SAN DIEGO—Racecar driver and color commentator Derek Daly knows a lot about speed, and the Formula One racer shared with ICSC attendees his tips for speed in his keynote address at the “Start Your Engines”-themed Western Division Conference here last week. Daly said, “In my business, ‘start your engines’ means you’re going to go against your completion and you’re going to go as fast as you can.”

If you don’t win the race, he said, you try to figure out why you weren’t fast enough, and “How fast can you get fast?” This is what retail experts are faced with today, in the age of Internet sales and ever-faster technology that aims to deliver retail products to customers’ doorsteps at the turn of a dime. The speed of doing business has increased in the last 10 years, said Daly, and we now value speed as a core competency.

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