Archived Some Things I'd Like To Say To My Very Young ETL-HR

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commiecorvus

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She's new to the job.
Been with Spot about the same amount of time as I have but is less than half my age (which I really don't hold against her, I promise).
This is her first HR position before that she was an ETL-Softlines.
(And before that college.)
Her solution to everything is to go by the book and when that doesn't work it must mean someone else wasn't.
I've been been pretty brutal at the chat sessions to the point where I'm pretty much persona non grata.
So here is what I'd like to say but probably won't because I know she won't get it (at least for a couple more years.)

When you ask the people in the next session if they have any comments, after the one or two vocal people get done and the rest are just staring at you consider this;
Those people come from some amazing places.

You have TMs who have lost families in hurricanes and tidal waves that were only news stories to you.

There are people sitting at that table with college degrees from other countries who were professional people before they came here, some who had family tortured and left one step ahead of a government willing to do the same to them.

There are young men and women who saw friends gunned down in the street because they wore the wrong colors in a neighborhood or talked to the wrong boy.

You have people here who have run businesses, managed people, some even who have sat in positions similar to yours.

Most of all there are long term TM's who remember what this company was like in the days when it seemed to care what they thought and treated them accordingly.

Because of the economy, life decisions, a myriad of situations you couldn't possibly understand unless you walked in their shoes, they now depend on you to pay their bills and lead them day to day.

You can't treat them like children or wayward cattle.

This means you have to consider them as people not pawns to move around to fit in the slots that Spot has set down for you.

You need to protect them from the crap that comes from above and build them up so you have loyalty and respect.

You're young and that isn't a bad thing. People like youthful energy when it is at their side, helping them, giving them backup, giving them hope.
They don't need it chirping at them, nagging them to be better by a book that they have no influence on and no respect for.


Do anybody else have something they would like to add?
 
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My Etl hr must be her twin sister ,except this is her first job in retail ! She spends most days trying to come up with art and craft idea to put on the walls in the breakroom !!!

One more thing to add :
Etl hr ,don't run to the stl whenever you do not agree with a tm 's point of view ( mine for example ) .I was called in the stl's office ,I felt like I was 25 years younger and called into the principal's office all over again !
 
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Its all an illusion --- your not a God --

Side story --- Once upon a time there was an ETL in training - just passing through my store - seemed like a nice enough guy - somewhere along the line - he wound up in a store in my district - I go there to visit my SFT peep and see him - "Hey Fred -- how - ya - doo-in" ----------------------------- later my buddy said - "What did you ( me ) do to him -- hes a real prick to everybody"

Two years later I see him working in a car parts store ---- long story shortened -- he got fired -- and his STL / HR / the other ETL's / the girl at shoes --- everybody set him up ----- when I walked away I only said "Karma" -----
 

redeye58

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Maybe she could listen to the TMs who are working 2 jobs & still qualify for foodstamps because they only got nickle & dime raises this yr; the TMs who don't qualify for medicaid so they have to take their kids to the ER while spot plans to cut HMOs/PPOs next yr; the TMs who can't pick up extra shifts because they don't have a car & rely on the bus; the TMs who have been verbally abused by guests & overruled by ETLs to the point that they don't feel like anything they do matters.
Maybe she'd see a whole new world outside her little bubble.
Or not.
 
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Before you even think of telling her any of this you need to do one key thing: find out if she is a republican or democrat. (most ETLs are republicans)

Republicans generally look down on anyone who has had problems in life. Telling her these things will simply make her feel better than you and look down on TMs.

Also - remember you don't know for sure where she has been. Having a college degree does not mean a pampered life. (though often it does)

For all you know, her family was homeless when she was a kid or had major problems and made some kind of comeback later in life. Therefore, it is very presumptuous to assume she has had an easy life, and she could easily become pissed at the insinuation.

I think the biggest thing people on this forum need to do is STOP THINKING ETLS ARE BETTER THAN YOU. They are not. Forget that "executive" BS target tells them to make them feel good about themselves. They are equal to an assistant store manager at wal-mart or any other retailer. You make it sound like anyone who has been a TM is some kind of screwed up loser with tons of problems in life. Just because someone doesn't make a lot of money or have a prestigious job doesn't make them less respectable than someone in the opposite position. Unless those TMs are criminals on the side, ETLs are not better than them.

Fact is, ETLs have plenty of problems in their own lives. In my years at Target, I have seen ETLs get ripped to shreds by guests (I always found it hilarious that these powerful "executives" can't do a damn thing but sit there and take abuse from a guest like a chump), get divorced, have their wife show up to the store because they were having a secret affair they just found out about, all kinds of crap. They are not gods - they are people like anyone else. Because they have a degree does not mean they are better than you.

