Valas Consulting has a broad spectrum of clients from a variety of markets. Our mission is to help our clients build progressive, profitable businesses, increase their market share and take their busineses to the next level.

We work with our clients to help them define and measure success. We then help them focus on the strategic elements of their businesses in order to achieve the goals they establish for their businesses and personal lives.

The following case study provides examples of how Valas Consulting Group assists our clients:

Allen & Peterson Cooking and Appliance Center, Anchorage, Alaska

Allen & Petersen LogoWhen I first met Leon and Kenny, they were young, energetic and eager to grow their business. Unlike others who don’t seek outside advice unless they’re in trouble, these businessmen came to me when theirs was prospering.

The question put to me during that first conference was simple—“what do we have to do to grow our business, gain more share of our market, and increase our profitability?”Outside view of building

We spoke about what I called The Seven Pillars of Retailing. I urged them to divide up their individual responsibilities between finance, human resources, merchandising, advertising and promotion, facilities, warehouse and delivery and customer satisfaction. Together we developed a “to do” list to improve their performance in each area.

We met regularly to discuss the progress Leon and Kenny were making, and each time, they came in smiling and said, “We’ve finished the list you gave us, now what?”

In the past ten years, Allen & Petersen has grown significantly. They’ve opened two more stores and added a cooking school and a gourmet shop to their merchandise line-up. They sell everything a serious cook might need from cookbooks, to flavored olive oils to professional Viking and Kitchen Aid stand mixers.

They publish a glossy Alaska’s Best Kitchens magazine showcasing some of their finest installations.

They have developed an extensive website where customers can shop for products, sign up for classes or register to enter the annual Taste of Alaska recipe contest.

The company’s Intranet—designed around the Seven Pillars--helps Allen & Petersen team members stay informed.

Most important, Leon and Kenny were able to buy the business which had been a division of a conglomerate owned by Kenny’s family. Leon went back to school to not only earn has Bachelor’s degree, but he has just received an MBA.

Don’t get me wrong, Leon and Kenny don’t do everything I suggested. They’re strong, independent businessmen with great ideas of their own. On a visit to Anchorage, I suggested that they were over-emphasizing their cooking school and gourmet store and neglecting their major appliance department. Since the margin on cookware and kitchen accessories is far greater, they continue to focus on that part of their business.

Nearly ten years later, Leon and Kenny remain my most successful coaching clients. They are always looking for new ideas and for ways to improve their business and they’re not afraid to admit they don’t have all the answers.

Sometimes, though, I think it’s me learning from them.

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