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June 2022 update from our Executive Director


In mid-May, the RIA hosted 300 members in Chicago at Runchella 2022. In the exit survey that followed, we asked what we could do to improve the event, and one attendee responded with a request for “nap time”.  While the comment was clearly intended to be facetious, there was an element of truth there, given that Runchella packed a lot into 3 1/2 days.  After pre-breakfast group runs, attendees spent their mornings in deep dives into professional development and meetings with key brands, while afternoons were spent in brand presentations. Evenings included a brand open house one night, and an epic industry party the following night. 

So yes, we get it... a little nap time might have been in order.  But within the busy schedule there was a clear narrative that answered the question posed by another attendee, who made the point that “things are great now, but the tide will turn as it always does, and will we all be ready for that?". Runchella was specifically designed to answer that question by focusing on how we use data. The goal was to expose the powerful new sources of data from RIA Weekly Snapshots, (Cadence) Optio and other platforms that allow for meaningful insights into everything from inventory flow to staff coaching. Runchella closed the loop on the data by introducing our newest member benefit, Mastermind Groups.  Moderated by Parker Karnan, those who participated were able to see first-hand how data informs peer sharing discussions, which are particularly helpful for stores when they see that their business is under-indexed in key performance metrics.  By joining these quarterly peer sharing sessions, member stores can lean on the advice and support of their peers, ensuring a metrics-based information hedge against the ebb and flow of the business cycle.   

So in effect, Runchella was a primer of sorts into the tools that will keep the run specialty channel healthy and competitive. As we move further into what promises to be another solid year of growth, the RIA will continue to push for the exchange of ideas and information.  We invite our members to come along with us, and we'll try and include some nap time. 

Terry Schalow

Executive Director, Running Industry Association 


Published on | Terry Schalow | News & Updates

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