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(WBUR Boston)   "The Market Basket debacle and what it means for the American Worker" Time to pull yourselves up by your bootstraps and demand better pay and CEOs that give a damn about their workers   (onpoint.wbur.org) divider line 43
    More: Interesting, The Market, MIT Sloan School of Management, American workers, supermarket chains  
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1851 clicks; posted to Business » on 06 Aug 2014 at 5:02 PM (5 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



43 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2014-08-06 04:03:45 PM
The circuses are probably going to start breaking down before people get really upset.  Remember, Marie Antoinette was the classic Harvard Business school case study.
 
2014-08-06 05:06:32 PM
Long term profits will always trump short term profits.  $10K today or $100K by next week?
 
2014-08-06 05:25:13 PM

Smeggy Smurf: Long term profits will always trump short term profits.  $10K today or $100K by next week?


That means I have to support your operation through next week.  The shareholders won't stand for that.  It's better for all of us if I just shoot you and collect $50k in life insurance tomorrow.
 
2014-08-06 05:34:58 PM

Smeggy Smurf: Long term profits will always trump short term profits.  $10K today or $100K by next week?


You mean I have to wait a whole week, thats like forever!
 
2014-08-06 05:41:54 PM
This should be the rule not the exception.

It's pathetic that managerial talent is so scarce in this country that workers threaten the company to keep one of the good ones. From what I understand the guy just treated everyone decent and had a head for business so that they made enough money to avoid layoffs. Thats all. He wasnt the Wolf of Wallstreet or anything.

Apparently being a human being that's good at their job is just too much to ask from management these days.
 
2014-08-06 05:50:00 PM
Either way, business textbook writers are probably already working this into their next editions.  It's a case study for horrible public relations taken to 11.
 
2014-08-06 05:52:13 PM
The CEO will just order HR to fire all of the ones that complain and replace them with me people off the street or dump the workload on existing (remaining) employees and call it "reorganization" or "downsizing" while raking in billions from stock prices.
 
2014-08-06 05:59:08 PM

vegas_greaser: The CEO will just order HR to fire all of the ones that complain and replace them with me people off the street or dump the workload on existing (remaining) employees and call it "reorganization" or "downsizing" while raking in billions from stock prices.


If that's their plan, it doesn't seem to be working, assuming that they were counting on the reorganization to raise stock prices.

If you're in the business of selling products, not selling those products tends to hurt the bottom line.
 
2014-08-06 06:46:54 PM
And now the new co-CEO has forbidden all managers from talking to any government officials without prior approval.

Somehow, this is going to end up getting even worse before this whole mess is over.
 
2014-08-06 06:50:16 PM

King Something: vegas_greaser: The CEO will just order HR to fire all of the ones that complain and replace them with me people off the street or dump the workload on existing (remaining) employees and call it "reorganization" or "downsizing" while raking in billions from stock prices.


If that's their plan, it doesn't seem to be working, assuming that they were counting on the reorganization to raise stock prices.


Hell, it isn't even working to replace employees. Mainly because there really aren't too many workers left actually working at MB, and most of the pool that would replace them is overwhelmingly in Arthur T's favor and isn't willing to cross the imaginary picket line.
 
2014-08-06 06:51:42 PM

NeoCortex42: And now the new co-CEO has forbidden all managers from talking to any government officials without prior approval.


And just like that, 68 stores don't have managers tomorrow, and 68 freshly-unemployed people will have retained lawyers and contacted Martha Coakley and Elizabeth Warren.
 
2014-08-06 06:55:01 PM
As soon as companies start getting CEOs that stand up for their employees more than they do their shareholders, sure. Otherwise, CEOs don't give a damn about their employees. They are expendable. Everyone from the mailroom clerk to a CTO can be replaced, and anyone in between will be fired in order to preserve profits, all while the Board of Directors gives that same CEO a massive bonus for saving company money by said firings.

Otherwise, this isn't the start of some workplace revolution. Asshat CEOs, hostile unions and greedy shareholders will never ever go away.
 
2014-08-06 06:56:43 PM

IlGreven: NeoCortex42: And now the new co-CEO has forbidden all managers from talking to any government officials without prior approval.

And just like that, 68 stores don't have managers tomorrow, and 68 freshly-unemployed people will have retained lawyers and contacted Martha Coakley and Elizabeth Warren.


