JasonDoiy/iStockBY: EMILY SHAPIRO, ABC NEWS(CORNELIUS, N.C.) — A North Carolina mom was “inadvertently” shot and killed when her children found a gun in her purse, police said.The mother, 25-year-old Gabriel Alexis Henderson, was alone in her Cornelius apartment with her five children at the time of the shooting Monday, the Cornelius Police Department said.Detectives believe the children found a small, semi-automatic handgun in Henderson’s purse, police said.Four of the children were in the room at the time of the shooting, police said, while the fifth child — the oldest — was in another room, police said.The youngest child was also “inadvertently” shot, police said, and was taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.Police did not release the kids’ ages or names.Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.
The preseason USA TODAY Sports Coaches Poll features two No. 1 teams — North Carolina and Kentucky — but there are a handful of up-and-coming teams in the top 25 worth focusing on based on their potential for a major March ascension.Maryland (No. 3 in Coaches Poll, 28-7 last season): The Big Ten Conference favorites are title contenders on paper — future NBAers Melo Trimble and Jake Layman return, Duke transfer Rasheed Sulaimon is eligible right away and Diamond Stone is poised to be one of the best freshmen in the country.Mark Turgeon finally has all the pieces in place in his fifth season. But the Terrapins’ re-emergence is only a projection at this point.High expectations are a good thing and all signs suggest the Terrapins have what it takes to cut down nets in March and April.Oklahoma (No. 8 in the Coaches Poll, 24-11 last season)Among the three Big 12 schools in the top 10 — Kansas and Iowa State being the other two — the Sooners have the most experience and stability.They return four starters, including reigning conference player of the year, Buddy Hield, a preseason national player of the year candidate who bypassed the NBA to give this Oklahoma team a Final Four ceiling.The Jayhawks and Cyclones bowed out of the NCAA tournament early last March, and Oklahoma broke through to the Sweet 16. Now there’s momentum for more from Long Kruger’s veteran team.California (No. 14 in Coaches Poll, 18-15 last season)Landing two top-10 recruits when your name is not John Calipari means Cuonzo Martin has a freshman class to be reckoned with.Arizona and UCLA are more proven contenders in the Pac-12, but the abundance of talent on this roster, which includes the return of Tyrone Wallace (17.1 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 4.0 apg), makes it hard to rule out the Bears as Pac-12 favorites.This team’s success will hinge upon Martin’s ability to mesh and develop all the weapons at his disposal.LSU (No. 19 in Coaches Poll, 22-11 last season) Ben Simmons is the most talented player in college basketball. That’s a fact. Whether the 6-10 freshman lives up to it is another thing.Same goes for LSU, a program that certainly underachieved last season under Johnny Jones and has knock-off-Kentucky ability. A veteran backcourt fueled by Tim Quarterman and Keith Hornsby will help foster a strong team culture for a youthful team that is short on maturity and long on talent…and confidence.“I think we’ll win the national championship,” freshman Antonio Blakeney told reporters over the summer. Setting the bar high isn’t a bad thing, eh?Vanderbilt (No. 20 in Coaches Poll, 21-14 last season) The SEC’s longest-tenured coach, Kevin Stallings, has a roster poised to challenge Kentucky and fend off other SEC foes (ahem, LSU).The Commodores, who won 10 of their final 14 games last season, have an adept inside-out attack that starts with 7-footer Damian Jones, who should take an All-American-type leap as a junior. Jones controls the paint, and Vandy’s perimeter game is as good as it gets — returners Matthew Fisher-Davis, Riley LaChance, Luke Kornet and Wade Baldwin all made at least 40 three-pointers last season.Title teams usually have a mixture of either good depth, experience, a talented big man or excellent shooting. Vanderbilt has all of them.PHOTOS: Preseason top 25 teams
The final of the second annual Banks Beer 100-ball bash is set for tonight and will see a replay of the previous edition’s final as hosts, Enmore Community Center Cricket Club taking on rivals and defending champions, Lusignan under lights beginning at 19.00 hours. Prior to the main event, fans will witness Enmore Masters taking on Floodlights select XI at 11.00 hours followed by the battle for third place between Lusignan East and Strathavon Sports Club at 14.30 hours and the awards ceremony for the East Coast Cricket Committee at 18.00 hours.In the first semi-final, Enmore defeated Strathavon by 61 runs after Imran Hassan’s 61 allowed them to post 145 for seven with M. Ronald taking 4-34 for Strathavon. In reply, Strathavon were bundled out for 84 with Chaitram Balgobin and Satash Jainarine taking two wickets each.Meanwhile, in the second semi-final, Lusignan SC got past counterparts, Lusignan East by eight wickets. Lusignan East were rolled over for 96 as T. Persaud top scored