MOHR Retail Announces New Owner and CEO, Mary Beth Garcia
Founder Michael Patrick to remain on as Executive Advisor through 2022 as the company enhances and expands offerings to help retail and service industry businesses build the interpersonal skills that drive results.
(Miami, FL) – MOHR Retail has announced that Mary Beth Garcia, currently President, will take over as the new owner and CEO of the retail and service industry training firm, effective January 3, 2022. As part of the transition, the firm’s founder, Michael Patrick, will take on the new role of Executive Advisor, working with retail clients and on strategic priorities through 2022. Along with the change in ownership, the company will now be based out of Miami, Florida. Garcia has been associated with the company for more than twenty years, initially as a client.
“I’m thrilled to have this opportunity to build on Michael’s legacy of work and impact, helping our clients develop the critical people-to-people skills that drive results” Garcia says. “This is a pivotal time, coming off of two incredibly challenging years for retail and service businesses and their teams. The sharp uptick in demand we saw for our services in 2021 shows that there’s a growing recognition by leaders that they need to be able to engage with their teams in a more meaningful way and connect with them where they are, through the good times and the tough times.”
The pandemic has had a major impact on the mental health and work/life balance of all frontline employees, and retail workers, in particular, are quitting at record rates. While many organizations are eager to get back to “normal” operations, leaders who ignore the realities of what their employees are experiencing and balancing now will struggle to retain their people and deliver exceptional customer experiences. To reduce churn and reconnect their teams to the mission and to each other, leaders must create a workplace where people feel supported and valued.
“The leadership ‘rules’ of the past taught us that when crisis hits, we need to be strong and keep moving forward to inspire others. That’s not enough anymore,” Patrick says. “This is a time for empathy. Leaders need the interpersonal skills to allow others to be vulnerable and to help with work/life balance and stress reduction. That might mean potentially adjusting schedules to allow for associates to grieve, put their life back together, or just rest so they can regain some semblance of calm.”
Garcia has been at the forefront of these issues since the onset of the pandemic. Many retail and service business leaders are familiar with her work to build community and knowledge-sharing beginning in March 2020, when she convened a monthly retail roundtable discussion group to explore challenges, ideas, and best practices for navigating this unprecedented territory. Those connections and real-world insights are now informing the future direction of the business as MOHR reshapes its solutions to adapt to changing client needs.
“A major focus for us in 2022 will be enhancing and expanding MOHR’s existing products and services, while retaining the core learning design that has been proven most effective in delivering results in the field,” Garcia says. “As part of that, we’ll continue to leverage technology, including mobile apps and virtual learning platforms, to make it easy for busy leaders and team members to engage with the learning and immediately put the skills to work on the job.”
Garcia’s other primary objective for 2022 and beyond will be broadening MOHR’s reach and amplifying market awareness about how the company can help retail and service organizations build positive, sustainable, and profitable workplace cultures.
“Now is the time for new leadership and new investment,” Patrick says. “We have all learned from the past two years of challenges, and we are all stronger for it. I look forward to working with Mary Beth as she shepherds us into a brighter future, providing interpersonal skills that drive results for all levels of the retail and service industries.”
About MOHR Retail
For more than 30 years, MOHR Retail has developed the critical people-to-people skills needed to create results in the retail industry. Through innovative classroom and online learning methods, as well as ongoing national retail research projects, the company continues to stay on top of the trends in order to fuel the success of specialty stores, chain stores, outlets, catalogue retailers, department stores, and more. The company provides retail-ready and customized training and consulting solutions for retail multiunit managers, store leaders, support center leaders, buyers and merchant teams, sales associates, and senior leaders. Now based in Miami, Florida, MOHR collaborates with retailers and service businesses across the country, including Benjamin Moore, Hudson Group, Michaels, LVMH, The TJX Companies, ULTA, Whole Foods, West Marine, and others.