Should the time clock be used for breaks?

Jun 16, 2011
Thinking corporate policy is the end all be all seems like an odd persuasion to go along with your signature of, "I can think for myself, thank you.".

I care about policies when they make sense, and have a valid reason. I don't follow every policy to the letter 100% of the time though. There's times where taking my last break just means I have to work harder to catch back up afterwards. It's got nothing to do with inability to time manage, it's got a lot to do with payroll being so limited that I'm expected to do multiple people's jobs.
Yeah.... probably should change that, though not following corporate policy was not the inspiration for the signature. Break policies do make sense and are valid. An example of stupid policy? Only clear liquids in a clear container are allowed for drinks. No lycra in pants is another. It's senseless and invalid to not allow a clocked out tm to buy food at SB and eat it there. It seems senseless to me to spider wrap and lock up Apple products in the back room area that is locked. It seems senseless to me to use INF as a metric for fulfillment tms without noting a reason for the INF. None of those things affect the company mission or affect the well being or safety of a tm. As I've gotten older and it's harder to even get an interview I have found that keeping my job is more a matter of minding the little things that management can add up to find you are suddenly not that key employee you have been for 20+ years and performance you out. Target used to value a tm that was creative, innovative, self motivated, a good problem solver. Now I am finding that the more you stay in your lane and nod, smile and outwardly agree with whatever, the more likely it is that you'll be on the next schedule. Challenging upward, which encouraged tms to think for themselves and present solutions that make sense and would work was a thing when I added my signature. Challenging upward is not a thing anymore.
Nov 10, 2017
My only thing re: declining to take breaks: whatever you do, don't lie about it. Don't enable unrealistic expectations of what can be accomplished in a shift that includes all required breaks. Correct your managers if they ever try to compare your productivity favorably to that of TMs who accomplish as much while working but take their breaks.


Service Advocate, Formerly GSA
Dec 29, 2013
I think the culture is largely a store-specific thing, rather than a company-wide thing. I'd never encourage someone else to skip their breaks, and if I saw a team lead encouraging someone to do so, I'd report them for it. But choosing to do so, and being pressured to do so via an external source are different things in my eyes. It is a corporate policy that I should take my breaks, but it's not actually a law (at least not in my state), that I take them, or even be provided the opportunity to do so, so there are times where I have opted not to, because doing so results in me not closing the lanes as quickly at night, or having to stay late to finish picking an OPU, etc.

As for some of the other policies, not sure if those are actually policies my store just doesn't follow, or if they're just store-specific things people at your store enforce.

ie. TM's can definitely sit at the SB tables here, and they often do. We've never spider wrapped items that are in the electronics stock room.

As for INF, I agree 100%, it's really not a fulfillment metric, it's a store metric. When I don't find an item it's typically not because I screwed up and didn't look in the right place, it's because our inventory was wrong, or the last remaining item was damaged, etc.