with 33 and K. Amsterdam chipped in with 21. However, it was two wickets each taken by Vickram Doonauth, Chandrapaul Ramraj, Vishnu Ramjeet and Robin Williams that contained the East side. Lusignan SC were then powered past their target with Williams returning to hammer an unbeaten 64 and supported by Ramjeet with 25 not out. A. Sammy took 2-14 for Lusignan East. ECCCC team: Bheemraj Ramkelawan(Capt), Yuvraj Dayal, Satash Jainarine, Amir Khan, Imran Hassan, Ranjeet Hiralall, Rudolph Singh, Vishwanuth Ramlakhan, Chris Surat, Navindra Gobin, Hemraj Garbarran, Chaitram Balgobin and Vivikanand Ishwardin.Lusignan SC: Shazam Ali- (Capt), Rajpaul Basdeo, Robin Williams, Vishnu Ramjeet, Gavin Boodwah, Kumar Bishundial, Azad Mohamed, Vickram Doodnauth, Chandrapaul Ramraj, Somnauth Bharrat, Steve Ramdas, Jagdesh Dowlatram and Deokarran Kumar.
Super Eagles midfielder John Ogu has stated that his dream is to play in the Premier League.The Hapoel Beersheva star made this known in a chat with reporters in Port Harcourt ahead of the much publicised international friendly match between the Super Eagles of Nigeria and DR Congo on Monday.In his words, John Ogu said: “The dream is to play in England. That’s the dream for me but since its not happening, I will just try my best.”John Ogu has been named in the Super Eagles’ 30-man provisional list for this summer’s FIFA World Cup in Russia and would be hoping that he is part of the final 23-man squad for the tournament.Audio Playerhttps://www.busybuddiesng.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/AUD-20180528-WA0022.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.RelatedWinning The League Was Special – John Ogu (Audio)May 28, 2018In “Europe”John Ogu Contests 2018 CAF Awards Africa XI SelectionJanuary 9, 2019In “CAF”EXCLUSIVE: John Ogu Reveals Future after Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Plans NPFL ReturnJune 4, 2019In “Nigeria”
0Shares0000LONDON, England, October 27 – QPR officials on Thursday denied reports that three players had given evidence against John Terry in the FA’s investigation into allegations of racist abuse involving the Chelsea and England star.The Daily Mail reported Thursday that Rangers trio Paddy Kenny, Clint Hill and Shaun Derry had all spoken to FA investigators probing claims that Terry racially abused QPR defender Anton Ferdinand. The report claimed all three had provided statements to FA offcials which appeared to contradict Terry’s version of events during Sunday’s stormy west London derby at Loftus Road.However a spokesman for QPR issued a strong denial of the reports, saying none of the three players named had given evidence.“There is no truth in these stories whatsoever,” the QPR spokesman said. “None of the three players have been called to give evidence or will be called to give evidence.”Terry is the subject of FA and police investigations after video footage emerged on the Internet on Sunday appearing to show the England captain making racist comments at Ferdinand.Although Terry has not denied using the words involved, the Chelsea defender insists his comments were taken out of context and that he had actually been denying using the slur in question.English FA officials have said they have no plans to suspend Terry from international football while inquiries are ongoing and say he will lead the team out in friendlies against Spain and Sweden next month.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)
Originally published on Blogging4Jobs. When invited to a newly revised onboarding session, that I entitled “Onboarding Experiment,” one of our new hires told me how she loved that I used the word experiment. My immediate reaction? Crap. She’s onto me. I find myself using that word quite a lot in reference to initiatives I’m working on. There’s just something about calling a new effort an experiment that makes it sound more exciting while also easing the stress for those of us who are phobic about commitment. It’s not just that though.Describing something as an experiment makes everyone think about it differently.I’m a big fan of this approach overall for a variety of reasons and I suggest you check out the thoughts below if you’d like to experience the benefits as well.EMBRACE THE ADVENTURETrying new things is fun. Sometimes a scary kind of fun, but fun nonetheless. I don’t know about you, but I’m going to create as much fun as possible for myself in work. We’re there way too often to not enjoy it. So, dive in and enjoy the ride. Testing out new waters is also a great way to build courage and most of us could use a little boost in that area now and again.FEEDBACK IS YOUR FRIENDWhen you initiate something new internally and put it out there as an experiment, people become more curious. That curiosity can impact participation. You’ll certainly get more feedback than perhaps you’d receive if employees thought they were locked in for years to something that’s newly launching. Instead of wondering why they should bother sharing their thoughts or concerns if change is a long way down the road, they’ll jump at the chance to be part of something new and moldable.TESTING