Taking the Tesco thing a tad more seriously

There has been much jocular banter to and fro at The Slog during the last few days – between those who think having a go at Tesco is tilting at windmills, and rude buggers like me who think doing nothing is no longer an option. It’s all good knockabout stuff, but if I may this Friday evening (a dead time for blog hits anyway) I should like to present a rather more serious case than previously.

First off, of the two most voluble critics of Shop Tesco Tricks, Drain Alert I don’t know at all beyond sensing that he/she has a healthy sense of humour. So fair enough. Duncan Donuts I know slightly as a fine man and sensible bloke who is seriously concerned about our culture; we have differences about many things, but I can’t think of many others I’d prefer to have with me on a barricade. I am a man of snap judgements.

I don’t know about Drain Alert, but I know Dunc lives in London. (If you really want to hit him very hard indeed, I have his address.) However, the point here is that I have over the last decade or so learned at first hand the destructive power of Tesco, because I no longer live in the metropolis, but between two small communities. There is marketing, and there is monopolising. Tesco is a monopolist company.

Let us take some of the crits. “Tesco is no better or worse than the others”. Wrong. Tesco has been at the cutting edge of selling the broadest range under the Extra brand, and zapping the small retailer via its Express sub-brand. It was the first in the 1970s to introduce mafia-style screwing tactics against manufacturing companies. But let’s suppose that they are all the same: why does that make this criticism valid? If we are being attacked by Orange, AOL and BT, is a focused attack on Orange (easily the nastiest of the lot) ergo sum immoral? The argument is daft. In fact – much worse – it borders on being an excuse for doing nothing.

A second set of incoming vitriol suggested that mine was ‘an anti-capitalist rant’. Hmm. Let me explain something here: from Fine Fare in 1977 until Safeway in the mid to late 1990s, I had one or another multiple supermarket brand as a client pretty much without cessation. The word ‘rant’ to describe a calm analysis of how braindead buyer-bullies ripped the profitability out of British food growing and manufacturing doesn’t sit well with my nature. Anger about this (given our current situation as a nation) should not be dismissed as ‘a rant’. Anger has helped achieve almost every liberty we enjoy. My anger is based on personal, professional experience of just how truly anti-social these people can be. ‘Tescophobia’ as a concept is just as dishonest as Islamophobia.

The third most common input was ‘it’s just people trying to make a living, it’s capitalism’. Bollocks. Capitalism never was and never will be based on greed: real capitalism is about risk. There are many in our culture today who think cynicism to be somehow clever. It is in fact exactly what the cheats want to grow as an attitude: the one thing they fear is principled determination. The threat we face in 2012 is that ghastly perversion of capitalism, monopolism. If you doubt this, look at the history of anti-Trust legislation in the US. From the Edwardian era onwards, American legislators realised that the JP Morgans, Fords and Newscorps of this world are out to control and stifle. Stifle the voyager gene, and you destroy the risk element of capitalism. Capitalism is among the finest outputs of a species brain that constantly wonders, ‘What if?’ Monopolism is the devilish residue of the ancient simian brain part that feels constantly threatened.

I was back in Tesco this morning. Only this time, I was on more of  a shopping mission than anything else. There now follows a small selection of what I found. But first, let me say this: there are two overriding beliefs shared by most supermarket shoppers. The first is that bigger sizes are better value; and the second is that own label is cheaper than manufacturer brands. Tesco is using both these beliefs to boost its profits.

The Oaktree premium Houmus costs 32.7p per 100 gms. Tesco own-label is 47.5p per 100gms. Napolina premium spaghetti costs 33% less than the Tesco version.

At the meats gondola end, a ‘special offer’ was available on extra-lean beef mince: £4 for 700 gms. Further down the aisle, in the cooler cabinets, was the identical product: but this time the offer was 2 x 500gms for £4. In the yellow fats cabinet – at eyeline level – was the ‘Large’ size of Clover for £2. Down at ankle level was a ‘Family’ pack – twice the size for the same price.

The beer offers at Tesco require a degree in astrophysics to work out the relative value of 300 and 440ml sizes in cans and bottles. Work out in your head – now, as a hurried shopper – the difference in value between 12 x 300ml bottles at £9 and 10 x 440 ml cans at the same price. One version had the price per litre worked out for you; the other one didn’t. How can that be legal?

