Working at the Apple Store

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by c2kvette, May 14, 2003.

  1. c2kvette macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2003
    Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina USA
    #1
    An Apple store is schedule to open in my area this fall and I was thinking about getting a part-time job there. Does anyone here work for an Apple store and what do you think about it?
     
  2. djtet macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2003
    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    #2
    c2kvette, where in NC is the store opening? That would mean that NC will have 2 apple stores and there is only 1 store (compusa-greenville) in the entire state of SC that even sells macs.

    Have you applied for an open position through apples website? I applied for a bunch of positions a while ago for a store that will soon be opened back where I'm from (Long Island, NY) and didn't get a call. Maybe cause they saw I was living in Charleston, SC...
    and they didn't want to deal with relocating crap...

    I saw on your profile that your a designer...how is the market in NC?
     
  3. c2kvette thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 12, 2003
    Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina USA
    #3
    There is an Apple store opening at Southpark Mall in Charlotte, NC.

    http://maccentral.macworld.com/news/2003/03/03/southpark/

    As far as the field of Graphic Design in the Charlotte area: we have several design firms and print houses in Charlotte, remember it's one (if not the) fastest growing city in America.
     
  4. djtet macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2003
    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    #4
    apples site...

    i just went to the apple site and the only job i saw posted, for charlotte, was an accounting position. were you thinking about going in once it opens and talking to a manager? that's probably your best bet.

    ...maybe i would have a better chance at getting work in charlotte, instead of here in charleston...
     
  5. c2kvette thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 12, 2003
    Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina USA
    #5
    I would think that your best bet would be in the Charlotte area or the Triangle, ie: Raliegh, Durham, Area.
     
  6. Valhalla525 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 5, 2003
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    #6
    Working at the Apple Store

    ...Personally, I'd have to recommend against it, but then again, maybe it just wasn't for me.

    I was recruited to work at the Apple Store because I was a long-time Mac user, as well as a Mac tech for many years. I was Apple certified, but the Genius Bar employees were hand-picked through other channels long before I got wind of the open positions.

    I looked forward to working for a company where honesty with the customer, communication and honest feedback were seen as integral parts of a successful company. What I encountered, unfortunately, was VERY different.

    During training a great deal of time was spent in covering how to honestly, kindly, and gently communicate with customers and each other, as well as how to give each other constructive criticism.

    During my employment there I found a greater and greater tendency to "push" products on people, at one point even approaching the "don't give them a chance to say no" tact taken by many of the pushier companies in business today. This was so decidedly un-Apple that I spoke out about it, gently and politely, as our training instructed. In return, I was asked to, essentially, 'shut up or leave'.

    This and the General Manager's behavior so directly contradicted the Apple-sponsored way of dealing with employees and co-workers, that I can only conclude Apple is just like any other company, and actually has little or no loyalty to its employees, despite its claims during training. What I encountered concerned me enough that, as a long-time Apple devotee, I approached higher-ups within the company. I was told not to rock the boat, and again, to 'shut up or leave'.

    I cannot in good conscience recommend working for Apple to anyone.

    Just my $.02 worth,

    Valhalla525:(
     
  7. djtet macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2003
    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    #7
    retail...

    Valhalla525,
    Sorry to hear about your experience...however I don't know if it is appropriate to deem apple as a bad company to work for, based on your experience. There is the saying..."one bad apple spoils the bunch"... The gen. manager working above you could have just been an ass, and wanted everyone that worked for him/her to make him/her look better by bringing in better numbers...(in other words, all employees must be pushy!!!)

    However, this may not be the case and apple might be like all other retail companies when all is said and done...sales, sales and sales...bottom line. I worked in retail outlets before and our regional managers wanted us to push crappy products on people just so they could make thier numbers look good.

    All in all, c2kvette, do take into consideration what Valhalla525 has stated, and that the bottom line in retail is sales...
     
  8. Valhalla525 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 5, 2003
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    #8
    djtet,

    All excellent points. I tried for months to maintain objectivity, but in the end I had to conclude that the problem(s) extended far beyond the walls of the store I worked in. As I said, I did approach higher-ups within the company, which meant talking to people at Cupertino, and the attitude was, unfortunately, the same.

    While ultimately sales is about number, the bottom line, etc., there are different approaches to getting there, obviously. Apple representatives, from Cupertino, were the ones who recruited us ("us" = the first bunch to work there), and advertised the company as a family, whose success is contingent upon honest feedback and communication within the company. Also, they openly advertised Apple's sales tactic as being this: they know they have the best product available, and the product speaks very strongly for itself.