IS CONTAGIOUSInnovation and HR aren’t always synonymous. Set the precedent in your organization that trial and error is ok. It’s how you learn and grow. And if those on the HR team lead that way, it will inspire other departments to embrace that mentality as well. Who know what earth shattering idea can come from this approach permeating your organization? It will feel pretty awesome to know that some of that mindset originated with you.FAILING MAKES US BETTERIt might not feel good in the moment, but we learn from every failure. Really shooting for a goal and missing the mark hurts but it’s how we pick ourselves up from those challenges that show true leadership. Having the grit and persistence to get back up when we fall makes us proud and less afraid to do it next time. Practice what you preach. How can you expect to lead others to challenge themselves and implement change if you’re not willing to do it yourself?Doing the same thing over and over again. That’s what they call the definition of insanity. We may not wear lab coats or work towards curing disease daily but we can certainly flex our research and development muscles in HR. Reminding not only ourselves but also the rest of the organization and the world of what we’re capable of. I hope they’re ready for us!
As we march closer to 2020, a few common themes have emerged among the research questions that the Loss Prevention Research Council (LPRC) receives from its membership base. While much of our research seeks to provide insight on whether introducing a new loss prevention technology solution or policy to your retail environment will curb shrink and protect sales, members are starting to adopt the same analytical approach for what’s already in their stores.Does the technology that’s already in your stores work? The intuition of many loss prevention professionals on this question is shifting toward skepticism. There are a few reasons behind this, some of which are logical, and some may require a second look.It’s Not Preventing Theft EventsLoss prevention technology solutions are deployed in my stores, and I still have a significant shrink problem. This can lead to the sense that the technology isn’t deterring anyone. While it’s true that the technology failed to deter 100 percent of the theft events that occurred in its presence (occurred events), that’s only one-third of the equation.- Sponsor – It’s difficult to gauge how many potential events could have occurred (total possible events), and how many were prevented (prevented events) by the technology. In order to do so, we would need to run a randomized controlled trial where we systematically remove the technology from test stores while keeping the technology deployed in control stores.Verdict: Needs to Be TestedIts Effect Has Waned with TimeResearch at the LPRC shows that loss prevention technology follows a similar effect curve to the administration of medication. The intervention is administered, followed by:• An onset of action, • A peak action, • A continued effect throughout the duration of action, and • A return to near or at baseline.In many cases, there is a full return to baseline: the effects ware off completely over time and the technology becomes ineffective. In other cases, the effect tails off and settles above the original baseline. A percentage of the effectiveness survives the decline of action (the “new” factor) and the technology remains effective over time.Verdict: Often true that the effect declines, but also true that a residual effect often remainsI Need to Signal to My Coworkers and Boss that I’m an InnovatorYou’ve just been put in charge of a district, or a region, or an entire loss prevention division. The guy before you installed that legacy loss prevention technology. You need to set the tone that you will be more effective than he was—that you’re innovative and willing to get with the new to get results.We’ve all been there. There is a good chance that some of your predecessor’s initiatives aren’t effective, but there is also a very good chance that many of them are. Setting the precedent that you are a champion of results and ideas that work, no matter who is responsible for them, may be a more impactful message than that of change for the sake of change.Verdict: Consider championing results and a higher standard of proof instead of change. Test which existing tech/policies work and which ones need to go.Several current LPRC studies involve exactly what’s outlined here: randomized controlled trials (RCTs) testing the systematic removal of a technology and assessing that removals effect. To hear more about the LPRC’s 2017 Research Agenda or for assistance setting up your own test, please contact mike (at) lpresearch (dot) org. This post was originally published in 2017 and was updated September 14, 2017. Stay UpdatedGet critical information for loss prevention professionals, security and retail management delivered right to your inbox. Sign up now
