Black Friday. Yeah, it’s coming. Some of you are like Santa and are making lists, checking it twice, seeing what stores are open when. The hours are becoming pretty crazy. Stores use to open an hour early, then a few hours early, then at midnight. Now some stores are open at 8pm on Thanksgiving and are staying open all night long! How insane is that?
The first thing you need to know is that I worked retail for an electronics store for four years. I was a commissioned sales person. I worked every “Black Friday” for four years. The holiday hours were pretty insane. Back to back to back 12hour shifts. Extended hours every night for over a month. I remember going to bed at 5pm on Thanksgiving so I could get up at 1am to open the store. Needless to say it was pretty draining.
I’ve seen a ton of post about people slamming big business for being open on Thanksgiving and then being open throughout the night. Calling the companies greedy and insensitive. Questioning these companies about how humane is it to have people away from their families on a holiday. Crying about how people are missing out on family traditions because of these huge over bearing companies that just care about the bottom line.
Here’s the thing though, I don’t see many people saying they are refusing to shop. I don’t hear people calling for boycotts of these sales. I don’t see posts rallying friends and family to stay at home and not buy that 50inch tv for a stupid price. Infact, I hear just the opposite. I hear people checking out ads. Making plans for post-Thanksgiving dinner shopping trips. Mapping out stores and planning shopping strategies. Recruiting family members to shop for them!
You are right about one thing, these companies do care about the bottom line. That’s all they care about. The bottom line is if they didn’t think that shoppers would line up at 8pm on Thanksgiving night to get the best deals, then they wouldn’t open their doors. Simple economics is supply and demand. If the demand wasn’t there to open the doors at 2am, then the stores wouldn’t do it.
We like to call these companies greedy and inhumane. Blaming them for ripping people away from their families. Causing riots at stores. It’s these companies that cause people to shoot each other over video game systems. It’s the companies that cause people to pepper spray someone else over a toaster oven. Yep. It’s all their fault. Couldn’t be the shoppers. Couldn’t be the fact that the shoppers are just as greedy, just as inhumane. It isn’t possible that the companies are simply reacting to the public. No, that’s out of the question.
What if we all decided to not go shopping? What if we decided to wait? To boycott shopping? The thing is, it wouldn’t happen, ever. The real issue isn’t the big companies. It’s the people shopping at the big companies.