The Tipping Point for me #164

The Tipping Point for me #164

The Tipping Point for me

Blog #163  I talked about how Sales continued to plummet and pressure increased. In this blog I want to talk about the tipping point for me.

One Thursday we get in over 100 cases of shoes. Keep in mind each case could hold between 12 -24 pairs of shoes. Our stockroom was small for the size of business we did so it was always tight for space. Chris and I did our best to get all the new styles out to  the floor and stage the boxes near where they should go in the stockroom. We determined we would have to shift the entire stockroom to get everything off the floor.

The Plan

Of course Chris volunteered to work in the back with the team but I thought it would be a great opportunity to have some bonding time with everyone. The plan was to have each salesperson work in the back with me each hour. Another salesperson would work with the stock guy. I took my tie and jacket off as it was going to be sweaty work. We were making great progress and I was happy this would mean great business for the weekend as the stockroom would be perfect.

The RMM comes in unannounced after lunchtime. He tells me to stop what I’m doing and to put my tie on and watch the floor. “The 1st Asst. should be doing this, not you”, he tells me. After explaining to him the game plan and why I wanted the bonding time with the team he tells me to meet him in the store managers office upstairs.

Power Trip

“WHEN I TELL YOU TO DO SOMETHING, THAT’S WHAT YOU DO” he said in a very stern voice. “DO I MAKE MYSELF CLEAR?”. I nodded to him I understood. “NOW WHAT ELSE CAN I DO FOR YOU?” My blood was boiling at this point. He was just being a dick. Power play to show who was boss. I was at the point that I didn’t care what happened to me. “YOU CAN GET THE HELL OUT OF HERE SO WE CAN FINISH WHAT WE WERE DOING?” Did I just say that? It kinda just came out…I thought for sure he’d fire me…

His face turned beet red and jammed his stuff in his brief case and stormed out. Not a word to be said. I went downstairs and proceeded to finish what I was doing. Chris asked if I was ok, he could tell something was up. I told him what happened and he chuckled and said that was pretty crappy of him to treat me like that. He was also worried I’d get written  up, I told him I didn’t care at this point, I owed it to the team not to be pushed around like  this.

The Call

I got a call from the Target recruiter later in the day. We have some timeslots for your interview. I took the closest date on my next day off during next week. No matter what they offered the answer was going to be yes…

Interview day was here. I was prepared to make the move. The interviewer was super nice and cheery. I liked her right away. She explained that Target was focused on the customer experience and a clean presentation. The ETL program or “Executive Team Leader” was a training program to grow Store Managers or STL’s (Store Team Leader) as Target called them. I would work in a training store for a few weeks then transfer over to Milpitas as  a Softline’s ETL.

Benefits were about the same except the discount was lower. Target had much more items the family could use so that was ok. They offered me a higher salary than what I was making at Nordstrom. At the end of it they told me to talk it over with my family and let them know in the next few days. The answer was going to be yes but I wanted to tell Diane everything first.

Pros & Cons time


  • Benefits about the same
  • Salary Higher
  • Growth seemed to be really good
  • Thought about being a store manager at Nordstrom at some point
  • Wouldn’t have to deal with my RMM anymore
  • Wouldn’t have to deal with my RMM anymore (Yes I said it twice)


  • Miss my team
  • Had a great Store Manager
  • Time served at Nordstrom
  • Loved the shoe business
  • Liked going to the shows and seeing friends I made over the years
  • Liked wearing suits vs Khakis and a red shirt
  • Customers were awesome at Nordstrom too, not sure about how Target’s customer were
  • Grass isn’t always greener – The unknown factor

All in all it was worth the risk and since I was miserable the Pros would win this time.

…just sharing my story and tips from my footwear career. 

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This post has 2 comments

10 Feb 2021

Great post…WHO WAS RMM? Had a similar situation early in my career, and resigned and moved across the country. Turned out to be my best career decision. Ended up in Seattle as a sales rep, where I met Jay Yost and was hired by Joe Famolare in the early days o
f the great run…10 years there and then 35 years with Wolff….Love your posts Mike…

13 Feb 2021

decided not to have his name grace my blog lol


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