PW has an an article on Borders today that discusses how the company is trying to save itself from oblivion. As a low-ranking, part-time/full-time (depends on the week) bookseller at the other major chain, I feel more than qualified to lend my BBA-educated two cents.

But all joking aside, I do have a major pet peeve with Borders that generally sends me to B&N or Bookpeople when I need to buy a book: I can never find a freaking human to help me. There is always someone in the cafe and someone else behind the register, but as far as I can tell, there’s never anyone else working the store. I actually assume that they must be there somewhere, but Borders employees must be masters of camouflage and handily avoid my searching. This is very ironic because I don’t normally like asking employees for help. One thing I like about Borders is that they have computers I, as a customer, can use to see if things are in the store. The problem occurs when the computer says something is there, but I can’t find it on the shelf. Now, this happens all the time at B&N, but since I work there, I have sneaky suspicion of where the book might be, and I can then go walk around past all the suspects. Is it in the front window? In backstock? On a cart in receiving, etc. The list goes on. When I’m in a Borders I need a similarly privileged person to do the same thing. And I can never find one. And then Borders loses my sale. This can’t only be happening to me.

© Copyright 2006-2011 Madeline Smoot. All rights reserved.
May be excerpted and duplicated for educational purposes.
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