Retail Death

The Loud Wheels
July 8th, 2010, 7:01 pm

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During this conversation, the store's associates managed to get $4,000 of merchandise out the back door.

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Author's Comments:


Posted by RetailReaper
July 8th, 2010, 7:17 pm

There was a brief conversation about associate theft today with my assistant/co-worker at work, who used to be my right-hand-man at my retail gig. She recounted a tale of being put to the rack by the Loss Prevention witch hunters regarding some retail theft happening in the store. She, of course, was innocent, but when asked, "do you know who could have done it?" she specifically told them the people who were guilty. I happen to know she is right -- I saw them get away with it more than once when I was working there. But, of course, no action has been taken...the actual guilty parties very rarely come to any harm it seems. Just my jaded opinion, I guess.

The topic of theft has always been a controversial one for me. Like anyone, I'm against most crime, and think that associates who pocket from the register or prop the backdoor open with a returned laptop at the end of their shifts should face the consequences for their actions. However, when asked the question above -- "how is an associate driven to steal from the company?" -- I can't help pointing out how little these associates are paid for their work.

Workers who are paid well and are happy with their jobs rarely steal from the company. I don't have studies to back this up or anything, but it seems like common sense to me. Sure, there are going to be a few bad apples here and there who will steal anyhow, but if you make a comfortable living, why bite the hand that feeds you, right? The only reason to bite that hand is if you're starving and you're fed less than you need to survive. That's when hand-meat starts to look delicious.

I'm sure retail theft does not cost corporate retail enough money to justify paying associates a living wage. But internal theft is only symptomatic of the bigger problem. All things suffer -- from the appearance of the store, to the satisfaction of the customers -- when employees are not taken care of by their employers. Pay the workers what they're worth, take care of them as they deserve, and the payoff would be immediate. I mean, how many customers are going to complain to management of rude behavior by associates if those associates actually WANT to be there?

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Reader's Comments:


Posted by middi (Guest)
July 26th, 2010, 5:52 pm

here's an idea for you... how about something for when the customer asks you a question, and doesn't believe you and has to ask one to two more employees and STILL recieve the same's funnier when they come ask me the question again... seriously...if the manager say no..,.. accept the flippin no!!

Re: thought...

Posted by Michael (Guest)
September 5th, 2010, 5:19 am

OMG yes! In my last retail job, I'd regularly get asked for things the store didn't carry, and I'd tell them "No, you need to go to (specialty store) for that." They would find someone else to ask, who would regularly radio me to come and answer it because I was the most experienced floor person... so I'd just look them straight in the eye and say "As I stated previously, you have to go to (specialty store) to get that, we don't carry it and don't even have it in our catalog."

Shadow Raikou
Posted by Shadow Raikou
March 25th, 2011, 2:09 pm

aww ther are not gonna be more retail Deaths?

Posted by RetailReaper
April 14th, 2011, 6:55 pm


I have not necessarily stopped entirely, but drawing a comic is a lot more work than I have time for right now. Much as I hated it, the benefit of working in retail was that I had a little extra time to do this stuff. Now I'm a full time marketing/online sales dude for a local company, and while I make a good bit more money, I have no time for comics.

Every time I go to a retail store, after I get over the nausea, I find that I have a new idea for an RD comic. But to go home, sketch, draw, scan, color...when I have a half hour of free time every evening, we're talking about devoting 2-3 days a week to making a single comic.

I have been considering trying to get some RD stories across in another medium...photographing stuffed animals in retail scenarios, something like that, I don't know. Don't consider the comic gone forever, but don't hold your breath for more anyhow. Unless you're into asphyxiation. In which case, glad I could help.

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