Columns

IHA Shoots For the Stars

Duke_Ratliff

Did anyone watch the Cosmos television show? The recently concluded Fox series, an updated version of the old Carl Sagan program, took viewers on trips to new, unexplored  worlds. The International Housewares Association last month unveiled a plan to boldly go where no home furnishings trade association has gone before—to the world of consumers. BestMore »

Last updated: July 2, 2014

Pondering Millennials

Duke_Ratliff

By Duke Ratliff Call them a marketer’s dream—or nightmare—the consumer segment dubbed “millennials” (consumers aged 18-34) is starting to make its presence felt in the home furnishings industry. Attention-getting products targeting millennials have been seen at every trade show this year. These items are usually inventive, colorful or unusual in some way—perfectly reflecting the quirky,More »

Last updated: May 1, 2014

Risk Management 101: Protecting Intellectual Property Through Indemnification and Insurance

Kristi A. Davidson

By Kristi A. Davidson In January, we began our discussion about how to protect your intellectual property and ways to mitigate the risk of unauthorized use.  Toward the end of that column, I wrote these three words:  “indemnification and insurance.”  We have certainly addressed these words in prior installments of Risk Management 101.  But didMore »

Last updated: April 30, 2014

Mitigating Risks in Reductions-In-Force

Brian Rauch

By Brian S. Rauch Reductions-in-force have, unfortunately, become a growing trend in the retail sector. As detailed in last month’s issue of HFN, both Macy’s and J.C. Penney recently announced the elimination of 2,000 or more jobs. Even though they are typically done to improve profitability, reductions-in-force can be costly in terms of declines inMore »

Last updated: March 17, 2014

Jerry’s Kids

Duke_Ratliff

I loved the old Jerry Lewis movies when I was a child (not so much as an adult). Mostly forgotten, one of the films featured Lewis slapsticking and mugging his way through his duties as an employee at the fictional Tuttle Department Store. The movie was called “Who’s Minding the Store?”, a phrase that hasMore »

Last updated: January 22, 2014

Risk Management 101: Protecting Intellectual Property (Part 1)

Kristi A. Davidson

In this continuing series on risk management, we have considered the basics of products liability and shifting that risk through either an indemnification agreement or insurance. But products liability is not your only risk. How can you protect against (or seek compensation for) other risks, such as the loss or misuse of your intellectual property?More »

Last updated: January 22, 2014

Resolutions for 2014

Duke_Ratliff

By Duke Ratliff With holiday shopping (and selling) in the rearview mirror, home furnishings executives can now focus on the year ahead. Here are a few resolutions for the new year that notable individuals and institutions can make to make it a successful 2014. Walmart’s new leaders Doug McMillon and David Cheesewright should resolve toMore »

Last updated: December 20, 2013

Risk Management 101: Insure and Protect (Part 2)

Kristi A. Davidson

By Kristi Davidson In November, we introduced the concept of product liability, explaining that anyone in the design, manufacturing or distribution chain is exposed to the risk of liability for design defects, manufacturing or production flaws, or inadequate warnings. In December, we considered one way to shift this risk to others in that stream. ThisMore »

Last updated: December 20, 2013