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Black Friday Perspective Explored: Employee Stress Builds

The stress related to Black Friday and the holiday season builds for senior Katie Adams who is a sales associate at the Neenah Shopko.

The stress related to Black Friday and the holiday season builds for senior Katie Adams who is a sales associate at the Neenah Shopko.

Emily Manteufel, Student of Journalism

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The stress related to Black Friday and the holiday season builds for senior Katie Adams who is a sales associate at the Neenah Shopko.

“Saying that Black Friday is the most unorganized day in retail is an understatement,” Adams said.

For Adams, a normal day at Shopko is slow and long. On Black Friday everything changes. She uses the following words to describe the day:  Crazy, unorganized and busy.

Ultimately, she notes that being in the black is good; it brings profit.

The prep for the holiday season starts typically on Nov. 1., but Shopko starts hiring seasonal workers in October so the newbies can be trained and prepped. The recruiting process is simple, because stores need all the help that they can get.

When the doors open, customers rush in and try to get what they want in response to the Shopko advertisement before everything runs out.

“It is a lot harder to get my daily tasks done,” Adams said.  “People want more items because there are bigger deals.”

She adds that it is fun helping customers.  “It helps me stay busy making my day go quickly.” 

Clearly, Black Friday is frantic for employees. As stores try to prepare as much as they can, workers and managers remain nervous and frustrated through the day and the entire holiday season.

According to Business Insider, “Newspapers in the 1960s created the term Black Friday.” It was originally used to describe the Sept. 24, 1864, stock market crash and the panic it caused.  

The website, which is a fast-growing business site launched in 2007 by former top-ranked Wall Street analyst Henry Blodget and DoubleClick executives Dwight Merriman and Kevin Ryan, is now the largest business news site on the web.  The website features additional perspectives on working on Black Friday.

Customers also get caught up on the frenzy of the sales.  In an article from the Huffington Post, the author creates an analogy for Black Friday shoppers. He says that they have their own warrior gene of sorts, which allows them to actually enjoy the process of Black Friday shopping.  He clarifies that his wife has that gene;  he does not.

He continues to describes the rush of people, soliders ready to participate in the retail battle, in the stores after Thanksgiving Day. But the deals do not start on Friday anymore. Most stores start the sales on Thanksgiving Day.

“Working on Black Friday affects my time with family. I would like to stay home relax and be with the people I love,” Adams said.

Although Adams admits that working on Black Friday can be fun, she prefers that retail hype avoid the holiday and focus on Friday.

Adams said:  “Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, and I dislike how businesses affect that. I hope that it goes back to just being on Friday.” 

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Black Friday Perspective Explored: Employee Stress Builds