Interviewed by Joe Laszlo, VP of content at Groceryshop, Buechel discussed his first year as CEO of the better-for-you grocer and how he envisions the company evolving.
“One of the things that I’ve really enjoyed doing over the last six months is visiting all of our regions and all of our support functions,” said Buechel. “For me, one of the things that’s going to be really important going forward is that we have a strategy that everyone understands, and one of the opportunities that we have is to be more store-centric going forward."
The CEO spoke about bringing back the “theater of retail,” a more engaging in-store experience that may have gone by the wayside during the pandemic as customers opted for the convenience and initial safety of grocery pickup and delivery.
“It’s been a little bit difficult over the pandemic, but our customers do look for that amazing experience,” he said. “Some of them [the new in-store experiences] are going to be around the products and offerings that we sell, some are going to be around the store design and the experiences we bring to life, some of them are going to be about technology that simplifies those things.”
Buechel pointed to the Whole Foods Manhattan West location as a model for a renovated in-store experience, allowing more ways for customers to see fresh offerings prepared.