I'm actually shocked that the AGs of MA and NH (who have already told MB that they were watching how they were treating fired employees) haven't publicly laid the smackdown on them for complaints made by fired employees saying they've been denied pay for accrued leave and sick time. Actually, I think I'm more shocked that MB was ballsy enough to do such things only days after getting a public warning from the AGs
 
2014-08-06 07:24:07 PM
It's funny this story has all the leftwinger's heads exploding. It a monkey wrench in their EVIL CEO's narrative.
 
2014-08-06 07:53:30 PM

Spare Me: It's funny this story has all the leftwinger's heads exploding. It a monkey wrench in their EVIL CEO's narrative.


Actually it's a fantastic example of the way "leftwingers" would like to see businesses run: People before profits. No one's head is exploding.
 
2014-08-06 07:54:13 PM

Spare Me: It's funny this story has all the leftwinger's heads exploding. It a monkey wrench in their EVIL CEO's narrative.


Nice bait.  I'll take it.  Arthur T is the exception, not the rule, when it comes to how a CEO can and should act in accordance to their company.  The CEO of the company I work for is very similar, alongside other companies like Costco and Southwest.  I don't believe that the majority of sensible Liberal individuals believe that every CEO of every company is a wicked, money-hungry SOB who puts profits above his employees and customers.  However, in this day and age, that has become the norm.  That is what people expect from a CEO, so they set themselves up to be pleasantly surprised when you find someone like Arthur T, who took the time to not only get to know his day-to-day employees, the ones that make the company run and who create a large portion of the incentive for the customer to return day after day, but also take care of them by providing adequate wages and benefits.  The entire Market Basket situation is evidence of what happens when you push too far in the name of profit.  Now, the Board, the new CEOs, and Arthur S are reaping what they sow.  And the worst part is, that unless their old CEO comes back in to play, the Board will likely sell off stores (or the entire company) to minimize losses to their own bottom line at the expense of their workers, the people the ensured that those stores were opened, stocked, and ready to go to service the customer.  It doesn't threaten the liberal narrative about corporate greed, it reinforces it and it points out what can happen when you have employees who are happy and productive and what happens when you try to tighten their belts for them.  The bottom line is this is an example of privatization of profit and socialization of loss in action.  There are plenty of other companies who would do themselves a service to pay attention to it and learn from Market Basket's missteps.  People will only take so much abuse.
 
2014-08-06 08:00:44 PM
radicalunjobbing.files.wordpress.com
 
2014-08-06 08:02:35 PM

Spare Me: It's funny this story has all the leftwinger's heads exploding. It a monkey wrench in their EVIL CEO's narrative.


How so? Because they guy who took the hostile takeover fits it perfectly.
 
2014-08-06 08:06:47 PM

sherkaner: Spare Me: It's funny this story has all the leftwinger's heads exploding. It a monkey wrench in their EVIL CEO's narrative.

Actually it's a fantastic example of the way "leftwingers" would like to see businesses run: People before profits. No one's head is exploding.


More appropriately, people AND profits.  MB under Artie T was proof that you could have both.
 
2014-08-06 08:16:33 PM

soze: sherkaner: Spare Me: It's funny this story has all the leftwinger's heads exploding. It a monkey wrench in their EVIL CEO's narrative.

Actually it's a fantastic example of the way "leftwingers" would like to see businesses run: People before profits. No one's head is exploding.

More appropriately, people AND profits.  MB under Artie T was proof that you could have both.


That's what's driving the cons nuts about this story: it disproves the theory that you have to treat people like shiat to make money.
 
2014-08-06 08:16:50 PM

trotsky: Spare Me: It's funny this story has all the leftwinger's heads exploding. It a monkey wrench in their EVIL CEO's narrative.

How so? Because they guy who took the hostile takeover fits it perfectly.


A lot of them have these imaginary head-puppets that do things in their heads. Then they come here and try to tell us that these things really happened.
 
2014-08-06 08:36:42 PM
The should be in future Marketing books under the chapter: "How to completely fark up a PR campaign.".
 
2014-08-06 09:05:48 PM
freefall.purrsia.com
 
2014-08-06 09:17:43 PM

dustman81: The should be in future Marketing books under the chapter: "How to completely fark up a PR campaign.".


Hell, I'd be surprised if they haven't started writing it in the next editions already.  Unless, of course, you take into account that it's not a bad PR campaign, it's actually Arthur Shiathead trying to kill the company to spite his better-liked cousin.