Tesco is running into difficulty because it has become the victim not of its own success, but its greed. Its expertise lies in food and household, but moving beyond this requires a different level of staff assistance. Asking an assistant to help me three weeks ago choose between three versions of an ‘HD ready’ television felt like asking King Charles II for advice on World War I tank tactics. Tesco has cut staff quality and numbers in a relentless search for margin – in order to give the shareholders what they want. But as ever, this just won’t do: the shareholders are not the customers. Lose sight of the who the customer is, and you are lost.

This was exactly the mistake made by Britain’s food manufacturers in the 1970s. They sold their brand birthright to own-label multiples in return for quick returns to the shareholders. But by 1980, Birds Eye was delivering more in case discounts to the retail trade than it was to those shareholders. Birds Eye’s real customer was and is the kid or mum who feels (and they were right) ‘Other Beefburgers just don’t taste the same’.

To sum up (yet again) Tesco has added massively to our balance of payments problem by reducing the amount our farmers produce, reducing the ability of home-grown food manufacturers to expand abroad, and importing massive amounts of foreign-grown food produce. It has melted the glue of local communities by expanding its ranges, lengthening its opening hours, reducing staff wages, and opening small stores to push the remaining specialists out of business. They should rebrand Tesco – and call it instead Omnivore.

And last but not least, it has reduced still  further any remaining trust in UK brands by cheating and misleading customers in search of value; while at the same time raising doubts about the honesty of those local government officers it presses into a sort of vicarious partnership via which social facilities are sacrificed to Mammon.

This is why Shop Tesco Tricks will keep going – as will the dozen or so other, much bigger sites devoted to controlling this appalling monster. So while I’m happy to hear what detractors have to say in terms of databased arguments to challenge what I’m saying, I really am not going to engage with the gratuitous ‘it won’t work/playground antics/what’s the point’ crap.

Enjoy the weekend.

48 thoughts on “Taking the Tesco thing a tad more seriously

  1. John, I have nothing to lose and everything to gain from you carrying on your crusade against the Tescopoly, although I haven’t worked out yet what objectives you have in mind other than giving them a darned good kicking. Keep at it :-)

    • A damned good kicking? Well they’ve already shot them selves in the foot. Their current policies seem to have lost them 16% of their share value – several £billion. Clarke seems to have wanted to “pile it high and sell it deceptively cheap”. Maybe the public is a darned sight sharper the you give them credit for, John. I never automatically assume the larger size is better value than the smaller one which is why they are obliged to put a price per kilo value on the ticket. Maybe small on that ticket but it IS there. Likewise the other “deceptions”. Believe this or not you have to agree they’ve just buggered up their own master plan and Clarke is seriously on the ropes.
      As I said by all means give him a bloody good kicking. Maybe you’re right – maybe right now they will be ultra sensitive to the criticisms you are now showering upon them. Good timing. So press on.
      If I was ever bothered to shop there I’d help you out on the barricades.
      But please don’t let this little domestic diversion keep you from the greater analysis – especially of the big Eurozone issues on which you have a better inside track than any IFA or econojournalist I know.
      It’s Friday 13th so give us more on France, Sarky, loss of AAA ratings and its divers impacts.

      • The best way to see the Tescopoly is as a bunch of smart-ass spivvy market traders. I’ve never known an honest market trader in Britain. I’ve been carrying a pocket calc with me for quite a few years when I go food shopping to verify product prices. I recommend others do the same thing.

  2. Awesome stuff, JW! Tesco have also opened up here in America under the name “Fresh N’ Easy”. It remains to be seen how they will fare against the Ultimate Monster, Wal*Mart.
    King Kong vs Godzilla, anyone?

  3. John – You obviously never owned a shop. Although I do not condone the tactics and or working practises you describe. It is common practrise among all shops.Everything has a price and it is up to you the customer to work out if you have the right deal. The lower prices are deliberately pitched like that to attract you that particular shelf, whether you buy the particular item is immaterial in the excersize, what is important to them that you peruse the shelf in question and are tempted to buy something. I understand your campaign and wish you good luck with it. But to mention the extending of their range of goods as if that is a crime, is a red herring. They have to move and keep up with the “Joneses” Thus extend the range.!!
    The fact that they(Tesco) are as vulnerable to the mqarket has been proven over Christmas, there marekting went haywire and subsequently the profits fell away, with disasterous result for their shares.

  4. 3 x 12 = 36: 10 x 44 = 440 – 10 440ml tinnies for me I think :-)

    Its not rocket science, really.
    Take a calculator, infact there will be one on your mobile.

