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So I had a bit of a strange experience at the Lego store

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So I went on a trip today and saw the Lego store in a shopping mall. I went to this same store back in 2011 and I thought I would go in there and look at the prices and have a quick browse. Except this was different. Normally speaking in Britain when you enter a store you will normally enter with no contact from the employees. You will simply walk in and start looking in the isles. The employees will only approach you if you've been in the same isle for a while or if you ask them. It was like this when I went to the same store in 2011. I went in, browsed in silence, found what I wanted and took it to the cashier (with some small talk). However when I went in this time there was a guy at the entrance to greet you. I thought this was a bit odd but I shrugged it off. So I looked around for a few minutes until I got to the star wars section. I looked at the constraction figures a bit until one of the employees approached me and very enthusiastically (either these people were told to act or they REALLY enjoyed their jobs) asked me about what sets I was interested in. What was interesting was that when I mentioned I liked the buildable action figures she pointed at the brickheadz. The cheapest option available. When I mentioned I was just browsing and had no money they all quickly abandoned me. 

 

From what I hear this is apparently what American store clerks are like. Where they greet you at the doors and ask if you need anything all the time. Apparently it's referred to as "the customer is king". I'm sure Americans might find it strange that I found this disturbing but you have to understand I've been in many places on this island and ever since I was born I've gotten the same treatment. I browse in silence and if I see something I want I buy it. Maybe on occasion talk to the employees a little and go about my day. I was honestly so disturbed by the experience I went and checked other toy stores in the same area to see if it was a regional thing. I didn't receive this kind of treatment. I was allowed to browse and leave in peace. I found it simply uncomfortable.

 

Which also makes me wonder if they did this because they're desperate for sales. That's the only way I could make sense of it. Go with this weird enthusiasm and tone of voice in the hopes of driving sales. Seeing as I got the normal treatment when I was in this store in 2011. It makes me kinda worry about Lego's financial state if it got to this point.

 

Maybe I am looking way too deeply into it. But in this country that sort of stuff doesn't really happen. I never had this kind of shopping experience until today.

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As an American I can say we get creepy out by the happy treatment just like everybody else.

We're just use to it because it is ingrained in our culture.

 

To answer your question about if there desperate for sales I would guess no. Basically the "customer is king" attitude steams from the US extreme capitalism mindset of maximising profits even if your making a good profit.

 

I would guess this is the case.

I do find it odd this did happend in England though.

Edited by Rassilon (TTL)
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I know it's policy in the American LBR stores to greet everyone and check in on folks. Maybe it's become policy over there too?

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As an American I can say we get creepy out by the happy treatment just like everybody else.

We're just use to it because it is ingrained in our culture.

 

To answer your question about if there desperate for sales I would guess no. Basically the "customer is king" attitude steams from the US extreme capitalism mindset of maximising profits even if your making a good profit.

 

I would guess this is the case.

I do find it odd this did happend in England though.

Yeah I just couldn't think of any other reason. None of the other stores did this. No stores where kids would go would do this. There was definitely something off about that store. Thing is I have no idea how long they've been doing this. I went there once in 2011 and this was first (and probably last) visit in 7 years. I just find it strange that this starts right as Lego's earnings go down.


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Worth noting that part of the reason for "greeters" at stores, besides making the customer feel welcome, is to discourage theft. People are less likely to try and sneak off with unpurchased product if they know they have the employees' attention from the moment they enter the store.

 

Never realized this phenomenon was not common in the UK… certainly when I went to Hamley's in London this past January, I was greeted by employees as soon as I entered the store, but perhaps this is part of that store's premium experience (or perhaps because I stood out as a foreigner/tourist they thought I'd need some guidance on how to find things in the store).

 

I definitely wouldn't interpret this as any kind of desperation for sales. It's just the way things often are over here.

Edited by Aanchir
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I'm in England too but haven't been to a Lego store since 2015. When I went there no employees greeted me but they stood around in case someone needed assistance. I did end up asking a worker about the build a minifigure thing but nothing else.

 

Who knows why that happened to you. Who knows, maybe that particular employee had just had an arguement with the manager and want to joke around or something.

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Worth noting that part of the reason for "greeters" at stores, besides making the customer feel welcome, is to discourage theft. People are less likely to try and sneak off with unpurchased product if they know they have the employees' attention from the moment they enter the store.

 

Never realized this phenomenon was not common in the UK… certainly when I went to Hamley's in London this past January, I was greeted by employees as soon as I entered the store, but perhaps this is part of that store's premium experience (or perhaps because I stood out as a foreigner/tourist they thought I'd need some guidance on how to find things in the store).

 

I definitely wouldn't interpret this as any kind of desperation for sales. It's just the way things often are over here.

I don't want to name the store (I don't want anyone losing their jobs). But it was in a major tourist area. They talked to me with this strange enthusiastic and higher than usual tone of voice that I had never heard prior to that day. It wasn't the casual tone that you might hear if the store is in a very enclosed space.


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Yup, that happens in America all the time. Corporations like to show a pretty face to customers meanwhile committing horrible atrocities against human kind in the name of profit (Seriously, I can't believe Coca Cola hired DEATH SQUADS. That's the work of Philip K. Dick.).

 

That's not to say LEGO is trying to resurrect the anti-christ or whatever, just that they're participating in standard practices common with large corporations following the twisted ideology of American capitalism. In many ways they're probably one of the better companies that actually has ideals and cares, such as healthy play for children. However the standard company likes to butter up the customer to make them feel special and entitled. It's super common to see consumers complain about insignificant things and demand to see managers because they know that the company ethos is always "customers first." Though this mentality is designed to make the customer feel welcome and empowered, it really operates to mask greedy intentions--which is always maximum uninhibited profit. In US business schools economic/business morality is barely given any focus and is made secondary to teaching dehumaninizing methods of business for the sake of individual gain under the justification of "free enterprise."

 

In stores appearance is everything, and an employee can easily get in trouble or fired for showing any sort of resistance to customers, even abusive ones who scream and act manipulative because the system has also taught them that they are entitled and important. Companies act desperate for the love of their customers because false empowerment is the easiest way to control people. Think about how every commercial you've ever seen for a product portrays people as smiling and joyous rather than the grim reality that most of the life of the consumer is mundane and empty. Appearances are everything because the human brain is easily susceptible to the faults of their own senses.

 

Get me out of here... :guilty:

Edited by Banana Gunz
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I worked for four years in a grocery store that prided itself on its customer service, and we had a "ten foot, ten second" rule: say hello to any customer within ten feet of you within ten seconds. I've read about how in places like Eastern Europe it's typical to walk into a store and an employee will bluntly say, if anything, something like, "What do you want?" Born and raised in the US, I have to say it's hard for me to really imagine that going on. American consumer culture revolves around "the customer is always right." The SpongeBob joke that "we will never deny a guest even the most ridiculous request" is comical not so much because it's an exaggeration of how things work here so much as it's unusually forward about it.

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`Huh, coming from the US I was surprised that the Lego Store employees in the UK don't greet you as soon as you arrive at the store. That said, maybe the change could be to discourage theft?

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