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ChesneySwoopingHawks
10-09-2009, 13:24
Trade Secrets

Dissillusioned ex-staff member here, I'm sure you've heard all this before but thought I'd drop my opinions and experiences in. I worked in a UK store in a busy shopping mall for two years. I left this time last year to go back to University, thought I'd share some stuff with you. I know I am not the only staff or ex-staff posting here.

I think the main reason above any other, including credit crunch or whatever that Games Workshop as a business are underacheiving is the atmosphere in the stores. There are other companies that produce (often better) models and rule systems but Workshop is the brand played by 99% of gamers, in my experience anyway. This is because there is a shop on every high street. This is the main advantage GW have over their competetors. When I first got the job it was because the previous staff had all walked out, they were of the sort of hardcore veteran variety. All in their late twenties or early thirties they produced a high standard of painting and gaming but didn't sell well. They had an unpopular manager and as a result all walked. Workshop then employed four new staff, all of us in our first full time job, all of us younger than 22. The emphasis changed in the store from hobby to sales and they shipped in a dynamic young new manager (second choice for the role after the original, older guy left to earn 40 grand a year working at a garden centre)

So the store was a really upbeat place to be, we ran a record number of intro games and hit sales targets the previous lot couldn't. We did this by talking to everyone who came in the shop. We didn't harrass them or push new products into their arms, we just talked to them about the hobby. This meant that our shop was a good place to come and because of it's late opening (9pm) was always full of at least a dozen people at all times. Literaly hundreds came to our bigger events days, such as apocolypse release. We let customers use our paints and tools, we ran games non stop, let customers run campaigns, build terrain and even paint for the store armies if they wanted to. It was all very idyllic! The head honchos were impressed.

Things started to go wrong when the store was upgraded in it's status (there are four types of store in my memory, the more successful you are the more you get upgraded, I think they are called 1st company, 2nd company etc) The bosses in Nottingham clearly had noticed our shop was a money spinner and wanted more out of us. Our manager got a pay rise, we didn't. (Boo hoo, I hear you cry, sarcastically) I know it is common practice for this to happen in retail but it only had a negative effect. At the time (and I doubt it is much different now, a year later) I earned 11,800 a year before tax. This, by the way is next to nothing. I came home with 800 a month after tax and once you pay rent (350 quid) car insurance (70) petrol to work every day (40 a week) it leaves you with very little to buy food and luxuries with. So, we worked extremely hard for long hours (10 til 9 opening times plus weekends) with two days off a week, which were never weekends. We broke sales targets and smashed intro game targets and our manager, not us got a pay rise. It would have only taken 50 quid or so, or even some vouchers for us to feel valued.

One of many outrages was when the 2008 catalogs came out. The company said that if we sold a certain amount we would all be able to choose a page of the catalogue and they'd send us those models for free. We sold literally hundreds of catalogues, almost double the target our boss processed the money wrongly and we ended up with a 'tough luck' from head office. Bitterness increases!

Also when Brown tried to battle the recession by lowering taxes the company had the cheek to pretend this 9p an hour or whatever it worked out as increase was 'a reward because we'd worked so hard'. No, it was a temporary change in how much tax we were paying.

Then over christmas the new push was at recruitment. This was the company buzzword. So we did loads of new hobbyist stuff and (you saw it coming!) neglected our veterans. The proper gamers didn't want to be in our shop anymore because we treated them badly. You couldn't come in and paint anymore, it was difficult to get a table because of displays and more intro boards and we stopped all the campaigns and customer run events. We had three eleven year olds booked in to play a Lord of the Rings tutorial, this was clearly more important than the twenty vets involved in a mordheim campaign! We also saved a few quid by not allowing people (unless they were painting their first space marine) to use our paints and tools. We were expressly instructed to ignore veteran moaning and only concentrate on new gamers.

So bitter veterans. Bitter staff. Bad atmosphere in the shops. We lost staff members who weren't replaced, leaving us with more work. A notoriously badly behaved 14 year old wasn't banned from the shop despite being violent to other kids and accusing a staff member of being a pedophile because his rich daddy dropped him off with twenty quid three times a week.

The dynamic young manager was poached by another high street shop and now earns twice as much, with less hassle, has more realistic promotion opportunities and probably gets weekends off too. Who can blame him. But the company loses another hardworking man. Everyone I worked with has now quit and they haven't re-staffed properly. They now have a manager who runs the shop purely as retail and not as a hobby centre (he actually asks people to leave if they are not buying anything!) And guess what, they are no longer a first company store anymore. They don't hit their sales or intro targets. If you go into the shop you get hassled by some desperate employee trying to hit his sales targets. Bitter veterans with no place to game. Bitter staff working for a pittance. Bitter Games Workshop as their empire falls around their ears.

The price rises don't help, as well as the needless collapse of the mail order system. But in my view a key part of the companies failings are in the store atmosphere and in the treatment of the staff.

I know I sound very bitter. I am sorry if I have offended anybody. If you went to this shop 2006-08 you can probably work out which one it is and who I am!

Charax
10-09-2009, 13:31
Doesn't sound like a lot has changed over the years. You have my sympathies (well,you don't work there any more, so should that be congratulations?)

ChesneySwoopingHawks
10-09-2009, 13:34
Some damaged goods fell into my bag and coincidentally I completed my blood angels army. A minor victory, I know. But satisfying.

Cuchulain84
10-09-2009, 13:36
Less than 12k a year? That alone takes the proverbial. I haven't been to a games workshop for many years but I could see the signs of it then, I can only imagine what it's like in there now.

Condottiere
10-09-2009, 13:48
If domination is sustained by presence, I doubt this strategy will work well in the States, where everything tends to get widely spread.

x-esiv-4c
10-09-2009, 13:50
Thanks for posting this. Made for an interesting read!

Putty
10-09-2009, 14:23
its a pity that the business side of GW fails horribly to do... business.

this would lead me to believe that the art & development side pretty much carry the company because without them, GW would have folded long ago.

Llew
10-09-2009, 14:43
Interesting post. There's probably a ton of valuable information that GW could glean from speaking with ex-staffers. Sadly, most of it probably wouldn't fit with GW's view of the world.

(Does anyone else find it wierd that, in countries where birth rates are falling below population replacement needs, GW is focused on getting "new blood"?)

Pleasurepain
10-09-2009, 14:50
(Does anyone else find it wierd that, in countries where birth rates are falling below population replacement needs, GW is focused on getting "new blood"?)

Not really. On an income/effort level you can probably very easily justify selling only starter packs to people who never come back. It's the most efficient business. The problem is that if you want to retain a large-scale operation, as well as a purely efficient one, you are dependent on a very large supply of potential wargamers.

Llew
10-09-2009, 15:09
You're missing the point: there are fewer and fewer kids. In other words, they're aiming their business model at a shrinking market.

You basically need a birth rate of 2.1 children per woman just to keep your population steady (not factoring immigration and so on.) The rate in the U.K. between 2000 and 2005 was reported around 1.66. Europe ranges between 1.87 (France) and down to barely above 1.

GW's churn-and-burn business model, as illustrated in the OP's job description, assumes that there are always more kids to sell to. And certainly there will always be *some* kids, but it looks like there will be fewer and fewer in the immediate future. And if it's taken for granted that wargaming is a niche hobby that only a tiny fraction of people will get into anyway, they're playing for a decreasing number of customers.

Personally, I'd rather lose my customers to old age and dementia. Heck, as a business man, I'd love to see the only way I lost a customer was through death. (Test of reading comprehension: I'm not saying I want them to die...I'm saying I want them to be customers for life.) I sure wouldn't want to depend on customers that may never show up.

Angelwing
10-09-2009, 15:10
Interesting read. Nothing much has changed in the 12 years since I left the company.
However there must be some positives (aside from loads of cheap toy soldiers). As this was your first full time job I'm sure you learnt some useful stuff about how a business runs, what it's like to be a disposable asset number and how to deal with negative issues in future employment. You also have some valuable work experience to add to your CV.

It's also another illustration of why customers shouldn't get too upset or rude with GW staffers. It's a below average job with the threat of 'disciplinary action' hanging over their heads if they don't fulfil targets.

Brother Loki
10-09-2009, 15:10
Less than 12k a year? That alone takes the proverbial.

That's pretty much universal in UK retail for anyone other than management. It's usually minimum wage, or minimum wage plus about 10p/hour if they want to advertise it as 'competitive pay'.

Nephilim of Sin
10-09-2009, 15:10
I guess I don't get it, really. Perhaps things are different in the states, but your story really is nothing unlike what I have experienced working for various retail corporations here. The problem is not with the company itself, but how companies in general are run.

I have been in the jobs were you have to meet the sales targets. And you do. Most of these are dependent on the 'new blood' aspect, as well, and somehow the companies expect you keep reaching their goals. So you do.

But then they find some other way to nickel and dime you, complaining about this and that. I remember one instance where I had single-handily exceeded the entire weeks goals for the store, not myself. In one night (yeah, I had one of 'those' moments). Which meant they expected me to do better the next week, and the week after. Not in the positive way, either, but in the 'you aren't pulling your weight anymore' way.

Another job I had more recently, around the time that minimum wage was announced to increase, decided to do three price-rises in six months, and justified it by saying that minimum wage was increasing. Okay... kinda defeats the point, but still...

Except that when the last price-hike went into effect, they lowered the hiring wage to what minimum wage was (the law still had another six months to go into effect), which meant that someone being hired in would be around $2 less/hour than someone hired the week before. So, to make that work, they began to get rid of the employees who were getting paid more (based on the previous wage), so there wouldn't be so much of a gap. Think about that.... because that meant that when the law went into effect, people in management who had survived the 'cleansing' would be making about or equal to what new-hires would be making due to the law...

When I met that sales goal, even as a manager, it was my boss who got the bonus, not anyone on the staff. Where my woman works, they had a 'anti-union' meeting to satiate the staff concerning their bonuses. When inquired about the bonus the staff would be receiving, it was said to still be 'in the process of being calculated'. The week after the meeting, it was finally revealed that the company had changed the criteria on which bonuses were awarded (which would have caused some problems during the meeting), so all employees had missed their bonus by 1 point, where as under the previous criteria, they would have been awarded it.

It sounds like GW is no worse than any of these companies. Even in management, under both of these companies I was making about or less than $15k a year, which is hardly a 'living wage', and yet had to deal with just about every other point that you brought up, but without the benefits that something like GW would have provided.

Orktavius
10-09-2009, 15:11
Wow....this seems like the complete opposite of the Halifax GW store I game at currently *Halifax, Nova Scotia in Canada....I know there's a Halifax somewhere in Britain don't want people confused* Yes the staff there will talk to just about everyone that comes in the door about the hobby attempting to reach sales targets. However as someone with a background in sales and business I do not consider them to be pushy about it. They very much take the consultive approach in my mind to sales in that they try to help you pick something you'd enjoy. That being said they do tend to push the starter sets which I think is appropriate as you can run it as basically a board game if you don't really want to get into the hobby itself or to just get a handle on the rules and what not. This is probably the reason this GW store is constantly being bombarded with question from the mall they lease the space with as to how they make so much bloody money there as well as being one of the most profitable GW stores in North America from what I've heard.

All of this is pretty standard to what the ex-employee here is saying, here's where they differ on this though. The staff has zero problem with you going in there and painting your models *with GW paints mind you, though if you have one or two bottles of something else and are very discrete with it they won't give you much trouble from what I've seen* and in fact encourages people painting in the store with a decent number of painting stations set up. They encourage people to use the store's paints and any of the 4 staff members including the manager will gladly take a moment to sit down with you and show you painting techniques. At the same time there are 5-6 tables set up in the back of the store that are for customer use with an excellent terrain selection and other then when the store is having specific events have I ever seen the tables unavailable for use. In fact they regularly hold campaign nights for 40k and fantasy for the vets and seems to value both new and old customer in equal regard, an attitude that seems to be encouraged by the regional manager who I have met a few times.

I suspect, that the unfortunate case being described by this ex-employee is entirely true, however I also suspect that this is not so much a symptom of GW as a whole, but perhaps a failing of the regional manager's instructions.

PS, management getting a raise while the grunts don't is disapointingly standard practice where ever you go :( That being said the manager should not really have been divulging this fact for the very effect it had. In regards to the banning.....well one "precious snowflake" here with a penchant for causing trouble but always having more money then sense thanks to their parents was banned for 6 months for saying inappropriate things to a vet player...they were let back in after about 4 months with the insulted parties consent but it just goes to show standards/practices differ area to area, manager to manager, region to region.

Jedi152
10-09-2009, 15:29
Less than 12k a year? That alone takes the proverbial.
That's above minimum wage which put's it above other retail jobs, add in staff discount and freebies and GW isn't too bad if you're young.

I've made this comparison before, but my wife worked in fast food for a few years and it was a nightmare. She was management, so the pay wasn't too bad, but the bottom staff got minimum wage. They regularly worked 50 hour weeks and very few people got the weekend off (basically the assistant manager that writes the rota and his mates). Late shifts are 4pm til whenever the store shut and you had finished cleaning up, which was regularly 1-2 in the morning - once she didn't get in until 7am - a 15 hour shift, all of which is on salary, so no overtime of course!

Days off mean nothing to them. The day we moved house - a day which she had booked off 6 months in advance - she was rung and told to come in or she's fired, because someone couldn't be bothered to turn up for work.

You're busy all day working in awful cramped conditions get spattered with fat and oil, all your clothes and skin stink constantly and you get little or no discount on anything, and aren't allowed to eat or take home anything - even their waste has to be counted and all accounted for.

GW staff get to do their hobby all day in a nice comfy shop chatting to their mates, get lots of freebies for their army and get a discount too. Yes, they do a good job and it must be tough on such poor pay, but retail is usually for young people with no commitments.

And the OP makes an excellent point about the decline of the company. Also, here's to the best username ever!

ChesneySwoopingHawks
10-09-2009, 15:40
I'm sure there are worse jobs, but if I had worked in a supermarket or McDonald's (as I also have done) I'd at least get Sunday pay and a very real chance of promotion. The staff who get to sit round and do their own hobby are probably working in sleepy towns as this rarely happened in my shopping mall. The whole experience just left me feeling cheated and like I'd wasted alot of my time for no reason. I'm now at Uni studying to be a teacher and I can't imagine how I coped working there without strangling someone.

Be nice to your local staff!

GirathonB
10-09-2009, 15:41
I suspect, that the unfortunate case being described by this ex-employee is entirely true, however I also suspect that this is not so much a symptom of GW as a whole, but perhaps a failing of the regional manager's instructions.


I agree with this. My area was pretty much just as bad as the OP's area, and as soon as the regional manager was sacked, things improved 1000%.

ChesneySwoopingHawks
10-09-2009, 15:43
Also, here's to the best username ever!

I also like MC Hammerhead, Chaka Kharn The Betrayer and Stormboyz2men

Orktavius
10-09-2009, 15:43
I am nice to my local staff lol that being said I've worked 5 years of retail in my life and I can assure you that the regular grunts are treated the same just about everywhere and usually with less job perks *IE discounts on store purchases* It being your first job you can't be expected to have known that chesney but that part of your story doesn't really bother me that much it's a standard and well deserved gripe of all retail employees. I found the other items more disturbing myself IE the ignoring of vets and kicking people out who are painting/playing games as opposed to buying merch.

jackson11
10-09-2009, 15:58
Days off mean nothing to them. The day we moved house - a day which she had booked off 6 months in advance - she was rung and told to come in or she's fired, because someone couldn't be bothered to turn up for work.



That is totally in breach of several UK trade and employment laws and i would have loved to have represented your wife in court at the time as you could have walked away with a tidy sum of money for that threat.
Assuming the employer in question is one of the "big names" (which reading between the lines of the other content of your post one would assume they are) they would have settled out of court anyway for fear of the negative publicity (and the retail 20k ruling) and she wouldnt have even had to go to court.
She would have had the choice of keeping her job as well if she wanted or walking away with a sizeable payoff for dismissal contrary to statute or contrary to a statutory procedure.
You could have made a fortune out of that one little example let alone going into the health and safety aspects where she was "regularly spattered with oil or fat".
If i was you i would get her to go work back there as soon as possible and hope and pray they are still like that towards her. Then let me know and we will both make a killing out of it:D

Jedi152
10-09-2009, 16:17
Yes, sadly we didn't know much about our rights back then! Thank god she got out of that place.

Dangersaurus
10-09-2009, 16:20
Some damaged goods fell into my bag and coincidentally I completed my blood angels army. A minor victory, I know. But satisfying.

Had my sympathy up to this point.

This combined with the "boss processed the money wrongly," rings some bells for me.

Certainly staff dipping into the till and stock had nothing to do with the hairy eyeball HQ started giving the store? Of course not, you were all angels up to the end.

Hate to accuse you of anything (or at least, more than what you admitted to), but all the signs are there.

Wolf Scout Ewan
10-09-2009, 16:24
This all sounds familiar and I havnt worked for them since 2000.

Nephilim of Sin
10-09-2009, 16:25
You're busy all day working in awful cramped conditions get spattered with fat and oil, all your clothes and skin stink constantly and you get little or no discount on anything, and aren't allowed to eat or take home anything - even their waste has to be counted and all accounted for.

That is one thing that is horrible about FF, and in some extents, retail; you are told to keep the customer happy, to an extent, which really means that the manager will make sure that the customer is satisfied. Usually (especially in FF), this is because the customer ordered something wrong, which means that the item is considered waste. Which means eventually you get hit for crediting the item to the customer, plus get hit for the waste, all for doing your job, when in fact you did nothing wrong. However, it will still look bad for you.

Similar experience when I worked in retail, during the initial DVD boom/transition. Somebody buys a WS instead of FF movie, brings it back, and you have to trade it out for them, which, if opened, hits your stores bottom line twice (credit it into the system, send back as 'defective'). Of course, upper management doesn't see this as a concern, and only wonders why there are 'excessive' credits being done (as if someone is not doing their job).

ChesneySwoopingHawks
10-09-2009, 16:27
Erm... The way money is processed makes it virtually impossible for any to go missing.

The money was processed wrongly because we sold lots of the catalogs before the release date, so put the money in the safe in an envelope. This envelope was overlooked when the cash was collected, so it looked like we sold less catalogs on release day than we actually had.

Please don't talk about what you don't understand.

Dangersaurus
10-09-2009, 16:32
Please don't talk about what you don't understand.
I understand you admitted to stealing stock...

