Every shopkeeper has a shopkeeper personality type. After working with many shopkeepers in my paid mastermind, Master Shopkeepers, I’ve identified several personalities that come up again and again! 

As shop owners, we all have those bad habits or mindset blocks that creep into our work. These personality types are a reflection of these issues. It’s essential to think positively in business, of course, but it’s also important to recognize where we could be doing better.

Please note that each personality has a name attached, but that these aren’t a reflection of any real shopkeepers I know. Although, I can admit that I was once a “Can’t Say No Cathy” during my entrepreneurial journey. 

Overwhelmed Opal 

Opal does a poor job of managing her time, and she is ALWAYS overwhelmed. She feels like there just isn’t enough time in the day! The truth is, Opal doesn’t need more time—she needs better time and life management. 

When I coach an Overwhelmed Opal, we get busy prioritizing and managing her to-do list, or at least what she THINKS is her to-do list. Often, she needs to delegate, outsource, or let go of unimportant tasks.  

Procrastinator Patty 

There are two versions of Procrastinator Patty. Either she is a perfectionist or an avoider. 

Perfectionist Procrastinator Patty needs to understand that progress is better than perfect. Most of the time, B- work is what keeps life moving along, not A++. 

The Procrastinator Patty who avoids her work gets more satisfaction out of avoidance. 

Either way, Patty just NEEDS TO DO THE WORK.

Can’t Say No Cathy 

Cathy either has FOMO, or she feels guilty for saying no.  But if Cathy wants to avoid being Overwhelmed Opal, Cathy better start saying NO. 

Whether Cathy’s offering way too many services to her customers because she’s trying to please everyone or offering “all the things” because she’s afraid she’ll miss out…Cathy has to find her ONE AND BEST THING and stick to it.

I Do It All Ira

I admit it—I was once an Ira. Ira is most likely afraid to hire. Otherwise, her personality type is “Doesn’t Delegate David,” and we’ll be talking about sweet David soon.  But Ira needs to understand that if she wants to manage her time better AND grow her business, she has to ditch the “I do it all” mentality.

Lack of Planning Linda 

If you’re an Overwhelmed Opal, this can lead to being Lack of Planning Linda.

Either way, a business owner who doesn’t plan is a business owner without a compass. Although you may do well initially, it’s just beginner’s luck. This could come to a halt if you don’t start learning the value of planning.

Financially Fearful Francis 

Good old Franny tells himself he knows what he’s doing because he’s afraid of being embarrassed. Sometimes, Franny avoids his numbers because it’s easier to run and hide.  

Whether or not you’re a Financially Fearful Francis, all shopkeepers need to educate themselves. Even if you have an accountant or bookkeeper, you still need to understand how to analyze your financial information.

There are lots of episodes of the Savvy Shopkeeper Retail Podcast where I chat about shop finances—be sure to check out episodes 2, 4, 6, 25, 26, and 31 if you’re a Financially Fearful Francis!

Watch Your Back Winnie 

Winnie has been burned, perhaps by a business partner or neighboring shop owner. This means that Winnie is always defensive, always on the lookout, and always super cautious.

Being constantly on edge has to be exhausting! Winnie needs to remind herself that not all people are evil, and her energy is better spent doing other things.

Competitive Cara 

Cara loves to stalk her competitors. It’s almost to the point that she can’t define her style or brand because she’s too busy looking at everyone else’s.  

Cara doesn’t realize that being inspired by other retailers can be a beautiful thing. But there’s a fine line between “getting inspired” and flat out copying. 

Cara might also find it difficult to see how successful she has become or could be. She’s too busy wondering why everyone else is more successful than her.  

Success is relative. Cara should spend more time on herself, her business, and her customers. Finding out what brings HER customers joy is a better use of her energy than trying to compete with others.  

Victim Victoria 

Victoria feels like no matter what she does or who she hires or what software she uses, nothing seems to work in her favor, and life just sucks! 

I want Victoria to try flipping her perspective and focusing on what that matters to her. Victorias who want to improve should find things in their businesses that DO bring them joy. They should celebrate any win, no matter how small. 

A gratitude journal is an excellent practice for the “Victoria” who wants to change.

Helplessly Hopeful Harriet  

Helplessly Hopeful Harriet is never realistic about her numbers or her business. She doesn’t want to face the truth of her business struggling. 

Accepting the truth and working to change it is the only step that can turn around a Helplessly Hopeful Harriet. 

Shiny Object Sharon 

I recently had to tell a client NO, just plain old NO because she is continually chasing after the shiny objects.

The next cool software, service, or product will always keep Shiny Object Sharon from focusing on her zone of genius. When you stray from that, you risk not finding real success.

Boundaryless Bonnie 

 Bonnie will reply to customers on Facebook at midnight, will answer emails on her days off, she’ll even work a day off because her business or a customer “needed” her. 

Bonnie is most likely an Opal, too. If you’re a Bonnie, please, give yourself some structured time off and don’t give in!  

Bonnie is the person I love to create a color-blocked calendar for when I’m coaching her.

Doesn’t Delegate David 

Unlike “I Do It All Ira,” David HAS a team and maybe even has some fantastic team members, but he’s afraid they can’t do the tasks as well as he does.  

David just needs to let go of control.  David doesn’t realize that if he set up some proper SOPs (standard operating procedures) along with some proper training, he could free up his time to work on the parts of the biz that generate $100+/hour results!  How amazing would that be?

Shoulda, Coulda, Woulda, Wanda! 

Oh, Wanda, stop beating yourself up! No one should live in the past. Wanda’s always thinking thoughts like, “I should have bought that building, I should not have hired so and so, why did I partner with her, why didn’t I listen to my gut?”

Yes, for sure this happens on occasion to ALL OF US. But if you’re wallowing in this type of mentality, you may not have the ability to look forward to the future. 

It’s like the saying, “It’s better to make errors of commission than errors of omission.” Even if things don’t work as planned, at least we don’t spend our lives wondering what could have been.  Note the mistake, learn from it, and move forward.

All of the Above Allison 

I hope this isn’t you, but someone in Master Shopkeepers joked about this, and it made me laugh.  In reality, we might all see a bit of ourselves in many or all of these personality types.

All joking aside, I think a level of self-deprecation is okay and maybe even healthy. But it does have a limit.  The most important lesson of all of these personality types is this: Do the work to change your bad habits. You will be a better shopkeeper for it. 



  • [00:54] Shopkeeper Shoutout: All of the members of the Master Shopkeepers Mastermind
  • [02:40] Overwhelmed Opal
  • [03:23] Procrastinator Patty
  • [03:59] Can’t Say No Cathy
  • [04:26] I Do It All Ira
  • [05:04] Lack of Planning Linda 
  • [05:30] Financially Fearful Francis
  • [06:12] Watch Your Back Winnie
  • [06:38] Competitive Cara
  • [07:28] Victim Victoria
  • [08:09] Helplessly Hopeful Harriet
  • [10:03] Shiny Object Sharon
  • [10:33] Boundaryless Bonnie
  • [11:22] Doesn’t Delegate David
  • [11:58] Shoulda, Coulda, Woulda, Wanda
  • [12:51] All of the Above Allison

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