I know it sounds conceded to think I could’ve fixed Circuit City, but I really believe it. Not sure how many know that installing and selling car stereos was my first job out of high school and that I worked there for about three years. I knew the company had problems was back then when we’d have sales training like “how not to bait and switch” which basically amounted to “how to bait and switch without breaking any state laws.” I remember being asked to do things in regards to customers that conflicted with my personal ethics and I’d nod and say okay, then turn around and do the right thing for the customer anyways. After all the customer was the real reason I was there — and I was too cocky to believe I’d ever be fired and evidently I was right.
Overall it was a good college job; I made some great friends, and a good living — sure beat the hell out of delivering pizza — but I always thought that eventually the problems would be addressed. I knew I was wrong when almost everyone I knew at the big red plug was fired in 2003 and for the dumbest reason in the world; they were the best employees. So instead of training — or reversing the previous bad training — some of the most knowledgeable people in retail how to treat customers fairly, no matter what the commission, they were old laid off. Nice.
It isn’t hard to connect the dots on what will happen after you kill the only good thing you had going. I have to say I’m a little sad though, but at the same time take a little solace in the fact that I recognized the problems way back then. If I ever start my own business, you can bet I won’t make the same mistake though.