State of the Store Sneak Peek: Retail is still being led by unhappy managers. Why?

SEPTEMBER 19, 2017

Every year, retailers look to their District and Store Managers to carry out corporate goals; to nail sales forecasts, improve customer experiences, stay ahead of the technology curve, and hit KPIs. But what happens when the managing relationship between store-to-district, and field-to-corporate are all out of whack? Well, you get a lot of unmet goals and unhappy managers.

In our State of the Store report, we were able to spend some time studying the current state of retail. The biggest takeaway? Retail is still being led by unhappy managers. According to the report, the average Employee Net Promoter Score among Store and District Managers alike was an abysmal -20%.

So why are these managers so unhappy? Turns out, it’s all one big miscommunication. Among the top challenges and frustrations, unhappy managers are:

1. 150% are less likely to say they feel aligned with corporate. In fact, misalignment was the biggest point of frustration throughout the study.

2. 2x more likely to report their company does not have efficient systems of communication between corporate and stores. Communication in, around, up, and down the retail chain of command is unclear and ineffective.

3. 20% more likely to report they do not have the tools or technology they need to be successful. Some managers are still using pen, paper, and manual spreadsheets to perform some of their most complex reporting and analysis.

And that’s just three. To uncover the full findings, be on the lookout for our State of the Store report, where we’ll dive into all the reasons why Store and District Managers are so unhappy, the consequential impact they’re having on retail, and how to solve these very solvable problems.

In the meantime, check out our most recent report with Forrester Consulting on how retailers can close the store performance gap. Download it now.


As our demand grand marshal, Sarah leads the marketing team in creating meaningful connections between our company and our audience. After almost a decade in marketing for SaaS companies, she is inspired by finding creative, streamlined ways to communicate complex topics. Her appetite for curiosity pushes her to learn new things that will guide our brand and lead to bigger and better things for Square Root. In her spare time, Sarah enjoys singing in rock and roll bands and exploring Austin in her relentless pursuit of the best burger, taco, sushi, etc. Sarah graduated from West Virginia University with a bachelor’s degree in business administration.