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Old Aug 28, 2012, 02:28 AM   #101
Mark Booth
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Originally Posted by iRobby View Post
Don't blame Browett!!

I'm sad to say, but according to the article this change was pushed by Cook and Oppenheimer long BEFORE Browett!

Looks like they had and still do a have a difference of opinion with Johnson on retail so they forced him out and hired Browett knowing he fit their ideology.

A real bad sign!
If that is all true (I haven't read the article and don't know that I would believe it if I did), but if what you say IS all true, then it is indeed a very bad sign!

Mark
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 02:34 AM   #102
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Originally Posted by appleguy123 View Post
Browett will destroy the retail store experience for customers. You'd figure that Tim would be smart enough to see this.
If this guy does to Apple stores what he did to Dixons then the experience will be just awful.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 02:40 AM   #103
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Welcome to uncontrolled, public ownership, sociopathic capitalism. People make a joke about "Apple without Steve," but there's much to be said for the leadership that made Apple the success it is right now and which is clearly (well, not to current leadership) eroding. It just doesn't matter, way up at the top. No matter what they say, you can SEE what they DO. When public ownership is involved, the product means nothing, customers mean nothing and employees mean nothing. Instead, it's profit, share price & shallow appearances.

This is what you get when you have an anti-society.

PS: Public ownership is a joke. It should be called distributed private interest ownership.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 02:42 AM   #104
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What made Apple great is that they were different. Now, little by little they will become just like Sony or HP and there will be now reason to go to an Apple store or by an Apple product.

First go the retail stores and next the engineering.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 02:45 AM   #105
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I knew that bringing Browett on as the VP of Retail was a bad idea after reading all the comments people were writing about him here shortly after the news broke. And now after reading this news about Cook and Oppenheimer confronting Johnson about making profit while sacrificing the customer experience makes this situation look worse. Don't these guys know that it's bad to alienate their source of profit?

I have always wanted to give Cook a chance and I think he's done a decent job since officially becoming CEO but everything about this stinks so bad. Didn't the execs learn anything while Jobs was out of the company the first time? Apple was at the top of their game then and fell hard not too long after. Apple is at the top of its game now and the last thing we need to see is a repeat of the last time.

I never wanted to join the "Steve would never allow this" bandwagon but it's looking like I might have to sooner than later.
I gotta agree here. I don't know why, I like Cook, for some reason he comes off well to me and I want to give him a chance.

But if this article is true (Though I see some murmering it is bad reporting so let's hope), I have to say it sounds really short sighted of Cook (and it sounds we can give him blame and not trust they knew what they were doing when they brought in Browett. Know nothing of the guy except everyone keeps talking about the previous place he runs like how I feel about Best Buy... and that can't be good).

But, that is if the article is true.. and I hear its one citation is another article already proven to exagerate. So maybe we should hold off on the mob yet.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 02:46 AM   #106
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Good move Tim! Profit is all that counts. I would happily pay even more for any Apple product as long as it adds more to the bottom line. I don't own any stock or have any vested interest in the company. I just like to see them as much profit as possible so that I can tell my non Apple friends how successful the company is. As a consumer, I don't care about myself or customer service as long as it helps Apple to make more money. I will be so proud when they day comes that they have a trillion dollars in cash on hand and don't spend a dime of it.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 02:52 AM   #107
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A public listed corporate's first interest is profits? Shocking (which is short for 'no ***** Sherlock').
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 02:52 AM   #108
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The fact that Apple are in it for the money as opposed to the customer is hardly a revelation: it's what they have always been exceedingly good at. Profit first, company second, innovation third, customer fourth.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 02:52 AM   #109
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Straight from the mouth of Jobs:

"I have my own theory about why the decline happens at companies like IBM or Microsoft. The company does a great job, innovates and becomes a monopoly or close to it in some field, and then the quality of the product becomes less important. The product starts valuing the great salesmen, because they're the ones who can move the needle on revenues, not the product engineers and designers. So the salespeople end up running the company."

Now what does that sound like?
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 02:55 AM   #110
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Everyone, and probably ever corp., reaches it's level of incomptence!

I fear, it's that time for Apple unless they somehow develop the foresight to see what's forthcoming with this school of thought!

Oh well..had to happen some day...
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:01 AM   #111
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Booth View Post
I worked retail for 35 years before retiring in 2009. Everything I read and everything in my customer service "gut" tells me that Browett is the wrong person to head Apple retail.Mark
Quote:
Originally Posted by iRobby View Post
Don't blame Browett!! I'm sad to say, but according to the article this change was pushed by Cook and Oppenheimer long BEFORE Browett! Looks like they had and still do a have a difference of opinion with Johnson on retail so they forced him out and hired Browett knowing he fit their ideology. A real bad sign!
Not defending BROWETT, but if there's truth to the above, then he's only the fall-guy following orders from above.

