Retail Area Leaders

The Ultimate Area Leader

Area Leaders are busy, overwhelmingly so, and have the added frustration of knowing they are probably not working on the right things and getting the revenue or results that their hard work should reflect.

Does this sound familiar? Is the feedback you hear from your Area Leaders that-

  • There are days when they feel as though they are rushing from store to store, juggling competing priorities, trying to meet all the needs of their stores
  • They have a constant struggle to manage staff costs while working hard to achieve sales targets
  • They consistently find it difficult to locate experienced candidates to fill Store Manager roles
  • Their HR teams are stretched, trying to manage the growing number of “people issues” that really should be the responsibility of Area Leaders

As support staff are reduced and training budgets squeezed, Area Leaders need to shoulder more responsibility than ever before while under pressure to achieve their expected budgets.

The truth is that Area Leaders are working longer hours than they should to keep everything on track, causing burnout and resulting in an unnecessary and costly turnover of Area Leaders.

It’s time for Area Leaders to access the tool kit, strategies, and support they need to set them up for success.

Alison Crabb

The Ultimate Area Leader

Click image to enlarge

The Ultimate Area Leader is ideal for retailers who wish to:

  • increase the retention and longevity of their Store Managers
  • make the transition from Store Manager to Area Leader a seamless one
  • equip their Area Leaders with the skills and expertise to prepare and deliver store visits that have an impact
  • reduce the number of “people issues” that the HR team needs to resolve that should be dealt with by Area Leaders.

The role of the Area Leader is the most influential in retail. When done well, it is also the most rewarding.

Do you want to develop your Area Leaders to increase retention, EXCEED budget and create high performing stores?

The Ultimate Area Leader programs are what you need.

What the Ultimate Area Leader programs provide:

The Ultimate Area Leader programs provide the training and support for learning the specific skills that Area Leaders need to be successful, such as:

  • effectively planning and maximising store visits
  • leading with influence
  • prioritising and managing time
  • setting and managing high expectations for stores
  • engaging and developing store managers
  • the art of coaching and questioning
  • building a bulletproof succession plan
  • engaging a part-time workforce
  • having meetings that matter
  • recruiting and retaining great people
  • developing future Store Managers

Imagine how it would feel knowing you have provided your Area Leaders with the systems and processes to build their confidence and set them up for success.

How the Ultimate Area Leader programs work:

Your organisation might have leadership training in place but could generally lack the specifics needed to meet the uniqueness of the Area Leader role. I will work with you to complete a thorough needs analysis, clarify where your Area Leaders are currently tracking, identify gaps, and recommend a program that best suits your needs.

The Ultimate Area Leader programs use a combination of:

  • workshops
  • masterclasses
  • one on one coaching
  • group coaching circles

The Ultimate Area Leader Programs

Ultimate Area Leader –


This program has been carefully designed to give all your Area Leaders the essential leadership, people development and time management skills needed to succeed.

Ultimate Area Leader –


This program will help high potential Area Leaders to identify the strengths in themselves and others, and develop strategically as they seek to broaden their horizons.

Ultimate Area Leader –


Join a cohort of Area leaders from a range of retailers who will learn and grow together.

Did you know I literally “wrote the book” on Area Leadership? It’s called “The Essential Guide for Area Leaders in Retail”.

What my clients say

Upon first hearing about Alison’s Area Leadership program I was excited about the possibilities it presented to Kennards Hire and Alison’s program did not disappoint. It is rare that you have the opportunity to partner with someone who has performed a role, led people in the same role and now develops people in the role.

We have many experienced Area Managers in our business, and the Area Leadership program has allowed us to create a shared way of working that elevates the impact of leadership in our business as a collective.

The areas where we have seen this include greater structure in how our Area Managers think about and plan their time, balancing working on and in their business. They are maximising branch visits with greater purpose and holding regular planned area meetings – technology is helping with this, with a number of branches in remote locations. As a result of this, Branch Manager engagement and support has improved through regular / structured communication, time efficiencies have been gained through less reactive work, and Area Manager relationships within states/NZ and across the business is the strongest it has been.

Sally Craig | Kennards Hire, Sketchers
The program taught me how to engage with my peers and create a support network I could lean on.

Learning about the key motivators that improve retention and engagement has given me a greater appreciation and understanding of my team.

I can now build a sense of community and encourage and mentor my team to achieve the goals they have set for themselves. I have more confidence in my ability to lead, express my own needs, and apply the skills I’ve learned in various roles.

Danielle McRorie | Area Manager, Sketchers
I have enjoyed learning about different ways to get the best out of my team, and I have learned different ways to approach situations. Each session built on the previous one, which enabled me to implement concepts taught in each session. I have learned that there is so much more to my job than what I was doing previously. I now have various tools to make sure I am using my time efficiently and can continue to develop my skill set.
Monica Milowski | Area Manager, The Athlete’s Foot

Being a new Area Manager, I used The Ultimate Area Leader program to help me build my ‘style’ and find what I was comfortable with and what worked for me.

The Ultimate Area Leader program was the perfect balance of being hands-on, giving direct feedback on situations, and trying new things.

I can now focus on the crucial day-to-day requirements and spend less time on things that aren’t relevant. My store visits are more productive and impactful. I head into stores with a plan, execute and feel much more worthwhile and relevant as an Area Manager.

Toby Plant | Area Manager, The Athlete's Foot Vic/Tas
I had the pleasure of working with Alison as part of a 6 month ‘Retail General Managers and State Managers’ leadership program. Her passion for leadership and development is evident in all she does and her commitment to helping others become the best version of themselves is inspiring.

Not only has Alison provided the tools, strategies and techniques to develop our leadership skills and grown our business, she has shown tremendous compassion and understanding on a personal level which, in turn, paved the way to a wonderful culture shift of ‘people first, employees second’.

Our time with Alison was both beneficial and motivating and I look forward to working with her in the future.

Maria Silverii, Blue Illusion
Alison’s knowledge and experience radiated through her training. The entire group walked away from her sessions feeling confident towards our roles.

Alison provided a professional nurturing open room for everyone to be actively involved. The most informative training session I have attended in my 17 years of Retail, I walked away looking at my business from another angle.

Communication, Personality type and Control and influence were major learnings for me that I have implemented straight into my business, which has had immediate effect.

Phillip Macintyre, Regional Leader NSW & ACT
Alison supports the business on multiple levels. As HR Manager, I really value having an objective perspective on some of the challenges we’ve faced over an extremely tough period. Alison has worked with us extensively on senior leader performance. We have an open and honest working relationship that I truly value.

Alison is an empathetic, inspirational leader who has assisted us in working towards a team-first culture. I look forward to continuing this journey together next year.

Kyla Smith, Pancake Parlour

Investing in your Area Leaders is a powerful way to meet your leadership priorities for 2022 and beyond, as well as the broader retail targets and goals.

Alison Crabb

About Alison

I am the Founder and Principal of Alison Crabb Consulting, and I have worked with some of Australia’s most recognised and successful organisations for more than twenty-five years. Through building a culture of excellence and continual improvement, under my leadership, my division delivered the Flight Centre Travel Group’s highest profit globally for eight consecutive years.

Working with me really does mean working with me. I personally facilitate all sessions, which allows me to observe each participant’s development and provide specific ongoing feedback and support. I use my knowledge, expertise and experience to deliver proven, high-quality transformational training. No components of my programs are outsourced.

‘If you keep doing what you have always done,
you’ll keep getting the same results.’