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Wal-Mart solutions expert

Because sometimes you know what you want, but not what it's called or where it is.
  [vote for,

The Wal-Mart Solutions Expert would replace the door greeter. The Solutions Expert would make it his business to know everything the store has (which is actually possible,) where it is and what it can be used for. If you need something to make a fuzzy bow for a present he could suggest some of those multicolored pipe cleaners from the craft aisle. If you want something to hang pictures on the wall, but you live in an apartment where they would flip out over the holes in the wall, he can suggest the sticky wall hangers that pull out cleanly.

"I need some magnets for the fridge, but I can't find them in housewares." "Oh we don't have them in the logical place for some reason, but you can find a lot of different kinds of magnets in crafts."

Actually there would need to be multiple Solutions Experts at each door. When one goes off with a customer to direct him to a product, another is standing there waiting to take his place. Six total should be enough for a store, assuming two main entrances and the employees get back fast.

This would actually save the company time and money, because you would have no more customers wandering aisles and distracting the other employees from their real job with hunting missions.

On a completely unrelated topic, I STILL can't find any twist ties at Wal-Mart. Or any other store.

Psalm_97, Feb 09 2012

(?) They're on a roll... http://www.poundlan...inal/twist-ties.jpg
[2 fries shy of a happy meal, Feb 11 2012]


       Isn't this just an exhortation for store assistants to better know their stock?   

       At a large local DIY shop which I visit, there is one old guy who is always hanging around to help customers. I can go up to him and say "I need some extra-long screws for electrical sockets, but with domed brass heads", and he will immediately say "Third aisle, seven yards along, just past the lightbulbs, second shelf from the bottom, left hand side."   

       He is never actually right, but I appreciate his confidence.
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 09 2012

       //Twist ties usually aren't sold by themselves// Haven't you been paying attention? Mcmaster-Carr sells them in packs of 2000 or rolls, your choice. You also have a choice of type and color.
DIYMatt, Feb 09 2012

       //He is never actually right, but I appreciate his confidence.// [marked-for-tagline]
pertinax, Feb 09 2012

       //This would actually save the company time and money, because you would have no more customers wandering aisles// Walmart makes more money when customers spend *less* time wandering aisles?
mouseposture, Feb 10 2012

       Just make the stockers do an occasional shift as a greeter. One of my first jobs was as a stocker in a grocery store and I recall being surprised how quickly I learned where - everything- was.
swimswim, Feb 10 2012

       This wouldn't actually be anything like Lowes or Home Depot, because Wal-Mart is a department store. A Solutions Expert there would have a lot more to work with. And a Solutions Expert would be dedicated to helping people solve problems and get stuff done with what Wal-Mart sells, regardless of what the intended use of the product was.   

       Example: Once I needed a small table that could fold up for transport. I needed a table with the surface width of a laptop, that would stand about waist high to me. If there had been a Solutions Expert there who was quick thinking he could have told me "No we don't have anything like that... but here's an idea, maybe you could get this black folding stool and unscrew the seat padding." That is actually what I did, and it worked great, but only after a lot of piddling around.   

       //Walmart makes more money when customers spend *less* time wandering aisles?// They do with me. >.>
Psalm_97, Feb 10 2012

       // At a large local DIY shop which I visit, there is one old guy who is always hanging around to help customers.//   

       At the one near me he says things like...
"Oh, we used to stock them in aisle 9, but we shifted them to aisle 7 in '96, then we...did I tell you the story of why we moved aisle 7? Anyway, as I was saying...we shifted them from aisle 9, or was it 8?..."
Ling, Feb 10 2012

       In some stores, they have PCs where in customers can search for locations of an item.
VJW, Feb 10 2012

       But that would need software that asked questions like "Is it bigger than a duck?"
Ling, Feb 10 2012

       "I need a way to prevent this sodium from dissolving too quickly in my test tube of weak acid."   

       <Solutions Expert> "Super-saturate it. Salt, aisle 11."
RayfordSteele, Feb 10 2012

       Nope. They just stand there and say hi, and maybe move a shopping cart out of the main flow of traffic every so often.   

       They should have a requirement that the first hour of every shift they walk through the store, looking around at where stuff is. And there should be a test they have to pass to get the position, something like a Google aptitude test, designed to select those who can be creative and get things done with the tools at hand.   

       Then the position of door greeter, instead of being despised and ridiculed, would be a position of honor, reserved for only those who are worthy. Door greeter would be higher ranked than checkout clerk.
Psalm_97, Feb 10 2012

       twist ties? try a garden centre
po, Feb 10 2012

       bigsleep - it's something started by Sam Walton, late owner of Wal-Mart. When Sam was alive Wal-Mart was a fairly good place to shop, but the door greeter position was not one of his better ideas. I can't wait for them to either abolish the post or upgrade it to something useful.
Psalm_97, Feb 10 2012

       It gives something useful for the less-capable to do and obviously doesn't hurt anything besides Walmart's bottom line, which I'm all in favor of.
RayfordSteele, Feb 10 2012

       Twist-ties can be found in the produce section of most supermarkets, for free. Just wait until there are no employees watching and casually palm a handful.   

       I would have loved this job as a teenager. Maybe it will exist after I retire. [+]
gisho, Feb 10 2012

       This is kind of the difference between a big chain store and a local one that's been in the same family for fifty years.   

       If I go into the local hardware store and ask for the stuff to do the thing with the whatchamacallit, I get pointed to exactly the right spot.
MechE, Feb 10 2012

       Same here, plus I get a local news update and a free cup of tea. I love living in a small town, especially one where there literally isn't enough level ground on which to built a w@l-m@rt.
Alterother, Feb 11 2012

       Huh. Standing in line at the hardware store yesterday they had these [link] by the till for impulse shoppers.   

       [MechE] I hear Google's beta testing software that'll let you type "the stuff to do the thing with the whatchamacallit" into a search field and get a link to the manufacturer's website (with automatic translation from the Chinese, natch.).
mouseposture, Feb 11 2012

       I'd prefer human looking humanoid robots, as a greeter.
VJW, Feb 11 2012

       Cheery-and sunny sounding self-satisfied doors. "Whrrrr.... Thank you!"   

       Quickly to be replaced by Marvin... "Brain the size of a planet and they have me repeating the same dreadful greeting to Walmart shoppers, the dumbest species in existance, none of whom have even contemplated what a diode is, let alone how much they pain my left side. Even a Sqornshellous Zeta mattress would be bored to death by this job."
RayfordSteele, Feb 14 2012


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