The last two times I strolled into an APPLE Store without an appointment, it was so crazy busy that I couldn't get to talk to anyone and I left in frustration after about a half hour. Not the retail store business model STEVE & RON envisioned and initially accomplished.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gooberwilson View Post
Steve Jobs would've never allowed this.
Don't usually respond to memes; they're kind of annoying but in this case it's definitely true!! You get a pass. Relax, I'm joking about the pass.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigMcGuire View Post
And here we are.... the start of $ is more important than the customer experience . Won't be long before there will be justification of a cheaper crappier product to save $....
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Originally Posted by chrmjenkins View Post
Let's see how many ways we can alienate faithful customers.
Scary scenario; Let's HOPE you're wrong!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Drunken Master View Post
Don't these stores make a ton of money already? They're the most profitable chain retail store per square foot in the U.S.: http://m.gizmodo.com/5903437/foot-for-foot-apple-stores-rake-in-17x-more-cash-than-other-retail-outlets
This is a big mistake that they're making, but it looks like maybe they'll back off a bit after "screwing up".
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacRumors View Post

At the most basic level, Jobs served as the champion for former retail chief Ron Johnson's vision of Apple stores focused on consumer satisfaction, and without Jobs to protect that vision Apple has slipped into a numbers-focused perspective for its retail operations.The report claims that Cook hired Browett to replace Johnson, who departed Apple to lead department store chain JC Penney last year, specifically because of his focus on "traditional concepts of retailing" that prioritize revenues and profits as the key performance metrics.

Even with Apple reportedly having reversed a number of the staffing changes that brought the company such significant publicity earlier this month, stores are reportedly still subject to directives reducing workshop offerings for customers and specifying policies on staff evaluation and compensation that prioritize profits over the customer experience and employee satisfaction.

Article Link: Apple Retail's Emphasis on Profits Continues, Tied to Operational Perspective of Cook and Browett
Quote:
Originally Posted by WhoDaKat View Post
This totally makes sense as Apple is struggling to make a profit. Give me a break. Glass cubes, giant stores in Grand Central Station, and architectural innovating buildings is not the way you go to maximize profits, and thats not the point of these highly successful retail outlets. Its shock and awe, its getting the products into the hands of consumers so they can "play" with them. To do this is to understand why Apple products are so successful. Nickeling and dimeing consumers is the surest way Apple can shoot themselves in the foot.

Tim, your consumers made Apple the biggest company in the world, and we fight the good fight for you all over the internet (there are no fans like Apple fans) but if you even give off the appearance that you are trying to increase your already sky high profits, then you risk it all sir. You should fire Browett and quit worrying about retail stores profits. Their job is to showcase... obviously the profits will come.
Quote:
Originally Posted by osaga View Post
The greatest monetary loss to Apple would be declining sales stemming from a change in the tide of consumer perception. The apple stores are the face of Apple, they should subsidize them if necessary.
It's the core values envisioned and instilled by STEVE that have attracted millions worldwide to APPLE, ie great products, innovation, ease of use while also being fun at the same time, being able to walk into a store and look at all the latest cool gear and have your questions answered without feeling pressured, support that's second to none, in other words a positive experience, MAGICAL as you-know-who would say.

TIM, for the love of APPLE, are you listening?
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:04 AM   #112
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I think they are a business. They want what? Money. Screw the consumer. Stick an Apple logo on anything and it becomes a treasure, Apple will milk that until its drier than an old maids breast. They've been doing that sense Moby Dick was a sardine. I'd do the same if I were them. Feed the public the lies about the products mattering more than profit.

Profit = Profit. That's what matters in business.

*Yes, there were some sayings taken from American Hoggers on A&E
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:08 AM   #113
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As a business owner of 12 years I understand the profit / customer service aspect. I find if you offer good service and go the extra mile, you get repeat customers year on year. That said I live in a 2 bedroom house in northern England and don't sit on a pile of cash that's larger than the GDP of many countries.

Now I think about it I have already experienced this shift in the Apple store policies. I used to fairly frequently deal with Apple and always got passed on straight away to a business rep to supply or fix things. This has changed which slows things down for me and my customers - to the point that I now use the store much less. A lot of this was before the Dixons guy. He'll only make things worse.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:09 AM   #114
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If your are stupid enough to hire Browlett than you deserve every single cockup he makes.

Seriously the guy ran the most hated tech/ home electric stores in the UK. You think BestBuy is bad, the pcworld and currys shops were like CompUSA but with chimps running the show.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:10 AM   #115
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EVERYONE email Tim. I did! Let your voices be heard!

tcook@apple.com
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:11 AM   #116
Swordylove
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IKR...

