Walmart today gave financial analysts a "weaker than expected" forecast for the coming year, saying that macroeconomic pressures would keep its profits low in the coming year. Another thing working against Walmart: its own employees despise it. Here's one example.
As part of our never-ending stream of tales from mistreated, unhappy, and frustrated employees of America's largest employer, we bring you this story of... mistreatment, unhappiness, and frustration, which we received just this week. Perhaps the millionaire executives of Walmart could take some of these stories to heart?
Trudibell commented [on a previous Gawker story about Walmart]: "Maybe I'm wrong, but I bet no one grows up thinking to themselves "I'm going to grow up to work at Wal-Mart!" I imagine that the way you end up working at Wal-Mart is if you have virtually no other opportunities in life at all, perhaps you live in a really shitty/poor area, maybe you're uneducated or can't afford to get an education, maybe you were never really encouraged to imagine a life of non-autonomoton possibilities, but either way you end up working at Wal-Mart because life handed you a shit deal."
Here's my side of the story:
In 1998 through 2009 I worked as a partner in an independent two person manufacturers' sales representative agency selling construction material. In 2009 we made anywhere from $12,000 to $38,000 in commission each MONTH— more than some people take home in a year. My partner decided he was tired of making so much money and so he opted to take up life in prison. With an ethical clause attached to our contract, the gravy train came to an end.
Yes, I saved money. My mortgage payment was $3,000 per month on a $750,000 condo in an upscale ski resort town in Colorado. Credit card balances, typically paid off each month, ran about $1,500 per month. With no income. the savings account did not last long.
With two children to feed and foreclosure in progress, I sent my resume to anyone that offered a job. In an economic downturn, not many people were hiring in my industry. I have 20+ years in sales and marketing and a proven track record of making companies money. Every management position I applied for required at least a Bachelor's degree. I have an Associate's degree. With the economy in distress I applied for state assistance and got it on the condition that I continuously applied for work. Desperate for work, I applied at Wal-Mart for a temporary overnight remodel associate position. To their credit, Wal-Mart hired me. Probably because I had a pulse. The turnover rate at most stores is about 45% per month. Associates are encouraged to dissuade others from quitting.
What was supposed to be a temporary job until I found something else has been a four-year endurance of all the horror stories you have read. No one lies—Wal-Mart is a crappy employer. My Thanksgiving meal for the last two years occurred at the breakfast table because I was scheduled from four p.m. to one a.m. on Thanksgiving day so that shoppers could buy a 36" TV for $29.
I decided to enroll in college online—University of Phoenix, a reputable school. As an added bonus, Wal-Mart employees receive a 10% tuition discount. To date I maintain a 4.0 GPA. I cannot afford an education but that didn't stop me from taking on $40,000 more debt in the hopes that once I graduate someone hires me.
So, regardless of the numerous promotions I have been offered, I finally accepted one for 40 cents more per hour. I am a department manager. This was the first step I needed to take in order to be fast tracked into management. Good thing I didn't hold my breath. "Department Manager" means nothing on paper. Just forget that I manage a business unit responsible for 30% of an $80 Million business. Never mind that I manage six associates. Who cares that I exceed my monthly sales goals by 3 - 5%? Only idiots work at Wal-Mart.
With an updated resume and six months left toward my degree, I continue to throw my resume out there. Unfortunately, the first line reads, "Wal-Mart." Wal-Mart hires college graduates as assistant managers but if you already work for Wal-Mart, your college degree means nothing; you need to work your way up through the ranks.
For Trudibell's information, "life has dealt me a shit hand" but I am not resigned to work for Wal-Mart. I know there are other opportunities. I have no desire to exist at Wal-Mart until I am relegated to the honor of becoming a people greeter right before retirement.
Hire me. I have a proven track record of taking shit from management and being looked down on by self-righteous customers. I do my best to provide excellent customer service, despite my working conditions. Don't you think I would make a great asset to your company?
There's a well known joke within the retail industry: Wal-Mart trains their managers to work for other companies. I'm trained. Would you look past the employer and hire the employee?
[Photo: Getty. If you're a Walmart worker who'd like to share your story, email Hamilton@Gawker.com]