What Is Going On With J.C. Penney?

What Is Going On With J.C. Penney?

There are 81 comments on the Seeking Alpha story from Apr 17, 2013, titled What Is Going On With J.C. Penney?. In it, Seeking Alpha reports that:

J.C. Penney is looking for a major comeback with a new CEO in place. The U.S. retail giant recently borrowed $850 million from its revolving credit facility.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Seeking Alpha.

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laura baltimore

Kingsville, MD

#1 Apr 17, 2013
that what iam trying to find out whats going on with jcpenny seems like everyone is keeping it quiet and not saying anything keeing us associates wondering if we still have a job this is crazy i am scared need to have a piece of mind that i still have a job at jcpenny i hope mr ken can save jcpenny from disester bring back things that worked for jcpenny like sales and coupons and fitting room people and sales support and pricing team this needs to be done and take those dam libbys and stick them where the sun dont shine what a waste of money thats where all our money went what a shame this happened
Anony mouse

Lexington, MA

#2 Apr 17, 2013
laura baltimore wrote:
that what iam trying to find out whats going on with jcpenny seems like everyone is keeping it quiet and not saying anything keeing us associates wondering if we still have a job this is crazy i am scared need to have a piece of mind that i still have a job at jcpenny i hope mr ken can save jcpenny from disester bring back things that worked for jcpenny like sales and coupons and fitting room people and sales support and pricing team this needs to be done and take those dam libbys and stick them where the sun dont shine what a waste of money thats where all our money went what a shame this happened
Sorry, Laura, Libbys aren't going away--we're getting MORE! I actually LIKE them when they work properly. To that end, we NEED proper charging/bagging stations. With the libby, we can now do price checks (no need to scrounge for scanners) & quickly pull up store layouts--no need to carry around clunky set-planners.
SADLY, they are going to start allowing SOME in-aisle stackouts again. PHOOEY! You & I BOTH know what happens with those. Employee hours seem to be going up a bit in our store, I'm hoping this trend continues. I'm just praying that the powers that be can get JCP's cash flow problems under control AND go back to treating employees with the respect we deserve!
laura baltimore

Kingsville, MD

#3 Apr 17, 2013
well i hope those dam libbys go somewhere else other than jcpenny i hate them this is crazy where are they getting money for this we dont have the money to buy these stupid things what is going on put things back the way they were than we will be happy again what are in aisle stackouts that sounds stupid bring back the people we need to run the store like fitting room people and sale support mangers etc make our lives easier for the associates this is crazy our hours suck we dont have hours what a shame concerned
A Nony Mouse

Brookline, MA

#4 Apr 17, 2013
In aisle stackouts were the piles of messy merchandise displayed on rickety tables & etagierres in aisles &corners of merchandise pads. They are a horror show to keep folded & customers are always knocking them over with babycarriages.

Since: Mar 13

Pittsburgh, PA

#5 Apr 17, 2013
A Nony Mouse wrote:
In aisle stackouts were the piles of messy merchandise displayed on rickety tables & etagierres in aisles &corners of merchandise pads. They are a horror show to keep folded & customers are always knocking them over with babycarriages.
its well known they help sell sell sell. merchants need to sell, that is cluttered aisles to slow people down in the hopes they buy something....

without sales theres no need for employees, and the store can go out of business. ron johnson tried the clean store approach and look what happened:(
Hmm

Hampton, VA

#6 Apr 18, 2013
bob haller wrote:
<quoted text>
its well known they help sell sell sell. merchants need to sell, that is cluttered aisles to slow people down in the hopes they buy something....
without sales theres no need for employees, and the store can go out of business. ron johnson tried the clean store approach and look what happened:(
Starting to think JCP employees are allergic to work.

Since: Mar 13

Pittsburgh, PA

#7 Apr 18, 2013
Hmm wrote:
<quoted text>
Starting to think JCP employees are allergic to work.
no the few remaining employees have been very overworked, and just see it getting worse.
laura baltimore

Kingsville, MD

#8 Apr 18, 2013
well i think getting back cash raps is whats needed this is a real shame this is happening this was a money making company untill rotten apple johnson got a hold of such a wonderful company now look we are very poor bring back what worked for jcpenny at the beginning what a shame we are going through such a rough time right now now we have to start from scratch this is terrible whats going to happen now what a shame
laura baltimore

Kingsville, MD

#9 Apr 18, 2013
the facts are right in front of your faces go back to what worked for jcpenny to get back to where we belong this needs to happen now get it together before its to late god knows this is what we need right now for the people of usa to get back sales and coupons get rid of the things that dont work for jcpenny we need our people back what a shame it has come to this how can they let this happen to jcpenny we were doing so well

Since: Feb 13

Westfield, IN

#10 Apr 18, 2013
Laura: I am not sure where you are coming from and how much you are paying attention to what is going on in the stores.

Our store has been busy weekends for months now. We also have slow days during the week, but for all the years I have worked at jcp, weekend days and some nights have always been slow.

Also, coupons have been coming out since late November and with much more frequency in the past month (before RJ left) They have not vanished from jcp and if anything they are almost continuous in recent weeks.