Manufacturer involvement in designing product protection is decades old, noted University of Florida research scientist Read Hayes, PhD, CPP. He remembers Walt Disney’s Buena Vista Pictures as being an early pioneer in coordinating with retailers to prevent theft. Video releases such as Beauty and the Beast were massive hits with kids—but also with shoplifters. “Maybe some executives at Disney saw it differently and thought it’s solely up to retailers to protect products, but the consensus for them was to see it as a mutual problem,” he recalled. “So we came up with portable fixtures and included some security features and were able to reduce theft by making it harder and less rewarding to steal and increasing the odds of being caught.”Read Hayes, PhD, CPPHe remembers, too, working with a lip balm company on display options to increase shoplifters’ effort and to prevent the small product from falling into cracks and getting lost—an early industry effort to address “total retail loss.” In the industry’s most celebrated example involving Gillette, the company mapped its entire process for handling product—from the time it’s made all the way through to the shelf—looking for opportunities to improve process and handling to reduce the risk of loss.And, generally speaking, it’s not much different today, said Hayes. The roadmap and anti-theft menu is similar now as in these past examples. “Where you put it in the store, what types of display fixtures you use, employee positioning, prodding employees to pay particular attention to very high-loss SKUs, focused protective tech, what do you do, how often you do it—these are all options that are available for each solution.”- Sponsor – As director of the Loss Prevention Research Council (LPRC), which conducts research into crime and theft prevention technologies for the retail industry and includes manufacturers among its membership, Hayes has a unique seat from which to view the working relationship between retail LP and product manufacturers. He’s in the room when the two sides are discussing anti-theft solutions, both separately and when they are brainstorming solutions together. While the issue of theft prevention often divides the two sides, his job is in the middle—helping both.“I’d say the relationship is not necessarily better or worse than in decades past. I think it tends to go up and down,” said Hayes. He said he’s fortunate to work with manufacturers that want to work with retailers, but he knows that’s not universal, that some manufacturers still see retail theft as retail’s problem. “They think, ‘I’m already making a great product. I’m doing promotion to create demand. I’m shipping the product, so you have it when you want it. And now you want me to do more? You’re running the store.’”The Manufacturers’ Perspective“One stole is one sold” is still the perspective that some manufacturers cling to according to some loss prevention executives we interviewed. And a willingness to work with retail loss prevention isn’t as strong in some sectors of goods as others, they said.Krista Marantos MonninManufacturers in the drug, food, and household goods sectors have tended to be more aggressive in pursuing product protection, according to industry experts. Several LP leaders specifically identified Procter & Gamble (P&G) as a model manufacturer partner, for example. Krista Marantos Monnin is a retail business leader at P&G and oversees the company’s on-shelf availability operation. “We see it as a collaborative role with our retailer partners; ultimately, it has to be a retailer solution because everybody addresses shrink differently on the retailer side,” she said.Source tagging is certainly a primary part of product protection today, said Monnin, but even within that ubiquitous solution, retailers deviate on what frequency of tags they require. As such, she said manufacturers aren’t effectively positioned to forge across-the-board solutions on their own.Plus, even within the same product—Tide, for example—variation in packaging, size, and theft desirability often belies a single product protection strategy. “So if a customer comes to us and reports that it has a problem with Tide, we have to narrow it down to where and which SKUs, and then we can work together to find a solution that is effective, working off of a solutions matrix that we have built based on our experiences.”Certain manufacturers operate under heightened requirements for product protection due to consumer health and safety concerns. For these companies, product diversion is more than a nuisance—supply-chain risks are material to the business. One generic drugmaker, for example, wrote in its annual mandatory 10-K filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, “Cargo thefts and/or diversions, and economically or maliciously motivated product tampering on store shelves may occur, causing unexpected shortages, which may have a material impact on our operations.” Because of the stakes involved, such companies have led the way in product serialization to increase supply-chain visibility.Embedding security features into products as a selling point is also a possible trend as use cases for identification technology seeps into more product category niches. For example, manufacturers build technology by GearSecure, a mash-up of