Mannimarco
10-09-2009, 16:36
never having worked in a GW i wouldnt know how often you have stock takes, i do however work in retail and have done for more years than i care to admit (all for minimum wage, no overtime, constant backshift, having to suck up to customers and generally be a good little doormat who doesnt dare say a wrong word against them but am expected to take all the abuse of the day and occasional physical attack)

i can tell you its surprisingly easy to steal money from a store, im not saying you did, only that it is possible and probably done the world over in almost every kind of store at some point or another

Cuchulain84
10-09-2009, 16:41
never having worked in a GW i wouldnt know how often you have stock takes, i do however work in retail and have done for more years than i care to admit (all for minimum wage, no overtime, constant backshift, having to suck up to customers and generally be a good little doormat who doesnt dare say a wrong word against them but am expected to take all the abuse of the day and occasional physical attack)

i can tell you its surprisingly easy to steal money from a store, im not saying you did, only that it is possible and probably done the world over in almost every kind of store at some point or another

I worked for Blockbuster for 4 years. There money was counted in the morning, at the shift changeover, and before closing. It would have been easy enough to literally put your hand in the till but it would have also been pretty easy to isolate who was there when the money went missing. Stealing the odd can of Coke however...

Nephilim of Sin
10-09-2009, 17:02
I worked for Blockbuster for 4 years. There money was counted in the morning, at the shift changeover, and before closing. It would have been easy enough to literally put your hand in the till but it would have also been pretty easy to isolate who was there when the money went missing. Stealing the odd can of Coke however...

Except that it would have been just as easy to do a Goodwill or EVF credit on the account here and there, and take the money. Or to re-use some of the coupons that get shredded every period, with the same effect. Granted, those would print up on the receipt, but there are many ways around the system.

In fact, one of my SMs was fired (I caught him in the act) because he had received a check for a bad debt item, which had written off at a different price as opposed to the mailer, a difference of about $30. Being completely incompetent, he added items to the person's account (including drinks and snacks for the staff) until the amount equaled what the check was, instead of tearing it up.

Another SM in my district was fired for stealing the money from the gumball machine. Others would actually take their field destroys and sell them at local flea markets (or have another family member do it). They wouldn't even take off the labels that had their store number printed on them.

Once you reach management, it is incredibly easy to steal from them, even with the precautions you mentioned, although it is obviously easier to steal product and then make money off of that, especially if you were running the inventories.

Cuchulain84
10-09-2009, 17:16
Except that it would have been just as easy to do a Goodwill or EVF credit on the account here and there, and take the money. Or to re-use some of the coupons that get shredded every period, with the same effect. Granted, those would print up on the receipt, but there are many ways around the system.


We all had individual ID's and passwords for the system so that anything you did on the till could be traced back to you.

Hlokk
10-09-2009, 17:33
I understand you admitted to stealing stock...
As I had it explained to me, damaged stock is all sent back to HQ or just written off. I certainly hope so, certain GW staff give me damaged stock from time to time.

Charax
10-09-2009, 17:37
there's no real need for staff to steal from GW. If things are even remotely similar to the way they were when I was a red/blackshirt, the store has boxes and shelves filled with known loss stock that's dipped into whenever a display needs and extra marine, or a customer needs a missing component. Quick heads-up to the manager and you can walk out with squads of marines or whatever you need. As long as you're not ridiculously greedy most managers won't mind. Hell, one store I worked at had so much stuff in the store bits box they literally let people take what they wanted, because otherwise it'd just be chucked (then again, the staff at the stores I worked were very cool)

Nicking stuff off the shelves: Bad. Checking with the boss before you grab stuff that's not going to be sold and isn't needed? Fine.

Dangersaurus
10-09-2009, 17:57
As I had it explained to me, damaged stock is all sent back to HQ or just written off. I certainly hope so, certain GW staff give me damaged stock from time to time.

I understand that to a degree, but it's still fraud - the stock needs to be destroyed to qualify for the write-off. In the end if it's given away there's not much harm, but a company can get in a lot of trouble for such a seemingly harmless practice.

Still, it's a nice little perk in retail. Sometimes you can shine someone's day with a little bit of otherwise lost stock. There's just a bit of conflict when a self-proclaimed bitter employee is the one deciding what exactly constitutes damaged goods ("whoops, it fell down into my backpack!"), and then takes them for themselves.

Of course, in my experience, it's not being bitter that leads to being a thieving employee. There's just a certain type that doesn't realize that retail isn't for everyone and entry-level is as far as they'll ever get... and they think they should get a share of the take before they move on to their next bitter entry-level job. Hopefully this does not reflect the OPs situation. Maybe he's just young and has some growing up to do.

In the end, his story would've been so much more poignant if he hadn't tried to brag about playing Robbing Hood.

Charax
10-09-2009, 18:20
well I understand wanting something free Vs wanting something cheap, I'm just pointing out that you can get stuff free without risking your job :D

Dangersaurus
10-09-2009, 18:24
There usually aren't rational reasons for a person to steal. It's usually "I want this, I'll take this".

It might also be that there aren't enough peers/role models telling them that it's wrong.

I'm a bit depressed that the OP will be moving on to being one of those role models in his teaching career. Like I said, hopefully he realizes one day it's one to grow on not one to crow on. I imagine he'll still be bitter about the long hours and low pay... unless it's very different for teachers in the UK?

Satan
10-09-2009, 18:32
Less than 12k a year? That alone takes the proverbial. I haven't been to a games workshop for many years but I could see the signs of it then, I can only imagine what it's like in there now.

That's a laughable salary for retail both in Sweden or Denmark. Our minimum wage is another 3000 or so and I'd wager that most retail stores pay a little bit more than that.

de Selby
10-09-2009, 18:39
No it's the same for teachers in the uk. Of course, the most important lesson he can pass on to his future charges is that they should do whatever they have to do to avoid a life in retail.

Satan
10-09-2009, 18:43
No it's the same for teachers in the uk. Of course, the most important lesson he can pass on to his future charges is that they should do whatever they have to do to avoid a life in retail.

Or emigrate.

only joking...
10-09-2009, 18:55
That's a laughable salary for retail both in Sweden or Denmark. Our minimum wage is another 3000 or so and I'd wager that most retail stores pay a little bit more than that.

The taxes are higher though aren't they? Surely its all relative?

Satan
10-09-2009, 19:09
The taxes are higher though aren't they? Surely its all relative?

Well, the UK has a slightly higher corporate tax than either, but a lower VAT - which doesn't really matter as prices are generally the same level or higher in the UK anyway IIRC. Income tax in the UK is 20%, right? In sweden it's about 30% and Denmark 35-38% somewhere. Which isn't really accurate as you get a quite high return. Overall, I'd wager retail employment is more of a minimum wage job (and with less status) in the UK than Scandinavia.

But yeah, it's all relative so little or no point in making comparisons. But I remember seeing an ad for a job in Shanghai with GW where the pay was somewhere around 13500 or so (as a sales manager for the whole of Asia IIRC). I don't know about you Brits but I wouldn't drag my university degree over there for that kind of money. It's about what you'd make as a tourist guide or travel assistant working abroad for a Swedish travelling agency and those are not considered worthwhile jobs, most often reserved for young people with strong adventourous traits.

rich1231
10-09-2009, 19:10
Erm... The way money is processed makes it virtually impossible for any to go missing.

The money was processed wrongly because we sold lots of the catalogs before the release date, so put the money in the safe in an envelope. This envelope was overlooked when the cash was collected, so it looked like we sold less catalogs on release day than we actually had.

Please don't talk about what you don't understand.

Doesnt GW Epos track all sales?

blongbling
10-09-2009, 21:21
rich, it only tracks it if you put the sales through the till. It was a general, unapproved, practice that stores would sell in advance certain items and put the money in the safe so that it would look like they had a better then normal release day when they rang it all through (makes it look like they worked real hard on release day).

Not much wrong in that, lots of GW stores have and do do it, but I have no sympathy if you forgot to ring it through the till.

I always find these type of storeis interesting as I started pretty low in GW (mail order troll) and worked hard to get on but always find these "woe is me" stories quite funny. Nothing would have stopped you from getting on and promoted except yourself, lots of jobs are always on offer in GW, you could apply and move on. If you however wanted to stay in retail then you are restricting yourself due to the pyramid structure in place but hey, that again is a choice.

Jedi152
10-09-2009, 21:31
They don't advertise much. I'd love to work in HR or management, but can't find any vacancies.

Batwings
11-09-2009, 02:32
'I'd love to work in management'

And you seemed like such a nice chap!

starlight
11-09-2009, 03:48
Such is life at GW. Thus is how it was back in the day, thus is how it was during my time (HQ though, not retail), thus is how it is today, thus is how it will be...unless GW wakes up...which is unlikely... :(

Oh well, there are reasons I don't shop at GW Retail...and many reasons I feel sorry for those working there... :(

Orktavius
11-09-2009, 05:08
You mean for them being treated the exact same as every other freaking retail grunt world wide cept with the added perks of being able to buy models of what's probably your favorite hobby at a discount? yeah...my heart bleeds for you. As someone who worked 14 hour shifts on a concrete floor with no mats wandering around all day dealing with idiot customers at a job I hated and gave me no joy or satisfaction and no fringe benefits whatsoever I feel I have every right to say suck it up princess. It's retail, of course the pay is lousy and the job blows, your a god damn entry level grunt and you got paid appropriately for the work you did, don't like it get an education and a better job. This is not really to the OP but to starlight....who seems to feel the need to bitch about a job he/she it seems never actually worked but seems to feel the need to snipe at a company that still treats it's retail workers better then walmart, canadian tire or superstore...all places I've worked just because starlight has a personal grudge against the company.

starlight
11-09-2009, 05:20
You mean for them being treated the exact same as every other freaking retail grunt world wide cept with the added perks of being able to buy models of what's probably your favorite hobby at a discount? yeah...my heart bleeds for you. As someone who worked 14 hour shifts on a concrete floor with no mats wandering around all day dealing with idiot customers at a job I hated and gave me no joy or satisfaction and no fringe benefits whatsoever I feel I have every right to say suck it up princess. It's retail, of course the pay is lousy and the job blows, your a god damn entry level grunt and you got paid appropriately for the work you did, don't like it get an education and a better job.

The biggest difference is that most GW retail employees are expected to be baby sitters *as well* as deal with all of the rest of the retail nonsense...



This is not really to the OP but to starlight....who seems to feel the need to bitch about a job he/she it seems never actually worked but seems to feel the need to snipe at a company that still treats it's retail workers better then walmart, canadian tire or superstore...all places I've worked just because starlight has a personal grudge against the company.

Erm...yeah...riiiiight... :eyebrows: No need to get your facts straight there... :rolleyes:

Orktavius
11-09-2009, 05:25
GW employees are under no obligation to be baby sitters though some idiot parents do tend to drop their kids off like it's a day at daycare. I've experienced that in retail to, you ever see what happens in the toy aisle of walmart? I also acted as a judge many many a year ago for yugio or however the hell you spell it tournaments when I worked for less then minimum wage at a comic and collectibles store *to be fair I was paid under the table and cleared more then working at minimum wage would have gotten me* so again you fail to gain my bloody sympathy. Retail blows, customers are idiots and the pay sucks that's why it's a job for kids fresh outta high school.

Kinsley
11-09-2009, 05:49
GW employees are under no obligation to be baby sitters though some idiot parents do tend to drop their kids off like it's a day at daycare. I've experienced that in retail to, you ever see what happens in the toy aisle of walmart? I also acted as a judge many many a year ago for yugio or however the hell you spell it tournaments when I worked for less then minimum wage at a comic and collectibles store *to be fair I was paid under the table and cleared more then working at minimum wage would have gotten me* so again you fail to gain my bloody sympathy. Retail blows, customers are idiots and the pay sucks that's why it's a job for kids fresh outta high school.

Actually you are expected to baby sit these kids. Your expected to teach them the game, and to paint. They sit around all day and you have to deal with them.

Now that last comment although technically true, thats not how it is viewed by the higher ups. They want career people and they say that.

Not starting an argument just relaying some facts.

Orktavius
11-09-2009, 05:52
GW is probably more of a job for enthusists of the hobby but a career it is not unless you can prove yourself and advance higher.

Also yes...some idiot parents treat GW like a daycare for there kids over the age that GW REQUIRES a parent be there. The sad part is when you see the poor kids who's parents are well off and just want little to do with them :-/ I've seen that at the local GW

Vermin-thing
11-09-2009, 07:17
Not if the Kid's in the academy. :D

It saddens me that GW wants career people, and yet pay the same (or less) as a minimum requirement part time job. And for the icing on the cake they "only hire full time" (quoting my not-so-local GW's manager when I asked about getting a job) which is bull pie. If GW really wanted "career people" They'd offer much better pay (about three times what I'm making), have sensible targets, and aspirations. What's the point of going full time if your getting a pie crust for it (not even the filling), and there's no chance to clime the tower cake. (I want cake now :() Why would I trek 5 days a week in some ungodly hour of the morning (35-45 min trip around 7am) just to get the same pay, and get yelled at by some stupid kids parents?

It kills me (not really) that I can't work at GW wile in collage, and that once I've got a degree, I'll be able to get a far better job in the art industry.

Archaon
11-09-2009, 07:39
Nothing that surprising in the initial posting.

I've known people working for GW about 10 years ago and little has changed.. ****** pay and general retail standards.

What sets GW apart is that they apparently intentionally target fans to become staff because those usually last a bit longer before they become fed up and realize that making your hobby into a job is a huge mistake and move on (either to a slightly better retail job or to get a better education).

A GW job is best when doing it as a part time or during summers where you have school/university off but as i understand GW has done away with part time jobs.

What kills me though is staff discount (which has changed considerably i have been told.. 10 years ago staff was allowed to buy per weight which was a very good deal.. now it is different and definitely not that attractive). You barely make enough to live so where will you take the money from to buy stuff?

Anyway.. never been tempted to work for GW as i've heard enough horror stories about retail and i'd long ago lose my job for kicking abusive and extremely annoying young kids out of the store.

TAOC
11-09-2009, 08:22
I love the morale high and mightiness in this thread

zedeyejoe
11-09-2009, 08:28
I good read folks, I learned some things.

That GW mismanages the running their stores is not surprising.

I still remember my first wage 3,500 pa. Back in 1983.

Jedi152
11-09-2009, 08:42
'I'd love to work in management'

And you seemed like such a nice chap!

I'm really a hardass! :p

HR will do me. Or Health & Safety. :angel:

@zedeyejoe: I remember my first wage, 10 a day (!) cash in hand valeting cars at the local garage!

MasterPuppets
11-09-2009, 09:24
I'm a bit depressed that the OP will be moving on to being one of those role models in his teaching career. Like I said, hopefully he realizes one day it's one to grow on not one to crow on. I imagine he'll still be bitter about the long hours and low pay... unless it's very different for teachers in the UK?

There is this good story about needing a cherry picker to get of a high horse but that has nothing to do with OP...

...Working at GW Highpoint Melbourne when they use to be on level one during the early noughties was a fantastic experience as both a novice worker and an avid gamer. As one of the newest stores in a shopping complex that was expanding to meet the rise in population in the north western suburbs we did amazing business and the place was stir crazy during the EOT northern summer of 2003 (could be 02 don't quote me).

We had vet nights on a thursday that were well attended and did our very best to provide not only an opponent for our customers (sometimes we filled in), but also rule explanations(fancy that) and what was the best thing for them to buy, whether it be for a) someone starting in the hobby b) someone who needed a new direction in gaming, regardless of price or content.
Then in 05 a new regional manager was appointed, we were instructed to play only introductionary games with children who could provide at least 6 years of business ie 12 year olds, and push only Batt boxes and Army boxes on those starting out instead of the 5 marines and 8 paint bundle pack.

My hours were cut and given to a minor on $9.50, and one by one those who didn't agree with the new way of doing things were either replaced or forced out through the changing of work rosters, myself included. The place is now on level 3 highpoint just outside Target-which is pretty good if you are targeting the mother in need of a minder as she shops-with rubbish atmosphere, filled with two 8 year olds or no-one at all and a 17 year old who lectures anyone and everyone who walks in on the virtues of every new model ever made in the last 12 months to those who are both older and wiser and have lived a little longer.

I now teach, it might be rubbish pay but it is a darn sight more rewarding then anything I could ever imagine doing.

toonboy78
11-09-2009, 09:25
[QUOTE=Satan;3939412]Well, the UK has a slightly higher corporate tax than either, but a lower VAT - which doesn't really matter as prices are generally the same level or higher in the UK anyway IIRC. Income tax in the UK is 20%, right? In sweden it's about 30% and Denmark 35-38% somewhere. [QUOTE]

20% base + 11.5%(?) NI contributions!

Wintertooth
11-09-2009, 10:25
Tax & NI breakdown on 11,800: http://tr.im/ypMb

toonboy78
11-09-2009, 10:32
ah yes, at minimum wage then you are paying 15% (total tax and NI) and at the top end of the base rate you are paying 30.9% due to your tax free earings (the first 5k you earn is tax free)

zedeyejoe
11-09-2009, 11:00
Income tax in the UK is 20%, right? In sweden it's about 30% and Denmark 35-38% somewhere.

Highest income tax rate in the UK is 40%. In the bad old days it used to be 87.5%, so out of every pound you earned you got to keep 12.5p (and tax evasion was a major problem for the government).

Condottiere
11-09-2009, 11:08
That's sticking it to the rich. I doubt any society would tolerate more than 50%.

blongbling
11-09-2009, 11:12
That's sticking it to the rich. I doubt any society would tolerate more than 50%.

58% for Denmark
53% for Finland
60% Netherlands
54.3% for Norway
55% for Sweden

Satan
11-09-2009, 11:15
58% for Denmark
53% for Finland
60% Netherlands
54.3% for Norway
55% for Sweden

Which types of taxes total are those? Sweden abolished high-income taxes some time ago.

Condottiere
11-09-2009, 11:20
Wiki says Holland's Income Tax is 52% maximum, with the usual deductions.

Jedi152
11-09-2009, 12:16
Highest income tax rate in the UK is 40%.
From April next year if you earn over 150,000 you'll pay 50%. I suspect you'll see a lot of high flyers taking pay cuts to 149,999...