When they go back to fitting room support, I would think the same thing is going to happen like it used to. Those working the registers will conveniently be "too busy" to check them regularly because they know "someone else" is going to do it. The word support means that, not do it all. I worked in a department where they had four fitting rooms and had the support. What happened? Those of us who worked spent the majority of our time cleaning out fitting rooms (that the day shift never seemed to get around to doing so it added up by the night shift) That same department as well as another one are always the two, everyone else has to stay after their own work is done to "help" put things away because it had gotten so far out of control. This was before Fair and Square and if anything it occurred more often before RJ even with support and "enough" employees. It is a mind set - are the employees a "team" who care about how their departments look? The company has to decide what is more important - people who are able to accumulate the most ICAPS each week because they don't do anything else except stand behind a register or those who are willing to share the load? That team approach was always preached in all the years I worked there, but it never changed, even when Fair and Square was going on. I am not saying it happened throughout the store, but specifically those two same departments.

I have been working there probably a lot longer then you have and those pre RJ were not glory days - they had their share of problems, too. There were a lot of people who shouldn't have been working there who left right along with the people who should have been keepers. Unfortuneatly, some of those same who shouldn't still be there, are still there because of their ICAP savvy. They are also the ones who were nervous about their hours and jobs.

It seems to me that this current CEO is quickly returning to the "old ways" so you shouldn't be so concerned about that. Just give that exceptional customer service and it can work out for you.
laura baltimore

Kingsville, MD

#11 Apr 18, 2013
thank you for your words of encouragement but i know we are not real busy all week but on weekends sat or sunday when we have coupons thats when we are busy untill summer rolls around and school starts i hope the new ceo knows what we need to suceed in this world god knows we need a mircle to happen now people need to come back and shop like they did before apple rotten johnson came to reuin our company what a shame i love working at jcpenny but i am kinda scared right now hopefully we will be ok in the future
jcp team member

Miami, FL

#12 Apr 18, 2013
jcp needs to bring back a pricing team we need them real bad ..please customers are confuse about are prices and the changes we been doin to are stores I don't wont jcp to close I been working for jcp for 15 yrs are coupon bring customers lets bring them back all the way and I love the libys easy for me and the customers keep them and the ipad too.....JCP WE CAN DO IT ;)

Since: Mar 13

Pittsburgh, PA

#13 Apr 18, 2013
CUSTOMERS..... Will they remain away or return? Ullman might as well go for volume by heavy promos, or admit defeat and liquidate...

If sales volume dont increase dramatically back to near the pre ron era its all lost. The fixed costs of running penneys with sales off 30 some percent, will be too high to make a profit:(

Ron did with the BOD help crash penneys by making nearly ALL customer unfriendly changes.

Ullman needs to come out with some new commercials about his plans to get penneys back on track...

Get rid of the JCP logo, it represents failure, get a new spokesperson and end completely the gay agenda..

anyone should be welcome to shop at penneys no matter what they are. Just DONT push anything down customers throats!

I hope penneys survives, but it will be hard to undo all the damage ron did.

Since: Feb 13

Westfield, IN

#14 Apr 18, 2013
Bob: I noticed several weeks ago, before RJ left, that the commercials were saying JCPenney so that should not be a concern for you.

They already have the 20% to 50% off signs off scattered around the store. Since they marked those same items up about that much, when the sale is over those prices are more like Macy's. That's how the game of retail is played.

Not all the changes were customer unfriendly. You need to stop blaming the changes all on the CEO. There were many of us who continued to give excellent customer service throughout the constant changes and customers noticed those of us who did that. When it comes down to it, the people who work in a store can either continue giving great service or decide that they don't want to. You can stop saying also that only teenagers with no training and no fashion sense work at jcpenney's. It might be true in Pittsburgh but not here.

We have heard from customers since the CEO change that liked the lower prices and no coupons. Of course, they would have preferred the much lower prices and the coupons, but they know it doesn't work that way.

Only people like you have been bringing up the "gay agenda". I think it is very possible that that guy who left who used to do marketing was the one behind the ads that crossed the line. RJ is married to a woman and they have children for pete's sake. I am sure he was pushing for diversity and if people who are gay are people who have been neglected in advertising, then obviously very vocal Americans, but not all, were not ready for that. I think of this gay bashing each time I watch an HGTV show with the all the gay couples buying and fixing up homes. Where are all the protest against that particular programming? Even shows during prime time/family time are full of gay families and couples. heck, my grandkids go to school with classmates who have same sex parents.

Again, contrary to what you are seeing in Pittsburg, our area has seen steady increases in traffic and sales for some time now. Also, most customers do not read these kinds of boards and have no inkling as to what is going on drama wise. They don't know anything about this supposed gay promotion. They get excellent customer service from the people I work with who I know are openly gay. Geez, if all customers didn't shop at any store that had any gay people being treated as regular people, there wouldn't be anyplace left to shop. Just because a company made the error of not realizing not all Americans deserve to be in advertisements, doesn't mean that they are pushing anything down anyone's throats except that they think anyone and everyone deserves to be treated equal.

