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What Does “Hi, How Are You?” Really Mean At Box Stores?

Home Depot
Flickr, neubie

After several recent visits to the Cheyenne Home Depot, the store greeting has a double meaning.

Have you noticed over the last few years, at Home Depot in particular, they have doubled the amount of greeters and cashiers waiting to serve you? I often thought it was because of the lack of customer service most of the big box stores was having. You could never find anyone to help you and when they were available, not much help.

This isn’t about customer service, this new trend towards five or six greetings walking down the main idea is part of loss prevention. The idea is if they engage you, they have made contact with you and you are less likely to steal some lag bolts.

Look on the wall when you leave the store through the check out stands to the right of the main doors. They have loss prevention goals and award employees who save the store money. All of this is a good deal, but is the smile and “How are you?” for me, or to prevent me from stealing?

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