However, what I am noting is that the attempt to raise Depot to the next level does not yet appear to be very successful. On the other side of that arguement, I would comment that it is still too early in the game to determine whether the attempt will or will not work.
With all do respect ( I sincerely mean this), you don't have a "real" clue about what Home Depot is trying to do or needs to do to take it to the next level of retail supremecy.
The fact that Your DH comes to you b/c you have been there and done that is a real problem!! This goes back to the emotion piece I continue to hammer home.
In order for Depot to increase its effeciencies and dominate the home-improvement industry "emotion" has to be taken out of it. I don't mean the emotion of the ees to do their job and bust down walls for big orange. I mean the emotion that every Depot ee puts into his/her job. In the old school Depot ee individuality was encouraged and the entrepeneurial spirit was encouraged, but that is not what is going to take Depot to the next level.
I know all Depot folks don't want to hear it but the store mgrs at Depot are going to be turned into a "set of keys" for the benefit of the bigger picture. I completely understand that this doesn't sit well with ees like you(I truly believe you are one of the good guys at Depot) but that is the way it is at WMT and for the most part at LOW.
I know you are tempted to say that this individuality is what has made Depot different, and I would completely agree, but Depot business is at a different stage of the business cycle and any ee who can't pull there emotion out of it is going to be in for a long couple of years.
Jaglerster I am probably just more than intrigued by retail , but that is neither here nor there!!
And remember the analysts that downgrade Depot didn't do it b.c of analizing the Income statement or other books, it was b/c he walked into a couple of stores and they looked like crap and the service wasn't there.
Depot isn't Enron where detailed stock trades must be analyzed all you have to do is walk into the big orange builing around the corner from your house. Also, you can then walk into other retailers in the area and compare your findings!!
good post. i agree with you about the ima program. this is one of the very best, if not the best new program we came out with in the last 5 years. and you're right it is a training/ turnover issue only. in my store, we're lucky, very little turnover within the imas. i
disagree with your "especially when Depot is in such a competitive race"
our fault and/ or downfall is, that we "look" at the industry, we worry so much about low, that we stopped doing our thing, we're having put people in power who have no clue about retail and those people reinvent the weel.("we're selling tv's and small appliance but took the steel studs and steel channels out, i am in one of the fasted growing counties of ca, and guess what, all the new houses are built from steel") back the, we never looked at anybody, we kicked ass. period.we're number 1. give me an h... we have to go back to basis, stop trying all those new stores (garden/ flooring/ hardware stores and what have you) concentrade on what made home depot # 1. we own it to our customers....
With alll do respect, "Real trouble" can also be relative especially when Depot is in such a competitive race with one other major competitor. Granted the cooking of the books has not been an issue with Depot (I don't expect it to be either), but the emotion piece I spoke about could be considered "Real Trouble" in this type of business.
Do you think WMT or LOW have global merchants (or the equivilant) wacking SKUs b/c they are walking other competitors and are in a bad mood. I really doubt it.
I know one thing about the IMA program, it is not working. Not b/c of the concept, but b/c of the training and the amount of SKUs the IMAs are in charge of. I don't think the hand scanner is the answer and the IMA program has tremendous upside, if implemented correctly!!
And sir, just so you know I am smarter than the average bear and I have been into alot more than 1 Depot. Not to pull back the curtain too far, but just know that I know what I am talking about. Seriously I am not some misguided stockholder or employee, I am probably one of the most objective posters on this board.
Also, Does your DH make you read all the Walk the Talks for you departments?? If not you should they are reallly informative and can help you to understand your part in the Depot machine!!!
To sum it up best, "EMOTION"!!
To expand, "emotion" is what has made Home Depot what it is today. Throughout the 90s the store mgrs and even associated were emotional about the decisions they made, whether it be in merchandising the store or what products they were going to carry.
If anyone from a Dept. head to the buyer wanted a product in the store they could make a phone call and get it and the store was truly under the control of the personnel at that store. That was the genius of regional buying.
Now, though, in an effort to take this retailer toe the next level in retailing Depot has to use another E word...efficiency!!
In order for Depot to keep their earnings growing they have to leverage their assets (mainly the building), they can't just stack it hig and let it fly anymore or have maverick store managers run their market the way they see fit. That was great in getting Depot to where they are now, but it must change.
This emotion runs to the buyer level also. During this past clearance event I was told by very reliable in the know sources that some items were clearanced b/c the buyer was walking a competitor and saw a similar model and made a phone call and turned a SKU off and clearanced it. Is this any way to run a business that you are trying to make the best retailer in the world, I don't think so...you wait until a line review and then you call your vendor out and see what they say.
This emotion leads to low ee morale and you end up talking out of boths ides of your mouth quite a bit!!
A couple of things Wal-Mart does that Depot doesn't even think about ....
You can't be a Wal-Mart vendor if Wal-mart is more than 20% of your business!! Key b/c Wal-Mart won't be the reason you go under.
Wal-Mart is so efficient they actually make money off of their transportaion b/c they hardly ever have empty trucks...Amazing b/c they are the only retailer that can do this!!
I also don't see the emotion running rampant throughout the Lowe's stores. The foot soldiers understand the big picture and frankly are kicking the crap out of Depot, right now!!
Again, I don't work for either boxes and I don't work for wal-Mart, I am just intrigued by retail.
One last thing, to all the foot soldiers at Depot instead of bitching about the changes by Nardeli either buy into them or quit....If someone was banging their head into a wall and then complaining about a head ache what would you do??????
Not sure where you're shoppin' but you should go to a Home Depot.
Behr Paint - flows & covers great - the "cheap tools" are just one line of products - supported by good Husky (lifetime warranty)and plenty of other choices to suit individual needs - prices always competitive or matched -
As for lowe's - it is easy to have neat stores and lots of help and full shelves when you don't have customers to assist -
How many Home Depot stores have you shopped recently - 1 not so good store in 1,400 is not good but this is not the norm.
If you're not selling - in the teens would be an even better time to buy
Aug 19 & 20 will be an eye opener. If LOW has no customers why is LOW not doing an "emergency" 10% discount sale on the last day of the quarter???? I estimate that LOW will blow earnings out of the water. Will HD?
It's not just the dirty stores, its the lack of associates, instock condition and even worst customer service. Anyone try calling Ben Hill now that it's been centralized? They have NO CLue what service is.
It was much better, with regional Ben Hills, to assist with customer issues. These folks knew the market had a personal knowledge of each store , SM and beter yet the competition. Another cost savings move that will haunt like the centralization of buying.