In many ways, it is a matter of expectations. That is why I am rarely
disappointed at HD. I don't expect much. In a couple of areas - paints and
tools - there are several older guys who are pretty knowledgeable and
helpful And it has resulted in some major purchases (table saw, air
compressor, nail guns). In other areas, I know not to ask anything beyond
"do you carry xyz?"
For anything beyond commodities in the electrical and plumbing areas, I got
to specialty stores. The same for more specialized woodworking
tools/supplies and any wood products other than "2 by" lumber and plywood.
What bothers me is that they don't support the product liens that they sell.
I was in HD recently looking for replacements washers for a Delta faucet. I
bought the faucet from them a few years ago. They still carry a similar
product. But when I couldn't find the replacement washers among a wall of
faucet repair items, the assistant told me that they don't stock Delta parts
and I should order it from Delta's web site.
I agree, but I don't think that is is so much tell customers what to buy as
it is that they focus so intensely on immediate profit. If a product line is
not moving, it is off the shelves very quickly.
I think the thing that pisses me off the most about the whole Home
Depot phenom is that people actually get mad about it. Simple rule of
capitalism, something people don't quite remember once they leave their
six-figure job for the week - YOU GET EXACTLY WHAT YOU PAY FOR. If
you're going to pay someone (frequently people with less-than-stellar
skills and abilities) minimum wage to do a job, you're not going to get
much out of them. I often see associates (I lay tile part-time) on the
phone, hanging around in groups, and generally being unhelpful.
Doesn't bother me at all when I realize that they're being paid minimum
wage. If you want people to be great at their jobs, give them a reason
to do them well. But that brings us back to the roots of capitalism
once again . . .
Also, you can't rightly complain about the quailty/tier of merchandise.
It's like Wal-Mart. If you want high-quality goods, go somewhere that
actually takes pride in the product over the profits.
Aside from all that stuff, I don't like the way HD's are laid out. The
plywood aisles are too narrow - they should just take the middle 3 or 4
rows of the store and blow them out to all lumber. That would be
amazing. Lumber, underlayments, ductwork, major plumbing pieces right
in the middle with an express lane or two to round it out.
I guess they'd need to put some profits toward improving the actual
company, though . . .
Prices are too high and you dont carry alot of common stuff. Too much
catering to high end fancy stuff. For example, I wanted some common
replacement wood frame barn windows. All HD had were costly vinyl
windows with all sorts of features that I did not need.
I find Menards much more to my liking, much more geared to the average
farmer or homeowner, and better priced too.
An "associate" is an entry-level attorney with a median salary of
$100,000 - they don't know how to use caps either.
On to some peeves:
Does some monkey always have to always have to close off the *only*
aisle that has what I drove all the way here to buy with those silly
toddler gates "for my safety"?
And when I asked about the common size Shop-Vac bags that were out of
stock, the guy checked the computer and found they weren't even on
order. It seems, he said, that corporate decides how many of certain
items a store needs, so they have too much of some stuff, not enough of
All the tools, hardware, and gadgets you sell come in BOXES, right?
So why not a stack of empty boxes here and there so I can package all
the small items I need like caulk and pipe fittings and other stuff that
rolls off the bottom shelf of the lumber cart I'm transporting 2x10s to
the checkout with?
HD is set up for either large items that fit the lumber carts, or small
shopping cart stuff - but I always buy BOTH at the same time!
And speaking of all those boxes that undoubtedly get consigned to the
crusher, how about recycling a few at the checkout - joist hangers are
the natural enemy of those useless plastic bags you people try to pack
A bookstore customer of mine gets books from a wholesaler delivered daily -
from ten to as many as 75 standard-sized boxes of books per day.
They knock the boxes down, place them in an old poster rack, and sell them
for fifty cents each.
The money goes into a Christmas Party fund for the employees. Every year, a
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