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BN's Future

Two years ago, I predicted that BN would embrace POD machines - and alas, that prediction came true.  My other predictions - media departments, wine bars/expanded Cafe service, comfy chairs/couches - have not come to fruition yet, but I believe they are within BN's future - and that we'll see them shortly.

Despite all the negative shit in this forum, what GOOD things have you seen?  Solid merchandising incentives (like "Pop Culture)?  Better ePlanner directives?  Better ideas?

I'll admit when I've been wrong, and I was a supporter of Lynch's Nook Study/University push.  But that didn't work out as we'd hoped, and I regret the $$$ wasted - and the backtracking/redirection BN has gone through because of Lynch's ideas.  (I can't help but think how that money might have been better spent for store improvements, payroll dollars, and increasing employees' salaries.)  But I appreciate our new direction - faults and all - to become a stronger company in the years to come.  And I believe that the Samsung Galaxy Nook (an outsourcing project that BN should have done years ago) will help us solidify our place within the book selling marketplace.

Thoughts?

Comments

( 121 comments — Leave a comment )
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(Anonymous)
Aug. 8th, 2014 12:07 pm (UTC)
Yawn........
(Anonymous)
Aug. 8th, 2014 05:10 pm (UTC)
We are all burned-out on the Get Pop-Cultured events at my store. Too many events in too long of a time-frame. They should have just had 2 or 3 themed Saturdays in a row. With no clear directions, no budget and absolutely no added hours these events have been very stressful on employees that are already stretched way too thin. We have no hours for shelving but they want us to spend all our time and resources on these Pop-Culture events. Getting the books onto the sales floor where we can find them for our customers will bring in a considerable more amount of money than these ill conceived events ever will. And where's the new Samsung nook? Anybody hear any news about it? Our digital plan is sky-high but there are no new nooks or even old nooks in the store to sell. And forget about getting any directives on what to tell customers when they come in asking about it. We just shrug our shoulders and say we don't know. I feel like at the store level we've just all been left to drown.
(Anonymous)
Aug. 9th, 2014 04:35 pm (UTC)
Seconded.

I also don't like the management expecting employees to use their personal social media outlets (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) to promote these events for them.
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 10th, 2014 01:34 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 12th, 2014 04:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - smithback - Aug. 10th, 2014 04:07 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - chester04 - Aug. 11th, 2014 04:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - smithback - Aug. 16th, 2014 02:14 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pachakuti - Aug. 12th, 2014 09:22 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 14th, 2014 11:16 pm (UTC) - Expand
Social Media - (Anonymous) - Aug. 13th, 2014 07:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 15th, 2014 06:32 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - smithback - Aug. 16th, 2014 02:20 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 16th, 2014 08:16 am (UTC) - Expand
Fuck B&N anti-blogging policy. - (Anonymous) - Aug. 16th, 2014 08:16 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 16th, 2014 08:17 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - smithback - Aug. 10th, 2014 03:50 am (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Aug. 9th, 2014 02:17 pm (UTC)
go fuck yourself, corporate shill
smithback
Aug. 10th, 2014 03:53 am (UTC)
"Go fuck yourself?" Seriously? Well, how about this: "Go find another job, loser." Specifically, go find another job you entitled loser. And be sure to include your attitude within your resume.
(no subject) - smithback - Aug. 10th, 2014 04:05 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - smithback - Aug. 10th, 2014 04:17 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 11th, 2014 12:26 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 10th, 2014 04:47 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - smithback - Aug. 10th, 2014 05:01 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 11th, 2014 04:06 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - smithback - Aug. 13th, 2014 01:43 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 13th, 2014 03:22 am (UTC) - Expand
The reality of Smithback's wine bar dreams - (Anonymous) - Aug. 13th, 2014 11:04 pm (UTC) - Expand
no - (Anonymous) - Aug. 15th, 2014 11:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 10th, 2014 08:54 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - smithback - Aug. 16th, 2014 02:21 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 15th, 2014 06:34 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Aug. 10th, 2014 08:51 am (UTC) - Expand
Are you well liked Smithback? - (Anonymous) - Aug. 18th, 2014 11:55 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Are you well liked Smithback? - smithback - Sep. 28th, 2014 03:28 am (UTC) - Expand
Omg. Have you guys seen this? - (Anonymous) - Aug. 18th, 2014 11:51 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Omg. Have you guys seen this? - (Anonymous) - Aug. 21st, 2014 09:01 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Aug. 12th, 2014 12:28 am (UTC)
I love tablets and ebooks. That being said bookstores will be a thing of the past as more and more people use them for reading ebooks. Ebooks can be downloaded directly so what need is there for a brick & mortar bookstore with paper books. I just don't understand how employees think any tablet or ereaders will save this company?

This company will eventually close due to ebooks, tablets and cheap online books.
(Anonymous)
Aug. 12th, 2014 12:32 am (UTC)
What pod machines?
I have never seen a POD machine on the floor or in the back. Are you just making stuff up at this point?
(Anonymous)
Aug. 12th, 2014 09:01 am (UTC)
Re: What pod machines?
No, he's not. The POD machines are being tested in a few stores, and would presumably expand if successful. I'm somewhere on the east coast, and the nearest store that's piloting POD is Willow Grove, PA.
Re: What pod machines? - (Anonymous) - Aug. 12th, 2014 02:11 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: What pod machines? - smithback - Aug. 12th, 2014 11:49 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: What pod machines? - (Anonymous) - Aug. 13th, 2014 01:54 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: What pod machines? - (Anonymous) - Aug. 13th, 2014 07:47 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: What pod machines? - smithback - Aug. 16th, 2014 02:26 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: What pod machines? - (Anonymous) - Aug. 18th, 2014 04:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: What pod machines? - (Anonymous) - Aug. 18th, 2014 05:54 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Aug. 12th, 2014 12:40 am (UTC)
Good vs. Bad at Barnes & Noble.
Good: quirky bookseller that are hard working and kind, being around books and a few of the good booksellers, a small fraction of managers that don't buy into the corporate crap.

