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Furniture World Articles by Cathy Finney

Naturepedic Launches New Organic Sleep Accessories, New European-style Foundation

Published: 6/16/2014
Trio organic pillow system lets sleepers adjust fill; FlexSlat™ Foundation offers European style comfort and adjustability.

Read Naturepedic Launches New Organic Sleep Accessories, New European-style Foundation


Gorman’s Home Furnishings Welcomes Designer Leen Zabalawi To Gorman’s In Shelby Township

Published: 4/25/2014
Zabalawi is responsible for working with homeowners to select furniture and accessories; provide in-home design counsel, including floor plans, furniture placement and room designs; and the selling of home furnishings.

Read Gorman’s Home Furnishings Welcomes Designer Leen Zabalawi To Gorman’s In Shelby Township


Twin-Star International Adds Shane Hunter as National Account Manager

Published: 3/15/2014
Hunter was previously Director of Sales for GHP Group, Inc.

Read Twin-Star International Adds Shane Hunter as National Account Manager


Weekly Furniture World Media Note #81 from Lance Hanish-MobileFirst

Published: 7/15/2013
According to the latest quarterly report from RKG, smartphones and tablets combined accounted for 26% of organic search traffic in Q2, up from 15% a year earlier.

Read Weekly Furniture World Media Note #81 from Lance Hanish-MobileFirst


Easy Furniture Web Tip 172: Even Clumsy SEO Practices Can Work

Published: 7/1/2013
If you can’t afford a full-blown search engine optimization campaign, you can still benefit from do-it-yourself SEO practices.

Read Easy Furniture Web Tip 172: Even Clumsy SEO Practices Can Work


Stein World Appoints David Kuehneman as Senior Vice President of Sales

Published: 4/16/2013
Most recently, Kuehneman served as Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Wells Lamont (a Berkshire Hathaway company).

Read Stein World Appoints David Kuehneman as Senior Vice President of Sales


Michael Ashton Designs Debuting New Bedroom Line at April High Point Market

Published: 4/11/2013
At the April market, the company will introduce 11 master bedrooms and four juvenile bedroom groups in styles ranging from traditional to contemporary.

Read Michael Ashton Designs Debuting New Bedroom Line at April High Point Market


Retail Sales Super Snoopers

Published: 8/19/2009
Here is Cathy Finney’s final article for FURNITURE WORLD Magazine that examines principles outlined in Dr. Sam Gossling’s recent book “SNOOP,” and applies them to sales situations in retail furniture stores.

Read Retail Sales Super Snoopers


Personal Sales Tips For Slow Days

Published: 9/11/2008
A small attitude adjustment and a few reminders of important sales do’s and dont’s can get you back on track.

Read Personal Sales Tips For Slow Days


Meet The Retail Sales Power Players

Published: 1/2/2008
Sales tips and training tools from some of the best sales associates and Cathy Finney.

Read Meet The Retail Sales Power Players


Finding Figment: How To Stay Up For Your Next UP.

Published: 9/13/2007
It is possible to re-imagine, re-create, and re-define your professional life with each new “opportunity”.

Read Finding Figment: How To Stay Up For Your Next UP.


The Secret Of Positive Sales Energy

Published: 7/17/2007
What actions can you take to connect with customers and keep performance on track when you feel unsettled and negative?

Read The Secret Of Positive Sales Energy


I'm Here, Your "Sketchee!"

Published: 3/9/2007
Making and actually using rough sketches of your customer's rooms can improve the quality of the information you collect, as well as the effectiveness of your follow-up.

Read I'm Here, Your "Sketchee!"


Time Management For Retail Sales Professionals

Published: 8/8/2006
If your salespeople just try to do their best everyday, but feel that they don’t have control over their schedule or their UP’S, then you need to read this article. Cathy Finney presents ways to stop wasting time and instead, plan each day for sales success.

Read Time Management For Retail Sales Professionals


Are Your Customers Confused Or Enthused?

Published: 7/15/2006
Your customer’s worst fears are amplified by your own fears as a retail sales consultant.

Read Are Your Customers Confused Or Enthused?


Sales Ah-Ha’s

Published: 4/17/2006
Insights, advice, and practical information that can turn your retail sales Uh,Oh’s, “Oh, No’s,” into “Ah Ha's!” and even “Eureka moments!”

Read Sales Ah-Ha’s


Ride The Sales Tornado: Become The Wizard Of "Awes"

Published: 12/7/2005
Cathy Finney looks at the skill sets you need to possess to end up in the land of “Awes”. Once there, you can take your company, “Me Inc.” to new heights by embracing change in 2006.

