Back to what this post is REALLY about. I feel that I need to give y'all a little background beforehand. I hate Wal Mart. There I said it. I hate Wal Mart. I said it again. I have yet to go to a Wal Mart store where I truly have an amazing experience. Yes, shopping is an experience for me. Grocery shopping, clothes shopping, shopping for candles, shopping for sheets....shopping. I appreciate when a store provides outstanding customer service (or as a friend described as "Disney World level customer service"). It will make or break my opinion of the store and opinion of the products the store is selling. I can't tell you how many times I have overpaid for something or bought something that I did not need from a store because of the outstanding customer service (also the way products are displayed make a big impression!).
I hate Wal Mart because I've never had that level of experience shopping there. I understand some people may be saying, "you're seriously expecting 'Disney World level customer service' from Wal Mart?" The answer is yes. I am a consumer that is giving your company MY money. I expect to be treated with respect and provided a pleasant shopping experience. Every Wal Mart I have ever graced (which after living the Marine Corps life for almost 16 years now means I've been to a LOT of Wal Marts) is full of disgruntled employees who don't want to be there, don't want to at least fake it, and aren't very friendly (RUDE). I think this atmosphere bleeds into its customers too, because the customers I encounter at Wal Mart are equally as disgruntled and rude.
Several years ago, Nick's uncle David and his partner Andy came all the way from England to visit us in California. It's become a big inside joke between us about my hate for Wal Mart after a conversation about it that we all had during that time (after consuming some adult beverages). Just recently, they mentioned on Facebook about how it'd be great if I sent them some Hamburger helper from Wal Mart. (Side note: the British love them some Hamburger Helper. I'm not even sure why, but some of the British candy I like is equally frowned upon by actual British people). ANYWAY, to humor them, I went to Wal Mart today to buy them Hamburger Helper. I could have easily gone to HEB (it's closer), but I thought it would be funny. I went live on Facebook to prove I was there. A friend of mine even texted me this:
So as y'all can tell, people who are close to me know that I prefer not to shop there. Also, I'm sure someone is gonna hate because they feel I am judging people who go to Wal Mart in pajamas. This is a stereotype of Wal Mart shoppers, and I have no regrets about saying it. It's funny! Look, I don't get all dolled up to go to Wal Mart, Target, the grocery store. In fact, you can catch me many times with wet hair thrown up into a bun, athletic shorts, and an old t shirt at the store. But let's be real here, I'm a self conscious person as it is, so you won't catch me in pajamas in public...ever. So if that is your choice of outfit, I say, "go on with your bad self!"
"My Wal mart trip. The size is overwhelming. My cashier gave me an attitude because I asked if their chip reader was set up (how was I supposed to know?! Half the businesses that have them don't use them yet)...I asked an employee (based on the collared shirt with wal mart logo on it) what aisle hamburger helper was since I never buy the stuff...she claimed she didn't know because she doesn't work the floor....she looked less than pleased to help me find someone who could help me... I'm pretty sure I felt her rolling her eyes at me as I walked away after thanking her.
Why are they so unhappy? This is every dang wal mart I've ever been to."
As usual, my yearly trip to Wal Mart was exactly how it has been since I became an adult and had to shop for myself. This little Facebook post went viral. Ok, not VIRAL in the sense that it was shared a gazillion times, and now I will be on Ellen tomorrow. However, it garnered a lot of attention and comments. I didn't realize how many of my friends had friends and family employed by Wal Mart, and it surely was not meant to disrespect their place of work. I did get some insightful comments that I took to heart.
So why I am blogging about this? Because my Wal Mart Facebook post was based on an inside joke with family, and it got out of hand. I'm just going to add that there is a Fortune article that just recently came out saying that Wal Mart is laying off thousands of employees, and focusing on in-store customer service. Just last year, they closed hundreds of stores as well. They claim it is because of competition (sites like Amazon) that is taking over this industry. I find it hard to believe when chains like Target are doing amazingly well. I can't help but think that their customer service is a big reason why they are losing customers and business. It's sad that they're laying people off in order to focus on "in store customer service", but at the same time, their "in store customer service" is the reason why I (as many others) don't shop there.
I'm not boycotting Wal Mart. I go there once in a blue moon, but each time I go there, I am always reminded on why I don't like it there.