Walmart welcomes back its greeters, sort of
A 2012 RetailWire piece speculated that Sam Walton flipped over in his grave after the company he founded made the decision to move greeters away from store lobbies and closer to registers. Well, Mr. Walton may get the opportunity to flip back again with the news that Walmart is testing greeters in 300 of its stores in the U.S.
So why is Walmart revisiting the idea of placing greeters, an innovation introduced by Mr. Walton and closely identified with the company for years, back at store entrances? The primary reason is that the chain is looking to cut down on theft, according to a Wall Street Journal report.
The decision to move greeters three years ago was done so associates could help direct customers to shorter lines at the checkout while showing others where to find products in the store.
At the time, Walmart spokesperson David Tovar, told Bloomberg, "It’s a better position inside the store. The greeters will be able to assist customers in more effective ways. Whether they are coming in the door or are 15 feet away, they will still be able to greet people."
Long checkout lines have been a common complaint about the Walmart shopping experience for years. That doesn’t appear to have changed much since the company repositioned its greeters.
- Welcome Back, Wal-Mart Greeters – The Wall Street Journal (sub. required)
- Here’s where you’ll soon find Walmart’s greeters – Fortune
- Walmart Greeters Get New Assignment – RetailWire
- Walmart Breaks Tradition by Changing Role of Its Greeters – Bloomberg
Did Walmart make the right or wrong decision three years ago when it repositioned greeters in its stores? Should management move greeters back to the lobbies of its stores?