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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:22 PM   #1
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Apple Asks Retail Employees for iPhone Sales Advice




Apple has sent out a memo to its international Apple Retail Employees, asking for innovative ideas on how to improve the iPhone, the retail store environment, and company sales techniques. According to 9to5Mac, the message was distributed late last week.

Employees are asked to submit an idea, which will lead to an eight-week experience where selected candidates will interact with members from various Apple departments at the company's Cupertino headquarters, including Marketing, Merchandising, Customer Analytics, Mobile Commerce, and more, in order to "solve problems" related to the way Apple sells and supports its iPhones.

Apple occasionally turns to its Apple retail employees for assistance with various aspects of software development. In late 2012 Apple asked its workers to help improve the Maps app and a number of current employees have been given access to the OS X Mavericks beta for testing purposes.

Earlier this month, several Apple executives including Tim Cook spoke with Apple Retail Store leaders about upcoming iPhone incentive programs and discount strategies aimed at selling more iPhones in-house.

Article Link: Apple Asks Retail Employees for iPhone Sales Advice
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:23 PM   #2
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Maybe I'm completely wrong, but doesn't this seem like bad news? This makes it sound like they are totally out of ideas at the top...
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:24 PM   #3
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Maybe I'm completely wrong, but doesn't this seem like bad news? This makes it sound like they are totally out of ideas at the top...
Thought the same thing.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:26 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by TennisandMusic View Post
This makes it sound like they are totally out of ideas at the top...
there's only so much you can do to a phone.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:26 PM   #5
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Thought the same thing.
Yeah, I'm a tad puzzled. There aren't too many innovative things that can surface.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:28 PM   #6
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:29 PM   #7
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Asking for info from the idiots that work in Apple Stores?
Not good news here.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:30 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by TennisandMusic View Post
Maybe I'm completely wrong, but doesn't this seem like bad news? This makes it sound like they are totally out of ideas at the top...
I don't see this as bad thing. Soliciting ideas from more sources like employees makes sense. The more avenues/broader spectrum of ideas coming in can only help. I know a lot of businesses are pushing similar practices such as this - encourage employees to contribute ideas and in some small way shape policy. I don't think think it reflects poorly or that management has "run out of ideas."

edit: I do agree the Apple store employees aren't always the brightest minds, still can't hurt to get feedback from them however.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:30 PM   #9
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Asking for info from the idiots that work in Apple Stores?
Not good news here.
That's completely unnecessary.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:30 PM   #10
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Maybe I'm completely wrong, but doesn't this seem like bad news? This makes it sound like they are totally out of ideas at the top...
No.

What's wrong with asking the people that sell your product on a daily basis, how they can better improve this product and the selling process?

The smartest man is a man who knows when to ask for help.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:31 PM   #11
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Maybe I'm completely wrong, but doesn't this seem like bad news? This makes it sound like they are totally out of ideas at the top...
Well, they currently are out of executives in charge of retail. Would it be better if Browett were still in charge making these decisions for them?
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:32 PM   #12
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You should work on completing it during work hours on the clock.
I don't get this, when would retail employees have time to do this since they have to sell current products. Lunch breaks?
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:33 PM   #13
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No.

What's wrong with asking the people that sell your product on a daily basis, how they can better improve this product and the selling process?

The smartest man is a man who knows when to ask for help.
You can't just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they'll want something new.
Steve Jobs
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:33 PM   #14
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I don't get this, when would retail employees have time to do this since they have to sell current products. Lunch breaks?
They will probably bring in an extra employee per day and maybe give employees allotted time during their shift to complete this, if they wish to do so.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:34 PM   #15
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that's sad!
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:35 PM   #16
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I don't get this, when would retail employees have time to do this since they have to sell current products. Lunch breaks?
Maybe at opening/closing time when it's not a zoo in there. :P
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:35 PM   #17
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I do not work for Apple but here is the tip for Tim Cook on iphone sales.

Get CHINA MOBILE deal done which will lead to shortages in iphone availability
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:37 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by TennisandMusic View Post
Maybe I'm completely wrong, but doesn't this seem like bad news? This makes it sound like they are totally out of ideas at the top...
Haha I wondered how long it would take for someone to spin it this way. Why would getting input from retail employees be a bad thing? Leaders aren't the only ones who have good ideas in a company.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by greenmeanie View Post
Asking for info from the idiots that work in Apple Stores?
Not good news here.
Wow, really classy there.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:37 PM   #19
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Seriously? Why not just come to macrumors and read all the complaints. Or they could just make the screen bigger, stick a removable battery in there with a sd card slot and call it the best phone ever. Not so hard. Do it... Do it...
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:40 PM   #20
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there's only so much you can do to a phone.
Try telling that to Samsung...


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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:40 PM   #21
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Probably a good way to share requests they get from customers at store. I would imagine that many people that buy iPhones at an Apple Store interact with sales people and mention what they wish was available in the iPhone, etc... I don't see this is only getting ideas from the sales people but a way to funnel customer requests back to Apple.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:40 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by TennisandMusic View Post
Maybe I'm completely wrong, but doesn't this seem like bad news? This makes it sound like they are totally out of ideas at the top...
Or Apple simply wants to hear what the customers requests in the store. The retail employees would be the best ones to answer that.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:40 PM   #23
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make the checkout easier. as of now everywhere you buy a cell phone you have to wait around until they activate you in the carrier's system.

why not authorize your card for $700 and then only charge $199 after you activate it yourself at home. that will free up a lot of people from doing simple data entry work

if i preorder an iphone to pick up at store, don't keep me waiting while you find it in the back. meanwhile there is a whole pile of phones sitting on the shelf. give me one of those.

sometimes it seems that apple's backend systems are so far behind everyone else its like they aren't even using computers
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:41 PM   #24
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They aren't doing this because they have trouble selling iPhones in general. They're doing this because majority of iPhones are sold by Carrier Stores instead Apple stores. That in itself isn't a failing on Apple's part but rather general consumer associations; "if you want to buy a Mac go to an Apple store, if you want to buy an iPhone go to your local Carrier Store".

But of course everyone will jump of the "Steve Jobs is dead so they're out of ideas" train
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 12:41 PM   #25
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Haha I wondered how long it would take for someone to spin it this way. Why would getting input from retail employees be a bad thing? Leaders aren't the only ones who have good ideas in a company.
And, sometimes the leaders are the ones who don't have the good ideas.

I've worked in too many places where the leaders think they're too good to ask the "lower" employees for ideas and those employees mistakenly believe that they aren't creative.
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