Robert Bak, 5/29/2017
Current occupation: Agent/Manager for BAK Editions.
Former occupation: DynaTheater & Planetarium Manager for the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science.
Contact Information: Robert has been involved with the entertainment business for many years. First starting as a stage manager Off-Off Broadway in NYC, and then working in Los Angeles and Albuquerque. He has been a director and producer of plays with national award-winning playwright William Derringer. . In addition to his involvement in theater, Robert has written a number of short stories, essays, and plays. Early in 2017 Diverse Voices Quarterly published Robert’s “Why Is There A Queue?” story in their Volume 8 – Issue 30. Robert’s short story, “The Magic Room” was a 2016 finalist with Fiction Week Literary Review. Work Literary Magazine will be publishing his short story “The Flying Vase” in their 2015 magazine. Agave Magazine (Volume 2 – Issue 4) will be publishing his short story, “The Monthly Bill Is What” in their fall 2015 issue. Work Magazine at WordPress.com published his story, “Dark All Over” in 2012. He would like to thank William for the training and insight of what the writing process is.
MOVE TO MAKE MOVE
For any of us who have worked in the retail business, you know what kind of a challenge it can be. The customer is very fickle, always demanding the newest and most improved merchandise to be purchased. Especially in the clothing and fashion aspects, it changes every season. What is new is now old, everyone is looking for the latest statement to work.
Especially if you are working in a large wholesale warehouse location. Sales are the most important daily requirements of the management staff. They have their daily meetings, going over all of the previous day, week and month sales. It is a bad day when the numbers are not being made, what they can do to improve the numbers?
Ross has been working for five years at a warehouse group, he had the five AM to one PM shift. As soon as he came into work, he was assigned to the liquor and produce sections. After the warehouse opened he would then work either as a cashier, or other assigned work. Ross would each morning check the work assignment sheets to see what needed to be restocked or what had to be moved to a new location.
The management team would decide which products would be reassigned to a new location. Always hoping the new location would improve sales. In retail you want the customers to check as many aisles as you can. This way as they are trying to find what they are looking for, there is a chance they will see something they were not going to purchase, but it caught their eye.
These repositioning of stock took place every morning. Around seven AM the first of the delivery trucks would arrive. It then turned into an industrial ballet, as forklift trucks would be flying by, then the hand trucks would start moving about. Ross had to look twice before he could move so he would not be run over. The many forklifts were zipping back and forth delivering all of the necessary supplies for the members as the doors would open soon. All of the workers are on a time crunch, the two-way radios going off all over the warehouse. And then the dreaded announcement. “We are opening the doors in five minutes.”
Regrettably, it would confuse the customers but also the workers. This is what Ross called the, “Move To Make Move” daily work. Move this pallet from one row to another row, and that item could move to another location the next day. One pallet could move three or four times in one week. Always hoping the customers would notice and purchase that item.
And of course, the management team would be keeping track of the sales and would see if these repositioning of stock was working. Of course they never told the hourly workers what was working and what was not. This moving of stock was a make work project for the hourly staff. This is what the retail business has become.
Ross by this time had brought into play to these daily changes, every day was a new day and a new location for some of the merchandise.
Welcome to the move to make move way of life.