    Caveat Emptor

    Keep it up though, I love it. ;-)

  5. I confess I share little common ground with you on many, many other topics (on lots of which I think you are simply wrong), but on this particular subject of the monopolising policiesand downright dishonesty of Tesco I am in absolute agreement.
    Do please keep kicking away at the ankle of this monolith. I do too, in my little way, and if enough of us do, it will have an effect.
    Respectfully,
    Monty

  6. “Tesco is running into difficulty because it has become the victim not of its own success, but its greed”.

    And always remember:-
    “There’s enough money in the world for all the needy people, but there’s not enough money in the world for all the greedy people”

  7. Essentially Tesco use their might to bully. Here is an appalling example of bullying. The US military have had rather a bad press of late. Both of the men in this video took an oath to protect one of them went over an above the remit of his oath and deserves commendation the other I leave to the court of public opinion.

    LA Sheriff Punches Special Needs Woman In The Face On A Bus

    “to serve and protect” ?

    Please keep an eye out for this deputy. get his name a badge number. this is visual confirmation that he’s the sheriff involved in hitting the disabled woman in bellflower who was riding metro.

    http://twitpic.com/86hb75

    • Inexcusable! Scum like these made up the Nazi and Commie minions. Give the bully a public flogging – put him in the stocks!

  8. Page19 of today’s second section of the FT sets out market share as follows:Tesco 30.1percent.Asda 17.2,Sainsburys 16.7,Morrisons 12.2.Why has the Competition Authority not begun an inquiry over Tesco,which is clearly above 25 percent nationwide,and in certain places ,areas,probably in excess of 30 percent?All those years ago ,the Americans took a very aggressive stance against the Rockefeller family in oil,mirrored by what the allies did to the post war German chemical industry .Write to Vince Cable,ex the Shell Group of companies..

    • The Competition authorities, like all the “authorities” in the UK, only go against the little guy-and make an example of him. The big guys would make mincemeat of them.

  9. Pingback: Taking the Tesco Thing a Tad More Seriously | Sovereign Independent

  10. I think on the whole I agree with you about ‘TescOmnivore’; much of the beast is indeed a menace. They clearly do have some vestigial ethics, but branded at the ‘basics’ level, not with ‘Tesco Finest’. They have a lot of useful political contacts. But let’s not underestimate the task of taking Tesco on. I know you don’t want to hear this, but to succeed you will have to get their influential metro elite target market sector on your side. I’m not sure they care tuppence about price or all the tiresome game-playing and their broader ethics are, I suspect, also at the ‘lite’ end of the spectrum. They’re convenience-driven in their busy lives. Get their attention and you could succeed in limiting Tesco’s awfulness, without it, it will be harder. The ‘rednecks’ who are Tesco’s other market are unlikely to be interested. As a former advertising man you will be used to the struggle to raise awareness of a superior alternative.

  11. Surely all it takes, John, is a change in the law. Make unit pricing compulsory – so much per litre, so much per 100 gr. Your righteous anger should be directed at Parliament as much as at the Tescopoly.

    • Tod
      Venting spleen against Parliament…been there, got the teeshirt.
      Up to Cabinet Minister level. It’s a waste of time. Companies have to react in the end because they need the income. Not so pols.

      • I’m totally with you on this John but here in France in the supermarchés unit pricing is/(appears to be) the norm. Now I recognise that France is just a series of cartels and ‘rip off the consumer’ is the retailing paradigm but if they can manage it – could we not? Perhaps, perish the thought,we might ask Brussels?

  12. I remember the advent of Fine Fare back in the early Sixties. For some months I was unexpectedly pitched into looking after a garden, corn and petfood shop on the other side of the road from FF – a traditional sort of place where the girls served customers at the counter. We felt the effect quickly. Tinned dog food was relatively new and we were selling it at 8d a tin. FF were charging 6d. Whilst I didn’t much mind the loss of that trade, which had very poor margin for us, customers were buying prepacked dog biscuits from FF at much higher prices than ours. We bought them in 112lb bags and weighed them up on slack afternoons or to order.

    So I rearranged the displays with two large pyramids of tinned dog food – one priced at 3 for 1/6 “Special Offer”. (same price as FF) and the other
    “Our own stock” at 8d each. When customers asked what the difference was, the girls were told to say “Well, we can get the cut price line, if you want it, madam”. Nothing more-nothing less. It worked rather well for some weeks and most people bought 8d tins and sales generally improved.