RFID and GPS, into musical instruments, which then allows end-users like touring bands to keep tabs on their gear. Collaboration between wireless companies and makers of cell phones has led to increasing adoption of kill-switch technology. There is an anti-counterfeiting sewing thread. There are apparel makers that mesh RFID, NFC, and QR codes together for tags that capitalize on the benefits of each.And a few manufacturers are using anti-theft solutions to gain competitive advantage in high-shrink product categories, according to Hayes. By building in security measures, these companies can “go to a retailer and say, ‘Hey, I understand that this product category is a challenge for you, but what if I take these steps that will reduce the amount of loss?’” That can result in favorable treatment because they are helping the retailer solve a problem, said Hayes.One prominent example is RCA, a maker of tablet computers. By tweaking firmware during manufacture, the company’s devices require a code for activation available only at point-of-sale. Without a legitimate purchase, they’re bricks. By denying thieves the ability to use the device if they steal it, and thus the motive to steal, the company was able to sell the prospect of fewer losses to forge a more favorable deal with a big-box retailer.Adam AlfordAdam Alford, senior director for loss prevention at GameStop, said his team has met with a few vendors in the last few months on the benefit-denial concept, with the goal of being able to put higher-value live products on the floor without increasing loss. Many merchants think such availability is vital to driving brick-and-mortar sales today as customers rely on stores as a place to touch and test products, rather than simply make purchases. Alford particularly likes the strategy’s potential in the mobile phone and tablet space.According to some LP practitioners, it’s somewhat rare for manufacturers to take individual initiative on theft prevention. The booming connected-home market is an example—smart thermostats, smart plugs, and the like. While these vendors understand their products are in high demand and can be high theft—and will discuss the issue, ask for recommendations, and gladly take measures to prevent their product from being secured in a physical lock-up—it typically stops there. Vendors are not necessarily at the point where they go to retailers to say, “We know theft is an issue, so we’ve partnered with this solution or built in this technology to prevent theft, and how will this work for you?” That conversation remains rare.The core obstacle is the same as it has always been, said several industry leaders. In some cases, manufacturers may not perceive that they have skin in the game and fail to see an impact on them if a retailer experiences high losses. Small brands may more easily recognize high losses as detrimental, recognizing the possibility that a store may choose to buy fewer of their products, move their products to online sales only, or discontinue altogether a product with high shrink.But large vendors, ones that hold some leverage on retailers, can remain hesitant to implement solutions that are going to raise their costs. “It’s not adversarial; they’re willing to hear you out,” but they often fail to see enough value to drive them to take action, said one LP director. A requirement that high-shrink items must be source-tagged is fairly routine and well accepted by manufacturers, but working on new, innovative solutions can be more challenging, noted the LP executive.While their particular bottom-line interests naturally divide manufacturers and retailers on the issue of retail theft, Hayes sees goodwill—and recognition of the legitimacy of each other’s viewpoint—as a viable building block to successful manufacturer to retailer collaboration. Rather than a unique challenge, Hayes characterizes the divergence between the two camps as similar to many business relationships. “It’s just complicated,” said Hayes. “Everyone has positive intentions, but everyone also wants to make their numbers.” Cultivating those good intentions are thus an important part of creating effective LP partnerships with product manufacturers.Richard E. Widup, Jr., CPP, CFEIt may sound trite, but it’s nonetheless true, that it all comes down to relationships, agreed Richard E. Widup, Jr., CPP, CFE, global corporate security director at RB, which acquired Mead Johnson last year, the maker of Enfamil and other infant formulas. “We all have a part to play, and manufacturers especially,” he said. “We need to understand shrink at the policy level and at the store level. And we need to use that to help shape and enhance our partnerships and forge open and honest discussions about what are the best solutions.”Manufacturer to Retailer: Ties That BindData provide a helpful building block to successful joint projects, according to Hayes. “Shoplifting can be very tightly clustered to specific products, specific brands, and even specific SKUs for specific brands,” he said. Most retailers have pretty good information on the rate of loss, down to the category brand, and sharing