Free business seminar, assessment will tell it like it is

Marc Wilson isn’t in the business of sugarcoating.

“I’m not related to you, and I’m not necessarily your friend. So when I leave, you’re going to get the truth, but you might not like hearing it,” said Wilson, a retail industry consultant at the Virginia Small Business Development Corp. and 35-year veteran of the retail business, who will be in Waynesboro on Thursday and Friday to lead a Holiday Retail Seminar in conjunction with Waynesboro Downtown Development Inc.

Wilson’s visit begins with a free seminar at 8:30 a.m. Thursday at City Hall in the City Council Chambers, “From bah-humbug to booming business, or Bah-To-Boom!” The seminar will cover all aspects of holiday retail sales, including sales approaches, merchandising, window dressing, cash-flow management and customer-traffic management.

Aimed at retail and restaurant establishments, the focus of the talk will be on helping small-business owners develop strategies for maximizing sales and profitability in the fourth quarter of the business year.

The rest of his time in Waynesboro on the two-day visit will be spent with individual owners doing 90-minute on-location evaluations that Wilson said is “literally a physical of their operations.”

“I’m another set of eyes and ears. I’ve been in the retail business for 40 years. I’ve seen an awful lot,” said Wilson, who preaches to small-business owners the value of differentiation.

“Are you the only, are you the best, do you have the best product selection, do you have the best price, do you have the best people, do you have the best shopping experience? It’s all about the diffentiation,” Wilson said.

RSVP for the confidential business assessment at

Story by Chris Graham. Chris can be reached at


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