How to Have Difficult Conversations with Good Staff | Episode 151

Show Notes:

Hard conversations can feel awkward. You like your retail staff, but you have to bring up some things that are not going right and need attention. Maybe you “let it go” and grit your teeth. In today’s episode, we’re going to discuss a topic that many of my clients face and some tips you can use to make these conversations easier: how to have difficult conversations with good staff.

Here are some key takeaways from this episode:

  • It’s essential to have policies and procedures in place, even if you have a small team. This will help you maintain a healthy work environment and avoid any misunderstandings. 
  • To start a difficult conversation, use these three sentences: 1) “Here’s what I would like you to stop doing.” 2) “Here’s what I would like you to start doing.” and 3) “Here’s what I would like you to keep doing.”
  • When addressing the issue, be specific, and clear, and provide examples. Offer solutions and reinforce positive behaviors.
  • If you’re struggling to find the right words or approach, seek guidance from a coach or mentor.

“You have to keep the ship upright. We have to keep things moving smoothly, and you deserve to have a business being run the way you want to run it. Your vision matters.” – Wendy Batten

Remember that as a leader, you set the culture.  It’s your responsibility to ensure that your team members are meeting the standards you’ve established. Difficult conversations may be uncomfortable, but they’re necessary for the success of your business.

Listen to the full episode for more details. Let’s keep your retail shop a happy place for both you and your staff.

“In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity.” – Albert Einstein

If you are ready to level up your retail business join the Retailer’s Inner Circle or reach connect with Wendy for one on one coaching here.

Listen on:  Apple Podcasts |Spotify | Radio Republic | YouTube | PlayerFM | Stitcher | iHeartRadio

How to have difficult conversations with good staff Creative Shop Talk Podcast Wendy Batten
  • Pinterest
  • Facebook

Resources Mentioned:

Retailer’s Inner Circle

Related podcasts we think you’d like:

Episode 139: 6 Things to Focus on in 2023

Episode 33: This Non-Negotiable Habit is Key to Creative CEO Success

Episode 78: Retailer Success Stories: Learning to Level Up with Amy Hart

About Your Host, Wendy Batten:

In case we haven’t met yet, I’m Wendy, a small business coach and founder of The Retailer’s Inner Circle, where I help other independent shop owners learn how to gain the right business skillsets to see more profits, paychecks, and joy as they navigate running their retail business. 

Through online classes, business coaching programs, speaking, and a top-ranked podcast, I’ve helped hundreds of retailers around the globe reclaim their dream and see the success they want from their beautiful shops. My signature private coaching community, The Retailer’s Inner Circle, has helped retailers around the world build their retail business skill sets and confidence. 

I am proud to have been featured in several major publications, including my own business column in What Women Create magazine. I have been privileged to be a guest on top-ranked podcasts and sought-after as a guest speaker and teacher for several brands, associations, and communities that are passionate about the success of independent retailers.

When I’m not coaching, you will find me either DIYing and renovating my very imperfect old crooked cottage by the sea in the UNESCO World Heritage town of Lunenburg, NS, or blogging about our travel and RVing adventures and the weird fun things we get up to in our coastal village. I’d love to invite you to check out one of my free resources for real retailers at

For more support from Wendy:

Retailer’s Inner Circle – Join Wendy inside the best retailer’s community

Wendy’s FREE Resources for shop owners 

Hang out and connect with Wendy on IG 

All of Wendy’s programs and services for shop owners can be found HERE.

Subscribe and Review in iTunes:

Are you subscribed to my podcast? If you’re not, I’d love you to consider it. Subscribing means you won’t miss an episode! Click here to subscribe to iTunes!

If you want to be more of a rock star, I’d love it if you could leave a review over on iTunes as well.  Those reviews help other retailers find my podcast and they’re also fun for me to go in and read. Just click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review” and let me know what your favorite part of the podcast is. So grateful for you! Thank you!


Hi there! I'm Wendy Batten, and I'm obsessed with helping independent shop owners like you achieve success.

With over 20 years of experience as a small business owner, I've owned several retail businesses along the way including a cafe, two retail shops, and a studio (and even a tae kwon do studio), learning first-hand the art of juggling all the balls.

I now dedicate my time to coaching hundred of retailers all around the world, sharing my expertise to help them organize their businesses and maximize profits, paychecks, and JOY in their day-to-day lives.

I created the support, programs, and community that I wish I'd had.

Whether you've been in business for years or are just starting out with your brick-and-mortar venture, you've come to the right place.

If you're serious about your business and ready to stop winging it, I'm here to inspire and guide you toward success.

I'm so happy you're here, and I can't wait to support you on your journey to thriving in the world of retail!



Subscribe Now

Subscribe to Creative Shop Talk so you never miss an episode covering the topics most important to creative retailers.

Share Some Love

Click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review”. I may highlight you on an upcoming episode. Make sure you leave your business name, Instagram handle and location so I can give your shop a shoutout. 

Keep on listening …
Coffee Break Chat: Be a Big Deal! | Episode 214

Coffee Break Chat: Be a Big Deal! | Episode 214

Creative Shop Talk Podcast Episode 214 | Coffee Break Chat: Be a Big Deal! With Retail Coach Wendy Batten Listen on:  Apple Podcasts |Spotify | Radio Republic | YouTube | PlayerFM | Stitcher | iHeartRadio In This Episode:  Let’s have a coffee chat around being a big...

read more
Five Areas Retailers Should Focus On in Q3 | Episode 213

Five Areas Retailers Should Focus On in Q3 | Episode 213

Creative Shop Talk Podcast Episode 213 | Five Areas Retailers Should Focus on in Q3 With Retail Coach Wendy Batten Listen on:  Apple Podcasts |Spotify | Radio Republic | YouTube | PlayerFM | Stitcher | iHeartRadio In This Episode:  If your retail shop is in an area...

read more

Join the Conversation!

Thousands of independent shop owners have signed up to receive Wendy’s latest industry news and business help delivered straight to your inbox! Join us!

Weekly emails with news your business needs.

Pin It on Pinterest