38 thoughts on “January 13, 2018

    • Not just Stuart, and not just Grumbel’s.

      Anytime a decision like that is made, they do their level best to keep it hush hush. Why? Because they need workers to run the stores until the last minute, and once the word gets out, the staff will leave en masse. Furthermore, some of the employees there might be tempted to walk off with things. After all, they’re out of a job anyway…. right? And finally, there’s the stockholders to consider. If word gets out that stores are closing, a lot of investors will start looking to unload their Grumbel’s stock.

      • True. When Lionhead Studios was being closed, the workers found out about it at the same time as the rest of the gaming community.

      • ‘Staff will leave on masse.’ Exactly, it’s amazing how they can act as though employees are completely disposable and replaceable, up the moment until all employees bail on them and they realize they’re completely screwed. This also goes for my non retail workplace. When the word finally comes (5 years maximum), there’s going to be a ton of ship jumpers and an equal number of lame ducks who no longer give a crap because of the way the printing company has conducted its business over the last 10 to 15 years.

      • The CEO and his sycophants at HQ need to be able to unload their stock before it crashes. They’ll hold off on an announcement until after they do that.

      • Mark, you are indeed correct, but in reverse order. Corporate is only concerned with the Bottom Line. And the sad fact is that when closings like this happen, stock prices usually go _up_.
        Employees may (or may NOT, as in the Sam’s Club case) be offered alternatives such as relocation or a severance package. But don’t bet on that happening. You could lose the farm on that bet.

        • Exactly stocks usually go up because overhead costs are down = more profit.

          The sad part of Sams closing is no notice, most employees were shown a locked door from what I read.

      • “We ran our business into the ground and now people don’t want to work for us and buy our stock! Feel sorry for us!” Boo hoo sweetcakes it aint hurting you and your golden parachute.

      • My former job deliberately kept us in the dark because they knew we would have left had we known the truth about their acquisition. Still I think they should have played with open cards right from the start.

  1. First off it is amzaing that this comes on the heels of Sams Club closing stores suddenly without telling the employees themselves. IMagine walking upto your store and finding out it is closed, and you havent even had a chance to file for unemplyoment so you have no money until the two weeks it takes to activate kicks in?

    Retail of SOME type will always exist, just might not need employees. I heard about a large glas box in China, that has merchandise in it. You approach it, order what you want on your phone. Then you either scan the phone to the box or let it read your QR code or something like that . Then a portal opens, your order comes out. You take it and go. Then it closes. The only employee arrives when systems tell it is time to restock items.

    That is one of the futures of retail. That and stores for people with hard to fit clothing needs. That is it. INMHO.

    • Dad went into one of the surviving “area” stores yesterday (I say “area” as it’s not near home or the nursing home Mom is in) and ran into a staffer that worked at the one near home working there that he knew. This employee told Dad that they were pulled aside and offered a raise and immediate transfer to one of the surviving locations a few days ago, which this one obviously took. No mention was made of these closings, so anybody who declined and arrived to work on Thursday morning to find their store closed! This employee didn’t even know about it until arriving at the their new store that day.

  2. Anyone else here old enough to remember when “MASH” ended and there was the short-lived “AfterMASH” series? The end of Grumbels could be a transition into spreading the main cast out into several different retail situations, and the strip could follow each of them in their various workplaces.

  3. Back before I decided to do something useful with my life, I worked for a health insurance company. After I left, several friends told me rumors of layoffs had been swirling, but denied. One day, a call from a local TV station came in, on the Customer Service line. The rep put the phone on hold and asked the supervisor just exactly when they intended to tell the employees, thank you kindly.

    The sup took the call, and then announced they were turning off the phones and having a meeting to discuss the situation. “Take your purses, since the floor will be empty. Now, Mary, Susan, Jane – you go with Supervisor A. Teresa, Bonnie, Connie – you go with Supervisor B. Remember to take your pocketbooks.”

    “Now, everybody in this room is fired. You can come in on Saturday morning at 10:00 to colelct your personal belongings.” There were guards posted so the girls could not get back into the office.

    I was no longer with the company, but I heard this story from several former co-workers.

    • That’s when you tell them they better be ready to cut you a check right there. If you get fired, you’re owed your pay immediately. At least in my state.

    • In New York, They have to give you notice if the whole facility is being closed. i worked at a call center that was closed; they did not give notice and the ex-employer was hit was a lawsuit from the state Dept of labor.

  4. Yep. If the boss denies it, it’s usually true. Same thing when you hear a celebrity respond to rumors of their impending divorce. “We’ve never been closer! Our marriage is perfect!” Two weeks to a month later, the divorce rumors are confirmed.

    Meanwhile, in the Grumbel’s world, Stuart is sending his resume out and lining up interviews at….Delman’s?!

  5. I can only hope that Stuart’s district gets consolidated with another district and he loses his job. He needs a big comeuppance at some point.

  6. When everything at the Radio Shack next door went in sale, the store manager insisted that it was just a marketing ploy and that the store would stay open. I don’t know if he was lying or being lied to.

  7. Heck, it’s not even just retail. I did a temp stint at a small cargo airport, and when I was let go, asked them if I could come back for their holiday help, got a weird look and was told, “We’ll see” Less than two weeks later a friend told me that all the full-timers showed up to locked doors and a sign saying shut down. No one had any clue they were shutting down.

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