Sunday, November 23, 2014

Working on Thanksgiving?

As is typical this time of year, the country is tuned into the Black Friday deal rush as customers start making plans to head out to stores on Thanksgiving day to take advantage of door busting low priced goods.  For the shopping portion of the world, the day can be a money saving good time, but on the cash register and store stock side of the fence, the day is something of a burden.

According to Yahoo, many store employees are being forced to work Thanksgiving or face being fired, and others have taken to social media to vent.  Yes, hotels, restaurants, movie theaters, hospitals, and more have featured holiday working staff that had to likely skip the Thanksgiving turkey for years, but now that more and more retail stores are trying to get a jump on sales for the holiday, thousands more people are being drawn into the equation.

I get it, nobody wants to work on a holiday, especially the big ones like Thanksgiving.  Employees understand that the store needs to make money (at least most of them do), and the rush on the Black Friday, which is creating something of a Gray Thursday, is essential to the bottom line of their employers.  So when they sign on at Wal-Mart, K Mart, Best Buy, the list goes on and on, they probably get that they might, and probably will, have to work on Thanksgiving holiday and more.

If they are not told this when they are hired, that's a bit different, but the real people to blame are the ones that are lining up outside often long before the store opens.  If nobody shopped or if the Thanksgiving holiday hours failed, the stores would make the logical business decision to not open early.  That's the thing though, customers are taxed for time as well, and many are working constantly before and after the holiday and have only limited windows to shop.  The holidays are one of them.

What it really comes down to for me is compensation.  If the large retailers were to include a Thanksgiving working bonus or additional pay for working on the holiday, maybe employees would be a little more open to giving the billion or million dollar company a bit of their time.  You know something that shows appreciation more than a "Thank you" and many probably don't even get that.

If it's that important to the store and the company that the retailer operate and function on the holiday, than why don't the corporations and businesses show employees just how important it is?  Oh, it's that bottom line thing again.

Still, it seems like there has to be some sort of middle ground here, and if the trend of opening at 6pm or 6am on Thanksgiving is going to continue someone should put some effort into figuring it out.

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