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Old 02-15-2014, 08:59 PM  
petegz28 petegz28 is offline
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Rejecting Walmart Strategy, Trader Joe’s Pays Employees A Living Wage And Wins

We’ve watched as places like Walmart, Papa John’s, Target, Applebee’s and other businesses continue to pay sub-par wages while claiming their only option for profit, given the economy and their being “forced” to provide employees with insurance, is to either cut employees’ hours and/or their wages. This miserly strategy is justified and implemented despite the fact that research shows that raising wages would actually “benefit workers, the industry and the overall economy.”

Yet in the midst of Scroogian thinking, a handful of smarter businesses have stepped to the forefront to reject this “austerity” model for a different philosophy right in line with research: pay a good living wage, offer benefits and maximize one of your most important “assets”: your valued workforce. Top on that list of smart retailers is Costco; Tulsa-based convenience chain, QuikTrip, and consumer favorite, Trader Joe’s.

Trader Joe’s is particularly notable as a store that inspires an almost cult-like appreciation from its customers. Founded by its namesake, Joe Coulombe, the precursor of Trader Joe’s was a convenience store launched in Los Angeles in 1958 with the rather unimaginative name, Pronto Market. Deciding it wouldn’t be in his best interest to attempt to compete with the ubiquitous marketplace leader, 7-Eleven, Coulombe ultimately decided to specialize; rumor has it he got the idea of a “South Seas motif” while on a trip to the Caribbean, where he noticed American travelers enjoying and bringing back to the States unique items with an island flair. He opened his first official “Trader Joe’s” in Pasadena in 1967 (the original store is still there!) and it was an immediate hit; a 2008 Business Week article made the point that Trader Joe’s “sells twice as much per square foot than other supermarkets.”

Given its profitability, one might assume that, like Walmart and Target, it was operating under the strategy of categorizing employees as a “business cost” that needs to be minimized and kept under tight control. One would be wrong. From The Atlantic:

Many employers believe that one of the best ways to raise their profit margin is to cut labor costs. But companies like QuikTrip, the grocery-store chain Trader Joe’s, and Costco Wholesale are proving that the decision to offer low wages is a choice, not an economic necessity. All three are low-cost retailers, a sector that is traditionally known for relying on part-time, low-paid employees. Yet these companies have all found that the act of valuing workers can pay off in the form of increased sales and productivity. [Emphasis added.]

QuikTrip, Trader Joe’s, and Costco operate on a different model, Ton says. “They start with the mentality of seeing employees as assets to be maximized,” she says. As a result, their stores boast better operational efficiency and customer service, and those result in better sales. [... ]

The approach seems like common sense. Keeping shelves stocked and helping customers find merchandise are key to maximizing sales, and it takes human judgment and people skills to execute those tasks effectively. To see what happens when workers are devalued, look no further than Borders or Circuit City. Both big-box retailers saw sales plummet after staff cutbacks, and both ultimately went bankrupt.

There is also the issue of consumer perception. Places like Walmart and Papa John’s, one a retailer, the other a food service provider, both suffered and continue to take negative PR hits for paying low wages, “nickel-and-diming” employees on the issue of insurance benefits, and appearing to place the burden of economic change and demand on the backs of their workforce, all the more galling when company CEO’s are making multimillion dollar profits. Consumer good-will and the general perception of a business tend to take a beating when those at the helm come off as greedy, unethical, and denigrating of their workforce.

Trader Joe’s, Costco and Quik Trip, on the other hard, have engendered loyalty and expanded their public good will with positive, worker-protective strategies that exhibit the importance they place on their most valued asset: the people working for and with them, whose skills and hard work are essential to a healthy bottom-line. And that is, after all, the goal of any smart company.

Given its profitability, one might assume that, like Walmart and Target, it was operating under the strategy of categorizing employees as a “business cost” that needs to be minimized and kept under tight control. One would be wrong. From The Atlantic:

Many employers believe that one of the best ways to raise their profit margin is to cut labor costs. But companies like QuikTrip, the grocery-store chain Trader Joe’s, and Costco Wholesale are proving that the decision to offer low wages is a choice, not an economic necessity. All three are low-cost retailers, a sector that is traditionally known for relying on part-time, low-paid employees. Yet these companies have all found that the act of valuing workers can pay off in the form of increased sales and productivity. [Emphasis added.]


http://www.addictinginfo.org/2013/03...wage-and-wins/
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Old 02-16-2014, 08:06 PM   #106
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Well that's a lot of assumptions to draw out of a one sentence post. I don't hate the free market idea at all, not one bit. Wal-Mart is still a brutal company that treats their employees like garbage. All of the above is true. Those two ideas are not mutually exclusive.
Have you ever worked for Wal-Mart? I worked for Sams Club in college, quite honestly made more than I should have as a supervisor. I was 20 year old mid making $10 an hour in 04. Wasnt bad at all. They didnt treat us any differently than the other companies ive worked for in my life did. Hell, even better. You would get literally in trouble if you didnt take your paid 15 minute breaks. None of thr other companies I worked for gave a shit if I got my paid 15 minute breaks as required by law. You hear so many bad stories probably just due to the sheer volume of stores and workers they employ. If you are big enough, and employ enough ppl bad things eventually happen anywhere
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Old 02-16-2014, 08:25 PM   #107
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The minimum wage in Kansas is $7.25

And it should be .01
hmm, my bad. I thought it was $7.75
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Old 02-16-2014, 09:32 PM   #108
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People who shop at Walmart dictate what the employees earn.
That's hilariously incorrect. Walmart would still pay their employees like shit if they decided to go away from the sell garbage cheap at high volume business plan.
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Old 02-16-2014, 09:42 PM   #109
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That's hilariously incorrect. Walmart would still pay their employees like shit if they decided to go away from the sell garbage cheap at high volume business plan.
Your response is equally hilariously incorrect. If Walmart moved away from their business model they would shrink to just another retailer.