\this whole thing, seriously, sounds like the plot to at least a dozen 80s movies
\\just wondering who's playing the sassy checkout girl or the uber-cool stockboy who are going to save it all and publicly embarass the evil CEO in a fantastic montage of hijinks and hilarity
 
2014-08-06 09:40:24 PM

FriarReb98: \this whole thing, seriously, sounds like the plot to at least a dozen 80s movies
\\just wondering who's playing the sassy checkout girl or the uber-cool stockboy who are going to save it all and publicly embarass the evil CEO in a fantastic montage of hijinks and hilarity


At this point I wouldn't be surprised if some lowly staff member starts cleaning out Arthur T's office, only to accidentally knock the portrait of grandfather Demoulas off the wall, revealing the real will that states Arthur T's side of the family owns everything.
 
2014-08-06 09:44:17 PM

RoxtarRyan: As soon as companies start getting CEOs that stand up for their employees more than they do their shareholders, sure.


Just in time for you to complain about the lack of performance in your 401(k). You'll still be biatching that the 1% are robbing you blind.
 
2014-08-06 09:51:35 PM

DrPainMD: RoxtarRyan: As soon as companies start getting CEOs that stand up for their employees more than they do their shareholders, sure.

Just in time for you to complain about the lack of performance in your 401(k). You'll still be biatching that the 1% are robbing you blind.


I wouldn't be complaining about my 401k performance if we would stop raiding Social Security, or if vulture corporate raiders would stop farking over pension funds.

/just spent two hours tonight trying to figure out how to consolidate my dormant 401k's.  Seriously, f this noise.
 
2014-08-06 10:10:00 PM

sherkaner: Spare Me: It's funny this story has all the leftwinger's heads exploding. It a monkey wrench in their EVIL CEO's narrative.

Actually it's a fantastic example of the way "leftwingers" would like to see businesses run: People before profits. No one's head is exploding.


And as more of a righty, I wish more CEOs acted this way too. We would all be better off.  I am glad that the corrupt, worthless union was shown the door too. They tried to intervene but they would have already lost this battle in the court of public opinion. It kind of shows that we may not need unions to organize.
 
2014-08-06 11:31:58 PM

SphericalTime: The circuses are probably going to start breaking down before people get really upset.  Remember, Marie Antoinette was the classic Harvard Business school case study.


What is the inherit problem in a system that satisfies a person's basic needs and provides them leisure?
 
2014-08-06 11:32:34 PM
blah... inherent.
 
2014-08-07 12:07:03 AM

groppet: Smeggy Smurf: Long term profits will always trump short term profits.  $10K today or $100K by next week?

You mean I have to wait a whole week, thats like forever!


I don't care about your week.  I want my dividends to be just as good next week as next month as next year.
 
2014-08-07 12:26:48 AM

Smeggy Smurf: groppet: Smeggy Smurf: Long term profits will always trump short term profits.  $10K today or $100K by next week?

You mean I have to wait a whole week, thats like forever!

I don't care about your week.  I want my dividends to be just as good next week as next month as next year.


So you're into sustainable, long-term profits over raiding the corporate larder for a pump-and-dump payout?  Sweet!  Glad we're on the same page here.
 
2014-08-07 12:52:50 AM

DrPainMD: RoxtarRyan: As soon as companies start getting CEOs that stand up for their employees more than they do their shareholders, sure.

Just in time for you to complain about the lack of performance in your 401(k). You'll still be biatching that the 1% are robbing you blind.


I work for a company that is awesome and small enough that we don't have these problems. A company like Aetna that my friend worked at until late last year? The CEO pushed for laying off 300 IT personnel, or rather, outsource them to Xerox because Aetna suffered a bad year and had to make up for losses. Xerox offered the staff lower pay and benefits if they came on board, took 2/3 of them, and fired them a week before Christmas to further outsource the work to Manilla. The CEO, CTO and other execs each got an additional multimillion dollar bonus that year (on top of their yearly raise of however many hundreds of thousands) for that move. So yeah, my heart ain't going to start bleeding for these CEOs, board members or executives who have their feelings hurt that they have a bad rap, just as I'm sure they are weeping themselves to sleep on top of their mountains of money.

There are exceptions, obviously, like my CEO, and that business owner who, a couple years ago, continued to pay his employees even though his business had to close (can't recall, there was a story here on Fark with the Hero tag a while back). But it appears as if the line between CEOs/business owners who are beloved by employees and those who are looked upon with scorn starts to get placed where other parties get involved, like aforementioned greedy stock holders or hostile unions who try to make power plays causing overall tension in the company and reducing the given value of the individual employees.
 
