Comparing Target and Wal Mart

It’s amazing that I stumbled upon this article title! I’ve actually written a cover letter to go along with my job resume to bring along with me as I’ve applied to a few of the Target stores within my area. In my opinion, there is a huge difference between Target and Wal-Mart. As a consumer I have been in both stores and the experiences I’ve had in both are like night and day. Let’s start with my experiences shopping in Wal-Mart. First off, I am always wondering whether there are vortexes in their facilities because whenever I am in need of service and help I can never seem to find an employee. I go off on an unwanted adventure of hunting down the first employee I can find regardless of whether it’s their area or not. Once I’ve located a Wal-Mart sales associate their willingness to help is similar to that of a cat wanting to go swimming! They begrudgingly do as minimal as possible to aid in my quest or if they are lucky, they’ll pass the buck to a co-worker and then seem to get lost in that Wal-Mart vortex before they get ensnared again by another consumer. Second, is it just me or do the employees seem so not happy to be working there? Believe it or not, that matters to me. Why do I want to shop in a place where the employees are not happy to be there? Third, the stores seem dirty to me and the aisles are too small to accommodate shoppers. I have found that customer service at Wal-Mart is actually quite funny in that it doesn’t really exist. As a consumer I do my best to avoid spending our families hard earned money at Wal-Mart. I don’t care that they have the cheapest products and their prices undercut everyone else. What matters to me is the entire shopping experience and unfortunately Wal-Mart comes up way too short. Moving on to Target, my experiences in their stores is so different than their competitor. First, it doesn’t matter if I’ve been in my local Target store or at one out of state, I have had tremendous customer service from their employees who are easy to locate. For those who have had the great pleasure of shopping in a Nordstroms’ department store where customer service oozes out in bundles. Target comes quite close to the Nordstrom experience. Target employees are not only accessible, but friendly, they actually smile and seem happy to be there. They don’t appear to be mentally cursing you if you ask for assistance. Actually, are you sitting down? They actually ask YOU if you are finding everything okay! Imagine that! One experience I had at Target was when I was shopping for a new alarm clock. I went to the electronic department and inquired where I might be able to find what I was looking for. The clerk gave me perfect directions: the aisle, which side it was on, and towards which end and shelf. I follow his directions and as I am about to turn onto that aisle, I find him at the other end making sure I found the aisle and following through. Second, their stores are clean and the aisles are easy to accommodate more than one shopping cart. Third, I love the products found in their stores! I don’t care that Target’s prices may be slightly higher than Wal-Marts’, to me it’s so worth it. Fourth, there is also a difference in the mentality of the consumers found in Wal-Mart and Target. I’ll use my holiday shopping experience last year to help support my fourth reason. Last year I was on crutches with my broken foot bound in a cast. I went first to Wal-Mart as it was the easiest location for me. Upon entering I secured the last wheelchair that I had to wheel myself in that had a basket that closed on top, securing me in the chair. It was so hard maneuvering myself through all the shoppers in the aisles. My small holiday spirit quickly dissolving as I encountered rude consumers who didn’t care that I was struggling to make it down the aisles. When I found the items that I needed it was very hard to obtain because I couldn’t stand fully upright in the chair because of the basket and as time went on with my basket filling up if I’d lift the basket to stand, the contents in my basket would fall out. I actually tipped over in my chair and had stuff spill out as I had tried to reach for an object. People passed by me without thought or consideration of my predicament. The last straw was in the electronic department as I was waiting my turn to have help unlocking a game for me when another consumer cut quickly in front of me and got help because I wasn’t easily seen in my wheelchair. I was literally sick to my stomach knowing there was more shopping to do, so I continued my shopping at the Target store in the next town. The store was inundated with last minute holiday shoppers like myself and there were barely any shopping carts let alone any motorized wheelchair carts to be found. So I got a cart and proceeded to push the cart at a snail’s pace as I hobbled on my crutches down the main aisle of the store. I wasn’t exactly exuding the holiday spirit as my spirit was quite low coming from my last shopping excursion. However, miracle of miracles, what happened next restored my dim faith in mankind and touched my heart. A sweet faced woman around the same age as myself with small kids offered her help with my cart and shopping. Being a mother with a young child myself I know how difficult it can be shopping with kids and although touched to the core, I reassured her that I could manage. Putting forth a brave smile, I was pleasantly surprised yet again when seeing my Hera (a female hero) and her small ones tentatively walking away from me another knight in a bright red shirt and tan pants came up behind me with a motorized shopping cart and offered their assistance to me as well. For me, it’s worth every penny to travel a few more miles and perhaps spend more money on same or similar products to receive the customer service and enjoy the experience I find at a Target store.