The consumer rewards Walmart for what they offer. I don't agree with it or shop there but the consumer pouring into their doors allows them to pay the wages they do.

The answer is if you don't agree with what Walmart pays their employees don't shop there.
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Old 02-16-2014, 09:58 PM   #110
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Originally Posted by mlyonsd View Post
Your response is equally hilariously incorrect. If Walmart moved away from their business model they would shrink to just another retailer.

The consumer rewards Walmart for what they offer. I don't agree with it or shop there but the consumer pouring into their doors allows them to pay the wages they do.

The answer is if you don't agree with what Walmart pays their employees don't shop there.
that answer isn't plausible for families struggling to make it...
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Old 02-16-2014, 10:12 PM   #111
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I wonder what to make of these commercials Walmart has been putting out saying they are investing $250 billion into American factories in the next 10 years.

Does that mean they are building factories and are making new American products exclusive to their stores? Or are they going to just buy from American factories now?
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Old 02-16-2014, 10:13 PM   #112
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Spoken like somebody who doesn't what the **** he's talking about.
You ever do any business with Costco or Sam's Club? There is a reason that Costco can pay their associates more per hour and it has everything to do with how they negotiate with their suppliers.
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Old 02-17-2014, 01:15 AM   #113
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Originally Posted by mlyonsd View Post
Your response is equally hilariously incorrect. If Walmart moved away from their business model they would shrink to just another retailer.

The consumer rewards Walmart for what they offer. I don't agree with it or shop there but the consumer pouring into their doors allows them to pay the wages they do.

The answer is if you don't agree with what Walmart pays their employees don't shop there.
Customers don't dictate what they pay their employees because when you're barely getting by paycheck to paycheck, can't really be ****ing bothered to stop and worry about how some retail store is paying their employees.

If Walmart shrinks to just another retailer, they're still going to pay their employees like shit. Majority stakeholders, mainly the Waltons, decide how their workers are taken care of and they've decided they want to fill their pockets with more money and who the **** cares if our workers can survive or not.
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Old 02-17-2014, 06:08 AM   #114
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Not sure how it is more free to force employers to pay a certain wage. As far as I can tell employment is voluntary. No one is forced to work for an employer.

If the employer offers a wage that no one will work at then they will have to raise it or go out of business.
Employment is not voluntary when everything you need to survive cost money.

Go and voluntary quit your job and try to live without an income, let me know how it works out.

How many hundreds of thousands of people lost unemployment insurance over the last 2 months? They have almost zero choice. Accept a below poverty paying job or starve... at least the below poverty wage job allows them to get on food stamps.
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Old 02-17-2014, 06:11 AM   #115
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Originally Posted by mr. tegu View Post
I wonder what to make of these commercials Walmart has been putting out saying they are investing $250 billion into American factories in the next 10 years.

Does that mean they are building factories and are making new American products exclusive to their stores? Or are they going to just buy from American factories now?
It means that after years of being a major part of the problem of shipping jobs overseas, Wal-Mart is trying to remake its image by promising to take something like 2 percent of their profits and put towards American goods over 10 years in High automated factories that won't create many jobs.
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Old 02-17-2014, 06:17 AM   #116
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You ever do any business with Costco or Sam's Club? There is a reason that Costco can pay their associates more per hour and it has everything to do with how they negotiate with their suppliers.
Are you assuming Wal-Mart doesn't have sweet heart deals with suppliers?

Wal-Mart is so fing big they almost dictate the entire market of suppliers.

Just like McDonald's very nearly controls beef suppliers.
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Old 02-17-2014, 06:18 AM   #117
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Employment is not voluntary
....it absolutely is voluntary..they tell you how much the pay is....you determine your worth when you accept or reject the offer.
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Old 02-17-2014, 06:28 AM   #118
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....it absolutely is voluntary..they tell you how much the pay is....you determine your worth when you accept or reject the offer.
And hundreds of thousand who lost their unemployment benefits over the last two months have that option? Right?

We have zero percent unemployment, right?

You can totally live in this country without an income, correct?
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Old 02-17-2014, 06:30 AM   #119
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And hundreds of thousand who lost their unemployment benefits over the last two months have that option? Right?

We have zero percent unemployment, right?

You can totally live in this country without an income, correct?

....strawman.

nobody is involuntarily applying for a job.
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Old 02-17-2014, 06:35 AM   #120
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....strawman.

nobody is involuntarily applying for a job.
Ah, the bep post where you so you don't know what a strawman is.

Nor did you understand what was said.

But go on and tell those hundreds of thousand long term unemployed who just lost their benefits and income that they have loads of options to choose from when accepting a job in a 6 percent unemployment environment.

Get ready to be laughed at.
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