that data with manufacturer partners can help enhance coordination on theft prevention, he continued. “It’s still the case that some manufacturers are blind to it, and they don’t know anything until the retailer reaches out and shows them numbers on theft.”P&G’s Monnin sees data as a prerequisite to forging problem-specific solutions and is in the early stages of working on new protection strategies for the company’s Tide product. But to do it effectively, retailers need to partake. “We need our retailer partners to share data so that we can accurately assess the problem,” she said.Nicole DeHoratiusThe quality of the data collected and shared could also be improved to forge more meaningful cooperation, suggested Nicole DeHoratius, a professor at University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and an expert in retail operations management. “Retailers shouldn’t just share their shrink lists. They need to conduct additional analyses and examine the underlying characteristics driving the shrink problem,” she advised. “LP needs to be far more analytical and examine what’s common about shrink across products, locations, retailers, and so on.“For example, do we observe commonalities across vendors, distribution channels, stores, and products with the same packaging? What are the underlying attributes of the shrink that might give an indication of the root cause?” This is particularly true given the pace of churn among SKUs and vendors, she added. “So on the retailer side, the problem isn’t generally a particular unwillingness to share but rather the existing skill set of the traditional LP professional,” she said, noting that to successfully move the industry forward, LP needs to adopt a more robust analytical skill set.Data sharing is key, and so is robust evidence of the effectiveness of solutions, according to Hayes. Manufacturers may be willing to bear the cost of a theft prevention solution, but they want evidence it works, and year-over-year data doesn’t necessarily provide it. “Hundreds of things can happen during the year that can alter the results,” said Hayes. As such, controlled experiments play an important role in providing both sides with confidence in a solution’s worthiness and to forecast results, he advised.Without testing a range of solutions—multitudes of hard tags, spider wraps, and the like—and without data on how they impact shrink and sales, “then we can’t understand what works,” said Monnin. “We test them and then share the solutions to build a more robust solutions matrix.”Stakeholder InvolvementA successful product protection partnership with a manufacturer can occasionally hinge on luck—right time, right ask. But as for elements that LP can influence, making sure merchant teams aren’t blind to inventory shrink and gaining their support is critical.John Doggette, LPC“The key to success is when our merchants rally behind an effort,” said John Doggette, LPC, director of LP merchandise shrink solutions and analytics at Lowe’s, in discussing a recent success story in which a large manufacturer stepped up to fund a new product protection solution. “For LP, if you don’t have a robust relationship with buyers, if you’re not training them and have a program for that, then you can’t expect things to get done. You need the buyer to be an advocate for the proposed solution.”At Lowe’s, Doggette said his team has worked hard to impress upon merchants that LP’s goal is to increase on-shelf availability, overall sales, and ultimately profit-and not act as a roadblock. “It starts with relationship building and having a dedicated person or a team of people whose sole purpose is to work with merchants,” advised Doggette. “A large retailer may have hundreds of buyers, so you need a retail LP organization that has someone on staff, if not a team, that is directly responsible for interfacing with buyers and for providing them with the data and analytics they need.”Lowe’s has dedicated staff members whose role is to interface with buyers from an LP lens, and their responsibilities include attending high-shrink merchandise division merchant meetings. In this way, the LP organization has insight into emerging developments. The LP-merchant liaisons also participate when merchants conduct product line reviews, playing an advisory role as the subject-matter experts around shrinkage and returns for the product category.Finally, the LP team members worked alongside the LPRC to create a training module on inventory shrink for merchants that is hosted on the company’s online learning center. “So now if you are hired into Lowe’s as a buyer, or need occasional refresher training, the course work is part of your training so that you learn fundamentals about inventory shrink and, more importantly, what you can do to reduce it.”Bill InzeoThe merchant relationship has also been a focus for the AP team at Walgreens. “One of the things we’ve done effectively to work with merchant teams is to integrate shrink and waste metrics into the process for analyzing performance and for which products to carry,” explained Bill Inzeo, director of asset protection solutions. “So it’s