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Management Lessons of a Failed Company

Christopher M. Tingley

This book is a look inside the day-to-day life of a retail manager as he witnessed from the front lines a company take the country by storm. Through a model of selling low priced clothing partnered with celebrity endorsements, the company’s rise was as big as their fall. After over a decade of teaching, the author, now a marketing and strategy professor, recalls his former life in retail. In a light-hearted and funny first-person narrative, the author takes you on a ride through his time with the now defunct clothing retailer Steve and Barry’s. He shares the lessons he learned from inside the store while watching mistakes made along the way. Through stories of being robbed at gunpoint, finding a dead body in the dumpster, and working to the point of exhaustion, the reader is given a firsthand account of the best and worst practices in store management. Designed to introduce students to business, management, entrepreneurship, and retail, it allows students to answer the question "Do I really want to be a manager?"

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6. Inventory Control


I always found stockroom employees, whom I called “the guys,” to be some of the most fun people to work with. They always had a way of turning truck receiving, or loading boxes all day, into one of the more fun and relaxed days at work. At least for part of a day, it was just us and a truck. No customers, no cashiers, just boxes and some laughs. Sometimes it was hot and stuffy, but we never seemed to mind.

Another one of my stockroom employees I loved working with was Mikey. Mikey was a teenager who always talked about his dreams of becoming a rapper. I don’t know if it ever happened, as I’ve never listened to any rap record to know if he did, but for as young as he was he seemed very determined. He was a hard worker, and one our most reliable employees. He was always in a good mood, even when I found out later that his home life growing up wasn’t easy on him. He was the kind of kid who would do anything you asked him to do, just as long as you asked him nicely.

Mikey and I always had a great relationship. Once he told me “Man, if anyone else ever asked me to come in on my day off I’d say No way. But you’re cool, and you let me listen to music while I unload the truck. ←43 | 44→Plus, I know you’ll...

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