Sunday, October 11, 2009

Sunday - My Trip To Walmart

I think this time I'mg going to put the location of this WalMart on here: It's located in Tempe, Arizona, at Elliot and Priest.

I don't seem to be able to make a trip to Walmart without some kind of bs - usually lousy customer service - involved. I go there anyway, always with a mission. Today's mission was to get a Hoover Steam Vac With Surge F5914-900. Yes, they had a display model, no they had none in the box - and they didn't even have a location for a place for them, just the model location.

Thinking that odd, I got a person over there to check it out. None in stock in the back, either, but 4 on backorder with no intended date of arrival. Can you please tell me if there is one at another store? His little handheld device actually had all of that information in there, including the "fact" that there is one at the store right down the road from where I work.

Okay, not the end of the world - I can pick one up after work this coming week, right?

Okay, well, I always go to the deli counter if I'm going to Walmart because they have good prices on turkey and ham - sliced to order of course. Note that my visits to Walmart are at most once a month average where it used to be I would be going in there at least once a week. The deli counter is always a wonderful place - there are usually 3 or 4 gals working in the back. And usually, they ignore customers for a while before whatever it is they're doing - they get done with, and then, and ONLY then, they will come up and help customers waiting.

Typical Walmart BS. Today, there was a man already being helped and I know from experience at this store that probably, a second customer service associate will NOT come up and start helping people, you have to wait. I decided against waiting 10 or more minutes for a pound of honey breast turkey. I went over to the seafood counter as I thought it would be nice to have some cooked and already de-veined, fresh shrimp this afternoon. There was NO-ONE in sight over there. I stood there for a minute weighing my options. I seriously considered going back there and helping myself. There are no signs saying I couldn't go behind the display case and no signs saying I can't just get my own bag and load it up with shrimp.

Of course, I wouldn't have a clue as to how to work the scale thingy that prints out a sticker with the price on it, but - if I really wanted to make my case, I could do it, go to check out - and then see what happens. I didn't do that. I gave up and walked away. Did some other stuff - and then, as is my want, called the store - from within the store. It was a new manager lady - she hasn't been working there very long and she was totally disinterested. I spoke my peace short and sweet. Went up to the garden center counter - I was going to buy some perennials from there if their prices were better than Home Depot - not at all.

Half flats at Home Depot are $5 and change, they weren't even selling half flats, just the 6 packs. The lady ringing me up there said that many customers have complained about the deli counter. Ohhhh?

I called this manager again, this time informing her that apparently, your own customer service reps know about this problem, why is it never addressed? She had no answers for me, I didn't expect any. I called the district manager's office and left a message. Now they really are interested in customer's opinions. They will call back tomorrow, just about guaranteed and ask what happened. I will tell them - I have never called them on the deli counter stuff but I figure it's time - it's been going on for YEARS at that particular location, and see if they can do anything about it.

But I have my own methodology in mind. Next time - which won't be anytime soon, really - I go in there, I am going to demand that another associate come up to help customers if only one is helping customers. When they ignore me, then I'll drag a manager over there and see what might happen. The only real way to get these people to change their ways is to force the issue. Note that the same personnel have been working at that deli for literally years now. A short little Asian woman is the one that normally services customers - and that after you have waited there (if no one else is there getting served) for a couple to several minutes while she does her thing, totally ignoring you. Or, she might say it'll be a second - usually at least 120 seconds and even more than that.

It's really quite unbelievable. I will invite the store manager to "spy" on their own workers - they can do that easily through the extensive video surveillance they have in every single store - and watch what happens when any given customer comes up to the counter to get some meats or cheeses cut and packaged for them.

The only thing today's visit did for me was to further entrench into my mind that Walmart has some of the worst customer service in the world, really, and that I really do NOT want to go in there very often and be subjected to it.

I'm not angry or even unhappy right now, I have come to expect this kind of thing from that particular store. My take is that they simply don't pay for quality help. Walmart would go out of business if they actually paid their associates anything. They couldn't possibly keep their brand title with the happy faces and constantly lowering prices and all that riggormoroo if they paid their associates, say, $12 per hours instead of minimum or close to that wage. Even $12 is rather pathetic, but it's a far cry better than taking home $7.25 per hour.

I do no support Walmart. I do go there here and there, yes, I won't lie. But the main brunt of my expenditures for everyday items is NOT at Walmart and not likely ever to be so again. I have done my Walmart rant many times on my blogs before, yes, long-time readers will see me doing this yet again and probably shake your head. No matter - I like to put this stuff out in the open because - these things are "crawled" and the crawls end up in internet search engines. People find this site because of it and see what I have to say.

Just like there's nothing better than customers giving kudos and praise to a store in terms of advertisement, there is also nothing worse for a store than for customers to rant about something bad that has happened - or in this case occurs on a regular, consistent basis - in any given store.

So there it is. Another Walmart rant, likely not the last one, either. Probably, the next time I go in there, I am going to follow through with my deli counter idea and probably, I will have a very interesting story to tell about that experience, if/when it occurs.

As for the rest of today? Cleaning, cleaning, cleaning. I just fixed the shelf in the refrigerator - Super Glue does wonders for stuff like that - and then started cleaning the fridge out, one shelf at a time. However, I threw the dogs out earlier and they have been out there for hours now, so I decided while I have them out there it would be a good time to sweep and mop the kitchen and utility room floor. That is done, the dogs can come back in - though they don't know that yet. They made me mad this morning and I had had enough - animals were made for the outdoors, some quality time spent out there certainly isn't going to hurt my feelings - it's beautiful outside anyway.

I have stuff to do outside, but my main focus today, really, is getting the inside of the house spic and span clean.

Have a great one!

Decatur, Alabama. Got there last night - decided I didn't have enough hours to offload - about an hour and 15 minutes on the clock, tak...