Thursday, June 18, 2009

How may I help you?

I think Lowe's is failing its customers.

(Home Depot probably is, but as there is no Home Depot here, and I've never bought anything from them, I can't be completely sure.)

Lowe's really needs to add another layer to their employee training.

The skill to size up a customer's ability to actually do the project they are buying materials for.

Let's say, hypothetically of course, that a Lowe's employee has a couple come through their check out lane. That couple is buying 7 blank doors, a hinge and lock drilling kit, the hardware for said doors, and about 20 gallons of paint.

The appropriate thing to do would be to say, "Have you considered pre-hung doors? It's doing to take you hours upon hours to drill the holes for locks and chisel the slots for hinges. And then when you're done, you're going to find out that the door is a quarter of an inch too big anyways."

Or when the same couple comes through the next day with 30 boxes of Pergo flooring, someone should at least mention Lowe's installation services. Or mention the hours of frustration that couple has in front of them.

Yes, Lowe's offers how-to books. Yes, Lowe's offers (quite pricey) installation services.

But when a person is standing in the flooring, or lighting, or paint section of the hardware store, they are filled with sugar plum plans for their new home. They get excited about the possibilities. The more excited they become, the more confident they become in their own skills.

The Lowe's cashier could be their last link to reality.


  1. Even if the hypothetical employee were to hypothetically mention installation services and helpful people, I have seen too many experiences where things were ordered and it took weeks to get the order right and even longer to get it installed.

    You might actually be better off doing it yourself.


  2. I would love to see you work as a cashier at one of these stores without going crazy by annoying customers. Why should it be up to cashiers to suggest items or services to you? That is why they have people working in those departments.

    Get a grip on reality or maybe get a job there and see how long you will be suggesting things to customers.

  3. I love how the overly critical people always post anonymously.

  4. I feel your pain. I've spent every free minute on various renovations and home improvement projects in the last 5 weeks. I've returned an enormous amount of stuff to both L*owe's and H*ome Depot, only to get the more DIY-friendly version (yes, pre-hung doors!!).

    I decided, at last, that saving the 10, 20 or even 50 bucks by getting the more time and effort-consuming version was not worth it (and I don't have a lot of extra money laying around). I would get so frustrated and annoyed that none of the projects were fun anymore. Quite the opposite. I was starting to really dislike coming home from school/work, because of all the stuff that was waiting to be done.

    Good Luck!!

  5. Amazing that time is still something we have in our pocket when the check book is empty.
    The prehung, service intalled things are nice(forgoing the unwritten complications of that scene)sometimes..until you can afford 1/10th and no more and the project still looks at you, sticks out its tongue and shrugs,"Whatcha gonna do?" Lowes and Home Depot and Bill's Hardware are in business because everybody has had to figure that one out for themselves. And yes, cashiers and department help with insight and optimism are always a bonus. Wishing you continuing luck... and hopefully future help. xox