How I wish to rub this all over the faces of the people in that thread who were faithfully defending Ive's profit-comes-last statement.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:20 AM   #117
HelveticaRoman
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If they are right they will make even more money from their happy fan base; if they are wrong their happy fan base will stay away and they will make less money, in which case they will correct the error because they see the cost benefit and not because they believe in customer service per se. The hippies-in-the-garage schtick may not wash any more, but they have the happiest bank manager and shareholders in the world.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:40 AM   #118
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Just jump into the sheep-dip and stop your bleating!
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:44 AM   #119
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I have to say, I left Apple Retail a few months ago now and it felt like I was leaving a sinking ship. Morale is at an all time low, thanks to promotions that were never honored, the pay increases people got really did nothing to cover up all the bad stuff happening around them.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:48 AM   #120
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Apple Stores - Horrible Experience

I already hate the Apple retail stores. Far too busy and heaven forbid anyone who actually tries to look at a laptop because they intend on buying one - they are there for hoodies to use as their own internet cafe. Browsing for porn is fine, but trying to buy something absolutely not.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:48 AM   #121
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But but but but I thought "it's not about the money" sheesh, maybe finally they will stop saying that.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 03:59 AM   #122
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I guess all the people who defended Browett when he was hired were right after all. There may be nothing innately wrong with him, he was (and is) just following orders from above. Alas the instructions from above in Apple are the same he got in Dixons.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 04:01 AM   #123
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Apple retail IS for customers

I worked for Apple retail for almost 8 years and I lived through the many shifts of focus over the years. Ron and Steve had a great vision of the stores being a place of community, to showcase Apple products and enrich customer's lives through ownership of the products. Customer focus always came first because we believed that one great experience would bring in 20 more customers where one bad experience could easily drive 100 away. All along it was still about being profitable since it is a business after all, BUT, it was done the right way through building relationships and not just pushing product or attachments.

In my last year and a half it got to the point where customers regularly outnumbered employees 15-1, yet staffing barely went up and when it did hours went down. Certain employees could only do certain things - if you wanted to buy a computer you had to wait in a queue to talk to someone, buying a case was a 20 minute ordeal by the time you found someone who could ring you out, Genius Bar appointments regularly 45 minutes late (yet if the customer was late the appointment got cancelled.) I saw my peers get burnt out and depressed from running lean, constantly being belittled by upset customers in a hurry. The focus shifted toward add this, add that, push this, do more with less, "close the sale so customers don't go elsewhere to buy." Because just like Best Buy, CompUSA, Circuit City, etc, Apple retail has somewhat became a showroom for Amazon. This was about a year ago, and talking to some of my other friends who have left it has only continued to go downhill since then. I go in to the store from time to time and I still can never get anyone to help me due to only five employees throughout the entire store. If all of these stories about cuts are actually true, my question is WTF is going on - how could cuts make the environment any worse than it already is? Back to the days of staffing one manager, one Specialist, one BOH, and one Genius for the whole day against the current visitor numbers? Are Apple's retail stores throwing in the towel and going to solely exist to be Amazon and other online retailers' showroom?

It's true that the retail stores aren't the most profitable part of Apple, but it's what builds the customer loyalty and keeps them coming back. Retail 101 shows that returning customers are more likely to spend more than first time buyers, and if the experience in the stores suffers those customers won't be returning and it'll be just another big-box chrun-n-burn. Shrinking retail overhead even more is not going to help raise profits.

I could buy Apple products from tons of other retailers, but in the end I still shop at Apple because a little piece of me inside still believes in Ron's vision. I truly hope all of these rumors are just that, and if not I can only hope the senior retail team who worked with Ron can muster the courage to bring the stores back to how they were meant to be - focused on the customer experience, the community, and enriching lives through the ownership of Apple products.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 04:23 AM   #124
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Apple will never match its golden years again unless it faces near extinction again. That will involve the ousting of Tim Cook, as well, or better yet, a demotion to where he excelled as COO.

The problem with Apple having become a poor-quality software company is that no one seems to notice that Apple has become a poor0quality software company. So, I don't expect them to change anytime soon. Only become more successful as things like Mac OS, iLife, iWork, iTunes languish in quality.

You have to remember Tim Cook is an MBA. His only real gig before Apple was shoring up supplies for Compaq. That's what he excelled at Apple: shutting down Apple's own manufacturing, strategically buying up massive supply quantities, and cutting off those supplies to competitors. His life-chaning moment was more likely reading about Rockefeller than tripping on LSD.

And you'll never hear Tim Cook give a commencement speech where he talks about being influenced by a typography class. I stand by my long-held analysis of him: curator-in-chief of Apple's inertia. All he's got to do is think like an MBA, and that's not thinking too different. I wonder if he ever wonders about the stark reality of having no vision or insight. I feel like people rarely step back and look at what he lacks and the surreality of him being handed the keys to the kingdom. He can trim here or there, but for the most part, he's got to be petrified out of his mind. It's like letting any one of you into a rocket ship. I'm not saying he's an idiot at all when it comes to what he does. It's just that what he does is in no way a replacement for what Steve Jobs did. And as far as I can tell, his role has still not been filled. He seems calm on the outside; I imagine the inside is like George Costanza at a job he's not qualified for.

But no one can say anything because the response to everything is: look how much money they're making! You must be wrong! As if the user experience of a product is benefitted by the company making it being rich. "They must be doing something right to make all that money" was not an argument commonly employed by the Mac community during the 90s about Microsoft.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 04:23 AM   #125
Overg
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I am amazed to see that this kind of people still exist?!

is he insane?
didn't he read the Steve bio ?
Remind me of the Scally/emilio era....
I am amazed to see that this kind of mangers still exist, and worst of all in apple!
Tim cook, kick this guy out immediately !!!
I don't get it, is apple in some kind of losses, that this kind of sever actions is needed??
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