Thread regarding Staples Inc. layoffs

One Last Vent for 2017

As a 10 year veteran of Staples, I know my time is nigh. The salary increases I earned over those years is no longer supportable as sales continue to decline and the work for myself and my "onshore" team is drying up as we train "offshore" and contract workers in our jobs. One doesn't need a Masters degree to see the handwriting on the wall.

As I sit here at home burning through my vacation time, enjoying moments with my family and friends, polishing my resume, and preparing to embark on my career transition, I thought, "What is the one thing that really shows me where Staples went wrong."

More importantly, what do other people think is the one thing that depicts Staples' failure.

So, in the spirit of the Solstice and the end of the year as well as to the rebirth that awaits us as the new year begins, I invite you to join me in letting go of that "one thing" about Staples that "turns your crank", pisses you off, and shows the level of ineptitude that really spells out f-a-i-l-u-r-e.

For me, it is the culture of meetings propagated by the "command and control" top-down management philosophy. The meetings are time killers and are used by managers and above to make themselves look busy. In Staples, communicating that work is being done is more important than actually doing any real work. Most meetings are completely unnecessary, many could be replaced with an email, and at least half of my team's work hours were consumed by an endless parade of meetings rather than actually getting work done. All this despite the repeated refrain of upper management saying we need fewer meetings, but in true Staples hypocritical fashion, calling more meetings themselves. Man, that felt good.

Happy Solstice and a safe and enjoyable Holiday Venting Season (Airing of the Grievances) to you all.

by | Post ID:
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11 replies (most recent on top)

- you are a complete and utter fool. You don't have the faintest idea what you are even talking about. Quill has been turning a profit since 1956. Since they're only successful because of Staples (your argument), how did they manage to stay afloat for 40 years before Staples even came knocking on the door? If I had the time I would completely destroy your argument even more than the previous poster but I don't have the patience to make you look like more of a moron than has already been done. Methinks you're probably upper management.

by | Post ID:

Dear Post ID: :

If, as you say, Quill is only profitable due to Staples' "infrastructure and services" then:

  • Why does Staples compete directly with Quill and undercut their pricing?

*Why was the Quill name and branding never dropped in favor of "Staples"? Or even something along the lines of "Quill: A Staples Company"?

  • Why was the Quill IT infrastructure used to support Staples Europe instead of the Staples' IT infrastructure?

  • Why is Quill run as a separate and distinct company?

*Why are Quill's analytics, data, and IT teams vastly superior to Staples along with the quality and cleanliness of their data/reporting?

Thank you Post ID: for pointing out my one "vent" that the OP asked for: the arrogance and accompanying ignorance of the employees, particularly management, that exists within Staples.

"Arrogance is the hat that weak leaders wear." (Oleg Vishnepolsky)

Signs of arrogance

  • Never says I am sorry

  • Always right

  • Surrounds oneself with yes-people

  • Punishes people who oppose one's opinion

  • Works NOT for a cause, but for applause

  • Overpromises on behalf of other people

  • Believes other people's ideas are one's own

In the spirit of the OP, How many of these have those of you seen in practice. I've seen them all in my time at Staples.

Happiest of New Years to you all.

by | Post ID:

Quill is the most profitable because it makes use of Staples infrastructure and services. No way you could survive as a standalone company.

by | Post ID:

Well, I have to disagree and say Staples does promote the little people. But is the promotion always based on knowledge and contribution? Not always unfortunately as the real contributors lacking big mouth are often overlooked. Happy new year everyone.

by | Post ID:

Being a Staples employee by way of Quill...the area that we see as the biggest reason for failure is competing against ourselves. Someone asked the VP of NAD a question about why Quill and Staples compete against each other and the answer was, "well why don't we have full share of wallet?" If Quill has 40% and Staples has 60%, we do have full share. Shoot, if OD has 10 % and the rest is split, why do Quill and Staples undercut each other's prices? I know at Quill we're no longer allowed to do that, but Staples is still undercutting our prices...if one company makes $100,000 on an account, but then the other comes in and undercuts the price to earn the business and then makes $80,000, that's the world's crappiest business plan. Too often do we slash our margins just for sake of doing it. Want to save people's jobs and make the company better, stop giving up profit $ for no reason! PS...most of us at Quill are assuming it's just a matter of time until we're sold off since we're the most profitable branch of Staples. Get out that resume polish!

by | Post ID:

Here we go again with another big lay off.


how could you all be so stupid?

I've done Indian cleanup duty at Aetna, Tmobile, Boeing, JP Morgan and ATT. I don't bother now. There is no glory or money in it.

by | Post ID:

True, so very true meeting after meeting wasted, too many managers not enough of them working to help their teams be better at their jobs. Happy New Year long time Staples employees! Here we go again with another big lay off. 8 years of work for what.....Where is Shira's happy Quote of the week now?

by | Post ID:

One of their failures is what you said - training "offshore" people. As I walked off of the elevator for the last time I really felt like I wasn't in America anymore and we all know what country the company is in now. Pretty sad that they would rather pay a $5,000 work VISA than getting an American back to work! I guess it really all boils down to the mighty dollar and the fact that Staples is one of the cheapest companies that I have ever worked for. Working for Staples and having to buy your own sticky notes! What does that tell you? Another issue - does anyone notice how the VP's, Directors, and higher ups are always the ones to get the promotions? I don't know when the last time a "little" guy got a promotion! I don't miss Staples at all. Especially leadership.

by | Post ID:

I knew the ship was sinking when they demanded that inside program account specialists (like facilities specialists and furniture people) need to go into accounts looking for business and randomly calling up customers. The facilities pams turned into a call center where they had to dial for dollars.

I have been here over 8 years and the entire structure turned into a massive mess.

by | Post ID:

Nailed it. You had a meeting about the meeting. Huge waste of time.

by | Post ID:


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