Are some people with degrees highly intelligent and capable? Yes. Fact is, however, the ETLs at your store failed. Because they "manage" a retail store isn't anything special. The fact is, among other "college educated" people, ETLs are actually the losers - not you or TMs at your store! Going to college and then working retail is basically a huge fail for them. It means they didn't have what it took to make it in a "good" non-retail job. When other people they went to college with see them working at Target, it is a "Holy sh**! WTF happened?" kind of moment for them. Let me say that again - in comparison to people who went to college and now work for the FBI, Google, Microsoft, etc. your ETLs are complete losers. It is all a matter of perspective.

Society doesn't let the TMs you describe advance in life. The TM who fled a war ravaged country and barely speaks english who can't get hired anywhere but Target because of our societies arrangement is actually more respectable than an ETL. Why? Because the ETL actually had a chance in life to do something great and they failed. They now spend their life "managing" a bunch of teenagers, young adults, and a hand full of older adults at a retail store asking "can I help you find something?" when they see a guest same as any other TM. That is hardly impressive.

So stop thinking of ETLs as some kind of super impressive people that are better than you. ETLs who go around and try to make themselves out to be superior to TMs are the most pathetic people around. It basically means they know inside they are pathetic, and have to make themselves feel better by bullying other people.
 
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I do not know of any good reason why the position of ETL.HR still exists.previously it was for the good of the team but obviously that is no longer the case.Having said that I feel sorry for the multiple people that have passed through our store in that position,the majority of which were very nice and well meaning people.I believe that most of them actually thought that they could make a difference,and I think that once that dream is shattered it is soul destroying for them and generally their career is measured in months rather then years.As was said above there are places to hide out for awhile,they can become a master crafter and make beautiful posters for the breakroom and hallway or worst still they can withdraw from the team and take the awful road of doing everything by the book.either way there is no happy ending,not for many etls in Target,the turnstyle is endlessly turning.
 
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our EtL-HR is new to the job, so I get that. First job out of college, and nothing in the way of life experience to fall back on.

She did tell me that she would take another job in a heartbeat - (I wish she would)

I'd like to tell her that no, she can't pick up lunch for me at the local restaurant when she is getting hers.
I have real bills to pay - I'm not sure I'll have the insurance I need for my family next year, and to get a clue.
 
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I do not know of any good reason why the position of ETL.HR still exists.previously it was for the good of the team but obviously that is no longer the case.Having said that I feel sorry for the multiple people that have passed through our store in that position,the majority of which were very nice and well meaning people.I believe that most of them actually thought that they could make a difference,and I think that once that dream is shattered it is soul destroying for them and generally their career is measured in months rather then years.As was said above there are places to hide out for awhile,they can become a master crafter and make beautiful posters for the breakroom and hallway or worst still they can withdraw from the team and take the awful road of doing everything by the book.either way there is no happy ending,not for many etls in Target,the turnstyle is endlessly turning.

HR at no company in the world is for the "good of the team". HR exists to serve the bidding of corporate. Period. That is anywhere you go. All of this "oh HR is there for you!" BS is designed to lure you in to a false sense of security so you will tell HR things you otherwise wouldn't. Things they normally wouldn't be able to figure out were it not for naive TMs who trusted them.

Honestly, I considered the TMs who ran to HR with all of their problems the biggest fools in the store. 99% of the time whatever they told HR was later used against them. As a TL, I always found it hilarious when an ETL came over to me and said something along the lines of "Hey, Bob just told the ETL-HR he was having problems with Tony.... So make sure you document everything you can on both of them from now on."

So in answer to your question, ETL-HR exists to make sure information can be collected efficiently and then used against TMs. Basically, the company needs a full time ETL to do this effectively. Just remember this - every single word you tell an ETL-HR is going directly to either another ETL, the STL, or a TL. If they tell you it is "confidential" that only means they won't tell another TM. So anything you tell the ETL-HR better be something you would be 100% fine telling any other ETL or the STL, because I promise you they are being told that same day.

Also - the reason so many ETL-HRs turnover is simply because HR is a position that the vast majority of corporate america requires prior experience for. Companies such as Target that hire someone directly into HR are extremely rare. You can't get an HR job at IBM, Tyco, Shell, BP, or pretty much any other non-retail job without actual HR job experience. Therefore, Target provides a means of getting HR experience that can be used to get HR jobs at other companies. Furthermore, HR exists at every company in the country. As a result, being an ETL-HR nets you experience in HR and skills in a field that are easily applied to another company. The experience gained in all other ETL jobs - hardlines, guest experience, logistics, etc are almost 100% unique to retail. You can't apply for a job at Microsoft using experience as an ETL-HL because no such position exists at Microsoft. However, you can apply for an HR job at Microsoft using experience gained as an ETL-HR. You can't apply for a job at Chevron using experience gained as an ETL-GE because no such job exists at Chevron, however you can apply for an HR job at Chevron using experience gained as an ETL-HR.

In other words, ETL-HRs are not turning over because they went into Target thinking "Oh, I am going to make TMs lives better!" and then are disapointed when they don't. No, they are turning over because they come in to Target secretly thinking "Sh**! I didn't go to college to work retail. I'm using this ETL-HR job to net some experience for a few months and then using that experience to get a better job".

