Hardware Retailing

APR 2018

Hardware Retailing magazine is the pre-eminent how-to management magazine for small business owners and managers in the home improvement retailing industry.

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April 2018 | HARDWARE RETAILING 75 Being Part of the DIY Movement In October, Ace Hardware Corp. announced it had purchased a majority stake in The Grommet. The companies had been collaborating since late 2016, bringing products from The Grommet into independently owned Ace Hardware stores. Nearly six months into the partnership, Pieri's perspective on the relationship between makers and home improvement retail stores is unchanged. "The DIY movement right now is strong, and home improvement remains one of the biggest avenues within it," she says. "Our community responds strongly to products that solve everyday problems, and many can be used in DIY projects." Pieri says independent retailers can compete against big-box and online retailers by differentiating themselves through local, handmade, unique goods. The Entrepreneurial Spirit Pieri says entrepreneurs shouldn't be afraid to go all in. "Make whatever it is you're pursuing worth your time because you should expect it to take a while," she says. "Anything worth doing will take five to 10 years, maybe even a lifetime, and that's OK." Like success, knowledge doesn't come overnight, Pieri says. Investing in the training you need at the outset will be enough to get started, but you can't know everything you need to know immediately. "In the early days, you cannot be fully operational or skilled at all areas of your business," she says. "Know what matters. Know what makes you distinctive and gives you a competitive advantage and double down on that. Also, have your own vision and be confident in it. If you're not the lead dog, then how do you know why or when you need to turn left? Live two years in the future and always look for what's next." The Grommet's Personal Values The Grommet exists to help consumers find reputable products with a story to tell. Since it launched in 2008, the company has helped brands like Fitbit, OtterBox and SodaStream become mainstays in consumers' lives. The Grommet organizes products based on 10 personal values, and shoppers can filter products on the website by those values. Learn a little more about each of the company's guiding values below. Crowdfunded Products in this category were created with the help of consumers who donated to a campaign to bring the product to life. Sustainable Living Products in this category are made using natural and eco-friendly materials, often through sustainable production processes. Philanthropy These organizations are nonprofits committed to helping people in need around the world, through time, money or resources. Tech & Innovation The products in this category are created by makers who are producing groundbreaking tools to enhance and improve everyday life. Social Enterprises Makers in this category provide a supportive workplace, make a positive environmental impact and foster other social good policies. Made in the U.S.A. Products in this category are produced in the U.S. and create jobs in local communities throughout the country. Handcrafted Products in this category are created by makers by hand, whether that's sewing, woodwork, jewelry-making or other handiwork. Independent Maker These products are developed by small businesses in local communities throughout the country. Underrepresented Entrepreneur Makers in this category are people of color, people considered too young or too old to be makers, veterans and other minority groups. Made for a Lifetime Products in this category come with a lifetime guarantee, and they are made with materials that are meant to withstand time and use.

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