Ken and Audrey Mull wanted to open Flower & Home Marketplace six weeks after buying the business. It would be a wholesale and retail business offering one of the largest selections of silk florals in the nation, as well as a broad selection of home décor, craft, and seasonal items. They planned major capital improvements to the retail space. The new owners had deep experience with wholesale, but limited experience with retail. They turned to North Group because we had worked with them since 2011 in one of their other businesses.
The owners wanted expertise quickly. They needed an executive to provide leadership and create a business culture that aligned with the values of the owners. They also needed to hire and onboard a staff of 50 employees and implement accountabilities for them.
The client chose a North Group consultant to act as interim executive. Instead of hiring right away, they relied on the depth of experience we brought in hiring, retail, wholesale, and start-up, as well as the complete trust and values match they had with us.
Our consultant became fully immersed in the day-to-day as interim executive, spending more than half of his time at the business. He created a leadership team, established a consistent meeting schedule and led the meetings. He facilitated the transition of a core group of employees from the former business, integrating them with the new company and culture. He hired staff, always looking for candidates that matched the core values of the owners. He worked to develop relationships of excellence, trust, cooperation and transparency with Flower & Home Marketplace and among employees.
The wholesale business successfully opened within six weeks of purchase. As soon as that was accomplished, they focused on their 90,000 square foot retail space and opened that to the public within nine weeks of purchase. In addition, Mulberry Home, their wholesale business, went live online.
The business enjoys an easily identifiable culture and an environment of accountability, with a leadership team that works well together and executes on strategy. Its work environment is honest, caring and supportive, embraced by both customers and the community.