Read Ride The Sales Tornado: Become The Wizard Of "Awes"


Combat Sales Reluctance

Published: 6/8/2005
Ninety percent of salespeople suffer from some form of sales reluctance. Cathy Finney looks at some of the common problems they face, and provides solutions that can make selling more fun and profitable.

Read Combat Sales Reluctance


Paint A Rembrandt... Or Forget It!

Published: 4/7/2005
Will Rogers said, “If you are selling something, try and make it so good that you’d rather be the man who bought it than the man who sold it.” Cathy Finney applies this logic to the fine art of working with clients in retail furniture stores.

Read Paint A Rembrandt... Or Forget It!


Most Important 4 Letter Word: GOAL 2005

Published: 12/20/2004
Unstick Yourself. Let your biggest competitor be you!

Read Most Important 4 Letter Word: GOAL 2005


‘Tis The Season To Follow-Up

Published: 10/5/2004
Even though the temperatures are dropping, and kids are back in their classrooms, your customers are not yet thinking about the holidays. So now is the season to follow-up. Here are some practical techniques on how to do it.

Read ‘Tis The Season To Follow-Up


Extreme Makeover - Salesforce Edition

Published: 6/26/2004
Homes are making headlines. “Extreme Makeover for the Home Edition” was recently the number one show on ABC. A lot of viewers are hooked on HGTV. If you want to take advantage of this cultural shift, you won’t need liposuction or a chin implant, but you may need to learn a few new skills.

Read Extreme Makeover - Salesforce Edition


Weed Out Those Bad Apples At The Interview

Published: 6/25/2004
Have you ever interviewed a seemingly superior sales consultant only to find out when she shows up for work that there has been a terrible mistake? Cathy Finney provides step-by-step instructions on how to make sure that job candidates have the will, the drive and the understanding needed to become a productive part of your sales team.

Read Weed Out Those Bad Apples At The Interview


Is Your Business A Team Effort?

Published: 6/25/2004
Is your team all on the same page singing the same song, or is each department writing their own lyrics. Is the main goal of employees to cover the customer’s needs and expectations or their own butts? Cathy Finney looks at “imagineering” strategies for helping your sales, back office and delivery departments work together to serve your customers and your bottom line.

Read Is Your Business A Team Effort?


Confronting The Challenge Of Management

Published: 6/25/2004
Cathy Finney looks at some of the challenges of being a retail manager including: how and when to get rid of poor performers; strategies for teaching people how to solve problems themselves; how often to hold sales meetings; and how to honor and encourage good performance.

Read Confronting The Challenge Of Management


Get Out Of Your Office Now! - Part 2

Published: 6/25/2004
When all the "monkeys" are living with their proper owners, retail managers can actually help their staff to sell, deliver and service more furniture! Here's how.

Read Get Out Of Your Office Now! - Part 2


Get Out Of Your Office Now! - Part 1

Published: 6/25/2004
Well my friends, it's time to get in the trenches with your troops! The action is on your selling floor, not in your office on your computer screen! Most managers are so busy handling their employees' "monkeys" they can't spend time doing those things that could really make a difference to their bottom line. Here's how you can find every "monkey" a good home.

Read Get Out Of Your Office Now! - Part 1


Follow-up Or Fall Down - Part 1

Published: 6/9/2004
Shy or uneasy about making follow-up calls? Don't like rejection? Here are sure-fire ways to follow-up successfully and consistently.

Read Follow-up Or Fall Down - Part 1


Sales By Appointment - The Impossible Dream

Published: 6/9/2004
The best way to get your "be-back" customers to actually come back and buy from you is to set up specific appointments with them. If you think that this is an impossible dream, check out this article by Cathy Finney.

Read Sales By Appointment - The Impossible Dream


Help Browsers Become Buyers

Published: 6/8/2004
Your salespeople may wonder how they can more effectively engage "browsers". Salespeople keep going back, and customers either get more rude with each attempt, or they act as if salespeople are totally invisible. What's the formula? What's the answer?

Read Help Browsers Become Buyers


Make More House Calls

Published: 6/8/2004
The national average closing percentage for a first-time customer walking into a home furnishings store is about 25%. The closing percentages for housecalls are between 93%-98%. In this article, Cathy Finney fine-tunes the skill of making house calls so you'll no longer waste your time, spin your wheels or get your brain picked

Read Make More House Calls


Professional Sales Attitude And Organization

Published: 6/8/2004
There are no bad-hair days at retail. This is your wake up call to assess your flight plan for soaring... your action plan for "Me, Inc." This is the perfect time to "get over it and get on with it!" Cathy Finney offers some practical and motivational and fun advice on how to realign your sales efforts to ensure success.

Read Professional Sales Attitude And Organization


Asking The Right Questions - Part 2

Published: 6/8/2004
Cathy Finney implores you not to talk about product. Instead, find out what they really want.