You said you would never ever step foot inside a jcpenney store until Ron Johnson was fired. So, have you? Remember, you have elderly family members with stock who depend on customers coming into the stores and buying. Are you doing your part?

Since: Mar 13

Pittsburgh, PA

#15 Apr 18, 2013
Well I will look around and see whats up, I have been very busy lately. But the million moms situation needs completely defused. Personally I dont care what anyone does in the privacy of their bedroom, and ellen was OK, however the gay couples on the catalogs were over the top. My elderly family members finally sold all their penneys stock at 14 bucks or so a share. I hope penneys survives but its not guaranteed:( We are in uncharted waters I dont know of any other company that ever worked so hard to fire its customers and then attempt a comeback.
The question will the fired customers return?
At this point penneys needs to do a BIG PROMO Penneys is BACK!!
Anony mouse

Lexington, MA

#16 Apr 18, 2013
Hmm wrote:
<quoted text>
Starting to think JCP employees are allergic to work.
NOT allergic to work...but since RJ...not enough STAFF left to properly maintain displays throughout the day when busy! HOWEVER, starting to see small increases in hours for the staff left ...so hopefully soon this won't be a problem?!:)
Enzyte Bob

Blacklick, OH

#18 Apr 18, 2013
bob haller wrote:
Well I will look around and see whats up, I have been very busy lately. But the million moms situation needs completely defused. Personally I dont care what anyone does in the privacy of their bedroom, and ellen was OK, however the gay couples on the catalogs were over the top. My elderly family members finally sold all their penneys stock at 14 bucks or so a share. I hope penneys survives but its not guaranteed:( We are in uncharted waters I dont know of any other company that ever worked so hard to fire its customers and then attempt a comeback.
The question will the fired customers return?
At this point penneys needs to do a BIG PROMO Penneys is BACK!!
See previous post about Ellen Degenerate and Rosie O'Donnell. If you remember, Kmart brought in another genius called Conaway. He was also going to show people how things are done the right way. He lowered prices and drove Kmart into bankruptcy.

History repeating itself?
Enzyte Bob

Blacklick, OH

#19 Apr 18, 2013
This made me laugh. See any parallels?

=========

Charles Conaway, Kmart
By The Associated Press

Conaway had won many fans on Wall Street as the No. 2 executive at CVS, where he helped build the drugstore chain into an industry powerhouse. When he was hired by Kmart in 2000, Conaway inherited a company with a long list of entrenched problems, including outdated technology and drab stores.

Analysts say Conaway made strategic mistakes, such as trying to compete with Wal-Mart on price and focusing on exceedingly cheap groceries rather than on its exclusive Martha Stewart brand. In early 2002, Kmart filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and Conaway resigned soon after.

Conaway also faced accusations that he misled investors about Kmartís financial problems before the bankruptcy filing.

The bankruptcy led to Kmart coming under the control of Edward Lampert, a billionaire investor. Lampert later engineered the acquisition of Sears, Roebuck & Co., combining the companies into Sears Holding Corp.
RJR

Buffalo, NY

#20 Apr 18, 2013
Enzyte Bob wrote:
<quoted text>
Two things about having Ellen Degenerate as your spokesdyke.
First and foremost, she is disgusting and it has nothing to do with the fact that she is gay. She is simply not a very good entertainer nor is she very funny. Having her as your spokesdyke reminds me of when Kmart used to have Rosie O'Donnell and Penny Marshall as their spokesfrumps. Degenerate is neither hip nor aspirational and she turns off a lot of people.
Second, why do we have to know who or what Ellen Degenerate sleeps with? We were contrasting her another board with Paul Lynde. Yeah, everybody assumed Paul Lynde was gay, but he never came out about it. More importantly, he actually had talent and was very funny. Ellen is a real turd.
Discriminatory bullies like you are the reason this world is such a negative and hateful place. You should be ashamed of the way you speak of homosexuals. You don't have to like Ellen or agree with her being a spokesperson for jcp, but to use the phrase spokesdyke is way over the line. I pray you don't have children or grandchildren that you have passed such judge mental intolerance to.
shp4fun117

Portland, OR

#21 Apr 18, 2013
With all do respect;
JCP is doing their very best to get things right, but all this negative bashing is not doing us well at all. We all need to focus on going forward and be the positive people who work for JCP. JCP was founded on providing our customers with the best in customer service and we need to remain doing that. Customer Service is what has always brought our customers back. Those of us that have worked for this company for years know this and we pride ourselves with this service. Remember: GREAT!
Our store here in Ore has seen increases in sales and a lot of our customers returning. Let's not waste our time being negative and focussing on what has happened. Let us focus on what we care about most, our customers, jobs, and let corporate figure out the rest. We really need to agree to disagree and go on from there.
Libby's have been an awkward addition, but once used to them they are a fabulous tool allowing us to be mobile on the floor providing customer service all over the floor. Now, if all associates will learn to greet, respect,engage,assist,thank our customers our company will be headed in the right direction. Lets all work together as a team and stop blaming each other....Enough! Let us get out there and make it a great weekend!

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