No matter where we turn in life we are always in relationships: at home, at work, and everywhere in between. I have been in retail for over 25 years and have had the opportunity to create many lasting relationships. There is an old saying, “The best part of the journey is those you meet along the way.” I couldn’t agree more! I believe that when we give 100% of ourselves, with our eyes wide-open, we can create great relationships and learn so much. At home, we surround ourselves in relationships: mother, wife, sister, husband, brother, father, cousin, aunt, and the list goes on and on. These relationships are what I consider “unconditional” because even though I may not like the behavior of one of my children on a family outing, at the end of the day I still love them with all my heart. Here at Festival we believe, “we are in the relationships business, and we just happen to sell groceries.” We believe this because the relationships we have with our associates and our guests are critical to our success, just as they are in any business. And the key to the health of any of these great relationships is listening. At Festival, we must continue to listen to the needs of our associates, and most importantly, the needs of our guests. We must be attentive and receptive to the feedback we receive—whether it be positive or negative—in order to keep our relationships with our guests healthy. Some people may think that relationships are something we should try to fit into our busy schedules. Instead, relationships must be our priority. Because if we extend ourselves to others unconditionally our lives will be enriched each day with those we meet along the way. Teresa Henrickson, Guest Blogger and Eau Claire Deli Manager
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