    I was only a trainee drafted in as a stop gap, being only 18. When a proper manager was appointed , a man who had lost his grocery shop to the supermarkets, he told me that he had checked on the supermarkets’ special offers on baked beans and found that the cheaper tins contained fewer beans and more sauce. But that still hadn’t convinced his customers!

    It was an old established firm with farm, wholesale and coal departments and great fun to work for. The boss had inherited the business early and was only about ten years older than me. I went to see him a couple of months ago and found him well.

    I still don’t like supermarkets!

    • Strange to relate, I remember when FineFare came to my local town and eliminated the traditional grocers. One of the things I most noticed (I was young and loved baked beans-still do) was the amount of juice in the beans increased. As I recall though, it was the Heinz beans it happened to; presumably there was a deal with Heinz to cheat the customers.

  13. I wish you all the best with the tesco campaign. It, as well as the others, have absolutely screwed British food producers, as well as bringing in lesser quality food which they buy cheaper but sell at not much less than the consumer was used to.
    The other trick which really annoys is withdrawing a product, substituting a lesser quality at the same sale price, and then bringing back the original at a much greater price. Examples are “21 day matured meat” (meat always used to be hung for a long time until the supermarkets didn’t want all that capital tied up for that long), and “Premium ice cream” i.e. what used to be normal proper ice cream.

  14. I have never shopped in tesco but you’ve made me feel that I made a wise choice.

    Seriously though take a look at waitrose – any shop there is 33% more expensive than other supermarkets. – now that does make me cross

  15. I don’t use Tesco John as there isn’t one in the town where I live.
    However, I do share your dislike of and concern about monopolies,
    and wish you the best of luck with this campaign.

  16. You make valid comments John. I was especially reminded of Unigate’s own label blunder on rice puddings and evaporated milk. One idiot director was convinced that ‘own label’ was the way to go as Regal, the Unigate brand, was never going to beat Nestle and Carnation. Their blunder was to end up producing 84 different labels at the highest point while diverting all the ‘secondary’ production (slightly darker or grainy as opposed to ‘normal’ product) onto the Regal label effectively killing it. Then the own label customers (supermarkets, of course) threatened to stop buying if they weren’t given price concessions. The eventual result was the closure of what had been the largest cannery operation in Europe as unprofitable.

    However, one has to ask the question, was it the supermarkets fault the own label suppliers were stupid and allowed them to take complete control? A more general question that must also be asked is did, and does, the supermarket revolution produce lower prices? Are we better off in general with supermarkets or without. For someone of my age who can remember pre-supermarket days I must say we are better off in general. Quality has often deteriorated I agree, but choice and availability has expanded astronomically in most areas and prices are still substantially reduced. It is difficult to be certain because, quite frankly, it was a different world fifty years ago and we cannot know what changes would have happened had supermarkets not come into being.

  17. Well said and closely argued.

    With ref, to price comparison – take a calculator. Doesn’t take long and, in my case, once led to a very interesting and entertaining conversation with a Tesco manager who demanded to know what I was doing. He was large, well-padded and obviously used to chucking his considerable avoirdupois about. I remarked innocently that I was trying to compare prices of the various sizes of items on display; at this point I essayed a pleasantry and remarked that my powers of mental arithmetic were not what they were. He told me that I wasn’t allowed to do this. I asked him to quote the relevant regulation and he said that if I caused trouble he would call security. I regret to say that I was enjoying myself hugely by this point and recommended that he do this, but – in fairness – he ought to give the poor fellow a minute or two because, at an estimated 20-odd stone, it would be a little while before the security man would be able to haul himself to the scene of the crime. There was a pause while he reassessed the situation. Finally, he decided to give me the benefit of the doubt and, warning me that he would be keeping his eye on me, he stalked away. The memsahib, who had been silent hitherto, gave me one of her Stares as I fell weakly against a shelf feigning huge relief.

    Of course this matter is deadly serious … but it is possible to have fun too folks.

    • Well done Caratacus. You are right though, this matter is deadly serious. Picking up on a point made elsewhere in this thread relating to Tescopoly’s near monopoly of grocery sales in a significant number of non urban areas; should a store manager take exception to conduct such as that which you describe above and decide to ban the customer from the store, this would have serious implications for that person’s ability to feed themselves and their family.