2014-08-07 12:58:48 AM

DrPainMD: Just in time for you to complain about the lack of performance in your 401(k). You'll still be biatching that the 1% are robbing you blind.


What about running a company to treat employees well would hurt 401(k) performance?
 
2014-08-07 05:00:03 AM

WhyteRaven74: DrPainMD: Just in time for you to complain about the lack of performance in your 401(k). You'll still be biatching that the 1% are robbing you blind.

What about running a company to treat employees well would hurt 401(k) performance?


It doesn't. What it hurts is his sense of the way the universe should be.
 
2014-08-07 05:54:26 AM
Nemo's Brother: derp

So boring.
 
2014-08-07 06:52:09 AM

ghare: Nemo's Brother: derp

So boring.


Yeah, nemo's brother derp isnt that exciting
 
2014-08-07 07:40:42 AM

WhyteRaven74: DrPainMD: Just in time for you to complain about the lack of performance in your 401(k). You'll still be biatching that the 1% are robbing you blind.

What about running a company to treat employees well would hurt 401(k) performance?


It "hurts" the shareholders because they aren't getting an extra $0.05 / share payout because you're far too generous to your employees.

I've said this before but it's worth saying again:

Fifty years ago if you went around and asked company CEOs "Who is the most important person in your organization?" I would guarantee about 40% would have answered "the customer" and another 40% "our employees."  Fifty years ago stocks were bought as long term investments and grew as long term profits as the company grew.

If you ask that question today, 95% of them will say "our shareholders."  This is a tenet drummed into the heads of these business people in every single business textbook the colleges use.  Upsetting your shareholders is BAD and your stock will instantly tank.  Today, stocks are flipped on percentages of a penny profits by computers algorithms.

Artie T. is definitely old school.  His company was making a healthy profit AND providing low costs for customers and good wages and benefits for happy employees.

Artie S. is definitely hoping to wring every dime out of the company by doing the opposite.
 
2014-08-07 07:52:17 AM

DrPainMD: RoxtarRyan: As soon as companies start getting CEOs that stand up for their employees more than they do their shareholders, sure.

Just in time for you to complain about the lack of performance in your 401(k). You'll still be biatching that the 1% are robbing you blind.


Last time I checked the average american's salary and benefits are a significantly larger factor in their lifetime income than a couple percent off their 401k.

Unless a person is independently wealthy and living off capital gains they would benefit more from an increase in salary, benefits, and employment stability than a couple points on their investments.

Doubly so for cashiers and store clerks at a grocery store.

So yeah - it'd work out exceptionally well for everyone not in the top 5%. And most of them too.
 
kab
2014-08-07 09:25:31 AM

DrPainMD: Just in time for you to complain about the lack of performance in your 401(k).


Yes, we should all be thankful that employees are second rate behind shareholders.
 
2014-08-07 09:38:03 AM

some_beer_drinker: [radicalunjobbing.files.wordpress.com image 452x433]


interesting
 
2014-08-07 01:16:24 PM

Incontinent_dog_and_monkey_rodeo: soze: sherkaner: Spare Me: It's funny this story has all the leftwinger's heads exploding. It a monkey wrench in their EVIL CEO's narrative.

Actually it's a fantastic example of the way "leftwingers" would like to see businesses run: People before profits. No one's head is exploding.

More appropriately, people AND profits.  MB under Artie T was proof that you could have both.

That's what's driving the cons nuts about this story: it disproves the theory that you have to treat people like shiat to make money.


I also think they're mad because they know, deep down, that their little theory is riddled with holes. For example, Henry Ford disproved their "you have to treat people like shiat to make money" theory 100 years ago.
 
2014-08-08 12:13:13 AM

HMS_Blinkin: Incontinent_dog_and_monkey_rodeo: soze: sherkaner: Spare Me: It's funny this story has all the leftwinger's heads exploding. It a monkey wrench in their EVIL CEO's narrative.

Actually it's a fantastic example of the way "leftwingers" would like to see businesses run: People before profits. No one's head is exploding.

More appropriately, people AND profits.  MB under Artie T was proof that you could have both.

That's what's driving the cons nuts about this story: it disproves the theory that you have to treat people like shiat to make money.

I also think they're mad because they know, deep down, that their little theory is riddled with holes. For example, Henry Ford disproved their "you have to treat people like shiat to make money" theory 100 years ago.


also, antisemitism is really cool.
 
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