How many times have we heard the phrase: “our employees are our most valuable assets?” Guess they don’t really mean it. Bottom line is that workers are a cog in the machine — as evidenced by Circuit City’s announcement: Circuit City Cuts 3,400 ‘Overpaid’ Workers:
Circuit City fired 3,400 employees in stores across the country yesterday, saying they were making too much money and would be replaced by new hires willing to work for less.
The company said the dismissals had nothing to do with performance but were part of a larger effort to improve the bottom line. The firings represent about 9 percent of the company’s in-store workforce of 40,000.
“Retail is very competitive and store operations just have to contain their costs,” said Jim Babb, a Circuit City spokesman. “We deeply regret the negative impact that was had on these folks. It was no fault of theirs.”
Steven Pearlstein summed it up nicely Attempts to Trim the Fat Merely Cut at the Meat:
But if retail is as competitive as Babb says, you’d think a merchant might want to keep its best salespeople — you know, the ones who know the most and have records of selling the most. That would be particularly true at stores where customers have lots of questions that need answering — for example, those at a chain that sells major home appliances, flat-screen TVs and digital cameras.
Let me pull a Jim Cramer here — SELL NOW. They obviously don’t have clue and are grasping at straws.
Opps — too late. Wall Street has already told us what it thinks. Circuit City dropped over 4% yesterday.