Don't forget to add in the 23.8% National Insurance too.

adamwelton
11-09-2009, 12:41
I found two contrasting examples in my travels around GW shops:

First off is GW Canterbury, Kent, England. The best, busiest, happiest, most interesting and quality GW product-selling shop I have ever visited. The blokes are all grownup full-timers (they have to be-the city has a massive university and two public schools). The shop is tiny compared to other bigger shops in Kent like the huge Bluewater precinct one and the warehouse that is GW Maidstone with one full time manager and two part time staff, open only between 1200 and 1800 four days a week, but Canterbury is always packed, with all GW games running at one time or another regardless of which is flavour of the sales quarter. The manager has been there for about fifteen years and can find GW stock you just can't get unless you ask carefully-I needed two axe-wielding Bloodletters from the last release after the new plastic daemons came out. Not a sausage anywhere for months, can't finish my new daemon list, sod it. The manager found me a local guy who was selling his metal because he wanted the new plastics and I was two OOP models up in a week. Happy days. I was also invited to the shop to try my list out unpainted which I did and played two of the staff in a day (as a display game) getting one win and one draw, making me a very satisfied customer. Happy days indeed.

The other rather poor effort came from the small "storage space" that is GW Melbourne, Australia. I dropped in on a visit in 2006. The 10'x10'x10' garage had five blokes standing about (including the manager). I had a look about for a few minutes in order to gauge price differences and differing stock. One bloke said "hello" and asked me if I needed anything in particular. I told him I was from England and he just smiled. After about seven or eight minutes the manager came over and asked me again if there was something specific I was after. I said "no" and that I was just looking. He went back to talking to his mates. I remembered a question and went over to the manager's group to ask it. I was stood there for over ten minutes and wasn't even acknowleged. I turned to go and the manager finally deigned to notice me, wanting to know what it was I wanted to ask. I said "it doesn't matter now". Once they established that I wasn't buying anything, they didn't want to know. What sort of attitude is that? I had expected better from Australia of all places.

Anyone else seen such bizarre behaviour from a retail chain?

Wintertooth
11-09-2009, 12:42
From April next year if you earn over 150,000 you'll pay 50%. I suspect you'll see a lot of high flyers taking pay cuts to 149,999...

That's not how tax brackets work. You would only pay 50% on the portion of your salary that exceeds 150,000.

zedeyejoe
11-09-2009, 12:51
The other rather poor effort came from the small "storage space" that is GW Melbourne, Australia.

And believe me, you can find that experience repeated in many GW stores. However I am told by my women friends that in lots of clothes stores, the experience is the same. So its not limited to wargaming.

But the one place that GW staff have always been on the ball, is GW Nottingham.

adamwelton
11-09-2009, 12:56
That's expected-it's the Head-Shed!

Corrode
11-09-2009, 13:01
As I always do in these threads, I'd like to put forth some support for GW Manchester (the one in the Arndale) and both GWs in Bristol (Cribbs and Broadmead). Both have some pretty excellent staff even if the Cribbs store is the size of a shoebox.

Suicide Messiah
11-09-2009, 13:20
I'll second the support for the broadmead store (never really like the one out cribbs). Great staff that you can have a chat with or completely ignore if you like.

Silent_Spectre
11-09-2009, 13:52
Just to throw another iron into the fire, when I applied and was interviewed for a Design Studio position (earlier this year, no I didn't get the job), the starting salary was 16,000pa rising to around 20,000pa after about 3 years. They even implied that working for GW was a perk in and of itself. Bear in mind I was already in a 22k+ pa job with benefits, why would I or anyone else accept a role like that?

Jedi152
11-09-2009, 14:10
Because they expect you to work for the love of the hobby.


That's not how tax brackets work. You would only pay 50% on the portion of your salary that exceeds 150,000.
Ah, we live and learn. I only really bothered looking into it after we went to a fixed 20% for my pay bracket.

Satan
11-09-2009, 14:22
Just to throw another iron into the fire, when I applied and was interviewed for a Design Studio position (earlier this year, no I didn't get the job), the starting salary was 16,000pa rising to around 20,000pa after about 3 years. They even implied that working for GW was a perk in and of itself. Bear in mind I was already in a 22k+ pa job with benefits, why would I or anyone else accept a role like that?

Yeah, that's no way to aquire skilled/competent employees exactly... If working for GW was a perk then you could argue the same thing for companies in every field such as Volvo or Sony Ericsson. Still doesn't change the fact that they're losing money to upstarts however.

That said I think trying out for a position with GW HQ would be fun and possibly rewarding, but no way I'd drag my degree and/or ass over there without an attractive salary.

SimpleSquid
11-09-2009, 14:37
@adamwelton GW Canterbury is my closest store, and I'd agree its an excellent place to go. Never gamed there, but the staff are all a bit older, and like to have a chat about the hobby, including other game systems, and don't try to jam products down your neck because its new and shiny.

blongbling
11-09-2009, 14:53
Which types of taxes total are those? Sweden abolished high-income taxes some time ago.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tax_rates_of_Europe that one

blongbling
11-09-2009, 14:58
good lads at Canterbury, its also the store i used to manage about 12 years ago, I went back down there to help out for a product launch about a year ago (eg buy them coffee and pizza) and it was still really busy with staff doing the "right" things

Jedi152
11-09-2009, 15:00
But the one place that GW staff have always been on the ball, is GW Nottingham.
The staff are specially chosen for Warhammer World because it's the main store.
They're less 'geeky' and more approachable.

I've only had issues with one staff member there, and he's gone on to higher things now (and he 'aint the best at that, but i'll say no more).

Bassik
11-09-2009, 16:15
People who got so traumatized by retail work (as I am), should try their luck in the industry.
I've been in several factories now, and compared to retail and food, it's heaven.
They're very strict about taking breaks and free days, but other then that they pay betther mostly, treat you better and when you plan a day off, you get that day off, no excuses.
Also, poor management equals new management very soon.:D

EDIT: and safetey. You're betther off near smelting ovens then in a supermarket, concerning your health.

Condottiere
11-09-2009, 16:26
That said I think trying out for a position with GW HQ would be fun and possibly rewarding, but no way I'd drag my degree and/or ass over there without an attractive salary.Initially read that as attractive secretary.

squilverine
11-09-2009, 16:46
I have worked in 4 major industry sectors, Retail as a shelf stacking till monkey for 2 major supermarket chains. Hospitality and Catering as a Pub manager and cafe owner, working for both large companies and self employed. Building and construction as a labourer and charge hand. Light industrial as a printer and engineer.

I have found most large companies, especialy if PLC's are purely motivated by profit. Despite having a duty of care towards their employee's they tend to veiw most as just another consumable, easily used and easily replaced.

My advice for anyone unhappy in their work is to start looking elsewhere, you spend the majority of your waking life in work so you need to try and make it as bearable as possible, otherwise sooner or later it will induce bad health and effect your personal life.

As far as salaries go, I have little sympathy, peolpe know (or should do) what the wages are when you sign the contract, a company has every right to expect you to put in 100% effort whilst you are at work, what they dont have the right to do is abuse you and lean on you to go beyond the contract if you dont wish to do so.

For anyone in the UK who feels they are being treated unfairly they should speek to their union reperasentative (if you have one) or get in touch with ACAS, they can let you know where you stand and what action you need to take if required.

In any case, I would never advise anyone to steal, damage or missappropriate stock or any other company assets. Even if you don't require a reference people talk and you never know who you could bump into at a job interview in the future.

Satan
11-09-2009, 17:02
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tax_rates_of_Europe that one

Yes, that would represent the maximum. In the case of Sweden I'd guess it's inaccurate. But I don't understand those figures as we have a single one across the entire board.


Initially read that as attractive secretary.

Yes, well I now realize the benefit of having someone working to sort out alot of lesser details for you, as I now have my own assistant at my job. As I don't want to appear sexist, I'll refrain from commenting further.

CaliforniaGamer
11-09-2009, 20:27
11000 GBP sounds low. How does this compare to wages in the UK in general?

Like comparable to a worker at McDonalds?

Considering the healthcare system is socialized, finance/banking is on the ropes, what good paying career options do UK 20-somethings aspire to?

Regardless, dont know if I would have working for GW retail as part of my long term success plan, especially given how expensive the cost of living is in England...

Corrode
11-09-2009, 20:41
11000 GBP sounds low. How does this compare to wages in the UK in general?

Like comparable to a worker at McDonalds?

Considering the healthcare system is socialized, finance/banking is on the ropes, what good paying career options do UK 20-somethings aspire to?

Regardless, dont know if I would have working for GW retail as part of my long term success plan, especially given how expensive the cost of living is in England...

As has already been posted in this thread, it's pretty comparable to any other bottom-rung job in the retail sector. 20k+ jobs tend to require experience or degree.

I don't understand what the NHS has to do with 'good paying career options' unless you're implying being a health insurance leech is a good goal to aim for. Doctors still clear an ungodly amount of money over here, though nurses suffer. Finance/banking is also doing just fine, it's everyone else that's suffering. ;)

Cost of living isn't too bad either. Taxes might be higher and property rates (particularly house prices, rent seems pretty comparable) are generally higher, but socialized medicine means we're not paying for health insurance or getting reamed every time we break a leg, and you can live pretty damn cheap on Tesco Value. Unlike certain parts of the US we're not bankrupt, either (despite Broon's best efforts).

Anyway, less P&R.

CaliforniaGamer
11-09-2009, 21:14
thanks that what I thought. The salary sounds low, but probably is reasonable given the situation, all things considered (no direct healthcare expenses etc).

freddythebig
11-09-2009, 21:44
11k p.a. is possibly reasonable if you are a school leaver or student still living at home.

It is no use whatsoever to anyone who is a primary breadwinner with responsibilities.

Corrode
11-09-2009, 21:57
11k p.a. is possibly reasonable if you are a school leaver or student still living at home.

It is no use whatsoever to anyone who is a primary breadwinner with responsibilities.

That's why those jobs tend to be performed by people who're students or school leavers rather than family breadwinners. Quite a lot of second-income people occupy retail slots too.

Hlokk
11-09-2009, 22:26
11000 GBP sounds low. How does this compare to wages in the UK in general?

Like comparable to a worker at McDonalds?
Worse, I earn more than that pro rata cooking burgers in my mates van on a night.

Thud
11-09-2009, 22:56
As I always do in these threads, I'd like to put forth some support for GW Manchester (the one in the Arndale) and both GWs in Bristol (Cribbs and Broadmead). Both have some pretty excellent staff even if the Cribbs store is the size of a shoebox.

I second the praise for the Arndale shop. I was in there this spring after reading all about how horrible GW shops are on Warseer (there's no GW shops near me) and I was impressed with how nice and helpful the staff were without becoming pushy and annoying. :)

CaliforniaGamer
11-09-2009, 23:04
Worse, I earn more than that pro rata cooking burgers in my mates van on a night.

...never heard of cooking burgers out of a van, is that a regional/cultural thing? Or "van"=portable kitchen coach of some sort?

Jedi152
11-09-2009, 23:15
You've never heard of a burger van? It's a British thing! :p

Thud
11-09-2009, 23:22
You've never heard of a burger van? It's a British thing! :p

Not just British, we have quite a few of them a bit to the north-east of your island. ;)

spetswalshe
12-09-2009, 00:00
Anyone here work in upper management and care to weigh in? I've recently spoken to a few people who do, and seem to genuinely believe that they can work hard enough in a 35-hour week to justify 100,000 a year. After tax, 60,000.

A child and family worker for the council social service earns a little under 20,000, with no bonuses, and works extremely hard in a challenging (not the fun sort of challenging) job literally saving lives but being reviled by the general public. I'd say, as an outsider, this is literally as hard as you can work for 35-odd hours a week, outside of back-breaking physical labour.

Is it even slightly possible to work three times as hard as this? I'm not trying to have a go at anyone, or be a dirty liberal (which I'm shocked to hear used as an insult these days, btw), but how is this possible? I genuinely want to know, as this concerns me a great deal.

Off topic a little this may be, but to bring it back, but retail is the perfect example; if you take 'a difficult job' to mean 'a job that is constantly unpleasant or requires constant hard work', and we assume the more difficult the job, the higher the pay should be - then a base retail job (GW blackshirt) should result in higher pay than the position of Creative Director. Certainly more people would be prepared to take the position of (say) 40k Background Master for 11k, than Guy Who Cleans All The Toilets for the same.

And yet we see every other post on this thread revealing faceless management's bizarre attempts to squeeze the rewards of rubbish jobs. Is it that directors always forget their time as a first-rung peon? Or do they genuinely think they deserve better?

Corrode
12-09-2009, 00:41
I don't know about directors in GW, but I have a little insight into the kind of people who make the kind of money you mention and trust me, they're not working 35-hour weeks. I suspect that if someone were to tell them they wanted that much compensation for working that little they'd be laughed at.

starlight
12-09-2009, 02:54
Directors are usually shareholders, this every dollar they squeeze out of the lower peons is another dollar in the pot for them to spread amongst themselves come dividend time...

The high priced help never get paid for the hours they work, they get paid for making other people richer. If you want a juicy slice of the big pie, work on ways to make the baker richer...quite simple really...

Brain workers almost always get paid more than brawn workers. There are other risks involved, but that's the long and short of it. Brawn can always be replaced, brains and organisation...not so easy...

Condottiere
12-09-2009, 05:17
That's why so many took a job in the financial industry.

Ravenous
12-09-2009, 05:27
11000 GBP sounds low. How does this compare to wages in the UK in general?

Like comparable to a worker at McDonalds?

Considering the healthcare system is socialized, finance/banking is on the ropes, what good paying career options do UK 20-somethings aspire to?

Regardless, dont know if I would have working for GW retail as part of my long term success plan, especially given how expensive the cost of living is in England...

GW is minimum wage, in Canada its 24,000/year before taxes. Around $1300 a month. Its a fun job when you can tune out the stupidity, but it most definitely isnt anything you can grow in because you cant survive off what they pay.

Orktavius
12-09-2009, 05:49
Just for ravenous's sake

http://www.ccsd.ca/factsheets/economic_security/poverty/lico_06.htm

24k a year before tax is well above the poverty line in many places so you can easily survive off it. Now...can you get yourself that nice big screen tv and eat out everyday...no...but you can live comfortably as a single person....if you have a family and are the breadwinner....well...get a different job.

CarlostheCraven
12-09-2009, 06:33
Hi

On topic:
In my experience, wage rates provide an accurate reflection of a person's value to a company.

Over my working years I have been a foreman for a landscaping company, earning a very decent wage working excessively long hours doing hard work. My physical labour earned that money, along with taking responsibility for ensuring that projects were done right.

I have also been the head of security at a nightclub, earning a little spending cash. My willingness to take on responsibility got me steady hours at a moderate wage in a very dirty business.

I have also worked at GW and did three tours of duty at my FLGS during my university years. I earned a low wage for a job that really had no responsibility. Having targets to meet is not the same as being responsible for the success/failure of a business.

I have worked in manufacturing (not automotive), and I earned a low wage for very little responsibility.

Today, I provide policy alternatives and critiques on behalf of the agriculture sector in my province of Ontario (Ok, I do research and policy work for a lobby organization):rolleyes:. All of my work is mental in nature, and involves ensuring that a sector of our economy is being treated fairly as new regulations are introduced that may impede them, and ensure that at some of the stimulus spending that is being doled out gets directed to strengthening the agri-products sector. I am earning far more that I ever did in any other job. Why? I have a high level of responsibility that requires a high level of knowledge in a large number of areas, and I have the analytical skills to assess that knowledge and produce results.

My desk job is far more taxing than any physical job I have ever had. I really feel that I have been fairly compensated for any job I have done, except the desk job. I am worth more. :cool:

Off Topic @ Orktavius and Ravenous
Bear in mind that Ravenous is talking about the Toronto, not eastern Canada. I could sell my little place in Kitchener (an hour west of Toronto) and buy a home twice the size on the East Coast (If I could find the right job to go with it of course ;)). I could also sell my home in Kitchener and need twice as much money to buy a condo in Toronto.

In Toronto, 24k a year means living in your parents baesment or sharing an apartment with several people. There is a massive disparity in the cost of living in different areas of the country, just like every other country.

Cheers,
Carlos the Craven

simonr1978
12-09-2009, 09:03
Anyone here work in upper management and care to weigh in? I've recently spoken to a few people who do, and seem to genuinely believe that they can work hard enough in a 35-hour week to justify 100,000 a year. After tax, 60,000.

Sorry to go off on a bit of a tangent, but AFAIK that's not quite how it works. You only get 40% taxed on the higher portion of your wages, I can't remember or be bothered to look up where the tax bracket kicks in but let's assume for the sake of making the maths simpler that it's at 40K. You get 20% tax on the first 40K of you wages (So you'll take home 32K of that) then 40% off the last 60K (The portion that exceeds the threshold, so you'll take home 36K of that) for a total of 68K after tax. Of course it's a bit more complicated than that in real life, the threshold isn't at such a convenient point IIRC, you lose NI as well and in addition to the 20% lower band everyone has a portion of their wages which are tax free, I'm not an accountant but hopefully you get the general gist.

zedeyejoe
12-09-2009, 09:36
Well its like anything (in our free market economy) you get paid what you can get. Work for yourself (like me) what you earn, is what you get paid. A friend of mine worked for a bank, made 6m for the bank, got paid 350,000. My father turned an almost bankrupt business around, turned it into the the 25th most profitable in the UK, got paid 4.5m a year (which is about the same as a good footballer) and 30m in shares. All of them think that they deserve what they get paid. In my fathers case, he created a lot of work for other people as well. The banker just sat in a chair and bought and sold currencies. It is really difficult to assess the value of someones work, so we have the market system that works it out for us with little interventions like minimum wage by the government.

threewolftats
12-09-2009, 09:44
As has already been posted in this thread, it's pretty comparable to any other bottom-rung job in the retail sector. 20k+ jobs tend to require experience or degree.

actually, not nessesarily, I work as a security guard earning near as 20k with no degree, no experience, and relatively no responsability.... oh and i paint my toy soldiers at work most nights.

only rough patch is its 12hr shifts 4-5 shifts per week and always weekends, but still not bad considering

simonr1978
12-09-2009, 10:22
To add on from what has already been said too, I think it's wrong to think that pay is in any way related to how hard you have to work. For example, I work in railway maintenance and I have no doubt that anyone who has worked in that industry would agree that P-way work (i.e. working with hammers, shovels etc on the actual track) is by far physically the hardest discipline to find yourself in, that said it's also the lowest paid.

You get paid according to how much demand there is for your skills, abilities, experience and qualifications. Think of it in terms of how easily replaceable you are, the harder it is to find a replacement the more money you're likely to attract.

Whilst not everyone is suited to it, the pool of people who could not do an entry level retail job is very small indeed, so if one of your sales assistants hands in their notice and leaves they're pretty easily replaceable. In railway work anyone who can cope with a labourer's job and pass a one or two day safety course can do P-way work, a P-way man is fairly easily replaceable so they tend to attract lower pay.

