Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Joly was managing director and chief operating officer at Best Buy from 2007 to 2009
Former Best Buy Chief Operating Officer Hubert Joly wants to improve the way business is done by asking a simple question.
The 53-year-old architect of a turnaround at the US consumer electronics retailer now believes business can be run better than it is.
When he arrived at Best Buy three years ago, the company was struggling.
“No strategy; no operating system; no hardware; no software; no organisation, no loyalty,” he said.
He was then, “under the shadow of Best Buy’s brand weakness”.
He turned the company’s focus back onto its customers, making things easier for shoppers and making them think twice about whether they should pick up their online order at a store, or wait.
What followed was a transformation that has already been judged a success.
In 2013 Best Buy became the first retailer to sell the iPhone through an in-store mobile phone exchange service.
That meant it took advantage of growing customer demand for smartphones while the technology was still new.
Joly said the original plan for store exchanges was a significant part of the strategy behind the iPhone upgrade programme.
“You put a smartphone out and it doesn’t work. What kind of next steps do you want to do?” he asked.
“If people see that the opening of the store and the experience of the store provides a solution for them – then their confidence goes back up.”
Joly’s turnaround also includes a much lower “doorbuster” price in order to keep shoppers from simply waiting for the Black Friday sales over the winter holidays.
He has also backed away from the sales technique known as “showrooming”, in which customers can look at products in store before buying them for less online.
“The store-in-a-store initiative is still the way in which Best Buy is going to win customers who are looking for a convenience,” he said.
Despite the successes, Joly said the company has also faced a learning curve.
“Some people say, ‘what have you done differently?’ – and I say, ‘well you’ve done exactly the same thing for 33 years’. Which is: you keep on doing what you’re doing.”
He said he was more interested in how to create a relationship with customers in the long term rather than just focusing on short-term profit.
“I didn’t come to Best Buy because I wanted to put the company in the fast lane. I came to Best Buy because I wanted to save it.
“I didn’t come to Best Buy because I wanted to run for office in a better, easier, more human way. I didn’t come to Best Buy because I want to be made a better minister.”
Over the years Joly has become the butt of some jokes. At one of his town hall meetings, a critic suggested a project to turn staff into tequila shots.
Last year another moderator played him a clip of Bjork singing The Word, an ode to the idea that you can’t be happy if you don’t feel like you’re in control.
“I don’t know the meaning of the word,” Joly replied.
The challenge now, Joly said, is taking Best Buy – known for its blue shirts – into new territory.
“How can Best Buy be the leadership in all of tomorrow’s business models, and how can Best Buy be the gold standard?
“We don’t have the right products, the right price, the right service, the right product experience for the kind of shopping people want to do.”
It has been a challenge that has been well-documented by the firm’s competitors.
Best Buy is facing increasing competition from online rivals and a trend towards shopping online.
But Joly is undeterred. “I don’t think Best Buy has changed its value proposition, and the value proposition of Best Buy has not changed.”