Food for thought
Bird

Fenton, MI

#41 Jul 31, 2012
DMxMD wrote:
<quoted text>
I'm starting to think the big injustice in all of this is that when corp ended spiffs and comissions, they just dumped it on us to try and explain and now we have to constantly hear all the whining and be called dicks when it wasn't even our fault.
Wait, isn't that the job of management? First, you call us whiners and lazy because we were upset over losing a good chunk of pay for our work, and then you whine about what your job requirements are. Aren't you supposed to be able to communicate to the employees exactly what direction the company wants to go? Aren't you supposed to be the ones that break good and bad news to the common everyday employees? Isn't that part of what you are paid for, to communicate important bits of information, on instruction from corporate, district, or the SM, to employees, and then, be able to responsibly field and deal with any questions or concerns be they good or bad? And, by the way, everyone in the company knows it wasn't the fault of anyone at the store level. I've never pointed to any manager and blamed them, not once. In fact, when my store manager sat me down and explained it, I shook his hand and thanked him for explaining it to me so well and in such a professional manner. Nobody below "executive" had any control over this. What people are calling you a "Richard" for is the fact that you profoundly gloat your glee over the whole situation. If someone talks about waste anywhere in any forum, the first thing you bring up is the dreaded "appliance specialist" that was sucking the company dry. It's as if you were hired by Lowe's simply to kick people in the nuts when they are down. So, ya know what, I don't feel sorry for you, even if you are called a "Richard" every day from here on out. You deserve it with your hateful attitude towards others, and the fact that you seem to have automatically decided that every specialist, CSA, or likewise that benefited from commissions or SPIFFS were simply lazy do-nothings, and taking advantage of a welfare like situation.
DMxMD

United States

#42 Jul 31, 2012
Bird wrote:
<quoted text>
Wait, isn't that the job of management? First, you call us whiners and lazy because we were upset over losing a good chunk of pay for our work, and then you whine about what your job requirements are. Aren't you supposed to be able to communicate to the employees exactly what direction the company wants to go? Aren't you supposed to be the ones that break good and bad news to the common everyday employees? Isn't that part of what you are paid for, to communicate important bits of information, on instruction from corporate, district, or the SM, to employees, and then, be able to responsibly field and deal with any questions or concerns be they good or bad? And, by the way, everyone in the company knows it wasn't the fault of anyone at the store level. I've never pointed to any manager and blamed them, not once. In fact, when my store manager sat me down and explained it, I shook his hand and thanked him for explaining it to me so well and in such a professional manner. Nobody below "executive" had any control over this. What people are calling you a "Richard" for is the fact that you profoundly gloat your glee over the whole situation. If someone talks about waste anywhere in any forum, the first thing you bring up is the dreaded "appliance specialist" that was sucking the company dry. It's as if you were hired by Lowe's simply to kick people in the nuts when they are down. So, ya know what, I don't feel sorry for you, even if you are called a "Richard" every day from here on out. You deserve it with your hateful attitude towards others, and the fact that you seem to have automatically decided that every specialist, CSA, or likewise that benefited from commissions or SPIFFS were simply lazy do-nothings, and taking advantage of a welfare like situation.
I'm sorry if it came off that way. I apologize. All of my hostility to the issue has been from the negativity I've seen since I took my current position. We recently turned over our last specialist from the transition, so at least in my store, we're done with the negativity. I feel like a constant dark cloud has just been lifted from our store and the sun is shining.
DMxMD

United States

#43 Jul 31, 2012
DMxMD wrote:
<quoted text>
I'm sorry if it came off that way. I apologize. All of my hostility to the issue has been from the negativity I've seen since I took my current position. We recently turned over our last specialist from the transition, so at least in my store, we're done with the negativity. I feel like a constant dark cloud has just been lifted from our store and the sun is shining.
I just wanted to add that only one left the company by their own choice, and only one was terminated. That's out of 12. The rest were promoted in the last few months.
Nochance

Toronto, Canada

#44 Aug 1, 2012
DMxMD wrote:
<quoted text>
I just wanted to add that only one left the company by their own choice, and only one was terminated. That's out of 12. The rest were promoted in the last few months.
10 specialists were promoted. To what?

