At The Deal's Corporate Governance conference on Thursday, June 7, Gennette sat down with TheStreet's founder, Jim Cramer. Gennette went into how he turned Macy's around, and how others can turn their companies around.
Scale to the size of your company.
Don't over-hire. Keep your team in a good size for your company.
Manage the company's balance sheet.
While Macy's is a company that has been around for a while, Gennett thought, "What would [Macy's] portfolio look like if [Macy's] was starting a company from the ground up?"
Gennett suggested that companies keep their debt-rations in a "comfy" range.
If you aren't, bring in someone who is.
Gennett admitted, "on the tech side, there were gaps in our skills."
Know your customers.
Gennett makes sure to ask customers what they want through surveys in order to stay informed about what the customers want.
Know your limitations.
"I have reverse mentors," said Gennett.
He brings in "millennials" to inform him of things that he might not know about. Then he can use that, along with what he called his "peanut gallery" of daughters, to keep him up-to-date.
Macy's was down slightly in aftermarket trading.
Follow The Deal's conference here.