By Fritzy Dean
Dear Mr. Target,
Whatever happened to your express check-out lanes? I clearly remember a time when a shopper with fewer than 10 or 12 items could get in an express lane and in a reasonable amount of time, be on their way.
Today when I asked a red-shirted employee for the express lane, she first looked puzzled, then pointed me to the multiple self-check lanes.
I choose not to use self-check lanes for a few reasons. First, I am not an employee and don’t wish to contribute my labor to your corporation. Secondly, I know that every self-check lane allows the store to get rid of three employees.
I realize, of course, the scanner does not take shifts or coffee breaks or vacations or sick leave. They never get grumpy or need the bathroom like a human checker.
Still I prefer the human. So I will wait in a lane where an actual human is checking. I don’t need that job, but someone does.
However, I have a suggestion that should be implemented as soon a possible. Since you have done away with he express lane, I feel you need a designated slow lane. This lane will be for the shoppers who:
• Have a cart full of items and EVERY single one of them requires special handling.
• If you have a discount code and you have to scroll through 400 items on your cell phone to find it, go to the slow lane.
• If you have a coupon in a printed ad and must flip thought the advertisement 15 times to find it, go to the slow lane.
• If you buy an item that must be purchased in combination with another item to get a special price, make damn sure you have both items and get in the slow lane.
• If you are oblivious to the world around you and don’t even notice the ever-growing line of people behind you, you NEED to be in the slow lane.
Mr. Target, I bet you could think of other shoppers who could benefit from a slow lane. But, Mr. Target, I have no confidence you will implement this sensible and reasonable suggestion.
That is only one reason, Mr. Target, that you and other retailers are losing ground every year to Amazon.
I truly wanted to do my part to avoid that scenario but, Mr. Target, I have seen the light. After 20 minutes behind one of those slow shoppers today, I finally asked the checker if I should move. She shrugged and said, “Well, she is almost half way done.”
I will not weep when Amazon rules the retail world.
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