February 16, 2019 - Lardlines
I Just Cannot Stand This Job
I currently work at a little bit of a smaller Target in Hardlines. Starting out as seasonal, I was pretty glad and excited to have a $12/hour job that was going to offer me lots of hours, or so they said. After what I have to assume was a pretty normal Christmas season, as I had never worked retail from Black Friday through the end of the year, I was still somewhat positive. Of course, I had seen some issues that deeply upset me, like the fact that our store has no backstop team leaving untrained and unsupervised team members to climb up 25 foot ladders with bulky and awkward 30+lb boxes to backstop, which is wholly against OSHA regulations, but I let it slide because I needed a job and it was never addressed in a reasonable way when I brought it up. I was just told by the LODs that “it would be fixed during the remodel later this year” or “I know, but just be careful.”
When it all went to shit was after the holiday season. First, I went from consistently 28-32 hours to sometimes only 8. We were told that it was because Target corporate only doled out so many hours for the store, so we couldn’t do anything. During that time, they harped on us all about not staying past when we were scheduled, following compliance, and absolutely no overtime.
From there, it all deteriorated. Seasonal staff started vanishing quickly, either quitting because of the lack of hours or being fired after shifts completed or were halfway through completion for thibgs ranging from being “lazy,” to poor zones, to simply not noticing if someone had stolen an item from their area. Morale around the store dipped, but I stayed firm. I am moving in a few weeks, so I was really vying for a transfer to ease the whole process. I worked pulls, backstocked, assisted up at registers, did carry outs, excelled at electronics up selling (where I had been begging to go since I started as I actually know electronics) all in hopes of being recognized and recommended.
That was, however, until Target broke me. It wasn’t just the God awful guests who gleefully trash zones, say the rudest things to you for not knowing every deal or square inch of the store off the top of your head, and whom you have to pick up after like the place was a daycare. No; it was management. I was getting chastised about not knowing how to work in other departments, like how storylines works or how to use the Wave. God forbid a hardlines member not know how to apply a coupon that has no barcode (I guess it’s a check sort of).
All the while, hours are being slashed across the board. We’re now up to the point where for weekend closing operations, I go in 4 hours before close, have to work 2 or 3 pulls on the line, zone two zones, work a whole day’s worth of abandon, and help guests and front and with only 2 hardlines members. That’s right, we’re consistently staffing the store with only 2 hardlines members on Valentine’s weekend to do ALL of hardlines duties plus closing. Softlines isn’t much better with anywhere from 3-4 people there, and 1-2 cashiers. And from what I’ve been told, day shift and opening is in the same understaffed boat. Keep in mind, our store is also consistently doing 100k in sales. We’re the only Target in 15 miles in a town of 180k people where oil is still big business.
But why am I making this post and not simply reading them and relating? Well, a few days ago they fired an electronics guy under the guise of not being security minded and lazy. Now, he was a closer, like me. And I usually had toys zone, which is right next to Electronics, so I saw him a lot. In this past year, he helped to get 3 people caught by AP, and he was the only electronics guy to willingly help me zone toys so we could all leave faster. He wasn’t by any means an employee of the month. Like me, he looked upset a lot default. Resting bitch face I guess. Like everyone else, he would pull out his phone too much when it was dead or when he shouldn’t. He would talk to the Target tech while zoning. But he wasn’t a bad employee. In fact, he was one of the few employees there who actually zone properly and work abandon without being told to. Why he was actually fired is no secret: an old man, who is nice and does work his best, wanted more hours. This old man, though he tries, is simply slow, inaccurate, and doesn’t know his tech that well, but nevertheless, someone was fired so he could get more hours making an understaffing problem that much more prevalent.
You know, I was told by an employee who has been there for a long time and was about to walk out last week that our store is up for a commendation from corporate. He says that’s why our jobs have turned to a living hell. If we win, our store leader who has been firing people, overworking staff while cutting hours, understaffing everything, and destroying all our morale and health (there is currently a BAD flu going around our store) will get a 10k bonus.
Anyway, I’ve completely checked out by now because despite being told by my supervisors that I excel in every area I’m put in, despite working the jobs of 2 or 3 or 4 people daily, despite all of that, I still can’t be put in electronics and also my transfer request was denied.
To those who might see this post from 1813, my advice is really don’t try to work hard. The harder you work and the more you do, the more everyone gets punished and stepped on for the gain of your boss who knows you’re replaceable. Your hours will be cut, your friends fired, your job expectations risen,and at the end of it all, you could be abruptly let go because someone with seniority wants more hours.