Sometimes franchisees hire store managers--have to. IIRC, all the Woodcraft
stores in Texas (5?) are owned by one guy. Ain't no way he's going to manage
You're probably right, though. It does seem that Rockler would ditch the
manager if he's screwing the store up, but a chain that is small but national
may have difficulty in keeping good local control and hiring replacements. Fire
the guy now, for example, and can't hire a replacement for 2-3 months (unlikely
in today's economy, but stranger things have happened) and the store might go
completely belly up, especially if hes already annoyed a large enough group of
I'm not sure any franchise seller is going to admit that control is out of
their hands if there is a problem with the store. Probably an individual
decision by the corporate person. But I did state that I wasn't absolutely
certain Rockler was francising stores. They may all be corporate owned, as the
Lee Valley stores are, which could account for their slower expansion into
markets than Woodcraft's.
You ALWAYS get something in return, if nothing more than the satisfaction of
knowing you've done good.
"It is not strange... to mistake change for progress." Millard Fillmore
Just FYI - All Rockler stores are company-owned.
And here's some more Rockler secrets:
1. The retail stores stock less products than the catalog because of
the limited space they have within the four walls.
2. The catalog lists less products than the Internet site because of
the cost of printing and postage.
3. The internet displays the most items (over 10,000 and growing).
So if you're looking for that hard-to-find thingy you just have to
have to finish your project, check Rockler.com first. Then, call the
store to make sure it's in stock before making the drive. Or, skip the
drive, order online, and spend more quality time in the shop ;-)
Rockler Internet Director
On 7 Apr 2004 09:10:09 -0700, firstname.lastname@example.org (Scott Ekman)
Great info. I finally got a chance to visit your new store in Houston
today. I was a little disappointed at the lack of power tools
(especially table saws - 1 only) but impressed with the selection of
other goodies). I was especially impressed with the service - greeted
warmly and promptly with an offer to provide any info I needed (wish I
had gotten the guy's name). This is the exact opposite of your
competitor on Hwy. 290 - spent 45 minutes looking around without a
Howdy-Do. 3 guesses where I'll do my shopping???
Scott, this all got started because of someone trying to buy an item
that was previously bought in one of the stores, under cabinet lighting.
More over, there wasn't even replacement bulbs for those who already
owned the product. The space was still in the store filled with this and
that when the item apparently could still be there AND other customers
had been complaining at that store about this kind of stuff.
It's hard to think that ALL the books, knobs, and other little do-dads
sell so much better than lighting things so that lighting and
replacement parts are not in the store in any form of representation.
Sure one can go to the catalog or online, that's obvious but with a
store this size, and having bought the stuff there before...well you get
Yo're totally right and correct!
However, that doesn't mean that what they're doing is good management
either. I hope you don't think that just because it's their choice,
whatever they do, it is always good management. In this case, didn't the
original poster say other customers had been complaining too?
Seems to me that so many,many places have thrown out the notion that the
"customer is always right" and favored a "we'll do what we want and
you'll like it" approach. Maybe that's why a place like Lee Valley is so
liked since they seem to be so customer oriented.
What the OP related about other customers was rather suspect. It may or may
not have been the case. There are plenty of cases of poor management but,
ultimately, that is the store's problem as the customer can always go
That they have and, as shopping is now considered a sport, people put up
Maybe that's why a place like Lee Valley is so
I was relating what the SA said about other customers having problems of
a similar nature. He was also complaining about the new guy in
management (who also was the one who got rid of the lighting he said)
having made other similar decisions and that is what customers were
complaining about and it was inhibiting him(he felt) in doing his job so
he was quitting.
You can call the SA,"suspect" and perhaps he embellished a bit, but I
doubt it's a fabrication either. Which is to say, the truth is in the
middle, with the SA being more right than wrong.
And that's where the problem begins. When customers are too
lilly-livered to stand up and be counted, then they deserve to have
their shopping be a sport rather than a "service to the customer"
That's also why so much in this wonderful country is going downhill. No
one wants to stand and be counted. I suppose that's because they're
And it's rare because of the customers lack of feedback. If these folks
realized that customers were upset, things might change. I told Rockler
to take me off the mailing list. I will go there if there is no other
source, but I will try my darndest to shop elsewhere.
Problem is everyone is standing, demanding to be counted and _served_ in
When it goes from shopping, where they refuse to vote with their feet or
fingers, to the job, where they do only what's in the contract language,
then it's really economic disaster.
The right not to be inconvenienced must be something the Supreme Court could
Well George, I've run several businesses and owned one. I adheared to
one philosophy...THE CUSTOMER IS ALWAYS RIGHT.
When you're a service business, you have a responsibility to those
customers. Rockler appears to be abdicating that according to the SA to
Like many you haven't heard Rockler's pov, and you automagically make
them right. How rich.
Doug, I think you've missed my point. As I walked around that store,
there were literally dozens of items, books, knobs, hinges, tools and
other items that I'd have a very, very hard time believing sell better
than the UC lighting, to the point that the lighting had to go. More,
the lighting section did not have anything new, but was a mix of various
I'd be a bit more accpeting if there were at least repair parts-bulbs
for one, but there aren't. At least you'd feel like they were trying.
This combined with the comments of the SA who was quitting seem to
indicate a trend there, less customer service. After all, the SA was the
one commenting that other customers were also ticked, not just me. That
was also in my conversation with the corporate offices who admitted
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