I would have thought it totally impossible to have 10 managerial positions come up in, what, in 5 months?

or have you systematically been treating them so badly that they quit, or fired them because of bogus write ups?
nedm

Pembroke, MA

#45 Aug 1, 2012
"Top producing sales people are incredibly valuable and typically don't work at Lowes."

That can be true although lowes does restrict sales staff from doing much. There's a really great author by the name of Dan Kennedy that writes books on selling. Lowes doesn't train people to sell. I remember a sm telling employees to just read the box to the customer. If the staff is just PBR's (professional box readers) then what is the point?

Here's a selling example. Every year we have a bit of a wet season when snow melts. Flooding can happen. First sump pumps fly off the shelves, then shopvacs. Some primo water can be used to illustrate how heavy water can be. That can be used to sell shopvacs with wheels on them, thus showing if you pay more you can have easier mobility. Sales manager..nope - corp won't like it. Why not have portfolios for cabniets and appliances showing photos of happy customers? Nope. Why not compair the before and after of lowes paint to hd's over a few years of sun exposure? Nope.How about testimonials of contractors for the tools sold? How about photos of gardens of veggies and flowers of products sold at lowes? Nope...

"Lowes is systematically cutting payroll to improve the bottom line and hopefully boost the stock price. That's how the bigs are compensated. Will it work? Who knows. IMHO the commission system was mismanaged, so I doubt it'll be a factor."

Given that the stock went down by 5% or so the other day based on that it tried to buy out Rona it is doubtful they can really boost the stock price.The market is very demanding and even if you meet levels and say something slightly negative you'll get slammed. Facebook matched some earnings but hasn't said enough on mobile and it's down 42% since its ipo.

To lose weight it takes diet and exercise. There's no exercising at lowes. End the nascar sponsorship, put that money into training and hours it isn't that hard.
NewBee

Van Alstyne, TX

#46 Aug 1, 2012
FormerSM wrote:
I would to hear your thoughts about something. A person/persons start a business with the intent to realize a dream, sell a service or product and make a profit. At the same time, they provide jobs with the intent to provide a fair living.
At what point in the game does it get turned around to where they sacrifice the intent of their business and profit in order to "please" the people they pay to be a part of their business?
Customer driven business or employee driven business ?
nedm - 250 words or less.
Pedro - try to answer without a diatribe about how much you hate managers.
Never! A business is started to make a profit.
But as business grows when times are really good and the economy permits they add different types of service and products.
When these new services and products are producing great profits and the ecnomoy permits and the public is in a positive state of mind you add profitable and higher paying positions to your work force along with lots of perks because you know that it makes you even more profit.

But as the cycle of business turns down due to situations such as the down turn in the economy that we are in now you have to adjust products and services which in turn means that you have to adjust your labor cost to maintain the reason you started the business. TO MAKE A PROFIT!

And to say that you would not be looking out for your personal profit and well being would be a lie.
Lowes has to deal with this the same as a Mom and Pop business, they have the same issues as a business. It is just a fact of life.

But as a Mom and Pop cycles thru ups and downs as they have to adjust with the economy to maintain a PROFIT so do public companies and as they do this they make mistakes that reduce business and eventually restructure for a rebound or go out of business. So you have to be able to roll with it it will go 1 of 2 ways bounce back for investors or end.
so you have a decesion to make know that it will be back and ride the down turn and be of value to them thru good and bad or get out.
Charleston needs new

Charleston, SC

#47 Aug 1, 2012
Menards opened a store in Owensboro Ky and it rocks, they are strarting there advance Southward, We would love one here in Charleston Sc cause lowes sucks here, which is sad they used to be a great place 10 years ago. Come on Menards
Nochance

Toronto, Canada

#48 Aug 1, 2012
DMxMD wrote:
<quoted text>
I'm sorry if it came off that way. I apologize. All of my hostility to the issue has been from the negativity I've seen since I took my current position. We recently turned over our last specialist from the transition, so at least in my store, we're done with the negativity. I feel like a constant dark cloud has just been lifted from our store and the sun is shining.
What does "we recently turned over our last specialist from the transition"mean? You have been systematically"getting rid"of specialists.

Oh, you are such a joy! What fun you must be to work for! Hope you have heard of karma, you certainly have a lot coming back your way!
nedm

Pembroke, MA

#49 Aug 1, 2012
"A business is started to make a profit."

