It is with a heavy heart that I post this. I have been loyal to B&N ever since I could read. I loved the booksellers, the smell of books, and the fact that most of them had a cafe was terrific. I could spend hours in their stores looking at books, talking to booksellers & of course leaving with a brand new book. It was wonderful. Unfortunately, Barnes & Noble no longer values those employees. Monday 2/12/2018, they fired HUNDREDS of full-time employees as part of a restructuring of the company. They saved 40 Million dollars by taking away benefits & removing the booksellers who have EARNED their pay raises. This is the same day they hired a new CMO. They have appointed CEOs that did not know the bookselling business & ran the stores ragged with fewer hours & more emphasis on their credit cards & not putting a book in a customer’s hand. What B&N fails to realize is that the only way they will survive the “downfall” of bookstores is by providing what Amazon & eBay cannot. Do you know what that is? It’s Customer Service!
Loyal booksellers are what have helped B&N thrive for years. I know that if I ever wanted a good recommendation, booksellers were there for me. I found J.R. Ward through talking to a bookseller. There are so many authors who I would have never known about if I didn’t get a personalized recommendation from a bookseller. I went to Barnes & Noble knowing that I would walk away with a new book that I would (hopefully) love. Now, I don’t know that.
B&N has removed most full-time employees which means that the people who have worked for B&N for YEARS or DECADES have been given no warning & a severance that forces them to stay silent and positive about the company. This just shows that B&N doesn’t grasp where their value comes from. They have focused too much on memberships & credit cards that they forgot to focus on their actual “put the book in the customer’s hand” value. They cut hours for booksellers which meant that they couldn’t provide the quality of customer service that patrons were used to. The customer service aspect was the only reason so many people, and I shopped at B&N. They forgot that. They forgot how important their employees are. They fired people who have been with them for decades. These people brought so much to B&N and were thrown away.
Look, I’m not saying to boycott Barnes & Noble stores. I love the stores & I’m still going to shop there. I will support the stores but no longer will I be buying nook books from a company that doesn’t support their employees. My online purchases do nothing but help corporate. If I have to choose between supporting an evil corporation I’m going to recommend the one that updates its apps regularly, listens to its customers, and has a better graphic user interface.