Store Openings On Thanksgiving: A New Low for Employee Disengagement

It’s Thanksgiving, but our doors open at 8 p.m.!

The public’s recoil at major retailer’s decisions to open on Thanksgiving Day is a perfect example of how employee disengagement has hit a new low. Infringing on people’s time with family and friends is a fast track to creating animosity between employer and employee.

To me, opening on Thanksgiving Day is a clear indication of a new level of greed stemming from Corporate America. It tells me that companies weren’t satisfied with their profit margins by opening their doors at midnight. They had to up the ante on the competition somehow. So they decided that, the earlier they open, the larger their profit margins will be.

Employers know, in our current economic climate, jobs are hard to come by. So, if they tell us to come to work on Thanksgiving Day, they know we’ll be there and on time. Companies forcing their employees to work on a national holiday should be called exactly what it is — forced labor.

Disengaged employees are disloyal employees. In a previous post, I provided Three Reasons Why Employees Aren’t Loyal . Now, we can add “forced labor” to that list.

Were any of the executives that made the decision to open on Thanksgiving Day actually at work on Thanksgiving Day with their rank and file employees? I’m willing to bet they weren’t. So, if forced labor is okay, then why didn’t they hold themselves to that same standard? Just something to think about.

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