Read Asking The Right Questions - Part 2


Asking The Right Questions - Part 1

Published: 6/8/2004
Every good salesperson knows that it is important to qualify customers. The questions you ask and the way you ask them determine whether or not the answers you get will help move the sale forward.

Read Asking The Right Questions - Part 1


Approaching Customers For Fun And Profit - Part 2

Published: 6/8/2004
You made a good first impression (See May FW). you look great, attitude appropriate and know how to handle "browsers" (See June FW). Now it's time to avoid drive-by-greetings, learn the fine art of looking busy and handle rude customers.

Read Approaching Customers For Fun And Profit - Part 2


Approaching Customers For Fun And Profit - Part 1

Published: 6/8/2004
You made a good first impression (See the May issue of FW). Now it's time to approach those customers. This first in a three part series on "The Approach," deals with appearance, attitude, handling browsers and making your customer's shopping experience start out happily.

Read Approaching Customers For Fun And Profit - Part 1


Important First Impressions

Published: 6/8/2004
Nine to thirty seconds - that's it! That's all the time you have to make a good first impression! What's even more scary? If someone's first impression of you is negative, it will take them three times as long to change their mind about you!

Read Important First Impressions


Become A Power Talker - Part 3

Published: 6/8/2004
Have you ever said something, and as soon as the words came out of your mouth you would have done anything to stuff them back in? Part 3 on words to use and not use will explain how to avoid the lizards.

Read Become A Power Talker - Part 3


Become A Power Talker - Part 2

Published: 6/8/2004
There are words that calm and words that can enrage your customer. How can you quote them your policy, ask for their commitment, find out their budget and get a deposit without saying these words?

Read Become A Power Talker - Part 2


Become A Power Talker - Part 1

Published: 6/8/2004
There are words that calm and words that can enrage your customer. How can you quote them your policy, ask for their commitment, find out their budget and get a deposit without saying these words? 99% of your job as a retail manager is psychology, is it not? It follows that what you say & how you say it will either earn your client's trust or ignite their true passions of anger!

Read Become A Power Talker - Part 1


Follow-up Or Fall Down - Part 2

Published: 6/8/2004
You know the routine. The cards that are angled 45 degrees to the right are the people I must follow-up on. The cards "tilting" to the left are distinct possibilities, and the ones standing straight up have items on order. Here's a follow-up system that can keep anyone on track!

Read Follow-up Or Fall Down - Part 2


More Top Secret Sales Tips

Published: 6/2/2004
In the June/July issue of FURNITURE WORLD Cathy Finney presented words of wisdom gleaned from some of the most talented retail sales consultants in our industry. These are salespeople who Sell With Assured Techniques (SWAT). This month, more top salespeople share their secrets.

Read More Top Secret Sales Tips


Are Energy Vampires Draining Your Sales?

Published: 6/2/2004
In the world of retail, attitude is everything. Energy Vampires can masquerade as a client, a colleague or your mother... so read this before sunset!

Read Are Energy Vampires Draining Your Sales?


Join The S.W.A.T. Team

Published: 6/2/2004
This article presents words of wisdom from some of the most talented front-line retail sales consultants in our industry. These are salespeople who Sell With Assured Techniques (SWAT).

Read Join The S.W.A.T. Team


Persuading Customers To Buy Isn't Logical

Published: 6/2/2004
The only way to turn low-margin one-time customers into clients is to help them to find comfort in their buying decision. The only way to do this is to make shopping an emotionally satisfying experience. Buying home furnishings is an emotional experience. Not buying is a logical one.

Read Persuading Customers To Buy Isn't Logical


Sales Mistakes Made In The Name Of Nice - Part 2

Published: 6/2/2004
Many salespeople just want to be nice. They don’t want their customers to feel that they fit the mold of pushy commissioned salespeople. In doing so, they may fail to meet the needs of their customers and cause them to buy from that pushy salesperson down the street.

Read Sales Mistakes Made In The Name Of Nice - Part 2


Sales Mistakes Made In The Name Of Nice - Part 1

Published: 6/2/2004
Many salespeople just want to be nice. They don’t want their customers to perceive that they fit the mold of pushy commissioned salespeople. In doing so, they may fail to meet the needs of their customers and cause them to buy from that pushy salesperson down the street.

Read Sales Mistakes Made In The Name Of Nice - Part 1


The Truth About Closing - Part 2

Published: 6/2/2004
Cathy Finney’s article on closing the sale continues from the June/July issue. She presents closing techniques your salespeople definitely need to know and others that they need to forget if they want to effectively help customers to buy. Remember, it’s not about "closing" a sale. It is about opening a relationship!

