Almost six years ago I began my career with Family Dollar Stores. I was told that I would do my training in a store 35 miles away from my home, and then I would be transferred to Stroudsburg, a new store. The new store in Stroudsburg never opened. I accepted store #3155, Allentown, still 35 miles from my home until a location closer to my home would become available. Store #3155 was on the floor, no help, no Assistant Store Manager, schematics were not done in most Departments for 3 years. The stockroom was packed to the ceiling with freight. I had to work the store from open to close for eight weeks. 80 hours per week, no day off. I did all the schematics, emptied the stockroom, hired a staff, and trained an Assistant Store Manager. Inthe six years that I managed the store the sales increased over $400, 000. My store was always neat, clean, and totally recovered. Almost every store visit by my District Manager or Regional Manager I would receive a '5' on the Anytime 5 Reports. I always scored in the upper 90's on my Loss Prevention/Operational Audits. I was always very proud of my store, and it showed. I missed 2 days of work in 6 years. One sick. The other was a very bad ice/snowstorm. I was always asked to go help out in other stores with problems. I always went. I was a very dedicated and loyal employee and wanted to spend the rest of my life with Family Dollar Stores. During my 6 years I had 10 District Managers, and 4 Regional Managers.
About 3 years ago the neighborhood around the store started to turn bad. My old customers left. Bad ones came in. I asked time and time again for more payroll. I was unloading 600 - 800 cartons a week by myself because I could not keep the sales floor covered. I was in the store 16 hours a week by myself. My shrinkage started to increase. I was robbed at gunpoint. All my hair fell out. Never missed work. I was told that Family Dollar Stores would install a camera system. This never happened. Not quite a year went past and I was robbed again at gunpoint. I was told again that Family Dollar Stores would install a camera system. This never happened. However, I did receive a plastic camera to mount above the checkout area. I had to climb the ladder every 7 hours to replace the batteries in it. I was told that all my shrinkage is internal. I replaced most of the employees. Still the store is getting worse and worse. I am still in the store by myself. I worked every Saturday and Sunday open to close because this was when most of the problems occurred. I received no help from any District Manager. Just 'keep your eyes on things'.
Last September, my District Manager 'estimated' my shrinkage at $40.000. I was told that if the numbers don't hold I would be gone. The store is still getting worse. For 3 years I had all the high priced medicines under the checkout with shelf talkers on the counter. When I would receive my Weekly Exception Cycle Counts all medicines were accounted for. I was told to put the medicines back on the counter. Family Dollar Stores would order a special fixture for them to keep them up at the front. This never happened. All the medicines were gone in a week. When I would receive my Weekly Exception Counts anywhere between $60.00 - $100.00 per item were missing. It's all internal I was told. Two weeks before Labor Day I was watching a customer - he showed me a knife. Still by myself in the store.
I would travel back to the store on the nights that I would not close and watch. I would put money in the safe from my pocket to see if it would be there in the morning. I would put tape on the receiving door at the bottom to see if it would be opened after I left. I would draw pencil lines on the stockroom floor where the flex-roller wheels were at the receiving door to see if it was moved. I would place small pieces of wood outside behind the receiving door to see if the door was opened. I would have my friend call with my calling card (so it could not be traced) to ask if my District Manager was there - just to scare them if the employees were up to no good. I did everything I could think of and more. I did everything but run the store for the last 4 months. No help from anyone. None. Every 2 weeks my District Manager would come in and tell me how much more the inventory estimate was short.
My District Manager came to the store the second week in January and told me the shrinkage went up another $45, 000. Still by myself in the store for 10 - 12 hours a week. Continuing to work around 60 hours a week, and still helping out in other stores.
My last day I told my District Manager what I did to try to prevent the losses. I told him that if Store #3155 had the DVD camera system, like every other store has in the Allentown/Bethlehem area, we would not be in this situation. Northing was done to help me stop the losses.