Here’s something that excites me this week, in terms of choice and human talent.
I have a friend who works at Value Village. In theatre we love VV , where you can get clothes and furniture for an entire cast and crew for about $8. Used fedoras, romance novels, 8-track stereos, kitchen sinks. You name it.
Jane, I’ll call her, knows most of the regulars. She asks you how the kids are doing at university, or how the bathroom redecorating is going.
People love her. Of course they do. She takes great care of relationships at the store.
Then comes a new manager. He’s decided upselling is a great idea.
You know upselling: would you like fries with that burger? Shoe polish with those shoes? A doughnut with that coffee?.
Great idea when the offer makes sense.
Here’s the new non-sense at Value Village.
A pile of batteries will be at Jane’s cash register this morning. She has to offer them to each customer, no matter what, and she’ll be penalized if she doesn’t meet a quota.
This’ll mean her saying to you, would you like a battery with that nightgown? Or, hey, would you love some shoelaces with that paperback?
This is not a joke.
And you’ll look at her, confused, trying to figure out why you need shoelaces in order to read War and Peace or what batteries have to do with your pyjamas.
If you have a curious brain, you’ll ask her what the heck is going on.
So she’ll lose the time she used to have to ask you about the kids.
She’s miserable, of course. She calls it soul-sucking. This is not good business.
Business is about relationships between people, first and foremost, and about offering you something you want in a way that makes us all happy.
I’d eat Kraft Dinner for life before involving my spirit in the nonsense going on at VV.
Here’s the most important thing.
I hope my friend remembers not waste time and energy blaming her manager.
It is always my choice to stay or go.
Preserving my spirit at work is my responsibility.
Let me know what you think, and thanks for the conversation,
(What makes us happy makes us well.)