I spent a couple months sleeping with an ETL-HR. She would brag to me about how much she looked down on TMs, but could easily convince them she cared about them. It is all a mind game. They don't care about TMs one bit.
 
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Time to let go of some of the bitterness,don't you have a better job now,why are you still here?you really do whine too much.

It is not bitterness. Just trying to give a heads up to TMs who think telling HR all of their business is a good idea. Sitting around letting people think HR is there to help them isn't doing anyone any favors when HR turns around and uses what they told them against them, is it?
 
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You are right with what you say about that,the only person who can look out for any tm or tl at Target is that person themself,people have to stand up and be strong for themselves.
 
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The singular purpose a HR-ETL serves at this point is to document and eliminate all team members and team leaders who do not meet the following mathematical equation:
Your hourly wage/3(the number of employees your level of productivity needs to be)< minimium wage paid to 3 new team members
All other issues you are on your own.
 
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as a team member with well over 20 years at Target, with a new ETL-HR(without a clue) - this thread is compelling me to give up my anonymity.

My opinion is that Target should never have an new ETL start in HR. There is no background experience to pull from in any way.
 
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I agree...I actually double majored in Psychology and HR and have been trying to get into the HR-TM role just to get experience so i can get the hell out. Every single HR job requires previous HR experience, usually 2 years, OR office experience, which I dont have either. Ive had a few interviews but it is damn near impossible to land a job in HR fresh out of college since there are so many talented professionals allready out there because of the economy. And for psychology. Unless you have a masters you cant really do much with that. MY ETL-HR has her degree in Business, which it seems most of my ETLS have as well. Our ETL-GE had a degree in HR though. Not sure why they dont just do what every other company does and hire specifically for HR and have people who know wtf they are doing
 
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I agree...I actually double majored in Psychology and HR and have been trying to get into the HR-TM role just to get experience so i can get the hell out. Every single HR job requires previous HR experience, usually 2 years, OR office experience, which I dont have either. Ive had a few interviews but it is damn near impossible to land a job in HR fresh out of college since there are so many talented professionals allready out there because of the economy. And for psychology. Unless you have a masters you cant really do much with that. MY ETL-HR has her degree in Business, which it seems most of my ETLS have as well. Our ETL-GE had a degree in HR though. Not sure why they dont just do what every other company does and hire specifically for HR and have people who know wtf they are doing

If you graduated with a major in HR, then you also have a business degree.....
 
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Mine is young but has been with Spot for about 13 years. Not sure if she worked her way up before and during college, or if she jumped once she graduated. I still have some animosity, but not much.
 
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I'm a relatively new HRTL (got promoted to the position in August) and have worked at two different Targets... the first ETL-HR I had was a lot like the type you all are describing - pretty much a by-the-book corporate lackey and not a very nice person in general. We always said she had the Resources part of HR down but was desperately lacking the Human part. However, at my current store (the one I am the HRTL for) the ETL-HR actually does a surprising amount of work and doesn't just tow the corporate line, something that might get us in trouble more often than not. We honestly try to put our TMs concerns first and fight for better pay and hours. When it comes to Christmas and Thanksgiving, we put up volunteer sheets before working on the schedule because we knew we had some TMs who would -for whatever reasons- rather make that shift differential and holiday pay. We had a pretty good turnout for volunteers for the holiday schedules and whatever shifts we had leftover, we either personally asked TMs or basically just made due with what we had. When we're not busy with HR stuff (especially now that holiday hiring is winding down for us) we are out working freight on the floor with our team.

TL;DR: Not every HR team is out of touch with their store, some of us really do care about our people. :)
 
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Interesting convo....for my two cents' worth, sometimes in the modern world of corporate/retail "leadership" positions, you get the traits a lot of people might find desirable in a leader; the ability to take action, make thoughtful yet timely decisions, take calculated risks, to ACTUALLY TAKE RESPONSIBILTY/BE ACCOUNTABLE/CULPABLE for things, to not turn their noses up at "lowly" tasks, to treat all in their surroundings with respect & civility ( at least ! ), and to have some level of empathy and awareness of the world around them.

Unfortunately, more often they just seem to think excessively highly of themselves, think lowly of others if they think of them at all, and are mainly interested in advancing their own careers or agendas.

There is no real reason to take this latter type too seriously, unless, of course, you find them in a positon of power or authority over you, which I am all too familiar with.
 
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Also, as to people being unable to relate to others, lacking compassion or understanding others' experiences or POVs, very, very often people simply don't think about what it's like to be in a certain situation ( extreme poverty, mental illnesses or physical challenges, different people's cultural backgrounds, etc., ) unless they themselves are confronted with it, either personally or among their circle of friends or close family. Too bad, really, but that just seems to be the way; people can be quite thoughtless and unfortunately it can bleed over into their work environment in noticeable ways.
 
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