no longer just looking at sales and gross. Shrink and waste are now included in that decision-making process.”Erik ButtlarTo arrive at the right merchandising strategy—one that is both driving sales and reducing loss—information sharing between merchants and asset protection should be a two-way street, advised Erik Buttlar, vice president of asset protection at Best Buy. Just as merchants need to understand protection strategies, AP needs to appreciate the sales imperative. “You don’t want to unnecessarily slow down transactions or make them more complex,” he said. “It’s not doing things to the customer but for the customer.”Efforts by LP to strengthen relationships with merchant teams surely please Professor DeHoratius. She coauthored a report for the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) on the subject, Opportunities & Challenges for Engaging Merchants in the Protection of Retail Assets. [For an excellent summary of the study, see Chris Trlica’s article in the September-October 2015 issue of LP Magazine.]Among other important lessons, DeHoratius said that her research has shown that an LP approach strictly focused on getting manufacturers to put tags on high-theft items can miss larger issues at play. “Our research has shown that many discrepancies in the inventory record are not solely attributable to theft. Instead, it’s about transaction errors, errors in delivery orders, and other operational issues that arise,” she said. Broadly, her research has led her to believe that LP discounts non-malicious causes of shrink, while shrink caused by theft is overemphasized. “It’s not all about locking up products,” she advised. “Solutions should be focused on ‘how do I prevent the discrepancies that are impacting operations and sales?’”The issue is also broader than LP and buyers. That relationship is critical, but it is just one aspect of a larger ecosystem on the retailer’s side that requires proper alignment. LP, merchants, store operations, sales incentives—they all need to work together for retailers to work effectively with vendors, according to DeHoratius.After a challenging shrink year at GameStop in 2017, and with the company transitioning into collectibles and other merchandise, the company saw value in meeting more frequently and proactively on shrink issues. The internal partnering and communication has been very successful, according to GameStop’s Adam Alford. For more than six months, the company has held biweekly committee meetings to talk about shrink issues, testing, ideas, and high-risk product launches. The meetings include key department heads and representatives from inventory control; loss prevention; head merchants from collectibles, video games, and other key product categories; general counsel; and vice presidents of store operations, IT, and business planning and analytics. “The goal is to drive awareness around shrink and to bring up issues and discuss solutions,” said Alford. “It also reinforces the issue of shrink for merchants so that they can go to a vendor for new packaging or new fixtures and know that everyone is really behind it.”Monnin sees the same imperative for inclusiveness on the manufacturer’s side of the aisle, with operations leaders engaging with sales people. That team can then engage in collaboration with a retailer’s team, including buyers and LP. “There have to be bridges across all these different groups for effective collaboration,” she said. Specifically, Monnin thinks multifunctional meetings are critical when theft problems arise, where retailers bring in their team, including LP experts, and manufacturers include asset protection, operations leaders, analysts, and product supply people. “You need to have more people than just the category buyer and the sales person. There needs to be a more expansive meeting of many stakeholders in order to build the trust that leads to data sharing and collaborative solutions that fit a retailer’s LP strategy, and for store operations to be effective.”External forums also play a useful role in facilitating solution sharing, according to industry leaders, such as Checkpoint Systems’ annual National Source Tagging Symposium (May 22) and the RILA annual conference. RB’s Rich Widup sat on the steering committee for RILA’s 2018 Retail Asset Protection Conference and said the involvement has been invaluable to his effort to work with retail partners. “Not only to hear where their pain points are but also to have open and honest discussions about solutions and to come up with creative ideas,” he said. “That has been really key from our perspective.”The LPRC boasts 55 major retail chain members, 65 solutions companies, and a half-dozen manufacturer members, including P&G.