Pay is one of the main gripes that crops up it seems from ex-GW staffers and I'm afraid I have absolutely no sympathy at all. You are an entry level retail grunt getting paid entry level retail wages with (still) better than average staff discount, if you didn't know what you were going to be paid when you signed the contract then you're a fool, if you did and still signed knowing that you wouldn't be able to make ends meet on that, you're also a fool, either way you have no-one to blame but yourself. BTW, I do consider only hiring fulltimers a good thing, there are plenty of employers out there that only hire part timers below supervisory grades so that they can avoid having to pay staff for their breaks.

Hlokk
12-09-2009, 10:26
...never heard of cooking burgers out of a van, is that a regional/cultural thing? Or "van"=portable kitchen coach of some sort?
Its like a trailer we sell burgers, kebabs and other stuff out of.

So if you ever get to sheffield and want a free burger...

One thing, on topic, I would like to ask, do GW staff still retain the ability to buy metal stuff at weight?

Edit: Simonr: With the hiring part time staff, theres also some benefit the business gets by not having to pay as much national insurance per FTE. Its crap, I know, but I'd do it if I ran a business.

blongbling
12-09-2009, 10:41
Anyone here work in upper management and care to weigh in? I've recently spoken to a few people who do, and seem to genuinely believe that they can work hard enough in a 35-hour week to justify 100,000 a year. After tax, 60,000.

A child and family worker for the council social service earns a little under 20,000, with no bonuses, and works extremely hard in a challenging (not the fun sort of challenging) job literally saving lives but being reviled by the general public. I'd say, as an outsider, this is literally as hard as you can work for 35-odd hours a week, outside of back-breaking physical labour.

Is it even slightly possible to work three times as hard as this? I'm not trying to have a go at anyone, or be a dirty liberal (which I'm shocked to hear used as an insult these days, btw), but how is this possible? I genuinely want to know, as this concerns me a great deal.

Off topic a little this may be, but to bring it back, but retail is the perfect example; if you take 'a difficult job' to mean 'a job that is constantly unpleasant or requires constant hard work', and we assume the more difficult the job, the higher the pay should be - then a base retail job (GW blackshirt) should result in higher pay than the position of Creative Director. Certainly more people would be prepared to take the position of (say) 40k Background Master for 11k, than Guy Who Cleans All The Toilets for the same.

And yet we see every other post on this thread revealing faceless management's bizarre attempts to squeeze the rewards of rubbish jobs. Is it that directors always forget their time as a first-rung peon? Or do they genuinely think they deserve better?

Senior mgt in any business dont work 35 hour weeks, my fiancee is a PA to directors in the bingo and casino business and those guys work 12-14 hour days 6 days a week to earn their mega money.

At GW the money is no where near that for your senior mgt, a decent senior manager will be on between 50-80k a year (like Head of xxxxxxxx department), a general manager (country manager) can earn upwards of 80-120k depending on thier career path to that role and the size of the company they run. Directors salaries are a matter of public record so you can see for yourself what they earn.

The creative types eg miniature designers are paid on a different salalry all together and can earn lots with some of them on over 100k a year

It is possible to have a good career and earn a lot of money at GW, you just have to work hard to get into senior mgt to do it.

Jedi152
12-09-2009, 10:45
One thing, on topic, I would like to ask, do GW staff still retain the ability to buy metal stuff at weight?
AFAIK, no. They just get a flat discount (50% rings a bell) on all GW products. It really pissed off some staff members since you used to be able to get a full plastic army for about 20.

Also, free burgers! :D

Silent_Spectre
12-09-2009, 11:48
The creative types eg miniature designers are paid on a different salalry all together and can earn lots with some of them on over 100k a year

That may be true of the department heads but the starting salary for a miniature designer at GW is 16,000pa. It takes around 5 years to get your salary up to a reasonable level (25k+), assuming you can stick it out that long...

Condottiere
12-09-2009, 13:55
Fairness is relative - how much would you pay an aircraft mechanic or a nuclear technician? How much do you want the airline company with whom you booked a seat to pay an aircraft mechanic working on the plane that you are about to board?

blongbling
12-09-2009, 17:18
That may be true of the department heads but the starting salary for a miniature designer at GW is 16,000pa. It takes around 5 years to get your salary up to a reasonable level (25k+), assuming you can stick it out that long...

sure, thats the senior mini designers

Corrode
12-09-2009, 17:21
AFAIK, no. They just get a flat discount (50% rings a bell) on all GW products. It really pissed off some staff members since you used to be able to get a full plastic army for about 20.

Also, free burgers! :D

50% discount is amazing though. Sure, not being able to buy by weight any more must bite, but in an era of fully-plastic armies it'd be pretty insane.

Jedi152
12-09-2009, 17:39
It is pretty awesome, and probably the reason the majority of people work there!

They often get freebies too. They have to paint stuff for the cabinets which often get replaced when new stuff rolls around. They can't keep them in the store forever so i assume they end up getting taken home.

spetswalshe
12-09-2009, 17:50
actually, not nessesarily, I work as a security guard earning near as 20k with no degree, no experience, and relatively no responsability.... oh and i paint my toy soldiers at work most nights.

You do presumably have an SIA or equivalent, though.

So how good a painter is a GW staffer expected to be? Everything in the cabinets always looks awesome, it seems strange that some fresh-from-school pup would be able to paint like that...

OLIVERASO
12-09-2009, 18:33
True, but staff do it anyways. Theft is more rampant at GW than anyone in management wants to admit. From the studio to the manufacturing floor stock goes "missing", unreleased models get out, resin casts of masters get "multiple" copies made (for quality purposes of course ). Unreleased resin casts of "test" sculpts of Jes's new Dark Eldar are "given" to buddies etc.

Kof Kof.
I was thinking at that, as I have just see that things happen ( guys that get -many- resin cast ... more than what was originally produced in fact ) in private collection... You are in the US, but apprently, GW employee are still stealing stuff in the UK :D

zedeyejoe
12-09-2009, 18:35
I got an ex-cabinet army, 2000pts of painted Skaven for 100 (not an ex-GW employee myself though). I thought it was a bargain.

Like everything GW gets to pick its staff and painting is on the list of skills. But everyone gets better with practice.

Jedi152
12-09-2009, 19:25
So how good a painter is a GW staffer expected to be? Everything in the cabinets always looks awesome, it seems strange that some fresh-from-school pup would be able to paint like that...
Not really. You have to paint to an acceptable standard, but not 'Eavy Metal standards. Most i've seen in shop cabinets i'd class as table-top standard.

As has been said, bear in mind they're painting a lot (every staffer is expected to maintain a 'current' full army for each system), so they'll get better fast.

Dangersaurus
12-09-2009, 20:02
That may be true of the department heads but the starting salary for a miniature designer at GW is 16,000pa. It takes around 5 years to get your salary up to a reasonable level (25k+), assuming you can stick it out that long...

Salary? That's the sort of thing I would expect to start as a freelance position. Not a bad trade-off really.

simonr1978
12-09-2009, 20:05
You do presumably have an SIA or equivalent, though.

At the risk of going off topic here, the trick with stuff like this is to start off with a fairly large company that will give you the training or licensing your discipline requires, for example I came on to the railway with no engineering experience or qualifications and for most of my colleagues the same is true, the companies we worked for trained and mentored us as appropriate. Whilst some areas or industries will obviously require specific qualifications (i.e. medicine), it's certainly not impossible to get yourself a 20K+ job with no experience or degree with a bit of luck and the correct aptitude and attitude.

That said, these jobs are the exception to an otherwise pretty solid rule, qualifications and experience will go a long way to landing a well paying job of your choice and as Corrode said, certainly outside of London, 20K+ tend to require a degree or experience.

Dakkagor
12-09-2009, 20:11
Its like a trailer we sell burgers, kebabs and other stuff out of.

So if you ever get to sheffield and want a free burger...

One thing, on topic, I would like to ask, do GW staff still retain the ability to buy metal stuff at weight?

Edit: Simonr: With the hiring part time staff, theres also some benefit the business gets by not having to pay as much national insurance per FTE. Its crap, I know, but I'd do it if I ran a business.

As previous (and bitter) staff, I can say that yes, the discount is a flat 50%, with a 15% at forgeworld.


It is pretty awesome, and probably the reason the majority of people work there!

They often get freebies too. They have to paint stuff for the cabinets which often get replaced when new stuff rolls around. They can't keep them in the store forever so i assume they end up getting taken home.

You say that. . . the story goes at my old store that someone worked up a huge and beautiful conversion for display that eventually had to be got rid of due to storage. He took it home and was sacked for his trouble.


You do presumably have an SIA or equivalent, though.

So how good a painter is a GW staffer expected to be? Everything in the cabinets always looks awesome, it seems strange that some fresh-from-school pup would be able to paint like that...

You have to have a modicum of painting ability to start with, but you'd be amazed what can be achieved with the inks, washes and highlights, and just reading the guides on the shelves.

Corrode
12-09-2009, 21:49
You do presumably have an SIA or equivalent, though.

So how good a painter is a GW staffer expected to be? Everything in the cabinets always looks awesome, it seems strange that some fresh-from-school pup would be able to paint like that...

As jedi said, they get a LOT of practice. There's a chap in Bristol at the moment who's there for his training course, and the difference between his old 2nd edition stuff dragged and the stuff he's painted since getting practice at the store is huge. A few basic lessons on technique can really bring a person up to speed, and they get a lot more than basic lessons assuming the manager is worth a damn.


Not really. You have to paint to an acceptable standard, but not 'Eavy Metal standards. Most i've seen in shop cabinets i'd class as table-top standard.

As has been said, bear in mind they're painting a lot (every staffer is expected to maintain a 'current' full army for each system), so they'll get better fast.

That's not actually true. I'd heard it mentioned here before and once, when having a rather lengthy chat with a staffer at GW Manchester, I asked him about it. At that store at least, they were expected to know the rules for every system, but they didn't necessarily have to have an army for all of them. However, he was keen to emphasise that a lot of these things are decided on a store-by-store basis depending on the whims of a manager, so it could be true elsewhere. GW managers really do have a lot more influence over their stores than you'd think.

Huw_Dawson
12-09-2009, 23:42
Buy at discount, sell on eBay. Problems with income solved. :)

- Huw

EDIT: If you didn't do this, you can't exactly complain about not earning enough.

starlight
13-09-2009, 00:13
Except that GW has several ways of *deterring* such practises, up to and including having you bring models in to the shop if they don't see them in your claimed armies within short order. Several staffers were accused of stealing (which is what GW considers it) until they brought in their armies to show their managers... :(

In one case a female administrative worker was accused because she placed a rather larger WFB order without ever having expressed an interest in the game. Turns out she was a rather avid, if secretive, collector and painter.

wolf40k
13-09-2009, 01:24
I've worked in retail at a hardware store and I can say that it is almost like working at a daycare as well. A person that has never built any thing in his life will come in and believe that he knows what he is doing(we called them weekend warriors) and order a whole bunch of things to build whatever it is they are going to build.

It was are job to explain why what they are doing wrong and how to fix it except they made 4 -5 times as much as we did and so must of know more about everything then us. I had one customer wanting to build a deck with 1x2's.

Retail sucks no mater what or were it is, unless you are a good salesman at a commission store.

carmachu
13-09-2009, 03:12
The funny thing is, I've heard similar things here in the US from someone on the manager level about pretty much the same type rants as the OP: Upper management wants more sales, what they dont want to do is show some appreciation, loyalty or actual pay-either in pay or bonuses for meeting targets.

The guy at our club pretty much has said the same thing as his time at GW- he's hitting humbers and exceeding them, they always want more or change stuff then the store goes to the toilet.

*shrug* GW could be in alot better position if they take care of the little things like employees.

Loki73
13-09-2009, 04:28
You're missing the point: there are fewer and fewer kids. In other words, they're aiming their business model at a shrinking market.


Actually your missing the point. Typically during hard times and recessions people stop birthing kids or plan to have less. If its such a shrinking market why do they keep doing it? GW has been doing this scince the 2ed to 3rd ed "screw the veteren" fest of yester yor!

Companies on a whole down trend bonuses become harder to get or are removed. Pay gets stiffled. Then when things get better there's no recompense toward the employees thus making more monies up for corporations.

One of these days this s**t is all come to a skreetching halt as world armageddon ensues!

CaliforniaGamer
13-09-2009, 06:50
Except that GW has several ways of *deterring* such practises, up to and including having you bring models in to the shop if they don't see them in your claimed armies within short order. Several staffers were accused of stealing (which is what GW considers it) until they brought in their armies to show their managers... :(

In one case a female administrative worker was accused because she placed a rather larger WFB order without ever having expressed an interest in the game. Turns out she was a rather avid, if secretive, collector and painter.

Hold it...what? Is this true? Thats somewhat beyond the pale.

When you buy stuff at an employee discount doesnt it belong to you?!

This is Orwellian.

...does the "Old Major" backed by Squealer and Napolean secretly run GW? hehe dunno if I can buy this.

yabbadabba
13-09-2009, 08:03
Hold it...what? Is this true? Thats somewhat beyond the pale.
When you buy stuff at an employee discount doesnt it belong to you?!
This is Orwellian.
...does the "Old Major" backed by Squealer and Napolean secretly run GW? hehe dunno if I can buy this.

Its contractual. In the UK any discount is a priviledge and can be withheld or even fully withdrawn. GW employees are offered the discount to encourage their own hobby and are contractually obliged not to sell it on, and especially not at profit. In worse case scenarios this would be breaking the terms of employment and can end in dismissal. This is common in many retail businesses, and consistent discount abuse is a fairly common reason for failure in probationary periods, especially amongst youngsters (along with being late!)

For GW, there is nothing wrong with buying gifts for friends or family.

Condottiere
13-09-2009, 08:08
Basically, they license the miniatures to you in consideration for your discount.

CaliforniaGamer
13-09-2009, 08:13
For GW, there is nothing wrong with buying gifts for friends or family.

Thats my suprise, if you are forced to physically present goods sold to you at a discount, wouldnt it preclude you giving a box or 2 to a sibling or buddy for a holiday gift?

I guess Im not familiar enough with Brit laws, barring catching you in the act of selling, asking someone to present every purchase in person after the sale date *seems* very unreasonable, contractual or not.

threewolftats
13-09-2009, 08:16
You do presumably have an SIA or equivalent, though.

So how good a painter is a GW staffer expected to be? Everything in the cabinets always looks awesome, it seems strange that some fresh-from-school pup would be able to paint like that...

Absolutely..... which takes a 4 day course and a CRB check to get.... basically if you can count past 10 without taking your shoes off, and you haven't spent any time in prison, You can have an SIA license...

yabbadabba
13-09-2009, 08:27
Thats my suprise, if you are forced to physically present goods sold to you at a discount, wouldnt it preclude you giving a box or 2 to a sibling or buddy for a holiday gift?
I guess Im not familiar enough with Brit laws, barring catching you in the act of selling, asking someone to present every purchase in person after the sale date *seems* very unreasonable, contractual or not.

You forget a jot of common sense. Tracking if you are selling stuff isn't that difficult. However staff sales are recorded. All you have to do is inform your line manager its a gift and no probs. No system is not perfect but remember very few people work for GW because they have to, if any. This makes it more unlikely for them to steal or defraud their company.

simonr1978
13-09-2009, 10:15
...and as Yabbadabba indicated GW is certainly not alone in this regard, apparently at least one person at our local major national supermarket was apparently dismissed for abusing their staff discount by accompanying friends and distant family on their shopping trips.

I can't imagine there'd be much if anything they could do if someone, say, kicked the behind out of the staff discount whilst they worked there, left and then sold on their purchases. Wouldn't help you too much if it was your main source of income and you had dependants to provide for, though as others have said, main family breadwinners don't tend to be working entry level retail.

That said, I'd also doubt that they could sack someone for not presenting absolutely everything they'd ever bought with their discount, there's got to be a reasonable allowance for stuff being lost, stolen, given away, broken, destroyed in botched conversions, etc. Of course if you've bought thousands of pounds of stuff and can only bring in a single battleforce then some alarm bells are going to ring.

Corrode
13-09-2009, 11:38
Thats my suprise, if you are forced to physically present goods sold to you at a discount, wouldnt it preclude you giving a box or 2 to a sibling or buddy for a holiday gift?

I guess Im not familiar enough with Brit laws, barring catching you in the act of selling, asking someone to present every purchase in person after the sale date *seems* very unreasonable, contractual or not.

It is unreasonable, which is why they don't do it. No sane manager is going to demand to see everything you buy fully painted and based by week's end, and I very much doubt it's standard practice anywhere. starlight's story may well reflect the poor standards of some area managers in the company, but I doubt it reflects the real situation in GW at all levels.

To put this in simple terms:

1) 'Hi, I was wondering if I could buy this box of Flagellants at discount for my mate's birthday, he's a big Empire player.' This one probably isn't going to raise any eyebrows.
2) 'Hi, I'd like to buy our entire stock of Greatswords at discount. What's that? Resell them on eBay at 20 a pop and make a killing? Dios Mio, no!'
3) 'Hi, yeah, same order of three boxes of Greatswords again. What, you think I'm reselling them on eBay since there's no possible way that anyone could use thirty boxesof Greatswords?'

The second two are the kind of thing where reasonable evidence might be required, and apparently are even admissible under UK law as a reason for firing someone.

blongbling
13-09-2009, 14:37
Buy at discount, sell on eBay. Problems with income solved. :)

- Huw

EDIT: If you didn't do this, you can't exactly complain about not earning enough.

and get fired

ChesneySwoopingHawks
13-09-2009, 15:23
What a horrible lot some of you are!

Here is a story of how I and many others have a really hard time babysitting your local GWs for the minimum wage and all you can say is. "It's not as bad as MY old job where I had to stick pins in my eye for pennies" or "Well, you do get to keep the odd display cabinet Space Marine AND you get a 50% discount!"

The discount is nice, but once you've bought an army for each system (which still isn't cheap) you lose interest in the fact a rhino costs 9. 9 is two hours work childminding 20 unruly 11 year olds whilst trying to explain to a grizzled old "Games Day '81" t-shirt wearing veteran that, no his eldar jetbike cannot use the tank tank shock rule. And you've got to run a shop just like any other, this means stock takes, deliveries, cleaning etc. Also you are mostly working at least half the day on your own.

