Lee Kent

Principal, Your Retail Authority, LLC
Ms. Kent is Owner/Principal of Your Retail Authority, LLC. and creator of Retail’s former Social Network, She is recognized by retail industry insiders as an authority on retailing and is a seasoned user of new media strategies. Lee likes to talk and exchange ideas about retail particularly on the in-store path to purchase and customer experience design. Look for invitations from Lee to exclusive Retail executive events. You can find her opinions most days on the Retail Wire where she is happy to share her 2 cents. Lee's current practice focuses on uncovering a brands point of view, customer promises and ability to deliver on them through the creation and/or co-creation of thought leadership initiatives. In addition to talking endlessly about her passion, Retail, she has directed numerous consulting and strategic initiative engagements. Her clients have included world-renowned companies as well as software providers and start-ups. Lee has served as the NA Retail Industry Practice Leader for a major global managed services provider, Retail Technology Consulting Principal for a Big 4 consulting firm, Director Supplier Management and Integration for an e-commerce start-up venture, Director of Managed Services for a major retail company and has brought her subject matter expertise to smaller organizations in order to help them build strong retail practices. To learn more, visit Lee's LinkedIn profile...
  • Posted on: 08/03/2020

    Is the future of malls outside?

    Yes, Nikki, those town concept malls have been a big hit here. We have several that also have some more that food court, upscale dinning. The thing is, most of them around here are pretty far out due to the land etc. and make them a "road trip" for many of us. So, we still dig the closed malls in the more convenient locations. I think the real issue in many closed shopping centers is how to handle the dressing rooms. The rest can be addressed fairly easily with guidance, masks, and hand sanitizers. But that is just my 2 cents and I could go on and on about it. I'll spare you.
  • Posted on: 07/17/2020

    Is retail’s contactless future here now?

    Yes Bob, I think this has been just the catalyst to get those reluctant, on board. The technology is there, easy and safe. For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 07/15/2020

    Nike debuts member-driven concept

    Nike Rise is the perfect blend of community, retail and experience. I was impressed when a friend told me of her experience in NY a year or so back. She was there on business but was able to meet up with a group to run. Nike gets who they are but, more importantly, they get who their customer is and what they are looking for. For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 07/14/2020

    What will retail’s back-to-school season look like this year?

    I'm with you on this one Richard. Many, if not most, of the schools I am hearing about are planning, at a minimum, to stagger schedules. This means the same supplies will be needed and kids do grow and seasons do change so clothes will be in order also. I also see a bit of growth in the at-home electronics category as many families have shared devices and supplies which may not cut it any more. Retailers may certainly want to take a look at their markdown and sales schedules though because these will not likely align with the past. For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/26/2020

    Will a smaller Macy’s be a better Macy’s?

    Yes, I agree with you Jeff and with Neil below. Cutting costs is necessary but not a strategy. Far from it. Where is Macy's headed with this? Tell me how you are going to use your square footage. I do like the Backstage and Market concepts. Are they paying off? What have we learned from them? Who is your customer now? I don't think I even know who the Macy's customer is today and I cut my teeth with Federated who will always have a part of my heart. For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/18/2020

    The pandemic has changed retailing, maybe forever

    Nail on the head, Neil!
  • Posted on: 06/17/2020

    Should stores relax dress codes to let workers show support for Black Lives Matter?

    Absolutely! I know we are in extraordinary times, however, once that slippery slope is open, the door is open to every cause. This is not, in my opinion, where retailers want to be. It brings with in new challenges that they may not be equipped to handle. For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/16/2020

    Will grocers maintain COVID share gains as restaurants reopen?

    Obviously grocers will not likely maintain the share they have seen during the pandemic but yes, there are opportunities still ahead. I am seeing and hearing more and more about some work continuing at home. This means those workers who, in the past, went out for lunch will still be eating at home. There is great opportunity for grocers to fill that gap. I am just a bit surprised I haven't seen more cool, ready-to-eat sandwiches in the grocery story over the pandemic. And I don't mean meal kits. Good, fun and tasty sandwiches with sides. For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/15/2020

    Do retailers need a chief health officer?

    Absolutely Mark and I would not stop at pandemic. This applies to any kind of disaster recovery plans and should be addressed together. I am not sure a Chief Health Officer is needed so much as operations personnel and plans with access to medical authorities. I am not convinced retail could sustain such a title and make it attractive to the right kind of person(s).
  • Posted on: 06/08/2020

    Is remote working bad for corporate culture?

    Absolutely Mark! I see the future as some kind of blend. It may not even be the same for every team within an organization or the same schedule every week. Teams will need to be fluid as will businesses of tomorrow. And that's my 2 cents!
  • Posted on: 05/27/2020

    Is Walmart about to become the king of online resale retailing?

    Absolutely! Love this and can't wait to watch! For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 05/26/2020

    Should Apple and other stores require shopper temperature checks?

    I see no harm in taking temperatures, however I am one of those people who has elevated temperatures frequently. I have a problem with iron and it results in elevated temperatures. Am I going to be denied shopping? During the current times, I suppose I could just turn my head and go home but eventually it would start to make me mad. This is going to take some thinking for my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 05/22/2020

    Can influencers connect during a pandemic?

    Personally, I don't think its a one vs the other situation. Influencers and brands can also compliment each other. Look at brands that have altered production in order to make masks, etc. That feel good, support the community kind of stuff is what keeps consumers feeling good about their favorite brands. They are not necessarily looking for brands to sell or influence them right now. But, hey, many many of them are still shopping. That is where the influencers come into the picture. Maybe not be means of luxury travel but they are creative and can still find ways to show off the wares. Can you spell Tic Toc, Instagram? It's all part and parcel of the same game. And that's my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 05/11/2020

    What should retailers do about social distancing renegades?

    I could not say this any better!
  • Posted on: 04/22/2020

    Will virtual trade shows replace in-person events?

    Totally agree that virtual events will be a great way to augment some in-person events. Having worked in the event business for several years now, I have seen much tighter reins on the pocketbook. It used to be that you could put on a good show and people would come back. Now days there are so many events vying for the purse strings that companies are having to scale back to only the BEST events. Whatever that is for them. I believe that it comes down to building loyalty to an event just like you would to a brand and augmenting a single event into multiple virtual events is a good way to start building that loyalty. And that's my 2 cents.

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