“Being involved in LPRC is valuable for building relationships, and in identifying what works, and for research that I can take back to my company and make people aware of,” said Monnin. LP directors said they see similar benefits on their end-learning about solutions that their peers are coordinating on with manufacturers and passing those ideas onto to their merchant teams.Doggette sees similar value—Lowe’s is also an LPRC member—and he hopes that the LPRC can provide a successful venue for addressing the traditional ad hoc approach to product protection. He believes that the LPRC is the key to bridge the gap between retailers, “so we can work with manufacturers on solutions that will work for everyone.”It’s a common sentiment that retailers don’t align with respect to the product protection they ask for from vendors—with one retailer asking for one thing and another for something else. Bill Inzeo expressed similar sympathy for manufacturers’ need to serve many of their retail partners and thinks joint data collection/sharing provides another way for retailers to broaden cooperation. The company participated in a data collection effort lead by Checkpoint Systems to provide manufacturers with anonymized, item-level theft data from a group of retailers, a fresh take at cooperation that he thought worked pretty well. “Retailers need to work together to enable the manufacturers to be more supportive,” he said. “And this allowed us to approach them with a more uniformed ask for support.”Read the suggestions and recommendations for future product protection solutions in the full article, “Security at the Source,” which was originally published in 2018. This excerpt was updated February 26, 2019. Stay UpdatedGet critical information for loss prevention professionals, security and retail management delivered right to your inbox. Sign up now
New Jersey authorities say a shoplifting suspect dragged a police officer with her vehicle as she tried to flee and attacked two other officers who tried to help him.Latonya Hendricks faces numerous counts, including assault by auto and three counts of aggravated assault on a police officer. It’s not known if the 42-year-old Paterson woman has retained an attorney.Elmwood Park police say the incident began around 2:10 p.m. Wednesday at a grocery store. She allegedly shoved a store employee and ran through the parking lot, but an officer saw her and approached her car. When the officer tried to prevent her from driving off… The Eagle- Sponsor – Stay UpdatedGet critical information for loss prevention professionals, security and retail management delivered right to your inbox. Sign up now
Five years ago, Steve Huffman was another young entrepreneurial mind chomping at the bit to launch his very own startup. After taking a train from Virginia to Boston to see Paul Graham speak at Harvard in 2005, Huffman and his partner Alexis Ohanian eventually joined the very first class of Y Combinator. Later that summer, Reddit was born. Now, in 2010, Huffman is taking a stab at his second startup, Hipmunk, and today I had the chance to chat with him about what he has learned from the last five years and why launching his latest project “terrified” him.Reddit wasn’t even Huffman and Ohanian’s original idea. In fact, their idea for ordering food from cell phones was rejected by Y Combinator. Graham liked the pair so much, however, that he invited them back to try again with a new idea – a testament to the value of people over ideas. Huffman says this is “a mantra of Y Combinator,” as many companies change their original ideas several times. Huffman’s newest venture, Hipmunk, aims to eliminate the pain and headaches that are associated with online flight searches, he says. No fancy algorithms or bidding on tickets – Hipmunk is just a simplified user-friendly interface for finding the best flights to get from point A to point B. Sometimes the best startup ideas aren’t entirely revolutionary new concepts, but are as simple as cleaning up someone else’s mess.While his reputation has helped the startup secure funding from both Y Combinator and a group of angels including Ron Conway, Huffman says being a second-time entrepreneur also has it’s drawbacks.“I almost threw up just before we launched because I had a lot more to lose in terms of reputation. I was terrified,” Huffman told ReadWriteWeb. “If you’re coming out of college, you’ve got nothing to lose. Whether you succeed or fail, you’re going to learn a ton, and you can only improve.” 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market chris cameron A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Related Posts Having previous experience and notoriety has certainly helped the company get off the ground, but Huffman says lessons and skills learned from his Reddit days have given the startup its greatest boost.Reddit was originally coded using Lisp and launched on just a single server, he says. Switching to Python and getting the service to run from multiple servers was no small task, he adds. This time around, Hipmunk is “like Reddit version 6,” as it was built using similar Python infrastructures and launched on 16 servers, says Huffman.“This project has gone a lot more smoothly that Reddit did,” he says. “I’m playing the same role as lead developer and product guy, but I’m a lot better at it than I was then. The development and deployment have both been a lot smoother.” Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#Interviews#start Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…