And of course, the fact I nicked some blood angels after being shafted by my crappy retail job for nearly two years means I do not have the moral fibre to train to be a primary teacher. Of course. I will probably spend my lessons teaching them how to worship satan while I pilfer their lunchboxes for dinner money during assembly.

Internet forums, what was I hoping for!
Otherwise, thanks for some interesting thoughts regarding my post. Chin up to any poor sod who still works for GW.

simonr1978
13-09-2009, 17:03
Actually what a lot of people were trying to say is that it is pretty much comparable to many, many other retail jobs.

As one of those who said I have no sympathy, I still don't. From what I can gather you pretty much have to go jumping through hoops to get a job at GW - you must know by the point you accept the position what it will entail because you will have seen a job description and signed a contract detailing rights, responsibilities and pay. So what exactly do you expect? Oh, poor you, it was minimum wage or just above. You knew that when you signed the contract, right? No-one forced you to accept the job, you could have declined or given notice at any point, and yet for some reason (I suspect that the discount was probably a big factor) you stayed.

Regarding "childminding 20 unruly 11 year olds ". I'm sorry, but firstly you must have known that dealing with pent up, over excited children and pre-teenagers was going to figure big time in your work. I'm assuming that you at least visited a GW store on a couple of occasions before putting in an application, if not then more fool you. Secondly, you are not childminding them.

GW is not running a creche or daycare scheme, yes it is basically a toy shop and unfortunately some parents are going to abuse that but GW and its staff are under few if any obligations regarding the care of youngsters in their store outside of the usual Health and Safety laws. Whatever some current and ex-staffers seem to think, dealing with children in this capacity does not make them childminders.

Personally I would regard your stealing from your ex employer as somewhat immature retaliation, not particularly lacking in moral fibre, can't honestly say I might not have done something similar myself in the same situation, that said you've got to accept that you do concede some of the moral high ground here.

Lastly, as a comment on your last sentence, to any of the poor sods who're feeling all downtrodden by the evil corporation, remember you chose to work there. You can also choose to leave, no-one's forcing you to stay.

Dangersaurus
13-09-2009, 17:36
And of course, the fact I nicked some blood angels after being shafted by my crappy retail job for nearly two years means I do not have the moral fibre to train to be a primary teacher. Of course. I will probably spend my lessons teaching them how to worship satan while I pilfer their lunchboxes for dinner money during assembly.

You're seriously throwing a tantrum because someone told you stealing is wrong?

zedeyejoe
13-09-2009, 17:38
I always thought that people who work for GW have a deep interest in the GW games. I never felt I had that much of an interest and so went and did other things with my life.

Reinholt
13-09-2009, 17:46
Fundamentally, this fits perfectly with what those of us in the investment world have known about GW for a long time:

Games Workshop is not a well run company.

To be fair, with regard to retail, most companies are rather poorly run (which also helps explain why so few retail companies experience long-term success); GW's problems begin at the top and permeate the entire company.

I do not expect this situation to change until GW changes some of their fundamental business practices (how they compensate employees, how they set performance goals, quality control, and so on), and I do not expect GW to change their fundamental business practices until they are either nearly bankrupt or bought out.

To quote Metallica: Sad, but true.

yabbadabba
13-09-2009, 18:16
Fundamentally, this fits perfectly with what those of us in the investment world have known about GW for a long time:

Games Workshop is not a well run company.

To be fair, with regard to retail, most companies are rather poorly run (which also helps explain why so few retail companies experience long-term success); GW's problems begin at the top and permeate the entire company.

I do not expect this situation to change until GW changes some of their fundamental business practices (how they compensate employees, how they set performance goals, quality control, and so on), and I do not expect GW to change their fundamental business practices until they are either nearly bankrupt or bought out.

To quote Metallica: Sad, but true.
What on earth does that have to do with the thread? Or is it just an excuse for another pop?

Reinholt
13-09-2009, 18:56
What on earth does that have to do with the thread? Or is it just an excuse for another pop?

I thought that should be obvious.

However, to take that one at face value...

Looking for situations with the following are usually useful when attempting to evaluate the overall health of a company: employee retention and satisfaction, customer retention and satisfaction, consistent and coherent management practices, appropriate incentive structures for employees to align interests with both investors and good corporate behavior, effective and efficient operations, and a few other things on the finance side I won't delve into the details of here.

Obviously several of those are grossly violated here, and worse, the incentives exist for managers to do precisely what was done.

But point is this - I've seen the story that was just discussed play out at multiple GW stores; the fact that it keeps happening (rather than being an isolated incident), the fact that the same errors are consistently made, and the fact that it involves some relatively basic mistakes tell me that what should be done here is pretty basic:

Look at the man behind the curtain, as it were.

yabbadabba
13-09-2009, 19:15
I thought that should be obvious.
However, to take that one at face value...
Looking for situations with the following are usually useful when attempting to evaluate the overall health of a company: employee retention and satisfaction, customer retention and satisfaction, consistent and coherent management practices, appropriate incentive structures for employees to align interests with both investors and good corporate behavior, effective and efficient operations, and a few other things on the finance side I won't delve into the details of here.
Obviously several of those are grossly violated here, and worse, the incentives exist for managers to do precisely what was done.
But point is this - I've seen the story that was just discussed play out at multiple GW stores; the fact that it keeps happening (rather than being an isolated incident), the fact that the same errors are consistently made, and the fact that it involves some relatively basic mistakes tell me that what should be done here is pretty basic:
Look at the man behind the curtain, as it were.

You dont have enough evidence to make anything like a qualified statement, and you have an anonymous post from a person who has admitted to being a thief, and therefore dishonest, as the vehicle for your observations.

Anybody with even the basic understanding will appreciate that the selection of individuals within any structure will contain a wide variety of behaviours, standards and work ethics, not all of which will be ideal, or compatible with the perceived company ethos. Yet those people survive and in some cases thrive.

So here is the truth of the matter. The internet, and particularly web forums such as this, are a poor place to gather any sort of information as there is no way to verify if whats being said is true, or even from a genuine person. There is nobody I have heard of who is qualified to be professional expert on GW's type of business. GW have never been run by anyone qualified and experienced in running their type of business, not a surprise as they are unique. Despite countless miles of whining and whinging on here GW are still around, making money and moving forward.

So, your comment is just another opportunity for an unqualified criticism.

zedeyejoe
13-09-2009, 21:05
You dont have enough evidence to make anything like a qualified statement, and you have an anonymous post from a person who has admitted to being a thief, and therefore dishonest, as the vehicle for your observations.

Just my 2p of course but it rang true to what I have heard from other ex-GW employees. So I was inclined to believe it.

Sadly I also find that a lot of people justify theft, in all walks of life. So they don't have to be totally dishonest, perhaps - to put the best face on it - just confused?

starlight
13-09-2009, 23:26
You dont have enough evidence to make anything like a qualified statement, and you have an anonymous post from a person who has admitted to being a thief, and therefore dishonest, as the vehicle for your observations.

Anybody with even the basic understanding will appreciate that the selection of individuals within any structure will contain a wide variety of behaviours, standards and work ethics, not all of which will be ideal, or compatible with the perceived company ethos. Yet those people survive and in some cases thrive.

So here is the truth of the matter. The internet, and particularly web forums such as this, are a poor place to gather any sort of information as there is no way to verify if whats being said is true, or even from a genuine person. There is nobody I have heard of who is qualified to be professional expert on GW's type of business. GW have never been run by anyone qualified and experienced in running their type of business, not a surprise as they are unique. Despite countless miles of whining and whinging on here GW are still around, making money and moving forward.

So, your comment is just another opportunity for an unqualified criticism.

Sadly your comments have no greater weight...nor do mine...

However, (obviously from another random internet user) my real-world experiences don't differ widely from the circumstances presented here... :(

GW is a toy retailer with ancillary departments selling books, computer games (through licenses), etc. Despite what they will have you believe, their business is neither unique, nor niche. Wargaming has been around in various forms for decades. Fantasy and Sci-Fi novels, etc have been around at least as long and are an established genre. Computer games are newer, but are a well established business sector. Nothing GW is doing is unique or niche...

What *is* niche are their customers, who are (by and large) late-teen to mid-thirty-something male geeks/nerds interested in miniature wargaming or model collecting. GW needs to put aside pushing the crack they're selling for a moment and get to know who is actually paying the bills...because they haven't demonstrated this in my experience. :(

Rant on all you want about no one understanding GW, but that simply underscores *your* lack of understanding. :( GW is a business, with product to sell, employees to train and motivate, shareholders to reward and creditors/vendors to pay. Sadly they have placed hobby knowledge and loyalty to your superiors above business acumen...to their detriment. Businesses the world over are faced with the exact same concerns every day. The successful ones learn and adapt. The unsuccessful ones continue on with their fingers in their ears humming loudly...usually claiming that they are somehow *different* and that *other people don't understand us* to hide their fundamental flaws... Enron was the largest recent example of this...

What the OP has described and many of us have seen in person isn't changed by his irresponsible actions (although it does present the concern of bias), nor is it diminshed by our choice of medium for discussion (the Internet).

GW may still be around, but they have been losing money for several years and seeing declining sales volumes for the last seven. They have taken drastic measures (increasing debt to pay dividends, suspending dividends, major restructuring, etc) to stem their hemorraging of cash. It remains to be seen of they are moving forward or not...

Based on what I saw at GW and on other information (including GW's own annual reports) we elected to *not* make a substantial investment in GW PLC back in 2004...a decision we have never regretted. Whether or not *you* recognise a person's qualifications isn't particularly relevant...but our investors were quite happy with our suggestions.:)

carmachu
14-09-2009, 00:26
Rant on all you want about no one understanding GW, but that simply underscores *your* lack of understanding. :( GW is a business, with product to sell, employees to train and motivate, shareholders to reward and creditors/vendors to pay. Sadly they have placed hobby knowledge and loyalty to your superiors above business acumen...to their detriment. Businesses the world over are faced with the exact same concerns every day. The successful ones learn and adapt. The unsuccessful ones continue on with their fingers in their ears humming loudly...usually claiming that they are somehow *different* and that *other people don't understand us* to hide their fundamental flaws... Enron was the largest recent example of this...



Correct. Putting aside that we all like the little toy soldiers for the moment, and looking at GW BUSINESS, I'm amazed how their even still in business some days.

You cant treat empolyees the way the OP and a friend(and others who have similar stires) in such a way and expect them to keep carrying the water for you. You cant promise some kind of bonus-whether money or models, and not follow through becuase of paperwork or whatever lame reason. Becuase as the poster describes, becuase then the next time you want targets reached....they wont becuase you as upper management dont follow through.

Its sad really.

simonr1978
14-09-2009, 01:17
You cant treat empolyees the way the OP and a friend(and others who have similar stires) in such a way and expect them to keep carrying the water for you. You cant promise some kind of bonus-whether money or models, and not follow through becuase of paperwork or whatever lame reason. Becuase as the poster describes, becuase then the next time you want targets reached....they wont becuase you as upper management dont follow through.

Its sad really.

That's reality quite often in the UK at any rate, GW has the advantage of being stimulating but demanding, uncompetitive pay but excellent discount, it compares not unfavourably with other employers who trade some of the positives against some of GW's negatives, i.e. less demanding but much less stimulating, better pay in terms of /hr but staff discount around 10% instead of 50%.

I've worked for employers in the past whose pay has been comparable to GW's, the discount has been but a fraction and they've offered no bonus at all. This, the above, is quite normal in UK retail at that level.

Reinholt
14-09-2009, 03:13
You dont have enough evidence to make anything like a qualified statement, and you have an anonymous post from a person who has admitted to being a thief, and therefore dishonest, as the vehicle for your observations.

I have more evidence than most people who work for GW, given the volume of information I have accumulated on them.

I know GW as a business quite well; I've had to analyze them for professional reasons, I get every single investor relations report and have spoken to people at multiple levels within the company, and I understand the business of, well, business, because that is my job.


Anybody with even the basic understanding will appreciate that the selection of individuals within any structure will contain a wide variety of behaviours, standards and work ethics, not all of which will be ideal, or compatible with the perceived company ethos. Yet those people survive and in some cases thrive.

To a point; some companies do it better (see Goldman Sachs) and some companies do it worse (see General Motors). Recruiting and holding on to quality employees is one of the foremost concerns that businesses face, and waving one's hands and saying "Well, we have a variety of people" does not solve that problem.

I would suggest GW has a variety of people who are not exactly top tier, or they would (in many cases) be elsewhere making more money.


There is nobody I have heard of who is qualified to be professional expert on GW's type of business.

Hi.


GW have never been run by anyone qualified and experienced in running their type of business, not a surprise as they are unique. Despite countless miles of whining and whinging on here GW are still around, making money and moving forward.

Correct, but this is more a factor of luck than anything else. GW has never had a strong competitor run by qualified individuals in their direct space, so their under-performance can be measured only in leaving money on the table they could have had.

Had they been faced with better competition, they would either be long dead or much more effective.


So, your comment is just another opportunity for an unqualified criticism.

My criticism, in this case, is not unqualified. I'm not going to go on and on about it, but look back over my past posts - I know finance and operations, and I have more than a bit of perspective (from practice) as to how firms operate.

Havock
14-09-2009, 04:17
Not at all familiar with GW's, seeing as I have an indie nearby, but I read the comments about FF.
Worked at a FF 'restaurant' (r. feeding shack) during my 'somewhere in between'-period years ago.

Manager and everyone else was retarded and/or an *******.

Fun times :p

Zoned
14-09-2009, 04:43
To Starlight:

Have you read the latest report? You wrote:

They have taken drastic measures (increasing debt to pay dividends, suspending dividends, major restructuring, etc) to stem their hemorraging of cash. It remains to be seen of they are moving forward or not...

Most of your points are right but I wanted to point out that they have greatly reduced their debt.

Taken from their latest annual report:

"As a result we have been able to reduce our net debt from 10.1 million to 1.6 million by year end."

Just wanted to keep things accurate.

starlight
14-09-2009, 05:47
As a result of *what* though...? And not what the report claims, but what did they *actually* cut (aside from a huge number of front-line sales positions and stores) or gain (mostly currency advantages) to pay for that 8.5MQuid in debt reduction...?

Greatly reducing their debt by slashing wages merely takes them back to the poor position they were in a few years ago, it doesn't mean things are fundamentally better... :(

Reinholt
14-09-2009, 06:22
Agreed that reducing the current debt they are using is good; until GW has more stable cash flows and predictable business, the kind of debt they were taking on is a double-edged sword. You might be able to lower your overall cost of capital (though, at current borrowing rates, I doubt it), but you risk the enterprise if you have a major downturn given how small they are.

However, I don't see that they have stemmed the tide of customers leaving the company in a meaningful way. Once you adjust for price increases, GW has been losing clients steadily since 2004, and that is an ominous long-term trend, especially if it is the higher-end (and thus higher spending over time) veterans burning out.

Vaktathi
14-09-2009, 07:47
With regards to the debt, much of it was created to pay dividends, a very poor business decision (why are you borrowing money to provide a return to investors when you don't have to and your financial position is slipping?), but one that likely doubled the personal income of Mr. Kirby based on his salary and his shares of GW.

zedeyejoe
14-09-2009, 08:44
Correct, but this is more a factor of luck than anything else. GW has never had a strong competitor run by qualified individuals in their direct space, so their under-performance can be measured only in leaving money on the table they could have had.

Had they been faced with better competition, they would either be long dead or much more effective.

I totally agree (as an ex-systems analyst, with a long term interest in GW and a gamer). I have travelled the UK sorting out problems in various businesses some truly appalling (like managers who play golf whilst leaving consultants to sort the problems out) to just the odd problem. GW makes mistakes no doubt about it, using a cheap, enthusiastic labour force is a mistake IMHO. A better sales team would do better at bringing in more money from the face-to-face transactions and perhaps the customers would be happier as well.

However should I care? does not make much money for me (apart from a bit of share dealing).

blongbling
14-09-2009, 11:47
"As a result we have been able to reduce our net debt from 10.1 million to 1.6 million by year end."

Just wanted to keep things accurate.

yes, but this money to do this came in through a couple of channels, the licenses they have and through their trade channels, not through their retail stores.

jackson11
14-09-2009, 12:34
And of course, the fact I nicked some blood angels after being shafted by my crappy retail job for nearly two years means I do not have the moral fibre to train to be a primary teacher. Of course. I will probably spend my lessons teaching them how to worship satan while I pilfer their lunchboxes for dinner money during assembly.



Hi Chesney and firstly, please dont take this as a personal attack as i dont know you from a ball of chalk, but i can only comment on what is put before us and by starting a forum thread you are opening yourself up to receive opinions and responses, so here is mine.

To be fair i would have some reservation having my child taught by someone who thinks it is ok to steal from their employer because they can justify it by saying they feel they had a raw deal wages wise etc (bearing in mind you knew the wage situation and what the job entalied when taking the job in the first place).

What happens two years down the line at your teachers position if you start to feel you are getting a raw deal pay wise and work load wise, does it then become acceptable to steal from the school as you view them as "screwing you over" also? If caught in the act by a child would you show remorse or would you try to explain to them that it is ok as your boss has had a payrise and you havent etc like you have tried to do to us on here?

I would leave you with this thought: if you feel what you did is totally acceptable given the situation you were in at GW, then will you happily tell the school you apply to for a job, that you stole from your last job as you didnt agree with the pay/work conditions etc or will you decline to inform them of this because you know really that it is totally unacceptable and you know that this would (rightly so) have a huge effect on the likelyhood of you getting the said position as they (as well as we) may call into question your "moral fibre".

I rather confidently predict it would be the latter as teachers and role models for young children are expected to be one of the pinnacles of society and you would know full well that this disclosure of criminal activity (which is exactly what it was) would cease any chance you had at getting employment.

The fact that on reflection, some time later, you still appear to think this was acceptable behaviour rather than regretting your actions is more a reflection on "moral fibre" or lack thereof, one would suggest.

We all make mistakes, i stole a toy from a friend when i was at school so i dont claim to be any better than anyone else, but most of us learn from those mistakes, show remorse for our actions and regret them because our "moral fibre" allows us to realise it is not something to boast about or attempt to justify using arguments that we ourselves know are fundamentally flawed.

Just my 2 pence worth anyway. Have a good day.

carmachu
14-09-2009, 15:06
That's reality quite often in the UK at any rate, GW has the advantage of being stimulating but demanding, uncompetitive pay but excellent discount, it compares not unfavourably with other employers who trade some of the positives against some of GW's negatives, i.e. less demanding but much less stimulating, better pay in terms of /hr but staff discount around 10% instead of 50%.

