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The Lesson from Sears

Sears is going to close its doors one day. You know it’s going to happen, they don’t have enough cash to burn through to carry themselves more than just a couple of years. It’s a sad end for such a heralded business, but they have been dying for years and their impending death can be traced to one thing: Eddie Lampert and his tight dollar.


While many will write books about the death of Sears and blame it on the department store business or that crazy idea when Sears bought financial businesses like Dean Witter and started Discover. The quick end for Sears was the decision by Eddie Lampert to stop spending on capital improvements for stores. The department store business is about presentation and not putting money back into the stores started to become a problem because Sears and Kmart stores started to look rundown.  Rundown stores push customers away.


As a retirement plan provider, don’t pull an Eddie Lampert and put money into your business. If you’re a third party administrator or financial advisor, you need to put a couple of shekels into technology and upkeep. The retirement plan business like the department store business or any other business built on technology and quality presentation is going to require you to put money back into your business.



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