Walmart workers forced to work early Black Friday
Wal-Mart workers would not have had to work earlier for Black Friday if the corporation wasn’t so concerned with matching competing stores like Toys R Us and Target. Some Hermantown Wal-Mart workers were O.K. with spending Thanksgiving at work, but there were mixed feelings among some of them.
One Wal-Mart employee in Hermantown said, “I got paid for it, so I really can’t complain.” This was her first year working Black Friday. She said, “They had me working around the store, answering questions. I just wandered around the store. It was the most boring day I’ve ever worked.”
Technically, Black Friday started on Thursday, with workers showing up several hours before midnight. Black Friday has grown, not diminished, as it has expanded past 24 hours into three sales events, not just one, for Wal-Mart.
The special deals for video and electronics started earlier this year, with sales starting at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. Thursday, two hours earlier than sales last year. Then customers had a chance to scramble for items.
Another employee voiced his opinion that he did not mind the Black Friday sales starting earlier this year, “But just that they had to put it on Thanksgiving,” he said. He said he worked last year for Black Friday as well.
All Wal-Mart employees were scheduled to work Black Friday unless they asked for the day off and received permission from a manager.
This event has been too over-the top and there is no reason why Wal-Mart had to start early with its event sales, other than to keep up with the competitors and meet customers’ growing demands.
All of them really should have been staying at home and being thankful for what they have instead of shopping for more things. It is really sad that some families had nothing better to do than shop all weekend.
Black Friday stays Black Friday at JCPenney’s
JcPenney’s all over the nation opened their doors at 6 A.M. on Black Friday. The new CEO of the company, Ron Johnson, really supported the idea of having associates spend Thanksgiving with their families and not have to worry about going into work that night. I would say we were pretty fortunate to not have to cut our Thanksgiving short and head into a work for a brutal over night shift.
This was my fifth year of working retail, and ultimately my sixth time working Black Friday. I was lucky enough to not open the store at 6 A.M., but when I came in a few hours later it was still ridiculously busy. Black Friday shoppers were out in full force and quite honestly, the amount of shoppers was probably more than the amount that have shopped in JcPenney’s all year. It has been a year of struggles and tribulations for the company, and Black Friday helped give us a huge boost.
The crowds were never-ending. Everywhere we walked we were running into people. Lines were long, but customers didn’t wait long. As with any holiday shopping weekend, the store was a disaster. Clothes were thrown everywhere, fitting rooms were overloaded, and associates were exhausted.
Black Friday is a a required day for all employees to work, and surprisingly I didn’t hear many complaints from employees. The only complaint, I would have to say, is a “mandatory” 12 hour shift that day. Working retail is one thing, working a twelve hour day in a store is another… Employees were beat. There was lines upon lines of people to check out, messes to clean up, and a lot of running around. I think by the halfway point we all just wanted to sit down.
I am one of the workers who actually enjoys working Black Friday. It is always busy, and it is fascinating to me to see all the people that come out shopping like it is the end of the world. It was another enjoyable, but very long day, in retail. Everyone had a great attitude and even though it was busy, we all continued to make the day the best we could.