    Our role as Apple employees was to make the Apple Store a warm, inviting place for people to get more intimately familiar with Apple products, and to make ourselves available as resources as much as possible. In fact, we were initially directly told NOT to be pushy. The turning point, however, was not due to a pushy General Manager concerned about his bottom line. The instruction to be pushier actually came directly from the Apple Retail Sales team via live teleconference from Cupertino. As I recall, Steve Jobs himself was present at the time as well.

    Much as I'd like to believe it was 'one bad apple spoiling the bunch', I'm afraid it was more along the lines of "one bad Apple" spoiling the bunch. (Pun intended.)

    Still, things may have changed. This was nearly two years ago, and Apple does seem to have backed off from its pushier sales tactics. Maybe they've learned. However, the General Manager in question still works at the Apple Store I was at, so they can't have learned too terribly much....

    Valhalla525
     
  9. yzedf macrumors 65816

    yzedf

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2002
    Location:
    Connecticut
    #9
    Re: retail...

    Very true. And from what I remember, only the most active stores can break even, the rest are losing money.

    To quote a sales drone I heard at the Palisades store 2 nights ago:

    "The 100MHz jump for the new iBook is like 300MHz in Pentium 3 terms."

    This was said to a man, probably close to 60 yrs old, who had no real experience with computers! His response was, blank stare... mumble mumble... walk out the door. All he wanted to know is why the 900MHz iBook cost $300 more.

    Being in sales, and having managed retail stores in the past, it was just one of the worst sales pitches I had ever seen. And this is from a salesperson that I have seen close sales in that store in the past. :rolleyes:

    When the store first opened, I was impressed by the knowledge and dedication of sales staff. Know that I know how they are paid (by the hour), and the store has been around a while, turnover has affected them more than I thought it would in the beginning. They don't pay enough to attract quality salespeople, and they don't apy commission, so there is no drive to sell the (as an example) 12" PB harder to people that are trying to decide between 12" PB or 12" iBook.

    Apple's corporate image can no longer be hidden now that they have left the land of Oz (ie they have retail stores now).
     
  10. djtet macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2003
    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    #10
    wow...

    Valhalla525,

    I had no idea that the problem went ALL the way up the ladder!

    I just don't see apple (as a whole) being similar to a major car dealership where the sales reps work soley on commission and "circle the water" for their prey...

    however, like you said, maybe apple has changed their "pushy" ways...
     
  11. Valhalla525 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 5, 2003
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    #11
    Oh, I didn't say we actually received commission....

    ;)
     
  12. bombensington macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2002
    #12
    Re: apples site...

    this is not the best way to go. apply now if you want the position. don't wait until the store opens - they have already trained all of the employees and there will be no openings at that time, i guarantee it.

    [edit] valhalla525...i tried to PM you, unsuccessfully...can you be reached through aim (there i'm bombensington4) or yim (there i'm bombensington)?
     
  13. djtet macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2003
    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    #13
    curious...

    Valhalla525,
    just out of curiousity...

    did you get paid soley on commission or salary + commission. It's a bit different when you have to sell stuff in order to make any money!

    just a side note to all apple sales reps/employees...
    I'm confident that customers out there, want a sales rep who...
    1) is educated about the product/service that they are selling
    2) doesn't treat the customer like a complete moron
    3) is NOT pushy!!!

    btw...c2kvette, do you want a part time gig at the apple store for extra $$, or just for pleasure of being surrounded by, and talking to people about, apple products???
     
  14. Valhalla525 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 5, 2003
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    #14
    At the time (again, this was a couple of years ago), pay was strictly hourly/salary, depending on the position at the Apple Store (part- or full-time).

    I do have to say that we had a great bunch of people at the time, and a number of people left as well for the same reasons I did. This was unfortunate, especially because some of them moved in from out of state specifically to work for Apple.

    The people who really had it made were the Apple reps who worked at CompUSA stores, because they were essentially their own bosses, and Apple was always eager to help them out with promotional materials, supplies, demo units, etc. They also weren't urged to be "pushier" in their sales tactics.

    Valhalla525
     
  15. djtet macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2003
    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    #15
    Valhalla525,
    Sorry, I misinterpreted and thought you did get commission...

    You said that people relocated just to work at the apple store...the pay must have been great! :)
     
  16. bombensington macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2002
    #16
    ha...not necessarily!
     
  17. c2kvette thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2003
    Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina USA
    #17
    Re: curious...


    Actually I've already sold 1 Mac and three more are pending :)
    I think I would enjoy showing people the advantages of the Mac over Wintel machines. The extra money would be a bonus - in a way.
     

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