I've worked for employers in the past whose pay has been comparable to GW's, the discount has been but a fraction and they've offered no bonus at all. This, the above, is quite normal in UK retail at that level.

I'm not taking pay with discounts.

I'm taking about promises of bonuses- whether its pay(a friend here in teh US) or with models(via the OP) and not following through or backing out after they meet the goal.

Being in business, I believe in the old saying of "take care of your employees, and they take care of you". Screwing them leads to turnover and unproductivity. Or here in the US-the turnover and the store closed.....

Doesnt mean you give them everythingthey want, you cant be silly. But if you tell them their going to get something for X goal, you have to follow through.

zedeyejoe
14-09-2009, 16:08
Not a fan of bonuses unless its a two way street, when you lose money they take a pay cut. Most bonus structures tend to be win-win for employees. Should it not be that the best employees get promotions instead? and we stick with the idea that people get paid for the work they do.

Lewis
14-09-2009, 22:37
What a horrible lot some of you are! Here is a story of how I and many others have a really hard time babysitting your local GWs for the minimum wage and all you can say is. "It's not as bad as MY old job where I had to stick pins in my eye for pennies" .

I have a sig.



Regarding "childminding 20 unruly 11 year olds ". I'm sorry, but firstly you must have known that dealing with pent up, over excited children and pre-teenagers was going to figure big time in your work. I'm assuming that you at least visited a GW store on a couple of occasions before putting in an application, if not then more fool you. Secondly, you are not childminding them.


Have you ever watched a game being managed by a staffer played by a group of under 13's? I'm a teacher and its as child intensive as anything I do.

I don't think GW is the worst job out of all its competitors, but its not the best either: I worked for Ted Baker on similar money and all that was ever asked of me was to subtly flirt with women in order to sell them dresses for christmas parties (and I was good too). I think that if you don't compare GW to Macdonalds but rather compare it to ther purveyors of luxury items then what it demands of its staff is far higher than the norm even when you factor in the employees affection for the product.

Seville
15-09-2009, 02:45
You dont have enough evidence to make anything like a qualified statement.

There is nobody I have heard of who is qualified to be professional expert on GW's type of business.

Hey, waitaminute.

I wouldn't get into this with LOLCat. He has taken several biz n econ classes at the local community college, has read more than one GW financial report, and is brilliant even by internet standards. He also cares about this topic far more than anyone else. :D

Anyway, I do get the feeling that working for GW is a pretty crummy gig. I applied once a while back thinking it might be fun, but when I found out their interviews are really just cattle calls where they figure out "if you have what it takes", and that you start at the bottom, I figured I was way overqualified and passed on the opportunity. I also got the impression that there was precious little opportunity for advancement. Furthermore, the people that I dealt with throughout the process were dolts.

Granted, I never actually worked there, so have no clue what I am talking about, but the impression that I got was that it was staffed by kind of petty and incompetent sorts...

This is in LA, mind you, so it could be a regional thing.

Reinholt
15-09-2009, 04:00
Hey, waitaminute.

I wouldn't get into this with LOLCat. He has taken several biz n econ classes at the local community college, has read more than one GW financial report, and is brilliant even by internet standards. He also cares about this topic far more than anyone else. :D

Bwahahahaha. I got a laugh out of that one. Well done.

As an aside, my opinion on econ classes is:

Do not trust anything you learn in an econ class, ever. All I learned during my MBA econ classes was that I shouldn't believe a <expletive deleted>ing thing economics professors say; it's a fancy way of lying. None of this efficient market equilibrium bull actually works properly; the starting assumptions are so poor that you lose any usefulness immediately.

It's like the old joke about mathematicians being people who think cows are spherical and frictionless...

Game theory has some interesting stuff to say about incentives, behavior, and conflict, though.

Corrode
15-09-2009, 11:36
Hey, waitaminute.

I wouldn't get into this with LOLCat. He has taken several biz n econ classes at the local community college, has read more than one GW financial report, and is brilliant even by internet standards. He also cares about this topic far more than anyone else. :D

Anyway, I do get the feeling that working for GW is a pretty crummy gig. I applied once a while back thinking it might be fun, but when I found out their interviews are really just cattle calls where they figure out "if you have what it takes", and that you start at the bottom, I figured I was way overqualified and passed on the opportunity. I also got the impression that there was precious little opportunity for advancement. Furthermore, the people that I dealt with throughout the process were dolts.

Granted, I never actually worked there, so have no clue what I am talking about, but the impression that I got was that it was staffed by kind of petty and incompetent sorts...

This is in LA, mind you, so it could be a regional thing.

You must have missed the part where most people working bottom-rung retail aren't the sharpest screwdrivers since it isn't exactly rocket surgery.

Condottiere
15-09-2009, 12:42
I think I'll decline medical treatment from any doctor or surgeon who's specializing in that field.

Corrode
15-09-2009, 15:47
I think I'll decline medical treatment from any doctor or surgeon who's specializing in that field.

Rocket surgery is a field with many applications. Most of them end messily.

Seville
15-09-2009, 21:48
You must have missed the part where most people working bottom-rung retail aren't the sharpest screwdrivers since it isn't exactly rocket surgery.

No, I didn't miss that part. Not quite sure what rocket surgery is, but I think I get your point.

But I wasn't talking about just the floor staff. I was talking about the store manager and regional manager I spoke with, in particular. The culture seemed "bad" is the only way I can describe it. See, I am at a point in my professional life where the employer should be trying to sell me on why I should work for them. It was very much the other way around with GW. I was entirely uninterested in being poorly paid floor staff, and was clearly overqualified, but they acted like they would be doing me a favor by allowing me the privilege...

Well, again, I really know nothing about the subject so probably shouldn't talk.

ashc
15-09-2009, 21:59
I'm pretty sure rocket surgery is performed by any Painboy worth his weight in teef.

carmachu
15-09-2009, 22:13
Not a fan of bonuses unless its a two way street, when you lose money they take a pay cut. Most bonus structures tend to be win-win for employees. Should it not be that the best employees get promotions instead? and we stick with the idea that people get paid for the work they do.

If and Only if the higher ups not only give back bonuses, but also take major pay cuts as well.....

What? Executives not lining up for that one, but expect the fornt line folks to take the hit?

Yeah, thought so.

Wintertooth
15-09-2009, 22:47
Anyway, I do get the feeling that working for GW is a pretty crummy gig. I applied once a while back thinking it might be fun, but when I found out their interviews are really just cattle calls where they figure out "if you have what it takes", and that you start at the bottom, I figured I was way overqualified and passed on the opportunity.

What position did you apply for? What are your qualifications and experience?

Corrode
15-09-2009, 22:59
No, I didn't miss that part. Not quite sure what rocket surgery is, but I think I get your point.

But I wasn't talking about just the floor staff. I was talking about the store manager and regional manager I spoke with, in particular. The culture seemed "bad" is the only way I can describe it. See, I am at a point in my professional life where the employer should be trying to sell me on why I should work for them. It was very much the other way around with GW. I was entirely uninterested in being poorly paid floor staff, and was clearly overqualified, but they acted like they would be doing me a favor by allowing me the privilege...

Well, again, I really know nothing about the subject so probably shouldn't talk.

Sorry, rocket surgery is a bit of an internet meme - it's just a conflation of rocket science and brain surgery, as I'm sure you can tell. I didn't realise when I read your post that you weren't just going in to be retail cannon fodder.

Schmapdi
15-09-2009, 23:02
But I wasn't talking about just the floor staff. I was talking about the store manager and regional manager I spoke with, in particular. The culture seemed "bad" is the only way I can describe it. See, I am at a point in my professional life where the employer should be trying to sell me on why I should work for them. It was very much the other way around with GW. I was entirely uninterested in being poorly paid floor staff, and was clearly overqualified, but they acted like they would be doing me a favor by allowing me the privilege...



I get what you're saying - I've had job interviews where it was clear that the place was just a dead end street where ambition and thought come to die. Where they have two types of employees, lifers, and young people who move on as fast as they possibly can.

Though you have to admit - it's entirely possible that just that manager/regional manager are dolts. You have to remember that a lot fo managers got to where they are by just being there the longest.

starlight
16-09-2009, 00:29
Which sadly sums up a *lot* of people at GW... :(

starlight
16-09-2009, 01:18
And that's different how...?

The fine details may differ, but that effectively describes my experience with GW Management... :(

Easy success at GW - stick it out, kiss butt, shift blame, know who is important when evaluations roll around.

canucklhead
16-09-2009, 01:21
All of this is why I love driving a truck. My boss is often as much as 1000 miles away, The only major goal I have is to keep the damn thing on the road, and I get to choose what time to have lunch.


That being said, when you begin a career, or even start out in the work force, perhaps in retail sales, you have to expect to pay some dues. Someone with ten years in retail has likely spent half of it in very similar situations to all the anecdotes I've heard. When I first got my truck permit, I spent the first year working for a moving company, all 130lbs of me. It was hell, no doubt, and the pay was pathetic, but only a local moving co. was going to hire an untried driver. A year later I went into towing, and now, I'm lead driver and Supervisor for the largest event rentals company in the province.

You can't walk into any store, GW or not, thinking that at 20 years old, you are doing them a favour working for them, and they better appreciate you like Mom and Dad. If you come at the job from a point of view of "I'm only doing this for a year or two until I start college", then you have to expect that your employer will look at you the same way. Not worth wasting any effort on, since you wont be there to justify it.

Reinholt
16-09-2009, 02:43
All of this is why I love driving a truck. My boss is often as much as 1000 miles away, The only major goal I have is to keep the damn thing on the road, and I get to choose what time to have lunch.


That being said, when you begin a career, or even start out in the work force, perhaps in retail sales, you have to expect to pay some dues. Someone with ten years in retail has likely spent half of it in very similar situations to all the anecdotes I've heard. When I first got my truck permit, I spent the first year working for a moving company, all 130lbs of me. It was hell, no doubt, and the pay was pathetic, but only a local moving co. was going to hire an untried driver. A year later I went into towing, and now, I'm lead driver and Supervisor for the largest event rentals company in the province.

You can't walk into any store, GW or not, thinking that at 20 years old, you are doing them a favour working for them, and they better appreciate you like Mom and Dad. If you come at the job from a point of view of "I'm only doing this for a year or two until I start college", then you have to expect that your employer will look at you the same way. Not worth wasting any effort on, since you wont be there to justify it.

The issue is, ultimately, far deeper than just paying dues:

GW maintains that they want to hire the best retail staff around, and then train them to high standards and keep them as career lifers, often to become management material.

In reality, they pay very close to minimum wage, have very high turnover, and don't pay enough to retain competent managers (so those who do stay are staying for reasons other than compensation, as there are a handful of them). Likewise, I have heard enough tales of the blame shifting / politics and seen several incompetent people promoted in US stores that I suspect they cannot all be lies (though some, almost definitely, are). Similar stories abound in the UK.

So the fundamental problem, to me, appears to be twofold on the retail side:

1 - A strategic disconnect between goals and resources (you cannot expect to have the best of the best on the pay that goes to the worst of the worst; this is similar to giving me ten newly minted privates in the US Army and asking me to conquer China).

2 - A culture that rewards cronyism and butt kissing over actual performance.

starlight
16-09-2009, 02:59
Actually it's company-wide, not just limited to Retail... :(

lcfr
16-09-2009, 03:47
Shame to hear that good employees are treated like crud at GW. My main reason for avoiding the place is exactly because I've yet to run into likeable red shirts.

I suppose the pressure to meet sales targets has something to do with this, but I'm constantly badgered by employees to pick up this or that. The minute I walk into the store some desperate kid creeps right up next to me and asks me "what I'm working on" or "what I play". I'm a pretty friendly guy (despite the venom of this post, haha) and I used to try and hold conversations w/these guys but it always turned into "you should buy the new plastic dwarf warriors/more skeletons/box of centigors, etc." or some dorky lecture on how cool Thorek gunlines or whatever the powergaming army of the time is. I avoid this now by being curt with them and generally giving them the idea that I don't need to be bothered, which is unfortunate because if I'm going to go into a store I really don't want to feel awkward about it the whole time.

Additionally, anyone else ever notice that when you're making a purchase the guy working the cash will always ask you if you'd like some other, specific, item? Asking me "did you find everything ok?" is one thing, but asking, "want some crazy glue?" is a little much...I was once asked (by an older employee actually, not some kid) if I wanted to purchase a hardcover rulebook, out of the blue!

This atmosphere of pressure on the customer coupled with the total social awkwardness of the staff is so irritating!

zedeyejoe
16-09-2009, 10:08
which is unfortunate because if I'm going to go into a store I really don't want to feel awkward about it the whole time.

Consider it a challenge to control the environment around you - in a situation where it does not matter if you lose. There are plenty of people you will meet in life who have objectives different from your own, so changing the situation is a good life skill.

Jedi152
16-09-2009, 11:07
Yes, i always make it fairly clear that i'm there on my own terms, to look at what i want and not be 'sold to'.

Although TBH, i've never really had any sales banter except from over-eager new staff.

blongbling
16-09-2009, 12:06
GW mgt, like all mgt structures, has it share of suck ups, political animals, blame avoiders and career killers....that doesn't make them any different from a million other companies I am afraid to say.

Actually where GW has differed itself recently is by unwittingly instigating a "yes" culture which i feel will be more damaging to it than anything else. Not having a culture where you can challenge what is happening and voice different opinions (in private) without fear of reprisals or of creating an "image" around you is something that will kill any company.

GW went through this under one of its Heads of Retail who presided over the retail chain during the period just before, during and after the LotR period. He effectively removed all people that would questions what he was doing or would voice concerns and replaced them a level of management that would only agree with whatever was said. I'm not saying that this series of actions resulted in the catastrophic results that came after the LoTR's but it did effectively remove most of the free thinkers and people that could have pulled the chain out of the crisis it had afterwards.

daemonkin
16-09-2009, 12:55
My job interview:
Manager: Want a job?
Me: Yeah, sure
Manager: OK, you're hired.

Official interview was over a few pints in a local bar/club. Good to know the store manager from way back when.

During my 2 years with the company I was fresh out of uni and looking for some easy work, get some money, play toy soldiers and not have a care in the world. Perfect!

I learnt a lot of interpersonal skills, (over)confidence approaching people and having the 10 commandments of GW retail rammed down my throat was a great experience, so much so that now if I do not get immediate attention when I walk into a GW store I know the staffers are not doing their jobs well.

My only regret: Not using my staff discount (50% or 5-fingered) to better advantage.

D.

zedeyejoe
16-09-2009, 13:09
Actually where GW has differed itself recently is by unwittingly instigating a "yes" culture which i feel will be more damaging to it than anything else.

Unwittingly, my bad I always thought it was deliberate. But it is common enough. Lots of managers feel that by being paid more and being higher in a company that they are 'better than others'. Ignoring the fact that some of the people working for them are just out of schooling and could have a brilliant future ahead.

I have had the 'Don't you know who I am?' statement once in my life but resisted the 'Can anyone help, there is a person who does not know who they are?' reply

starlight
16-09-2009, 14:44
GW mgt, like all mgt structures, has it share of suck ups, political animals, blame avoiders and career killers....that doesn't make them any different from a million other companies I am afraid to say.

Actually where GW has differed itself recently is by unwittingly instigating a "yes" culture which i feel will be more damaging to it than anything else. Not having a culture where you can challenge what is happening and voice different opinions (in private) without fear of reprisals or of creating an "image" around you is something that will kill any company.

GW went through this under one of its Heads of Retail who presided over the retail chain during the period just before, during and after the LotR period. He effectively removed all people that would questions what he was doing or would voice concerns and replaced them a level of management that would only agree with whatever was said. I'm not saying that this series of actions resulted in the catastrophic results that came after the LoTR's but it did effectively remove most of the free thinkers and people that could have pulled the chain out of the crisis it had afterwards.

It's not recent. In my experience (and related to me by others who worked there far longer than I did) GW has been like this for at least the last ten years and continues to be like this... :(

blongbling
16-09-2009, 15:15
well by recent, certainly I noticed it at the Lenton HQ becoming very dominant in the last three-four years, before then less so but then i was associated more with the old Northern European business where feedback and discourse was encouraged and asked for by the GM who had an open door and would listen to ideas and comments from anyone.

Certainly anyone that knows me wouldn't tarnish me with a "yes man" brush and my career went well up until a recent change in mgt but then i could see that i was fitting in less and less as people were expected to follow and do as they were told and not ask why.

Jedi152
16-09-2009, 15:32
It seems that working for GW is like walking on a knife edge.

And that comes from someone with a large amount of experience of inept managers. I work in education.

chainsawmassacre
16-09-2009, 16:05
You forget a jot of common sense. Tracking if you are selling stuff isn't that difficult. However staff sales are recorded. All you have to do is inform your line manager its a gift and no probs. No system is not perfect but remember very few people work for GW because they have to, if any. This makes it more unlikely for them to steal or defraud their company.


When I worked there we had the staff sales book, still got weight discount on metal AND plastic.

They couldn't make us bring in anything we'd purchased as they were ours, and as their contracts of employment weren't legal in Ireland. So every member of staff in the Dublin store brought them to the Labour Court and together won about 60K between us (there were 10 of us including key timers).

Happy days, now i'm in a 9-5 desk job taking it easy sculpting my own miniatures and resin bases in my spare time and actually enjoying my hobby again

daemonkin
16-09-2009, 16:11
Our staff sales book was investigated once and found that the sales each month totalled more than all the staff's salaries for the month for 3 months in a row. Things became a little stricter after that.

D.

75hastings69
16-09-2009, 17:09
Did you work in the Belfast store Daemonkin? A certain someone from that store once sold me a load of Gift Vouchers for a discount price - only for me to find out later they were actually stolen! the same person I also watched stamping on boxes of Beastmen (not to obliterate them - just to damage them) and then helping himself to them, he gave a box to me and also to another guy that was in the store at the time too, he was also pretty drunk! he was later fired and replaced by IMO an even more inept person and I never went back to the store for months, went in recently and it was a nice atmosphere - well apart from one very over excited and over friendly employee who just came across as being completely wierd and creepy!

daemonkin
16-09-2009, 17:17
@75hastings: Bingo! Never did anything too underhand - only staff discount abuse. Wish I had done more though but I guess I listened to good Homer rather than evil Homer!

And the drunk staff was probably the manager who gave me the job in the first place. Nice guy. Still friends with him! He used to hit on kids' mum's by 'breaking' a box and giving it to the kid who was happy which meant the mum was happy which more often than not ended up in the manager being happy!

Great days!

D.

