Our own store full of Emmet’s
And the work can begin. Once LEGO Singapore, the mall and ourselves have agreed and signed off on everything the operational and construction teams kick in. Delivering on the agreed design, ironing out unexpected glitches along the way (what do you mean the mosaic doesn’t fit by 6mm), the glass store front needs a rethink because its weight makes it impractical to open and shut every day. And so the negotiation process is ongoing, throughout.
We bring what we learn from past store designs to the table (too many to count) but each store is different, each mall requirements are different. While our band of merry Emmet’s work on the in-store construction back at the office the team is busy working on the operational and opening plans. How many staff to cover a store of this size, what’s the best planogram flow for the stock, how much stock will we need for opening, how long will it take various AFOL’s and professional builders to deliver on the in-store elements we have agreed? What will be the opening weekend promotions? Do we have time for last minute changes of mind or further delivery delays. Thankfully all the fixtures & fittings arrived (late) but before the world ever realised how shallow the Suez Canal was!
Alongside this run plans for the opening weekend. Especially important in our new Covid normal is safe opening for our customers and staff. This is a whole new set of challenges and we endlessly debate how best to ensure safety while maintaining the spirit of fun and excitement that an opening generates. Particularly for a store that is a return to the original mall of Singapore’s first ever LCS store. How can we deliver offers and giveaways that cater for the different customers we hope to attract and are these even available, accessible or customisable within the timeframe we are working in (do marker pens work on stainless steel?). What will queue management look like? What will a safe opening experience need to be like, what elements will we need to modify from the usual store expectations to ensure it?
The last 2 weeks before opening involve a constantly updating excel spreadsheet of tasks and to do’s, a lot of meetings (Zoom again) and several middle of the night ‘what about X & Y’ wake ups while we overcome last minute hurdles, delays, changes in requirements and timings until we finally arrive, at the big day.