roll reversal

Eric Dean remembers walking into a store as a child with a note from his mother saying, “Please sell my son a pack of Pall Malls for me.” Things have changed a lot since then. Retailers have become much more responsible, for instance, by taking greater precautions to ensure that tobacco products don’t fall into

pilot takes control

Pilot Travel Centers adapts to its growth by streamlining its payroll and human resources systems. Necessity is indeed the mother of invention. As Pilot Travel Centers grew to 50 c-stores and 262 travel centers in 40 states with 14,000 employees, it became imperative for the company to streamline its payroll and human resources processes. Explosive

payback with interest

Are you boring your associates right out the door? Trim turnover by keeping employees stimulated. Which item on the following list of job benefits is most important when it comes to keeping great convenience store employees on the payroll? Money Recognition Respect Interesting Work If you answered money, recognition or respect, you’re dead wrong. Although

in the q

Anchored by Starbucks and other powerful food brands, Canadian Tire’s ’Q’ concept could have a dramatic effect on the retailing landscape north of the border. Canadian Tire Petroleum has sold gasoline since 1958, but even the company’s president will admit that its traditional convenience store offer has been less than imaginative—until recently. Canadian Tire Petroleum’s

drivethru goliath

This natural descendant of the c-store intends to offer everything from lottery tickets and liquor to groceries and fast food—all in a drive-thru format. Stephen Beardsley wants to out-convenience the c-store industry. Beardsley is president of AutoCart LLC (Las Cruces, NM), a company that plans on building a $13 million to $18 million “Drive-Thru Supercenter”

fired up

Barbecuing brisket wasn’t anywhere on Rudolph Aue’s agenda in 1929, when heopened his one-pump country store in the tiny community of Leon Springs, TX,just a few miles west of San Antonio. In fact, it wasn’t until 60 years later,when Aue sold the operation, that the pit was first lit. The buyer was restaurateur Phil Romano,

at their fingertips

Huck’s Food & Fuel (Carmi, IL) is no stranger to big ideas. The company’s latest brainstorm has the chain saving on phone calls made from stores to regional and district managers. It’s also getting operations staffers more involved in the decision-making process surrounding competitive gas pricing. A little more than a year ago, Huck’s President

casing the deli

Some O’Connell Oil stores receive upwards of 30 call-ahead orders per day. Store-made sandwiches are popular, but deli meats and platters are the big draw. Which came first, the deli or the sandwich program? Pittsfield, MA-based O’Connell Oil may be in the minority, but it was trying to become a destination for deli meats long

casework

Rotisserie chicken. Cold sandwiches. Pizza. Fresh fruit. Display cases boost the sales potential of any food item. Display cases hold and merchandise products effectively and offer customers a quick showing of the operator’s menu selections. The idea is to give Mr. Customer the opportunity to view the retailer’s fare—and increase the likelihood of him making

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