Bad: Asshole management, know it all employees that are arrogant and in complete denial, know it all employees that eventually stab the good employees in the back, management that doesn't listen to employees ideas, district managers that make life harder for employees and never have any good ideas to improve working life, employees like Smithback who think any criticism is from negative employees, management that cuts hours just because employees have been around for awhile.
(Anonymous)
Aug. 12th, 2014 04:13 pm (UTC)
Re: Good vs. Bad at Barnes & Noble.
No. We cut your hours because you're a jerk.
Re: Good vs. Bad at Barnes & Noble. - smithback - Aug. 13th, 2014 01:42 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Good vs. Bad at Barnes & Noble. - (Anonymous) - Aug. 14th, 2014 11:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Good vs. Bad at Barnes & Noble. - (Anonymous) - Aug. 16th, 2014 07:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Good vs. Bad at Barnes & Noble. - (Anonymous) - Aug. 13th, 2014 02:36 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Aug. 13th, 2014 05:26 am (UTC)
Employees like Smithback are destroying this company.
Many of us long term employees have given up and have just accepted these bad apples will destroy bn.
(Anonymous)
Aug. 13th, 2014 07:22 pm (UTC)
Re: Employees like Smithback are destroying this company.
Smithback was outed a while back as Mark Bottini.

Bottini - (Anonymous) - Aug. 15th, 2014 06:38 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Bottini - (Anonymous) - Aug. 15th, 2014 04:17 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Bottini - (Anonymous) - Aug. 15th, 2014 09:17 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Employees like Smithback are destroying this company. - (Anonymous) - Aug. 16th, 2014 08:22 am (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Aug. 15th, 2014 05:07 pm (UTC)
music dept
some sad sap trying to keep his job up in corporate just made us separate Television (the only simple section in music/dvd) into 500 different categories. this makes things harder to browse and harder to organize. and it was completely unnecessary.
smithback
Aug. 16th, 2014 02:29 am (UTC)
Re: music dept
Yeah. I'm not sure how I feel about that.
A Special Request For Smithback. - (Anonymous) - Aug. 18th, 2014 11:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: A Special Request For Smithback. - (Anonymous) - Aug. 19th, 2014 08:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: A Special Request For Smithback. - smithback - Aug. 22nd, 2014 02:44 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: A Special Request For Smithback. - (Anonymous) - Aug. 22nd, 2014 05:54 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: A Special Request For Smithback. - (Anonymous) - Aug. 25th, 2014 03:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: A Special Request For Smithback. - (Anonymous) - Aug. 25th, 2014 03:50 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: A Special Request For Smithback. - smithback - Sep. 1st, 2014 02:35 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: A Special Request For Smithback. - smithback - Sep. 28th, 2014 03:30 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: music dept - (Anonymous) - Aug. 16th, 2014 01:14 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Aug. 17th, 2014 07:12 am (UTC)
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(Anonymous)
Aug. 18th, 2014 11:45 pm (UTC)
Re: kseBddnvRy appreciate your house as well as screen it off

Barnes & Noble Booksellers on Facebook.  Join us!

www.facebook.com/groups/2204987203/I
(Anonymous)
Aug. 18th, 2014 01:45 pm (UTC)
Anyone have a photo of B&N anti-blogging policy? Did you sign it?
(Anonymous)
Aug. 18th, 2014 05:55 pm (UTC)
I would send it to you but I'm not allowed to blog...
(Anonymous)
Aug. 19th, 2014 10:27 pm (UTC)
Back to Basics
I think the company needs to return to the traditional book store where people work there who read and can recommend books.

A book Recommendation:

Beneath the Dust Jacket
(Anonymous)
Aug. 22nd, 2014 05:43 pm (UTC)
Re: Back to Basics
You need to stop advertising on here. I read the preview and you really need an editor. Just a recommendation.
Re: Back to Basics - smithback - Aug. 23rd, 2014 01:40 am (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Aug. 24th, 2014 04:01 pm (UTC)
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(Anonymous)
Aug. 24th, 2014 10:47 pm (UTC)
The bottom-line on all the “positives” you cite will be the bottom-line--how did the financials end up? And from what I see the positives aren’t all that positive. To “become a stronger company in the years to come” first requires surviving until the years to come.
(Anonymous)
Aug. 26th, 2014 08:55 pm (UTC)
B&N has no future!
I'm not happy about B&N's future. It's not being negative like Smithback claims its just being realistic about our future. Ereaders are the future not paper books no matter how much some of us old timers like them.
(Anonymous)
Aug. 27th, 2014 02:28 am (UTC)
Re: B&N has no future!
It's not so much that e-readers are the future, but that company consistently gets caught with its pants down every time Amazon rolls out something new. We can't compete on price (hell, we can't even compete on price with our own website), we can't compete on tech, and Bottini's "Endless Shelf" is an excuse to stock nothing but new releases and perennial bestsellers. Every time I read his "In My Travels" column on BN Inside and hear how some bookseller's conversation about the "Endless Shelf" is helping to drive sales, I feel like I'm reading news bulletins from the Iraqi Information Minister. Sorry Mark, but no customer wants to hear "I can order that and have it shipped to your home in 3-8 business days." In an instant gratification society, this company has proven itself woefully inadequate to the task.
Re: B&N has no future! - (Anonymous) - Aug. 27th, 2014 01:26 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: B&N has no future! - (Anonymous) - Aug. 27th, 2014 05:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Aug. 27th, 2014 03:39 am (UTC)
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