Mike3791
16-09-2009, 17:17
Retail blows, customers are idiots and the pay sucks that's why it's a job for kids fresh outta high school.

No, its a job for people still in high school.


@75hastings:
And the drunk staff was probably the manager who gave me the job in the first place. Nice guy. Still friends with him! He used to hit on kids' mum's by 'breaking' a box and giving it to the kid who was happy which meant the mum was happy which more often than not ended up in the manager being happy!

Great days!

D.

Sounds like a lousy businessman. Giving away free product, costing the company money, just to get a smile from a ****? He only got a smile...right?

EmperorNorton
16-09-2009, 17:19
An even more inept person than a drunk stamping on the store's merchandise?
That sounds like you should have been able to sell tickets for that.

Verm1s
16-09-2009, 19:26
My job interview:
Manager: Want a job?
Me: Yeah, sure
Manager: OK, you're hired.

Official interview was over a few pints in a local bar/club.

Hhhahahaha! I wondered why that sounded familiar until I looked at the username. :D

Hastings: yes, I know exactly who you mean! Ah, the tales that could be told.

You wouldn't sleep for a week.

daemonkin
16-09-2009, 20:25
@Mike: Yes he only got a smile... the next morning!

I used to love running the Sunday creche/academy as the yummy mummies would come in with muffins and coffees for us hard working staff just to keep lil Jimmy occupied while they did some retail therapy...

D.

Lewis
16-09-2009, 21:08
Who says playing with minatures will stop you geting laid. eh?

Mike3791
16-09-2009, 21:26
@Mike: Yes he only got a smile... the next morning!


Well, if that's true then I withdraw my previous comment ;)

canucklhead
17-09-2009, 00:21
Unwittingly, my bad I always thought it was deliberate. But it is common enough. Lots of managers feel that by being paid more and being higher in a company that they are 'better than others'. Ignoring the fact that some of the people working for them are just out of schooling and could have a brilliant future ahead.

I have had the 'Don't you know who I am?' statement once in my life but resisted the 'Can anyone help, there is a person who does not know who they are?' reply

My personal favourite is the "who do you think you are?". I always look a little concerned, and respond, "I think I'm Jon, who do you think am?

Jedi152
17-09-2009, 10:56
One of the only reasons i'd have worked at GW when i was younger would be to score with the mums!

:D

Tanner MIrabel
17-09-2009, 11:13
Not much new in the world then. A friend's brother became a GW manager at uni, was massively enthusiastic, became less happy and then left after his area manager accused him of various (apparently untrue) misdeeds. This would have been in the early 90's.

Wintertooth
17-09-2009, 11:18
Anyone want to relate the time they got fired/made redundant and the company totally made the right decision? ;)

zedeyejoe
17-09-2009, 12:25
I can relate the times when others have been fired/made redundant, for all the right reasons. Does that help :)

Angelwing
17-09-2009, 15:01
Anyone want to relate the time they got fired/made redundant and the company totally made the right decision? ;)

Not as a GW employee, no. I got bullied out because the area manager hated me. Feeling was entirely mutual though.

However I once worked in a well known high street chocolate retail chain. I was store manager of a tiny concession store stuck in a large supermarket in an out of town location on it's own. The supermarket itself had a low footfall and was open 8am - 9pm. We had to match those hours as part of the lease contract. The fact is we lost money for the first 2 hours and the last 4 due to no customers. The store turned over a small profit (as I understand it). When the supermarket closed for a refit, my employers wisely decided not to renew the contract. My staff and I were offered other placements or redundancy. I personally had to find other placements for my staff by ringing around other local stores and for myself I took the latter, as the placement I was offered by my boss was completely unsuitable. I don't blame them one bit for closing the store, as it really wasn't worth the effort of keeping it going. I was angered by the complete lack of information and lying offered by my superiors about the closure. We were told nothing and given the run-around despite rumours right up until a couple of weeks before the closure, I believe simply to keep the store manned until the end.
So yes, I was rightly made redundant because my job ceased to exist for the right reasons.

Jedi152
17-09-2009, 16:04
If we're on other jobs, i was 'let go' from a 'famous-in-the-mid-90's' mail order computer game company that had about 6 stores in the country. I was never more glad. It was an awful job, and i hated it from day one.

From lying managers (first it was 3.80 an hour, then 3.50. By the time i started it was 3, oh, and no staff discount for 6 months) to abusive customers (people travelled half way across the country to save 5 on a game and blamed us when we didn't have it in stock), we had the lot.

Also, you had to be a member to buy anything - you could get a day membership for 50p, but of course we tried to push a yearly membership with cheap tat free gifts. Membership wasn't made clear in signs etc. so we had to explain it to every customer and face their wrath when we told them they had to pay more.

All in all, worked for one month. I've never been more happy to be 'let go'.

ivrg
17-09-2009, 16:07
Its amazing how stupid some bosses can be. They dont pay good salaries even if they are making good money on the employes and would make less if they quit.

Another thing is that they dont show any appriciation for good people.

And how much money doesnt all this cost? So its a big waist!

Some time i get the feeling that there is something important for the ppl up in the top to somehow show their superiority by treating others badly.

But never do your best unless you get paid for it, always give around 85-90% never 100% or more. Never! It wont do you anything good anyway, the money will be put in the bosses pockets.

zedeyejoe
17-09-2009, 16:33
But never do your best unless you get paid for it, always give around 85-90% never 100% or more.

No one, ever, can give more than 100%. If anyone ever starts talking about giving more than 100%, walk away as they are clearly a fool.

60% is a fairly good, everyday effort from someone.

madprophet
18-09-2009, 05:21
Well, shrink is a cost of doing retail business - that doesn't justify stealing, of course but you have to factor it in if you are going to do retail.

When I was in retail management, the company let the staff take damaged goods, they even had a box where they kept damaged good for the staff to take. The manufacturer didn't want them back and they were unsaleable (damaged packaging, stained or dirty but serviceable or repairable) so they got credit from the manufacturer and the stuff was written off and this was a way of disposing of it. It also discouraged employee theft since you could take some product without breaking any rules.

The hours sucked, the pay sucked, the benefits sucked but the work wasn't too hard and it was a hobby (model railroading) shop, so I could use my discount to feed my mini habit.

Unfortunately, the parent company went bust and they closed the year after I left - apparently the hobby chain was a subsidiary of another company which was owned by another group which over-leveraged itself and eventually the creditors lost patience.

Anyway, retail is a tough business and it has narrow margins. When I went into consulting I discovered that first hand. The retail side of my business (computers) is not much of a profit center - it is more of a courtesy to my clients. I make my money on the system design, programming, web hosting and project management aspects not selling PCs. One of my clients (the state Dept. of Health) eventually found it cheaper to offer me a payroll position in the Civil Service (which I took) but I still make a sideline in IT consulting. I just did a project where I sold a law firm a dozen laptops, assorted software and several dozen hours of work. I made several thousand on the work and less than a thousand on the retail stuff.

Condottiere
18-09-2009, 08:13
Considering the current prices of computer equipment, manufacturers make money on volume, since a lot of them have razor thin margins. Retail outlets can't push up the price too high, since they have competition from online companies, and to a certain extent, the second-hand market.

madprophet
18-09-2009, 12:14
Considering the current prices of computer equipment, manufacturers make money on volume, since a lot of them have razor thin margins. Retail outlets can't push up the price too high, since they have competition from online companies, and to a certain extent, the second-hand market.

True but that isn't limited to tech, its true in most retail sectors. :(

Vermin-thing
18-09-2009, 13:09
I've seen some companies sell there goods for less (to snag customers) with high repair, and servicing costs.

A prime example are printers, offer $200- $300 for a "nice" system, and then charge over the top for ink, and photo paper. Profit!

Condottiere
18-09-2009, 13:11
Considering that GW has forward vertical integration, from manufacture to distribution to their own stores, in a market in which they have a healthy (some say monopolistic) share, they should be making a lot of money.

Vermin-thing
18-09-2009, 13:15
Considering that GW has forward vertical integration, from manufacture to distribution to their own stores, in a market in which they have a healthy (some say monopolistic) share, they should be making a lot of money.

And yet they fail. (sorta) :(

Heck, I bet GW is kept afloat by little Timmys playing Ultra Marines.

Incognito
20-09-2009, 07:27
...The whole experience just left me feeling cheated and like I'd wasted alot of my time for no reason. I'm now at Uni studying to be a teacher and I can't imagine how I coped working there without strangling someone...

Bolded for emphasis...

Buddy, you sound like a great kid, and I hate to break it to you...But if dealing with precious snowflakes, unfair treatment, inhumanely low wages compared to the amount of work you put in, and with a very slight chance of advancement at that has made you bitter...Then you might want to rethink being a teacher.

That said, you're young. Those two years were a valuable learning experience.

simonr1978
20-09-2009, 18:34
@Mike: Yes he only got a smile... the next morning!

I used to love running the Sunday creche/academy as the yummy mummies would come in with muffins and coffees for us hard working staff just to keep lil Jimmy occupied while they did some retail therapy...

D.

I wonder why I suddenly thought of Jay from The Inbetweeners there... :rolleyes:

Aside from that, I have to agree entirely with Incognito here. Given everything you've complained about regarding GW, Primary School Teaching seems a very peculiar career choice.

TheDarkDuke
20-09-2009, 18:45
I agree with some things mentioned, I also disagree with many comments. First and foremost. If it is a RETAIL job, do NOT be surprised to work weekends... thats when the majority of customers shop, and is clearly a requirement of accepting the job. I love hearing people complain about retail companies "poor" treatment, more so when you observe their actions on a day to day basis and wonder why they are not getting everything they want. Most of these people tend to do little work, bad work, abuse everything they can and yet are still maintaining a job.

Any comments on wages/cost of living etc. Should not be blamed on the company paying you. Nothing states you must work there. Blame the government for taxes and the companies who charge you monthly the rates they do for living expenses. Be thankful that you have a job. If you do not like that job, or feel someone is making the environment negative, any creditable company has more then fair ways to go about change, let alone worker's rights, which every and any company will bend over backwards to not violate at the sight of. If you feel your not making enough money, find another job, improve yourself... do not blame others for your choices. Do not blame a company that is supporting you, they have costs/budgets as well and pay accordingly, not just because "my rent went up $50/month". Nothing in this world comes free, and my best words of wisdom to anyone with some of the cloudy views expressed in this thread is better yourself, do not blame anything/anyone around you. If your not happy do something about it as no one is going to do it for you. It isn't a cake walk out their so work for it, and do not settle for everything is just ok.

Brushmonkey
20-09-2009, 20:06
If you feel your not making enough money, find another job, improve yourself... do not blame others for your choices. Do not blame a company that is supporting you, they have costs/budgets as well and pay accordingly, not just because "my rent went up $50/month".

On the other hand, Games Workshop is the only company that i've worked for that has insisted an employee buy its products to keep their job. It was never said directly, but you did get tarred with the 'negative person' brush pretty quickly if you weren't buying the latest product.

Working for GW was often a pleasure, it was satisfying running a great intro, making a solid sale off the back of it, and knowing that someone new was sharing 'the hobby'. It was fantastic to share ideas and watch people grow and develop.

However, there are a lot of ****** working for the company, that will make those simple ideals very difficult to carry out, and unfortunately, nothing really seems to have changed in 15 years.

Lewis
20-09-2009, 20:14
[QUOTE=TheDarkDuke;3968346]I agree with some things mentioned, I also disagree with many comments......QUOTE]


I don't agree with you. I think its fair to compare similar employers and say this place is a bad employer and this one is a good one. As he has said he has moved on from that job, he is also saying that working for GW was a miserable experience for him. Its worthwhile for others to know what his experience was like.

simonr1978
20-09-2009, 20:55
He can't have been that miserable there because he was there for two years during a time of low unemployment, he should have been able to get another job pretty easily if he really wanted to, nobody forced him to stay.

Of his complaints many are either the norm for the retail sector or things that he should have known well in advance. If you don't want to work weekends for something around minimum wage don't go applying for bottom rung retail positions anywhere, or if in spite of this you do, don't go expecting to be bowled over with pity when you go whining on the internet about it.

There was no comparison made particularly, it was just a whinge about how bad working for GW was when actually it doesn't compare too unfavourably to other similar positions.

Arselskjut
21-09-2009, 00:03
great read. I remember all to well feeling that GW just gave up on us veterans in favor to make it a kindergarten. As a result i dont play that much anymore, I've begun to enjoy painting and just collecting, even if that feels like a wast when i just have all the miniatures in their gwcase when finished. ;D

blongbling
21-09-2009, 10:13
On the other hand, Games Workshop is the only company that i've worked for that has insisted an employee buy its products to keep their job. It was never said directly, but you did get tarred with the 'negative person' brush pretty quickly if you weren't buying the latest product.

Working for GW was often a pleasure, it was satisfying running a great intro, making a solid sale off the back of it, and knowing that someone new was sharing 'the hobby'. It was fantastic to share ideas and watch people grow and develop.

However, there are a lot of ****** working for the company, that will make those simple ideals very difficult to carry out, and unfortunately, nothing really seems to have changed in 15 years.

well to be fair you are supposed to be a frothing hobby monster to work in a retial store, if you aren't buying stuff and growing your armies then that would worry me as well. When I was a retail manager though this was never a problem, all the purchased the new items on their own, not that I would have had a discussion about not buying new things with them anyway....but GW has changed a lot since I was a store manager

Skraal2099
21-09-2009, 12:09
Do some stores not have employee discounts? I remember talking to one of the staff at my local GW and he said that there was no such thing.

But, on topic, I have found my local store to be pretty pleasant. You find a few immature kids there, mostly on saturdays, but mostly you find people who have been playing for at least 2-4 years. I have never really been pushed to buy anything buy the staff, except when I am buying something else and they ask me if I have enough glue, paint, etc.

blongbling
21-09-2009, 13:15
all GW staff get 50% off on GW made items (exc FW) and less discount on items brought in depending on the costs invovled.

Jedi152
21-09-2009, 14:53
Do some stores not have employee discounts? I remember talking to one of the staff at my local GW and he said that there was no such thing.
That's what they say so you don't get pissed off when you hand over 25 for a box of greatswords.

simonr1978
21-09-2009, 15:49
I'd imagine also to head off any suggestions about buying it on their own staff discount and in exchange for a little extra cash in hand from the customer. It's easier to tell a little white lie about not getting it at all.

Dasyatis
21-09-2009, 16:15
...they even had a box where they kept damaged good for the staff to take. The manufacturer didn't want them back and they were unsaleable (damaged packaging, stained or dirty but serviceable or repairable) so they got credit from the manufacturer and the stuff was written off and this was a way of disposing of it. It also discouraged employee theft since you could take some product without breaking any rules.

While I agree with doing this in principal, I can see why companies rule against it.

Back in my low-paid college era jobs (Tescos and Starbucks) they both did a "if somethings damaged / out of date then workers can take it home" type thing. Most weeks I`d be walking home from Tescos with a couple of bags of cakes or bread, or from Starbucks with a weekends worth of sandwiches and donuts.

Unfortunately, one day at Tescos they found out certain employees were "holding back" some cooked chickens at the end of the night in order to take them home. From then on the stuff went straight in the bin. A similar thing happened at Starbucks too. A staff member took several items that weren`t actually at the sell by date. No more free donuts for me.

Unfortunately, people will abuse any system, even if its one that works in their favour. If Games Workshop let people take home damaged goods for free then I would bet money that the amount of damaged goods would increase.

Brushmonkey
21-09-2009, 21:17
well to be fair you are supposed to be a frothing hobby monster to work in a retial store, if you aren't buying stuff and growing your armies then that would worry me as well. When I was a retail manager though this was never a problem, all the purchased the new items on their own, not that I would have had a discussion about not buying new things with them anyway....but GW has changed a lot since I was a store manager

Oh, frothing hobby maniac wasn't the problem! But already having been in the hobby 10 years before working for GW, and immediately spending my first wages on 2 x 2,000 pt armies, you may understand that I had enough to be getting on with, never mind painting store armies!

Fortunately this attitude was fostered more by certain individuals, rather than a concrete, company-wide policy. Some folks understood that its was how you inspired the customers, not what you did with your wages and personal free time, that mattered.

Anyhoo... I would definately recommend to younger folks to work for GW a little at some point, but not too long... :)

madprophet
24-09-2009, 04:01
While I agree with doing this in principal, I can see why companies rule against it.

Back in my low-paid college era jobs (Tescos and Starbucks) they both did a "if somethings damaged / out of date then workers can take it home" type thing. Most weeks I`d be walking home from Tescos with a couple of bags of cakes or bread, or from Starbucks with a weekends worth of sandwiches and donuts.

Unfortunately, one day at Tescos they found out certain employees were "holding back" some cooked chickens at the end of the night in order to take them home. From then on the stuff went straight in the bin. A similar thing happened at Starbucks too. A staff member took several items that weren`t actually at the sell by date. No more free donuts for me.

Unfortunately, people will abuse any system, even if its one that works in their favour. If Games Workshop let people take home damaged goods for free then I would bet money that the amount of damaged goods would increase.

Well, if people would abuse it, I could see why a company would stop it. Also food service is different than most other industries. If I take home a bag of damaged O scale trees, I can't really get sick from them (unless I eat them for some weird reason :wtf:) but if I eat food that has become tainted because it hasn't been kept hot enough the vendor could be held liable.

In the case of the hobby shop where I worked, the stuff in the 'gimme bin' had to be written off by the manufacturer's rep and were then credited to the store so it wasn't up to the manager or staff what went in the bin.

My point in mentioning this was that the stuff I got from the shop where I worked were either samples given to us by the manufacturer's (they wanted us to use their stuff so we could better sell it) or by the company from the 'gimme bin' - at no time did stock 'fall into my pack' :mad:. Everything I took home was either purchased by me (albeit with my generous employee discount) or was given to me by management. It is never okay to steal from your employer - not only is it illegal, ungrateful and generally unethical, it is downright stupid since you are hurting your employer's prospects and thus your own job.

As an IT consultant, I get scads of free hardware and software from manufacturer reps (I do a lot of business with government, legal and professional entities) - they want me to be familiar with their stuff so I can better sell it to my clients. It is perfectly legal for me to use these toys for my own use (indeed, it is intended that I do so) - it is NOT cool for me to pirate it but I can sell (within the conditions of my reseller agreements) or give away the original media and manuals or the hardware as incentives to clients (I've done this before).