Read The Truth About Closing - Part 2


The Truth About Closing - Part 1

Published: 6/2/2004
If you’ve ever wished that someone could visit your store to teach your salespeople how to more effectively "close the sale" you are not alone. The reality of the situation is that your people probably don’t need to learn how to close. They need to be taught how to open! If you can’t open, you can’t close. It’s as simple as that.

Read The Truth About Closing - Part 1


Too Chicken To Ask For Referrals? - Part 2

Published: 6/2/2004
Part two in a series, focuses on how, when and why you should “come out” and ask customers to give your name to friends, co-workers and family. This installment looks at how to approach different types of customers and fool proof follow-up techniques.

Read Too Chicken To Ask For Referrals? - Part 2


Too Chicken To Ask For Referrals? - Part 1

Published: 6/2/2004
Part one of a two part series poses this question. If you really satisfy your customer’s needs and establish rapport, why wouldn’t she tell all her friends, co-workers and family about you? Cathy Finney looks at reasons why salespeople don’t ask, and why they should.

Read Too Chicken To Ask For Referrals? - Part 1


Read 'Em & Reap (Customers)

Published: 6/2/2004
Do your salespeople meet, greet and sell every customer the same? Cathy Finney gives practical tips on how to serve customers the way they are comfortable being served. It's about learning to speak their language. It's about understanding them and their needs, and figuring out how you can help them.

Read Read 'Em & Reap (Customers)


Let's Make A Deal

Published: 6/2/2004
How can you handle customers who want a better price without losing them?

Read Let's Make A Deal


I Object! - Handling Customer Objections

Published: 6/2/2004
When salespeople hear an objection, they often panic! Instead, they should get excited! It means that their customer is interested. If they weren't, they wouldn't object!

Read I Object! - Handling Customer Objections


Get Their Name

Published: 6/2/2004
When you get the name in the beginning of the "selling relationship" it is much easier to get their address & phone number at the end. She is more comfortable volunteering this information when you've been calling her "Louise" for the past 20 minutes. But how do you get this information upfront without being nosy or pushy?

Read Get Their Name


Approaching Customers For Fun And Profit - Part 4

Published: 6/2/2004
This ends Cathy Finney's 4 part series on the "Approach" which started with the June issue. This installment looks at having fun and alleviating your customer's worst fears about you.

Read Approaching Customers For Fun And Profit - Part 4


Approaching Customers For Fun And Profit - The Approach - Part 3

Published: 6/2/2004
You made a good first impression (See May FW). you look great, attitude appropriate and can handle "browsers" (See June FW). You avoided those drive-by-greetings, learned the fine art of looking busy and handled rude customers. Now you are ready for small talk and to diffuse any problems before they surface.

Read Approaching Customers For Fun And Profit - The Approach - Part 3


Great Salespeople Wash Their Cottage Cheese - Part 2

Published: 6/1/2004
The “curse of competence” is a syndrome that leads potentially great salespeople to complacency. In this two part series, Cathy Finney looks at ways that good salespeople can become great salespeople.

Read Great Salespeople Wash Their Cottage Cheese - Part 2


Great Salespeople Wash Their Cottage Cheese - Part 1

Published: 6/1/2004
The “curse of competence” is a syndrome that leads potentially great salespeople to complacency. In this two part series, Cathy Finney looks at ways that good salespeople can become great salespeople.

Read Great Salespeople Wash Their Cottage Cheese - Part 1


The Gospel According To Your Customers

Published: 6/1/2004
If customers are the ultimate focus of your retail existence, you will want to know their commandments. What retail “sins” can bring down fire and brimstone (as well as lousy sales) on your stores, your salespeople and your peace of mind? Former sinner Cathy Finney preaches to the faithful in this enlightening article.

Read The Gospel According To Your Customers


Sales Strategies That Fail - OOPS -Part 2

Published: 6/1/2004
In the February/March issue we examined four major sales mistakes. This feature looks at ways to avoid ethical problems that occur in sales situations. Should you share information that may “kill” a sale? Should you blindly believe everything customers tell you about their needs? Is “nice” always the most professional attitude?

Read Sales Strategies That Fail - OOPS -Part 2


The Best Service Starts And Ends With A Hug

Published: 5/22/2004
This article is about reaching out and making a connection with your customers. It is about giving them a “hug”. Cathy Finney uses concepts developed in Jack Mitchell’s new book to not only explain how you can make home furnishings relationships work, but also how you can make them happen.

Read The Best Service Starts And Ends With A Hug


Connect With Customers

Published: 5/22/2004
If you think that better communication means developing a way to talk longer, more persuasively and more eloquently, you are mistaken. Communications skills must be developed and practiced to yield results at retail. Communication isn’t about how natural you feel, or how comfortable you are. It’s about how comfortable the listener is and the effectiveness of the sender.

Read Connect With Customers

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