Posts Tagged ‘wall’

Double Duty Dumb

August 23, 2010

First, I have an old man who is looking for two cuts of denim, one we carry, one we don’t. One is a high-rise, especially made for conservative men. The other is a higher-rise, but also baggy. We can call it Baggy. Well I show him to the high-rise we carry in-store, telling him the Baggy is only online.

A small, tiny woman gets my attention while I’m still helping the man. The woman asks me, “Hello, I can looking for a boot-cut,” she pauses for a long time, “For women.” Well that’s helpful. Suddenly, another small, tiny woman appears. I ask if they are looking for dress pants or jeans. They look at me blankly. So I take them to the denim, and they say they want the other option. At this time, most of our dress pants are on sale, including the boot-cut style.
I ask, “What size are you looking for?”
“One-petite.”
“We don’t carry that size in the store, they do carry it online. Our smallest size in-store is usually two-short…”
“Okay, two-short.”
“I”m sorry, these pants have been on sale for a long time, and all these pants are in larger sizes.”
“Do you have it any place else?”
“We do have some non-sale pants,” so I walk to another wall to show them the dress pants we do have in their size. Of course, these dress pants are flared-leg.
“I don’t want flare, I want boot-cut.”
“All the boot-cut are on sale.”
“Where are they?”
“We just came from there. We don’t have your size.”
“Here is a two-short.”
“This is flare-leg.”
“I don’t want flare, I want boot-cut.”
“We don’t have your size in boot-cut, only in the flare.”
“I want boot-cut.”
Anything I say, only gets a reply of, “I want boot-cut.” So I decide to walk away.

I find the old man looking at the lowest, tightest fitting jeans we have, which is entirely different from what he asked for.
I take him back to our high-rise denim.
“Where is the Baggy?”
“We don’t carry it in-store anymore. It is only available on-line. We do have a loose-style over here which is similar to the Baggy.”
“So that’s where the Baggy is?”
“No, it’s similar to the Baggy.”
“So where is the Baggy?”
“It’s only available online.”
“So what is that?” He points at the loose-style.
“It’s the loose-style.”
“Where is the Baggy?”
“We don’t have any, but the loose-style is the closest to it.”  Then I walked away. I can only take so much redundancy. How do these people find the doors to get out of their own homes?

Customer Types: The Blind, The Deaf, The Dumb, Micromanagement,  The Questioner

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The New Weirdo

August 12, 2010

As a personal preference, I generally avoid weird people who aren’t shoplifters. One such weirdo used to be known as the ‘hat guy’, wearing a certain baseball hat, walking to the back by the bras and panties, generally just standing, staring at our coworkers there. To which, we receive a call for help, “There is a creepy guy back here staring at me!” “Is he wearing a baseball cap?” “Yes!”

Recently, he’s lost his baseball cap, but I still don’t bother with him. Although I have been around during his visits, pointing him out to managers, I generally keep my distance, since he doesn’t ever steal anything. I have three stories from his recent visits.

Once, I pointed him out to a manager, and a few moments after, I hear my manager said, “Hey, did you just see that?” Apparently, when my back was turned, my manager approached the guy, greeting him, asking if he’s okay, and he turned, and did a moonwalk dance, backing away from my manager across the sales floor, then left. No, I did not see it. These occurrences seem to be like UFO sightings.

Next, I show him to my store manager, who loses sight of him. She comes back saying, “I swear, I just witnessed something totally inappropriate and dirty!” She found him coming out of a fitting room, literally tugging on his wiener (sausage) through his pants as he exited the room. She’s utterly grossed out and stunned by this. We are quite thankful the fitting rooms are not near any children sections.

Finally, I point him out to yet another manager. My manager follows the guy into the bras and panties section, and they are separated by a wall. As he turns behind a wall, my manager sees him put his hand into his pants. As they meet again on the other side of the wall, the guy still has his hand in the front of his pants, and seeing my manager, quickly pulls his hand out, and walks away.

I am quite perplexed by this weirdo, but as I said, I don’t bother with him. He’s younger, and not ugly, though I’ve seen him dancing a little when he walks around. He often comes in, staring at his face up-close in our large mirrors. I think soon, I’ll want a story of my own to tell, about this strange, perverted, dancing weirdo.

Customer Type: ???

The Art of War in Retail: Terrain

May 25, 2010

Chapter 2
As the Opposition–customers–enter the battlefield, the terrain greatly affects the destination, the movements, and the actions of the Opposition. Understanding terrain, you have direct control of these movements. You can force the Opposition in a certain direction, you can choose where they go and what they do.

Mountains- Firstly, these are large, built structures, generally known as walls–they cannot move, thus the Opposition must move with or around them. In a sense, it traps them, because they cannot go around it. The Opposition cannot avoid you when next to Mountains. Secondly, these large landmasses are hard to climb and maneuver through–product is placed high, easily visible, but often attractive items are placed on these walls. Because of the sheer size of these masses, they are also effective at being seen from a distance–which is good for advertising and marketing. All traffic slows down at mountains, as some of the flashier and more amazing Soldiers–clothing–are displayed here. Very popular pieces of clothing are always placed on Mountains for this very reason.

Hills- Firstly, these are smaller structures–tables and other smaller, movable structures–thus easier to pass by the Opposition. Because of the size, the Opposition will go around these, and even move to avoid you when possible. Generally, high-selling product will be placed on the first Hills as you enter the store to take the initial bombardment–but Mountains will garner the main attention after this. Similar themed items will be placed on Hills. Hills can be totally engulfed by Opposition forces, as all parts are accessible. Because of the smaller size, the amount of Soldiers–clothing–present is much smaller. Yet, the devastation can be titanic, since Hills have only folded clothing and no hanging clothing.

Fields and Forests- Areas of light coverage, not as well suited for soldiers in a retail battlefield, these are racks and small tables able to take losses and keep on coming back–because they are less popular, or forgotten items, even ones that have a really high-price point. In a sense it is like a forest, because the Soldiers are well-hidden, and almost invisible. The Opposition must ‘want’ these items, thus they aren’t the hottest sellers–they aren’t items you’ll buy ‘just because’..

Streams- The course and movement of traffic will flow depending on how you set up the Mountains and Hills. This movement is Streams. You can diagram it as–the Opposition enters, they approach the initial Hill, then they face the Mountain, do they go to the next Mountain or another Hill? You can watch the ebb-and-flow understanding what is a popular destination and what is just forgotten. Once you get an idea of the flow of these streams, you will know where to position yourself, as General, to take care of your troops. You may also move Soldiers around: if one Hill is never attacked, you may move it closer to a Stream so the Opposition will pass by it; i.e. a Hill between two Mountains cannot be avoided. By moving very popular clothing to more remote locations, you know the Opposition will still search for it–because they want it. In this way, you have altered a Stream.

Using these tactics, you can appropriately prepare Mountains and Hills for battle. By watching Streams, you can choose what is best where. How will you develop your tactic? It depends on what it important to you. As a General and a Champion, you also learn where you want to be–in the back, watching your troops in battle, where no Opposition goes, ready to reinforce your troops or replenish them when defeated, or do you stand in the front lines battling the Opposition, helping to turn tides and moving them appropriately. Gaining skill and strategy in this area takes time, patience, and understanding. Once you do understand, you can make your entire Battlefield profitable, every Hill and every Mountain becomes a destination, and Streams will touch every shore.