Although that is true that is implying as if all forms of business are to make a profit. There are plenty of non profits out there that have no shareholders and do fine. Even in retail this can be the case as there are some hardware stores that are co-ops.

There are non profit hospitals, schools,(any religion), clubs etc. Government itself isn't to make a profit but people still have to be paid.

I would argue that one bad part of the economy is the countless people that end up doing things for free. There is nothing wrong with charging some for the time and labor spent. Lowes is no exception to this. Why not charge for a kitchen cabinet design? How many take the plans and go somewhere else that charges $300 if not more? Why not charge to load a car if it takes a number of associates (say a riding lawnmower), why not charge for cutting services? I've seen customers come in and want 30 or so free cuts (for wood) and that takes time off from the floor.
Whickerbill

Mooresville, NC

#50 Aug 1, 2012
DMxMD wrote:
<quoted text>
I'm sorry if it came off that way. I apologize. All of my hostility to the issue has been from the negativity I've seen since I took my current position. We recently turned over our last specialist from the transition, so at least in my store, we're done with the negativity. I feel like a constant dark cloud has just been lifted from our store and the sun is shining.
No, you, the dark cloud is still there. I have sympathy for any employee that has to endure your sociopathic attitude 8 hours a day.
Devils Fan

Parsons, TN

#51 Aug 2, 2012
DMxMD wrote:
<quoted text>
I'm starting to think the big injustice in all of this is that when corp ended spiffs and comissions, they just dumped it on us to try and explain and now we have to constantly hear all the whining and be called dicks when it wasn't even our fault.
uh, you really shouldn't mumble because I can't understand a word you're saying.
Devils Fan

Parsons, TN

#52 Aug 2, 2012
DMxMD wrote:
<quoted text>
I just wanted to add that only one left the company by their own choice, and only one was terminated. That's out of 12. The rest were promoted in the last few months.
Wow! Really? Better pull that corporate cock out of your mouth so yous can breath.

Since: Jul 11

Location hidden

#53 Aug 2, 2012
Listen.... DMxMD is a P&P guy. Comes across a tad cold, but likes his job and wants the best for the company. Corporations that large need structure and a blueprint to ensure uniformity of the product over 3 continents and 200,000+ employees. You can't do that by the seat of your pants. Corp. needs to measure results and make adjustments accordingly. It's not personal. If you take it personally, you're in the wrong house. Find a small private hardware store and have beers with your four co-workers after closing. That's great too! Hell, they got rid of my position and me with it and I don't take it personally. Work is work, private time is private time, especially when a huge corporation is cutting your checks.
Bunkers Hole

Bluefield, VA

#54 Aug 3, 2012
I agree with exmanager… work is work. Lowe’s is a big company and I don’t expect, or want, a birthday card from Lowe’s.

It’s a simple relationship… I get paid to perform.

What is bothersome to me… how “we” perform (outside our own self satisfaction) does not matter whatsoever.

Due to limited rewards and ZERO accountability… Lowe’s has created stores filled with associates that just don’t care. Obviously not all, but look around and you’ll see a growing number.

There is no passion to help customers, no passion to move products out the door, no passion to learn product lines or improve selling skills. The only desire I see is survival… and ever that fear factor is now fading fast.

Corporate Lowe’s has created this environment… right or wrong, strategic or not, Lowe’s created it.

I truly believe that the only real factor that separates one retail chain from their competitor… the employees on the front line interacting with customers every day.

Corporate Lowe’s must understand this… so what we now have is not by accident, right?
nedm

Pembroke, MA

#55 Aug 3, 2012
Much of this argument was detailed in books back in the 1930's.

I remember when there were other incentives but at this point there are none. Consider the following.

1) No more spiffs/sos

2) Far fewer stores opening, making it much harder to move up

3) No more emtp, mtp, ops training, sales training, admin training. Outside of sm and hr there's no real training for salary management

4) Hours can be cut so OT isn't a factor

5) Staffing is low

So it's basically just punch a clock and watch the time go by. You get paid for time, not paid to work.

