Well folks........the way I see this is.......the vast majority of the employees at the big-box (and elsewhere) are "poor" at what they do and even "poorer" at what they know because............drum roll, please............
they have no vested interest in what they're doing to get that weekly paycheck.
The contractor (entrepeneur).........heck even the DIYer HO....has some degree of vested interest......and that's why they definitely want or at least "wish" to do the job right.
The average big-box (aka, the borg) employee couldn't care less. Whether they hide in the bathroom, stand around chatting with one another, etc.......the pay is the same.
The solution to this big-box dilemma is...........I don't know. Wish I did. But until there is some sort of merit-based bonus system established at a big-box......look for more of the same.
Once a borg moves in and drives all the competitors out of business........they then dictate what's available and what isn't..............including service-wise. So sad, so true.
They only compete with each other to see who can lure the greatest number of consumers to their particular carnival of dis-service.
IIRC, this all started with the first fast-food hamburger joints many decades back...not? No waitress/ no service.......you come get it at the counter. Gas stations soon followed suit. The rest is history.
Yes, there are exceptions at the big-box....and they are usually to be found with the older employees ( 45/50-ish or older?) ........who still give a hoot and try their best.....because they have a work/responsibility/service ethic that was developed many years ago. That mostly because they faced hard times and learned early on that a job isn't "just a job"..........as it made the difference between a full tummy or an empty one. Too many parent-supported/ spoiled brats around these days spouting ......"whatever".....knowing that mommy and daddy will once again bail them out if their inadequacies/rudeness cause them to lose a job. "No biggie".
(Archie Bunker will now crawl back into the shadows)
Last edited by goldhiller; 03-13-2008 at 10:53 PM.
***, I didn't know ****ie was a philosopher.
Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb
The only thing that the Borg understands is money - employees are a liability, not an asset, customers are an annoyance, not what keep their doors open. And it doesn't matter how much the occasional drone might know or care, it is soon beaten out of them by the futility of their resistance.
It's pretty clear that professionals don't care for big box "suppliers". It's a pain in the patootie to locate other resources, and it isn't likely that you'll find a one-stop-shop as we once knew, but good suppliers are still out there that know what service is all about, and there are some that can easily compete with the Borg when it comes to price, as well as walk all over them with service, personability, and just a general ease of doing business.
The original question that started this thread involved the designated marking on a sheet of plywood. IF you compare apples to apples, the other suppliers I talked with in my days journey easily trounced the Borg in both price and service. The private suppliers will not only give me rock bottom pricing on top quality material, I will get it delivered to my door at no extra charge. Any slight price advantage that the Borg may have had is eaten up by their delivery fee and the fact that a 1 hour material run is, at minimum, doubled. Since time is money, and I value my time, I'll spend my money elsewhere at an establishment that is not only closer to me, but far more enjoyable to deal with.
A few more observations from a guy who has worked at both Slowes and HD:
Slowes gives an employee discount - %10
HD gives nothing.
HD (and maybe Lowes) offers tuition matching up to (if I remember correctly) $5,000 for college students.
Each store had plumbers and electricians who have their own businesses but work at HD for the health insurance plan that is offered even to part timers. These are the knowledgeable guys that you have to seek out.
Both stores are incredibly easy to rip off - I caught a thief using my computer login...MY login..my first day on the job (I was into retail securuty for 11 years before I became a cop so I knew exactly what he was going). He got them for $670 but he was a good salesman so they kept him.
In my Lowes training class I recognized a few druggies that I had had dealings with, and I pointed them out to the management, but they still got hired.
A friend of my daughter, who was 20 at the time, applied to HD. I warnd her parents not to let her work there, but she got hired and was working the special orders desk (pretty girl). Well, she actually got physically groped by another employee and she ended up quitting (no complaint filed, nothing). If that had been my daughter, there would have been a big, crispy, charred orange box on the back of a big empty lot.
yep .... with all this Heavy Duty evil orange borg bashing a friend told me an incident that happened the other day ...... and thinking about all of this thread made me chuckle ... no it can't be ... say it isn't so.
While the story isn't new or remarkable ..... she was looking for a particular paint product and actually had a younger employee that was eagerly trying to help ... even though it wasn't his department .... when they couldn't find what she was looking for and feeling bad this employee was out of his department ... she told him she would go to the paint counter and ask there.
There were two guys standing behind the counter yakking away while she was standing at the counter looking for help .... they were simply ignoring her ( surprise ) and continued on yakking .... she turned and left the store. .... yada yada yada
Here's the remarkable thing though .... isn't a former head honcho from HD now the CEO for Chrysler ? .... hmmmm