We would like to thank Glenn Waites – the National Business Manager, Stanley Black & Decker who we recently interviewed on the success of Total Tools, why relationships are so important between the retailer and supplier and why the Total Tools Franchise model works so well.
As our CEO Tim Cockayne mentioned in his recent interview with The CEO Magazine, “It is about making sure that we have the right team here who understand that it is a partnership. Retail has changed a lot. I’ve been in retail for 25 years, and retail 25 years ago was about getting the best deal and thumping the table – and that doesn’t work anymore. It’s about making sure you’ve got people who align with what does work, which is working in partnership”
It is also this comradery between Total Tools and its suppliers that has resulted in a number of suppliers recognising the potential business model, but also wanting to be part of its fantastic culture, and buy into a Total Tools Franchise.
“One of the greatest testaments to Total Tools Industrial in the early days was their tenacity when dealing with suppliers, seeing them constantly punching above their weight division as their trading terms often belied their turnover. This has always been achieved on the back of their credibility, internal and external disciplines and their comradery, which has definitely been the envy of the industry.” Craig McDonald (Franchisee – Epping and Board Member)
So here is our interview with Glenn, a passionate, boisterous man who has over 20 years’ experience in the industry. He has been fortunate enough to work on both sides of the fence both in senior positions for large Australian retailers and some iconic brands in the industry. It is through this experience, Glenn has a deep understanding of what constitutes a successful business model. He is so passionate about what he does you can’t help but get excited about Total Tools and everything it represents.
If you were looking at investing in a Total Tools Franchise, what aspects of the business model would be the most attractive to you?
There are so many aspects that impress me about Total Tools. The number one would have to be its people, everyone who works at Total Tools is approachable, down to earth and humble. It is great to see they have stuck to their model as a Tool Specialist and it is so obvious to me and other suppliers that it works, it makes money and provides an amazing lifestyle opportunity for its franchisees. I am also very impressed with the quality, look and feel of the Catalogue Program.
When there is a store opening, what role do you and your representatives play in the setup, grand opening and first few months trading?
It is very important that we are there from the beginning. Each new store is given a ‘blue print’ as part of the setup process and that includes us meeting the new franchisees. Some areas we discuss are product information, service and warranty information, stock turn expectations and point of sale. We go into the stores and set up the stock to ensure that the retail footprint provides the best possible return for the franchisee.
Total Tools Thebarton
Vince, Paul (Franchisee at Total Tools Warners Bay) & Glenn
How does the relationship you have with the franchisees impact the success of your role?
The relationships I have with the individual franchisees are very important to how I run my business. If they gain confidence in our brands and myself from the outset then they are going to find selling our products much easier. This also flows through to their staff and the customer service they can offer.
How does your relationship with Total Tools head office impact your business?
Due to the transparency and honesty that we have at all levels in the business, we are able to work through any issues and enjoy all the successes we have together. Don’t get me wrong, Total Tools are aggressive in their negotiations, but we always walk away happy with the outcome.
What role do you see Social Media playing in today’s market?
It is in this space where you will find the new generation tradie. It is very important that we all embrace it and recognise the power it represents.
What other aspects of Total Tool’s marketing interest you?
I think the Insiders Program is very powerful. It is a great platform for both Total Tools and the supplier to reach the customer and reward them for their loyalty. In some cases you will get customers travelling more than an hour to attend an Insiders nights. There will be queues, hundreds of people all of which creates a real buzz for everyone. I believe this is one of the few loyalty programs that actually works.
How do you think the culture of Total Tools impacts your business and the success of Total Tools?
I believe that there is a real internal heartbeat that is at the core of this business. It all started with a group of guys who had a vision and passion and it is amazing to see that this is still strong today. If we have an idea we can go to a core group of original store owners and get honest feedback as to whether it will work or not. I like to refer to this group as the ‘Godfathers’ of Total Tools. They are there to support and encourage new franchisees as well franchisees who have been around for a while. It is not uncommon for one of them to travel to a new store interstate at their own expense, roll up their sleeves and help with training or store fit-outs. They want the same success for every franchisee that they have experienced and I think this is a great thing for the group and the brand. It can only lead to more growth and success for everyone.
“CULTURE – it is a term often used, Geelong are said to have it because they win Grand Finals, St Kilda don’t because they win nothing. The remark is often made about the culture in Total Tools. I believe that we are lucky to start with a group of selfless individuals who bonded together as friends, they were and still are prepared and happy to share knowledge and experience good and bad and time and effort when required for the betterment of the individual and the group. While that continues throughout the group we all prosper.” Gerry Smith (Franchisee – Ferntree Gully)
Finally, what advice would you give to a new Total Tools Franchisee?
My advice for any new prospective or new franchisee would be to do your homework. Learn about the industry and understand the retail model. I believe that building up your insiders’ database (loyalty program) is your number one priority when it comes to marketing. The program itself works very well, but the more customers you have on it the quicker you will grow. Thirdly I would call on the experience of the current franchisees and partner up with a mentor. There are so many lessons to be learned in any new business, but if you have someone by your side who has experienced them you will be able to work through them together.
If you would like to learn more about the Total Tools franchise model and how this business can offer you great profit returns and an amazing lifestyle, why not complete our Expression of Interest Form today http://bit.ly/1tqAc07