I have given laptops and software to employees as incentives too. That is also legal since once the OEM gives me the computer and/or software it is my property to dispose of as I see fit; subject to laws against piracy, of course. ;)

Jagged
25-09-2009, 11:12
I'll second the support for the broadmead store (never really like the one out cribbs). Great staff that you can have a chat with or completely ignore if you like.

I am a big fan of the Bristol Broadmead store as well.

Ultimately it all comes down to the manager and this is true of anywhere. If your manager is a prick they can interpret the rules in ways that upset everyone. If the manager is decent then they will interpret the rules in ways everyone can agree with. This is a universal truth :)

Incidentally I've been going to the Bristol Broadmead store for long enough to see more than a couple of managers. So far they have all been decent guys. Therefore I am inclined to believe that most GW Store Managers are decent people until proven otherwise ;)

Col. Frost
25-09-2009, 16:37
I am a big fan of the Bristol Broadmead store as well.

Il agree with that statement, always got a good feeling for the place.

With retail (and i spent 13 years, from stacking shelves to management) you will find that, regardless of the employee's feelings about upper tier management (virtually always negative), the 'mood' of the store and it's staff is dependant on the store manager. Good managers mean happy staff and as a result, a good 'feel' about the place. A bad manager or one who is seen not to pull their weight will result in a poor feel.

fantomex
26-09-2009, 17:56
Hmm, there really do seem to be such caricatured store types.

We either have the awesome store, with nice veteran staff, proper hobbying, etc, or we have the daycares where you get surrounded by sugar-hyped children and the staff couldn't care less what you think.

My local GW are actually doing pretty damned well, far as I'm concerned.
Some recent staff turnovers have led to a legendary manager, following on from another legendary manager, and a total chap of a full-timer.

The current manager quite literally offered me a job on the spot one day, knowing that I was out of work, but I had to turn it down to not knowing LOTR and Fantasy rules..
Apparently I get major respect from him for disproving a ton of fluff he was certain on, and being gentlemanly about it..:D
The full-timer is an utter chap, having given me a buttload of parts in trade for a couple of bits I had that he was after, just cos he had them laying about and thought I could use them.

I'm not one to mind about gaming, there are plenty of vet games going on whenever I'm there, and I don't game much anyway, I'm a converter..
(and also the embarrassment of having 9 winged scything taloned warriors taken down in assault by 5 blood angel scouts..)

I just wonder if GW will ever attempt to get the balance right and make stores more accessible..

Griffindale
26-09-2009, 21:39
You cant treat empolyees the way the OP and a friend(and others who have similar stires) in such a way and expect them to keep carrying the water for you. You cant promise some kind of bonus-whether money or models, and not follow through becuase of paperwork or whatever lame reason. Becuase as the poster describes, becuase then the next time you want targets reached....they wont becuase you as upper management dont follow through.

Its sad really.

One word. Wal-Mart

DeathTyrant
26-09-2009, 21:52
I am a big fan of the Bristol Broadmead store as well.

Really nice guys in there, friendly and helpful.
I went there earlier today. In case anyone else was there from about 17:30 onwards, I was the bald doofus with the backpack buying up the various Space Marine goodies for my new Blood Angels force.
The last time I set foot in the Bristol GW store it was on Broad Weir. Probably 6 or 7 years ago!

crimson vengance
29-09-2009, 15:26
It does my head in that there are so many little kids in the stores now not people who can actually paint and stay in the hobby for more than 2 weeks. I know i was once one of the young people but a stayed in the hobby and now after a couple of years off i am back with a better attitude to it than before but now i see the little kids.....I WANT TO STAMP ON THEM! AHHHHHH!!!!!

Anyway.... My local is Salisbury (UK). I think it is a pretty cool place but it is a tad small with only 4 tables and a painting table. (Sorry to the people who have less but for the amount of people who go in there there really should be more. sometimes you have to wait AGES for a table).
My only complaints are the little kids and the stalker-ish staff. I really don't like it when they follow me around when i go in to buy.

Jack Spratt
01-10-2009, 11:48
In relation to the OP: GW forgot how to treat people with respect many years ago.

In stark contrast...

Privateer Press just made their 2.0 version of the rules for warmachine available for free PDF download ,because the owner Matt Wilson did not want people to wait until january when the new rules hit stores.

Have a look: http://privateerpress.com/company/mkii-rules-and-model-info-available-for-pdf-download

This is a company the loves the hobby, and the customers.

Need I say more ;)

daemonkin
01-10-2009, 11:58
"A company is much like a tree full of monkeys - the monkeys on top look down and see nothing but smiling faces... the monkeys on the bottom look up and see nothing but a$$holes"

D.

Foolish Mortal
01-10-2009, 12:10
In relation to the OP: GW forgot how to treat people with respect many years ago.

In stark contrast...

Privateer Press just made their 2.0 version of the rules for warmachine available for free PDF download ,because the owner Matt Wilson did not want people to wait until january when the new rules hit stores.

Have a look: http://privateerpress.com/company/mkii-rules-and-model-info-available-for-pdf-download

This is a company the loves the hobby, and the customers.

Need I say more ;)


Just curios here, but do you think that companies such as these are using GW as an example - as in 'if we do everything the exact opposite of the way GW do it, we must be doing it right'?

Back on topic - I have noticed in my local store (York), that since Christmas last year, the atmosphere seems a lot more......subdued, it doesn't seem to have the same kind of 'vibe' it used to have.....hard to explain really as I don't go that often, but it definitely feels different somehow.

daemonkin
01-10-2009, 12:14
@Foolish: Yes I understand exactly what you mean. They really have geared up in the last few years to the 'sales, sales, sales' approach. My local store was an excellent place to hang out on vets night as we knew all the staff and in my case Iused to work with them. Since the staff turn around and new management the atmosphere is hard to tolerate at times and now I go in occasionally and never stay too long. The staff have no ineterest in my specialist games experiences and wouldn't know a slaanesh genestealer cult if it came up and grabbed their asses!

D.

Jack Spratt
01-10-2009, 12:19
[QUOTE=Foolish Mortal;3998653]Just curios here, but do you think that companies such as these are using GW as an example - as in 'if we do everything the exact opposite of the way GW do it, we must be doing it right'?QUOTE]

How should I know :confused:

Dangersaurus
01-10-2009, 18:09
Privateer Press just made their 2.0 version of the rules for warmachine available for free PDF download ,because the owner Matt Wilson did not want people to wait until january when the new rules hit stores.

Have a look: [snip]ad[ad]

This is a company the loves the hobby, and the customers.

Need I say more ;)
What makes sense for the follower doesn't always make sense for the leader. Giving away rules wouldn't increase GWs market share, it might for PP. GW does give away a lot - they have daily updates on their website as of late, and over the last couple of months lots of old White Dwarf articles have become available for registered users. I wouldn't read any love or lack of love into either companies motives.

Corrode
01-10-2009, 22:34
It does my head in that there are so many little kids in the stores now not people who can actually paint and stay in the hobby for more than 2 weeks. I know i was once one of the young people but a stayed in the hobby and now after a couple of years off i am back with a better attitude to it than before but now i see the little kids.....I WANT TO STAMP ON THEM! AHHHHHH!!!!!

Anyway.... My local is Salisbury (UK). I think it is a pretty cool place but it is a tad small with only 4 tables and a painting table. (Sorry to the people who have less but for the amount of people who go in there there really should be more. sometimes you have to wait AGES for a table).
My only complaints are the little kids and the stalker-ish staff. I really don't like it when they follow me around when i go in to buy.

There's a reason that the Salisbury store is so small - the rent in Salisbury city centre is sky-high. On the plus side, since they got new staff in, they've moved the tables around to be in more sensible positions - you can actually walk around the store now when people are playing and have a 50/50 chance of not having to squeeze past people.

I also wouldn't describe the staff there as stalker-ish - the old ones were pretty bad but the new guys are just doing their jobs, I've found them quite sociable the few times I've been in recently.

Jagged
01-10-2009, 22:54
It does my head in that there are so many little kids in the stores now not people who can actually paint and stay in the hobby for more than 2 weeks. I know i was once one of the young people but a stayed in the hobby and now after a couple of years off i am back with a better attitude to it than before but now i see the little kids.....I WANT TO STAMP ON THEM! AHHHHHH!!!!!

:rolleyes:

Deep-Green-X
02-10-2009, 00:08
In relation to the OP: GW forgot how to treat people with respect many years ago.

In stark contrast...

Privateer Press just made their 2.0 version of the rules for warmachine available for free PDF download ,because the owner Matt Wilson did not want people to wait until january when the new rules hit stores.

Have a look: http://privateerpress.com/company/mkii-rules-and-model-info-available-for-pdf-download

This is a company the loves the hobby, and the customers.

Need I say more ;)

I seem to remember some forum user coming up with a Goodwins law type relation between the duration of a thread and the chances of GW being unfairly compared with Privateer Press

Dont get me wrong I like PP models (steampunk goodness) and Warmachne from the demo game I played in a FLGS but its user base is infinitesimally smaller than GW's.

If GW did the same thing it would be a massive loss in sales of the rulebook, for PP its not that big a hit as they make the majority of their income from the (entirely metal) miniature range.

On topic the Belfast GW used to be a wretched hive of scum and villainy, part timers came and went but the shop was run by unfriendly arrogant guys who preferred to have their mates in the store than regular customers. I personally saw them accuse a kid of being gay because he liked Dark Angles, I know now they were referring to the "The Dark Angel" poem by the poet Lionel Pigot Johnson, the kid was very upset and he couldn't have been more that 12. They also never interacted with local games clubs seeing them selves as a higher quality venue for wargaming.

They were all let go by the regional manager one week and new staff hired sine then the turnaround has been dramatic and the shop and the local gaming scene has benefited as a whole.

Vermin-thing
02-10-2009, 05:54
In relation to the OP: GW forgot how to treat people with respect many years ago.

In stark contrast...

Privateer Press just made their 2.0 version of the rules for warmachine available for free PDF download ,because the owner Matt Wilson did not want people to wait until january when the new rules hit stores.

Have a look: http://privateerpress.com/company/mkii-rules-and-model-info-available-for-pdf-download

This is a company the loves the hobby, and the customers.

Need I say more ;)


My mind just exploded. :eek: :D

I hope the fluff, and art is very good so they can still sell some rule books.

*stares incentively at GW* >.> Common you know you can do it two....

GW would make Billions, no catrillions if they released the rules in PDF form (so they can change unbalanced rules, see DoC, VC), and produce fluff/art books for all the races.

Foolish Mortal
02-10-2009, 08:09
[quote=Foolish Mortal;3998653]Just curios here, but do you think that companies such as these are using GW as an example - as in 'if we do everything the exact opposite of the way GW do it, we must be doing it right'?QUOTE]

How should I know :confused:

Ooops....didn't quite come out as intended :p

I wasn't aiming the question at you specifically, it was a royal 'you' aimed at eveyone, so sorry for the confusion.

Jack Spratt
02-10-2009, 12:47
[quote=Jack Spratt;3998681]

Ooops....didn't quite come out as intended :p

I wasn't aiming the question at you specifically, it was a royal 'you' aimed at eveyone, so sorry for the confusion.

Got you :)

Jack Spratt
02-10-2009, 13:14
To compare PP and GW does make sense to me

I lost my interest in GW because of the following:

1) A major increase in the number of models needed for your average game
2) Pricing that is with out reason or end (yes I did it, I mentioned the unmentionable subject of pricing). It is almost every single year now :wtf:
3) An increasing focus on the young and new (customers).
4) Balancing issues between the armies that never seem to be solved. (I assume that most people like to play for fun and to win). Entire editions go by without an update for some armies.
5) The continued reuse of old old old artwork in "new" and updated books.
6) A magasine that has become without any substance. The last time WD was remotely worth reading IMO was in the good old days of Fat Bloke.
7) Hobbysupplies of low quality (for the most part, some of it is good stuff).
8) A store culture that I find distastefull.
9) And what about all this damn secrecy :confused: whats the point? Tell me if you are gonna make a new version, in the near future, of the rulebook I am about to buy.

I feel that PP does all of these things better. A lot better and thats why I prefer Warmachine and Horde.

Jack

emperorpenguin
02-10-2009, 19:15
I sympathise with the OP. I experienced a shocking time when I was with GW.

I remember how I was in the Oxford store but requested a transfer to Cardiff for personal reasons, which was approved. Then I come in one day just 3 days before transfer, to be told they'd given the post in Cardiff to someone else. Great, there goes my deposit on a flat in Cardiff wasted.
They say "Sorry, we forgot we promised you the move" and ofer me Bath as the next closest to Wales. Having lost my deposit I'm forced to sleep in the stock room (yes really) until I save enough for a new flat.
Then there was the promised pay increase which they partially went back on, cutting the % increase.
There was the plan to stop increasing prices, instead they'd increase paints and other "core items". Lasted a matter of weeks.
There was the constant shifting of goalposts regarding minimum ages of beginners sundays in 2003. I lost track of how many times it yo-yo'd between 8 and 12, resulting in very annoyed parents.
There was the company putting to an end the practice of buying us a pizza as a thank you at stock-take. Regardless of how long it took we never got overtime, a flipping pizza was all we asked.
There was the fiasco of the Forgeworld stand at Games Day 2003. Where many of us were forced to work at the FW stand instead of the exhibits we were due to work. Forgeworld refused to let us leave the stand even at break time and we FINALLY got to see the show 15 minutes before close, by which time most exhibits were being packed away. I've never bought anything off them since, they angered me so much that day.
Then we were forbidden from selling the Chaos knight we got at Xmas 2003. Which felt very heavy handed. To top it off our Games Day figure came so late (around march next year) that I'd left by then. I was promised it'd be kept for me but was instead given to a newbie who hadn't worked that Games Day. :mad:

Foolish Mortal
02-10-2009, 23:55
@Jack Spratt - I here you about the secrecy. I once had that crap pulled on me with one of the boxed editions of 40K (not sure which one). I knew that a new version was coming out, but when I asked at GW, they wouldn't say when it was out (it turned out only to be about a week or so until release), as a result when it came out, I didn't buy it - why should I have?

Zoned
03-10-2009, 02:41
PP has to release the rules early, or they would tank in Xmas sales. If the rules are in flux, people are scared of buying models. Rules out early means people know what to buy in December.

Oh wait...I meant to say PP are saints and can do no wrong...they aren't a business like any other trying to make money.

zedeyejoe
03-10-2009, 09:47
I knew that a new version was coming out, but when I asked at GW, they wouldn't say when it was out (it turned out only to be about a week or so until release), as a result when it came out, I didn't buy it - why should I have?

Because it met your needs?

I seriously don't get wanting to know the future. I want to know what is available now, to take off the shelves and buy. As a business, I also think that the long term selling of stuff day after day, is a better way to proceed than a frenzy of pre-orders

simonr1978
03-10-2009, 11:14
I seriously don't get wanting to know the future. I want to know what is available now, to take off the shelves and buy. As a business, I also think that the long term selling of stuff day after day, is a better way to proceed than a frenzy of pre-orders


What's to get about wanting a straight answer to a question about how soon something you're going to buy is going to be supplanted by a newer edition, especially as in this case it was pretty imminent? It doesn't seem like it's about wanting to know whole planned release schedule into the distant future.

As a customer, somewhere is far more likely to get my repeat business if they're upfront with me and tell me that I may want to hang on a short while as a newer edition is coming out very soon, especially if I am outright asking a question. If on the other hand you avoid answering a direct question particularly if it seems improbable that you wouldn't know the answer, it's hard to escape the conclusion that you're doing so in order simply to get my money there and then, in that case the likelihood is that any future purchases would be made at a different store or possibly on a different system altogether.

zedeyejoe
03-10-2009, 11:35
What's to get about wanting a straight answer to a question about how soon something you're going to buy is going to be supplanted by a newer edition, especially as in this case it was pretty imminent?

Its a no win situation for GW. If the answer is 'don't buy it now because next week (or the week after) a new version is coming out.'. Might as well take the stuff off the shelves now and not bother selling it.

Or, if you deal with the now, today we sell you this box, tomorrow we sell you the new box. Sales continue right up until the new stuff is ready.

simonr1978
03-10-2009, 11:53
Its a no win situation for GW. If the answer is 'don't buy it now because next week (or the week after) a new version is coming out.'. Might as well take the stuff off the shelves now and not bother selling it.

Or, if you deal with the now, today we sell you this box, tomorrow we sell you the new box. Sales continue right up until the new stuff is ready.

Or, you sell the box now, customer sees new box out in a week or two's time, customer feels aggrieved that they've parted with 50 or 60 for something with such a dismally short lifespan and feels misled by the staff who've dodged a direct question. Customer thinks "Stuff this, I'm not paying out all that for the basics again," ditches the army he was about to order altogether and goes and plays something else instead.

See, it's not a no-win situation. You can greedily go after the 50/60 for something you've should have already made their money on (Old Edition) or you can have the courtesy to be up front about it in which case they'll still get the 50/60 for the new boxed set, plus the extra sales to follow.

If you want the long term sales from me at any rate, be up front about it and you'll see more of my money, who knows, I may still decide to buy that older box anyway for the models and goodies that are in it. However if I think you're lying to me for a quick buck, I'll walk away and you'll not see me again for a long, long time if ever at all.

zedeyejoe
03-10-2009, 12:34
Or, you sell the box now, customer sees new box out in a week or two's time, customer feels aggrieved that they've parted with 50 or 60 for something with such a dismally short lifespan and feels misled by the staff who've dodged a direct question. Customer thinks "Stuff this, I'm not paying out all that for the basics again," ditches the army he was about to order altogether and goes and plays something else instead.

Indeed people make choices all the time.

In the modern world, stuff changes all the time. New products come out replacing old products, better than the previous version and at the same price. The stuff released 6 months ago can be reduced in price.

Am I hard done by because something new comes along or that I paid more for something that my friend got cheaper? Not in my world. I do the deal then and there, if I am not happy I don't buy. If I was happy then I see no reason to become unhappy later. But I appreciate that views differ.

simonr1978
03-10-2009, 12:59
I appreciate that stuff changes and is updated or replaced by newer versions, and no, in general I don't feel hard done by that. My point, in this specific case and going purely on what has been posted, was that the poster knew that a new edition was due at some point, I believe the staff must have known that it was extremely imminent - I would be surprised if the manager at least did not have the actual date committed to memory - yet chose to not to tell him in spite of him asking outright. That is at best poor customer service, out worst an outright lie. Either way it would have me unlikely to return to spend more money there, not because the edition had changed, but because I would feel deceived by the staff and would not trust them not to do so again.

Anyway, we are drifting away from the topic, I suggest we leave it there.