      We are becoming increasingly vulnerable to these bullies and jobsworths in virtually every area of our lives. This is why I, for one, am extremely grateful for JW’s excellent efforts in challenging their bollocks. Doing nothing really cannot be an option.

  18. Same to you John, thanks for a proper fun week so far. I’ve had a mighty time doing my minnow best to f**k with tesco on every level I can think of. Effective or not, it puts a smile on my face so here’s to some more!!

  19. Traditionally, stock shares in supermarkets protect wealth in recession.
    This time it’s different. Our family, (8 people and 2 expecting,twins) are now choosing to spend our money at M&S, because ..”we want them to survive..” the coming depression. They are the ”chosen ones

  20. just seen one of the Tesco TV adverts about half price on certain items

    I do just wonder if that is half the price they were charging for it (recently ) previously or in reality the price that they were already discounting from to match the others

  21. John,
    I have to admit to being a Tesco shareholder for my sins, but I do approve3 of your campaign and wish you the best of luck with it. I shall be selling my shares on Monday !

    • Bad, bad timing Graeme. You should either follow the example of their Financial Director Mr Robbins and sell your shares BEFORE the results were announced. Or wait a couple of months when everyone will have forgotten and the share price gets back to 2011 levels.

  22. Whilst it may not strike at the heart of the beast, gunning for Tesco is surely a legitimate activity as they are such a good example of beastly practices. To bang on about caveat emptor don’t answer, at least not if you have any interest in promoting ethics in business. Let’s not forget that it’s largely the lack of, that has landed us in our current parlous state (no double entendre intended). We are politically disempowered in so many ways now, let’s exercise our commercial empowerment while we still can i.e. before the increasingly monopolistic nature of our commercial system erodes real choice even further.

    I have been a long term patron of Tesco as there are two (an Express and a smallish proper shop) nearby; I plead guilty to the common misdemeanour of allowing convenience to dictate my habits. However, in the last week I have been using a small M&S which opened about three years ago and is only slightly further away. I have been pleasantly surprised to find that quite a few items can be had for a not entirely dissimilar price if you’re careful (I am a convicted skinflint). If we’re not prepared to make any effort we can’t really complain, and if things keep going the way they are we risk losing the ability to do even that.

    Looking forward to what the Slog/Sloggers have to say tomorrow about S&P’s long expected baiting of the eusual suspects..

    • My own personal war on Tesco’s started a couple of years back when they replaced the local convenience store with an express version (where it should be noted the prices are mostly even higher than the (also) local Tesco superstore) telling the local people that their local post office was not important (it was) because there was another one less than a mile away.
      I thought at the time that their dictate that I should have to travel (usually meaning driving) a mile to a post office (for Teco’s convenience and profit) (rather than walking) was out of order. (strangely enough the late 6pm post is now 5pm as well which is also a downgrade) Thus I will travel a mile out of my way (to Lidl) rather than use Tesco (either supershop or express). After 2 years in place the express prices match or exceed the prices that the old convenience store used to charge and is locally referred to as Queue’s are Us !
      On the rare occassions I use Tesco now – I ensure that my Lidl bags are on promiinant display and mutter loudly about how much more expensive they are than Lidl whilst navigating the alleys !
      Not much – but fairly satisfying :)

  23. Now you are getting to the meat of the problem. Buyers of any product normally buy at the cheapest price they can (all other things being equal) and the British public are no exception. They buy knickknacks from China and food from Thailand because they are cheaper than the British product which costs more because labour costs, taxes and pettifogging government restrictions at all levels make the British product much more expensive. This is the great Free Trade drive which the academic whiz kids, who want to save the world, have inflicted on us, resulting in the gutting of manufacturing industry and the depression of British farming. Regarding supermarket; you can buy from one, or a dozen different shops but expect that they will all get the best profit they can by one means or another. But whether its greedy banks, monopolistic supermarkets or crap government we get what we deserve, we the British people allowed this to happen, the responsibility is ours and the responsibility to change and correct the situation is also ours, but I don´t think tilting at the Tesco windmill is going to be a very effective way.

  24. John, it is counterproductive to get shirty with the folk who remind you that ‘they all do it’, because they do indeed all do it – even your precious Co-op. You will find it difficult to gain widespread sympathy among shoppers for your campaign unless you can unearth evils that are unique to Tesco (through debate), or you drop that line of attack and concentrate on the real evil of Tesco, which are its land purchases and expansionist techniques (aka bribery).

