Sunday, May 15, 2016

Target's policies are going down the toilet.

I don't do boycotts - just write about them.

It's not just the transgender bathroom/fitting room policy that's the problem ...

Target 'Guest Services' policy needs a review, and an overhaul.

I have a friend who is retired from Target - he has had a credit card with them for 57 years - since 1959 - before Target was even born.  He had been a lifetime employee with Dayton's - the department store company which invented and launched Target.  He retired from Target - though most of his career was in design at Dayton-Hudson-Marshal Fields sold off to Macy's.

After the credit card breach a couple of years ago, my friend refrained from shopping Target until things settled down.  Until he got a notice that his credit card would be cancelled due to a lack of activity.  My friend was appalled, called to inquire, and told he needed to use the card or lose it ... because that's the new policy.  No ifs, ands, or buts.  Was the 'Team Member' nice?  Yes.  Helpful? No.

My friend started to use the card, ordering household items and even having them delivered.  The shipping was free.  The packing and shipping was fairly inconsistent - not close to the expertise shown by Amazon.  But that may be understandable, since their online services are difficult to use and sub-standard as well - in comparison to Amazon.

As frustrating as these things were, my friend was surprised by what he termed extravagant waste when it came to shipping.  Oversized boxes for one or two small items, one order split apart and shipped in multiple boxes and so on - suggesting their packer and shippers lack training.  Again - all minor stuff for the customer.

The biggest problem occurred when my friend went over his 'limit' of $200 dollars.  He thought there had to be some mistake, before the breach, his credit limit was around $1300.00 - which enabled him to maybe buy groceries, household goods, a pair of jeans, and a big screen tv on a one stop shopping experience.  He called Guest Services, called Target Credit Dept. and was told there was nothing they could do but submit his request to a 'review board' - which would take about three months.  No good talking to supervisors and managers - these matters are handled by a 'review board'.  As a retired employee, my friend retains the benefit of the employee discount, in addition to the RedCard discount.  The limitations make it difficult to do business with the company.

My friend went online to see if other customers had the same problem.  He found pages of articles with complaints about the credit card limit.  the first one that popped up was this, from a list of 229 top complaints:  "I saw multiple complaints of the same nature online and feel completely taken advantage of. I don't ..... If you want a store cc please don't choose Target."

Target doesn't care.

They boast of excellent Guest Services - but ...
great guest service

Wherever you shop with us, we work hard to ensure your Target shopping trip is always enjoyable and exciting. How do we do it? Friendly service from team members ready to assist with your list, fully stocked shelves and a speedy checkout process—and that’s just the start. - Target - Shopping Experience

I never had anyone ask me if I needed help.  Once, buying a camera, the sales person didn't know anything about it - how it worked, how good a product it was - nothing.  Likewise, my friend's credit card experience, he's a Target retiree remember, pretty much demonstrates the appalling lack of customer service offered by Target.

Therefore, when it comes to transgender restroom policy - it is very easy to see how and why Corporate leaders just don't care about their customers/'guests'.  Policy is governed by committee - problems are reviewed by committee.  They outsource their legal department - which obviously dictates conditions and practise - as would insurance companies.  I'm thinking these are their 'review boards' - that maybe Target is operating under constraint - that maybe they can't guarantee another breach will not happen - hence the credit limits.  Just thinking out loud here.

The transgender restroom issue strikes me as a clear example of just not caring about a significant faction within their customer base.

Is the Target Boycott Different?

I came across an excellent article with that title by Bruce Frohnen at the Imaginative Conservative.  He demonstrates why this boycott is different:
Because this is an issue of safety, going to the core of parents’ understanding of their duty to their children, the Target boycott has secured a level, intensity, and duration of support seldom seen for causes that might be labelled conservative. - Frohnen

I'm not a person who gets involved in boycotts or signing petitions.  I don't know if they work or not.  Frohnen doesn't seem to know either - and chances are, Target is arrogant enough to simply ignore it.
That said, it is rather doubtful that Target will change its policies. The self-satisfaction of virtue-signaling, combined with continued pressure from the progressive left, constitute a strong motivation for the corporation to stay the course in contempt of its clientele. Recent events show that corporations will take on even severe financial costs in the name of progress—and that the mainstream media will reinforce quite strongly activists’ insistence that the company maintain virtue-signaling policies, even as they downplay those policies’ costs (both financial and human). - Frohnen

Target CEO Brian Cornell has spoken publicly concerning the conservative backlash - which in effect is really safety concerns of customers for their children expressed in and through the boycott - yet Cornell dismisses them, declaring the company won't back down.*

Target has lost much since former CEO Bob Ulrich retired.  Target is not too big to fail.  They lost in Canada - they can lose here.  In fact - they are losing here.  The mother ship company, Dayton's disappeared - Target can too.

I'm against it.

*To be fair, Cornell said that many of their stores have 'family bathrooms' where the guest may go in and lock the door for privacy - this in addition to men's rooms and women's rooms.  A large percentage of their stores have these and more will be added.  That seems reasonable - yet parents are also concerned about fitting room privacy.


  1. I haven't shopped at Target for years and years. They're overpriced - it's as simple as that.

    Boycotts? I don't believe in cutting off my nose to spite my face. I'll shop where my money does me the most good. It's sort of a form of protest to scarf up a loss-leader and leave. I'm no longer swayed by the end-cap.

    1. I still shop there for stuff. It's nearby. I've never found great customer service there however.

      I pretty much just wrote this for my friend who has been having the trouble. He pays his bills in full every month - never carries a balance. I felt sorry for him.

  2. What a great woman-on-urinal photo!

  3. I haven't shopped there much for years, not because I'm boycotting but because I'm a reformed shopper. I used to spend too much money when I went there, on cute but useless things. The big box stores aren't far but there's a smaller grocery store in my old neighborhood, a hardware store and a drug store. I could get nearly everything I needed at those places without a 10 mi. hike.

  4. I usually avoid boycotts but this time I am boycotting Target. For a couple of years I've received poor service from them (along the lines of your friend's experience), but it's close to my house and with six kids I'm always neededing something etc. Their poor service combined with their ridiculous bathroom policy makes it easy for me to boycott them. If they don't care what middle aged women with children think about their policies then they will certainly go out of business. Who do they think their customers are...young transgender childless adults?

  5. Kathy, Target is a very gay company. They have militant gays St director level and no doubt higher. They think I objections are the result of bigotry and there's no other possible reason for it.

    1. I think Bella Dodd recruited them and they worked their way up to director level.

      That's why I never use the fitting rooms because I'm afraid of being raped - I think security is definitely run by militant gays.



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