It is all too easy to blame the likes of Sir Philip Green and Mike Ashley for retail’s image problem.
But former Co-op chief executive Richard Pennycook has issued a rallying cry to retail leaders across the industry to “recognise that it’s an issue for all of us.”
Pennycook used the BRC Annual Lecture to shine a light on the issue of “mistrust with business” and said the industry had developed an almost “toxic” relationship with consumers.
And hours after Pennycook urged retailers to talk about “the right things”, Tesco, which has done a superb job of rebuilding its once battered reputation, did precisely that.
Britain’s biggest retailer this afternoon revealed a chunky pay increase for store staff, which will take their hourly pay rate from £7.62 to £8.42 by November 2018.
As part of the investment, maternity pay will be extended by 14 weeks.
Tesco UK boss Matt Davies said it marked the grocer’s “biggest investment in store pay for decade” at a time when it is winning back trust from suppliers and shoppers alike.
That may not instantly repair the image of the wider sector, but as they say, every little helps.
Quote of the day
“We really should be concerned that our customers rank us below bankers in terms of trustworthiness, and only a shade above estate agents and politicians. We can either pretend that it’s an issue about Philip Green and Mike Ashley, or we can recognise that it’s an issue for all of us”
– Richard Pennycook, Fenwick chairman
Today in numbers
The pay increase Tesco has awarded its shop floor staff
The bonus package Halfords boss Jill McDonald has forgone by joining Marks & Spencer
Get back into the swing of things after the weekend by checking out our ranking of Britain’s 50 most vibrant retail locations.
Luke Tugby, head of content