If you want to incentivize work they pay for it in different ways.
FormerSM

Hobart, IN

#56 Aug 3, 2012
exmanager wrote:
Listen.... DMxMD is a P&P guy. Comes across a tad cold, but likes his job and wants the best for the company. Corporations that large need structure and a blueprint to ensure uniformity of the product over 3 continents and 200,000+ employees. You can't do that by the seat of your pants. Corp. needs to measure results and make adjustments accordingly. It's not personal. If you take it personally, you're in the wrong house. Find a small private hardware store and have beers with your four co-workers after closing. That's great too! Hell, they got rid of my position and me with it and I don't take it personally. Work is work, private time is private time, especially when a huge corporation is cutting your checks.
A simple but perfect post. Thank you. As for DMxMD.....I agree 100%. The haters want to insult and don't take the time to "listen" to what he says. Rough around the edges yes, but he cares.
Bunkers Hole

Bluefield, VA

#57 Aug 3, 2012
nedm wrote:
Much of this argument was detailed in books back in the 1930's.
I remember when there were other incentives but at this point there are none. Consider the following.
1) No more spiffs/sos
2) Far fewer stores opening, making it much harder to move up
3) No more emtp, mtp, ops training, sales training, admin training. Outside of sm and hr there's no real training for salary management
4) Hours can be cut so OT isn't a factor
5) Staffing is low
So it's basically just punch a clock and watch the time go by. You get paid for time, not paid to work.
If you want to incentivize work they pay for it in different ways.
Losing the opportunity to earn spiffs was tough for many, while others not in a position to make spiffs didn’t really care. That’s a conversation that has been discussed at length.(opinions vary, but I think we can all agree that Nibby’s original connections blog regarding spiffs was poorly written and alarmingly out-of-touch).

“You get what you pay for” is another interesting topic… pay someone $8 an hour and expect them to perform to the highest of standards and care about the financial health and well being of a company is unrealistic. These are the “watch the time go by” employees, I guess.

Here’s my more direct point…

Employee #1 is a model employee, a pleasure to work with… positive, upbeat, and great with customers, fellow employees, is a hard worker, knows his/her stuff, brings no drama into the workplace. Steady, reliable and trustworthy…“earns” a 1.1% yearly bump.

Employee #2 is a total waste of payroll…“earns” a 1.1% yearly bump.

Not everyone has earned the right to get an automatic yearly bump, and others deserve much more than what the corporate computer generates.

To me, Lowe’s is settling for employee #2… while neglecting employee #1… and it’s showing up in stores across the chain.
nedm

Pembroke, MA

#58 Aug 3, 2012
The thing is it isn't even so much what they are doing but how they are doing it. If they had a gradual decline in spiffs/sos would it have been that much worse? To just cut it outright and do so immediatly is just bad policy. I'm not saying people should have counted on that money but when you have it coming in for so long eventually you might anticipate at least a little bit.

When it comes down to it retail is dying. Not so much lowes/hd/diy stuff but in other chains. As they fall eventually more people will look for work at lowes..more people means ultimatly lower wages as more will be willing to work for less.

There's a large supermarket chain called supervalu that I think will be gone in the next 1 1/2. 130K people will be out of work. I also think radio shack and best buy might be to fall after that.
Whickerbill

Mooresville, NC

#59 Aug 4, 2012
exmanager wrote:
Listen.... DMxMD is a P&P guy. Comes across a tad cold, but likes his job and wants the best for the company. Corporations that large need structure and a blueprint to ensure uniformity of the product over 3 continents and 200,000+ employees. You can't do that by the seat of your pants. Corp. needs to measure results and make adjustments accordingly. It's not personal. If you take it personally, you're in the wrong house. Find a small private hardware store and have beers with your four co-workers after closing. That's great too! Hell, they got rid of my position and me with it and I don't take it personally. Work is work, private time is private time, especially when a huge corporation is cutting your checks.
In my experience, those people that are strictly "by the book" usually lack any original ideas or creativity, and are usually poor leaders. They use "The Book" as their dictatorial crutch to fill in for their lack of leadership ability and inadequate and insecure personality.

Ever seen Band Of Brothers? Capt. Sobol was "by the book", however, Capt. Winters was a true leader.
Radar

Walkerton, IN

#60 Aug 4, 2012
DMxMD wrote:
Marketing 101 in 1960 maybe.
Someone buy this guy a subscription to Harvard Business Review. I'm tired of his posturing. And if he knows so much about business...hey, let's read what he has to say in the business magazines.

I miss the days when your ideas had to be vetted by an editor and a review board to get in print. Hey, maybe even reviewed by Lowes BOD Leonard Berry who I believe is on the editorial boards of a few retail magazines.

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