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Lowes Purchase Experience

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  • Lowes Purchase Experience

    A few months ago I posted Ridgid should make a knife belt/disc sander and had great responses on alternatives that were available. After researching all models suggested, and some that I came accross, I decided upon the Delta SA180.
    I remember seeing the unit or it's smaller brother at HD last year while scouting larger machinery, but they no longer carry it. So off to Lowes I go. 3 stores in the area, first 2 had only the display. 3rd was a charm, they had one left in the box, 99 bucks.

    After getting a cart and returning to the tool isles I noticed a familure face. It was Kurt, the sales associate I had worked with at HD for a few months on that big Ridgid purchase. I knew he had moved to Lowes because of the treatment received from HD management. But the day, and time didn't warrent him to be there. Our discussions were focused on the 2 stores internal cooperative ways. While he got along with fellow employees at HD, and saddly abused by management, it seams the opposite at Lowes. Management is more than fair with the employees, but employees seldom get along. And that was the reason him being there. He had a verble confrontation on duty with a another employee, which he didn't offer the nature of the dispute. I found our conversation interesting, in how the 2 big boxes operate differently, and have different problems internally.

    We then parted, and I started to aimlessly wander through the store looking for the laminates. I passed probably 20 associates, not one giving me a glance. As I passed a couple, they seamed unaware of my presence and continued bashing a fellow employee, even cursing as I passed. I never heard this at HD! Running construction crews myself, I know the importance of keeping piece within a group. I didn't feel comfortable asking anyone where I could find the laminates.

    After finding what I was after, I had to search for an associate, which was less than a pleasent experience. Knowledgable, but preoccupied and gave the impression I was impossing on her. But I made the best of it, I just wanted what I came for and be on my way.

    I don't go to Lowes very often, but while there I glanced at things I normally frequent HD for, for quality and price. Though Lowes is slightly more expensive, it's quality did seam equally higher in the lumber department. Hardware was about the same. The Tool department was quite the different experience I must admit. Clean, well kept displays, and stock that was managable was under the displays. The larger items, band saws, table saws I didn't take the time to get info on where they were kept.

    On the hour and a half drive home I wondered to myslef, which scenario I would prefer? Getting along with fellow employees, but misserable with management; or being respected my management, and cussed to my face and behind my back by fellow employees. And decided I couldn't tolerate either one myself.

    When I go to buy something, I seldom need assistance unless it's the need of a fork lift. So I could care less about associate intervention. Eventually, I will find what I'm looking for if they have it, so I don't bother to ask the location of items very often. I consider myself more than fortunate the day I met Kurt at Home Depot. I would have to say his knowledge, attitude, and time spent DID make a considerable difference in my decission to make the purchase I did with the Ridgid Machinery last year. Though we had 3 months from meeting to purchase date, he called several times to see how my shop was coming and when I expected to make the purchase so he would be sure to have everything in stock. But I have to sadly admit, no other associate has been so helpful or knowledgable.

    I have no idea if this experience has any merrit, or even should, on attitudes of either store. But I did want to share it everyone. I feel that customer service as a whole in large stores such as Lowes and Home Depot isn't being handled by managment properly, or the employees attitudes. I often visit the local hardware store in the small town I live, and the attitude isn't much better.

    I did ask Kurt what his major complaint was with customers, and to my surprise it was a simple thing. He claims customers have little respect for the store. They rumage the stock, misplacing, open packages, and leaving things all over the store. "The computer shows 3 in stock, but none on the shelf. But you'll find 3 opened units somewheres in the store." Not so true with machinery I'm sure.

    So where does the fix actually begin for this misplaced customer service, and frustrated employees? Are the disrespects of the customers and treatment of the unpurchased merchandise the cause of the non caring ways of the associates?
    Is it the lack of managements capabilities and skills? Is it a lack of proper training? Or as us the public as a whole, just quit caring about anything other than what "WE" want, when we want it? Maybe the lack of patients and persistance?

    Most visits of any length consist of 4 words spoken on departure. "Have a nice day" since cash has exchanged hands.
    John E. Adams<br /><a href=\"\" target=\"_blank\"></a>

  • #2
    Man that a good story. A few of my family used to work at Lowes. They got along with other employees. It makes me wonder?
    Andy B.