oh, that's too much " — Hopkins was on his feet in a flash.
"Yes, too much," said the manager of Store 8.
"People aren't used to the notion of looking for bargains here," continued Hopkins. "The chances are that people will hardly rise to the first bargain sale in a way to justify using that much space. They won't be expecting anything like this from us, and it won't mean anything in particular to them.
"Think we'd better lead up to a bargain gradually — have an announcement of the new policy at least. Start small, go up gradually; then, later on, knock 'em in the head with a half page."
"Take too much time, too much time." Talman spoke sharply. "We'll begin knocking 'em in the head at the start. We've been behind long enough. We've got to rush things; haven't any time to waste. We've got to make the store talked about. We've got to get people into it. Only one way to do that for us — bargains. We'll make a specialty of bargains. But these have got to be real bargains, so low in price that they 'll make some stir. And we'll begin with the carpets."
"They're not low enough to be sensational," said the manager of Store 8, curtly.
"Make them low enough," retorted Talman.
"The Colossal is four cents under us on the same stuff."
"Then cut our price to four cents under them. And, Hopkins, get that space, sure."
Next day the evening papers told in sensational fashion of the big carpet bargain sale to be held at Bustel's on the morrow.
At eleven o'clock Talman, Hopkins, and the manager of Store 8 stood on the balcony in front of the manager's office and looked down at the bargain tables below. There was no seething mob there around the carpet bargains, but there was a good, steady run of customers. They were obviously filled with curiosity — a bargain sale at Bustel's was a novelty; and there were faces among them that never before had been seen within the Bustel walls.
"Well," said Talman, "everything considered we've started well. Now we'll begin to do things. We'll have another bargain leader next Tuesday. We'll have 'em right along. We'll make people talk about the store, and that'll bring 'em into it — and that's all we need."