  25. Can’t help with this dont remember what the straw was but haven’t been in a tesco for two years. Two ruined favourite holiday towns and one farmer aquaintance seriously over a barrel formed the bulk of the load. Now it’s suma wholefoods for bulk/dry goods lidl for beer and sundries, bread from old post office/blackbird bakeries and farmers markets for meat and veg.
    Dont buy papers anymore either why spend good money on gossipy drivel when I just want a handle on whats going on, and right or wrong some blogs and comments are at least awake at the wheel.

  26. JW,

    I live in Pitlochry. The only supermarket here at the moment is a reasonable size Co-op. A number of the `corner shops` here have in the past become charity shops, much the same as in the rest of the uk. We do retain a local butcher, veg shop, and two small grocery shops.
    Around 2002 Tesco tried to enter Pitlochry but we, the local population, repelled their attempt via a petition.
    Sainsbury have now succeeded in achieving planning permission and will be opening a premises in Autumn of this year.
    At present in order to shop at a `decent` size supermarket it is a 54 mile round trip.
    Having to spend half a day shopping at a supermarket once a week, local shops being lovely and romantic but a tad expensive and limited to choice, I savour the experience of hunting out good value items. I do not jump in blindly at offers. I read, consider, and buy.
    I enjoy my visit to the supermarkets of Perth, be it Tesco or whatever. In the end it is peoples choice where they wish to shop as has been shown by recent Tesco results. Wouldn`t it be boring if everyone agreed with you.

    Just a footnote. I remember in my youth purchasing porridge in the local corner shop. The floor of the shop was dusted with sawdust and open sacks of various items lay around the queuing area. You scooped the porridge out of the sack and into a bag to be weighed. The hard bit was sifting through the oats at home in order to remove the dead flies. Any missed ended up as black objects in your breakfast. Oh the joys!!!

  27. I can’t see why you’re getting so exited about this, all of the large chain supermarkets do this sort of thing and as a shopper it’s just one of the things you have to be aware of when shopping.

  28. Dear me… In my town one has the choice of being screwed at Tesco or being screwed at Waitrose. Different corporate outlooks – same result!

  29. As an aside, part of Tesco’s recent problems almost certainly stems from the rising cost of transportation. A rep from one of my suppliers recently mentioned in passing that Tesco has restricted its lorries to 50 miles an hour in an effort to save on fuel costs (I think he mentioned that Morrisons or Asda had done likewise). Given its size, the breadth of its product line and the number of shops it has, Tesco’s food/stock miles will no doubt be the worst of any retailer in the country, and this not doubt partly explains it’s attempts to screw every penny it can out of its customers.

  30. if you sift out all the symptoms of what annoys you about shopping in these places the common denominator is a lack of trust. do you trust them to bill you correctly, overcharge[accidentally], charge twice for the same item etc etc . a small shop has to earn your trust and work to keep it. big shops/ chains like tesco dont give a monkeys whether you come back or not, they know there is a perception out there about value/ bargains. thats what brings them back in the door. cunning bastards.

  31. I hate those bastards with a vengence and you are right, they are trying to squeeze all the small shops out of existance. Why should they be able to open 24/7? It should be like in other countries and they shouldn’t even be allowd to open on a Sunday. In Spain they can’t open Sundays and holidays because they are properly licensed and they are only allowed to sell certain items, not newspapers, glasses, flowers, funerals etc etc, which should be the domain of small businesses. If they want to open out of town they should be taxed out of existance and the money used to cut the rates in the town centre. I hope the SNP’s supermarket tax comes about. try going to Elgin, Forres area and you’ll see Tescos every 10 miles. They have ruined the area and the small local businesses.

  32. “Asking an assistant to help me three weeks ago choose between three versions of an ‘HD ready’ television felt like asking King Charles II for advice on World War I tank tactics.”

    As someone who previously worked for Tesco, almost certainly doing the job you have just described, I have to say you are wrong in your brash judgement. I sold electronics as part the of ‘tech team’ and was never once told to give the hard sell. You will have dealt with an incompetent employee. My tesco ‘extra’ brach would have given consistently solid advice, without mugging off the customer.

    As much as I agree with the majority with what is written here, I cant help but feel I am being misled given such generalised false comments as I have experienced here. Prior to my leaving my job to go to university, we must have sold a good 5-15 £300+ tv’s a day. Not once did we missell.

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