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IAmA former Geek Squad agent for 4 years – Best Buy is the worst company ever(r/IAmA)
Actually, to the imprisoning employees part, I was refused exit from the store by management during my time at Best Buy. I worked the overnight stocking crew and after weeks (during the x-mas rush) of having my two days off during the week scheduled opposite 3rd and 1st shifts (that is I would get off at 6 am and have to be back by 6 am the very next morning) I told them I wouldn’t stay past 3 am anymore as I was the only one scheduled this way. This went on for somewhere around 4 weeks and the first time I demanded to leave at 3 am the manager refused to let me out. I clocked out and sat on a register for 2 hours until they were finished and went and found a new job the next day. Yes, I realize I could have called the police or some such and been a shithead about it, but rather than do that I just went and found somewhere else to work.
I will say that if you’re lucky enough to work at a store with good management (which I have since then) it isn’t nearly as shitty an experience. They have good benefits and I have years of fun memories from working at Best Buy. It’s the only place I’ve ever worked that allowed employees to have video game tournaments for prizes after hours, or gave out prizes for knowing the things you’re supposed to know to do your job. The employee discount at the time I was working there was unreal and there are other opportunities for VERY big discounts through the companies who make the products. I find it kind of odd that so many Geek Squad employees come on here complaining (minus the guy who was locked in the store naturally) since many of the media and merchandising employees tend to get it a lot worse especially during the holidays. Anybody that tells me it’s harder to fix a computer than it is to carry around 400lb stereo-in-a-boxes at 3 am has obviously never done that before. Less pay, much harder work, and managers that don’t have to worry about the daytime oversight of high ranking managers=shitty work environment. At least now the poor bastards don’t have to deal with 300 pound Sony Tube TVs anymore (they ordered a lot more of those than the big stereo systems). Though I do know the Geek Squad employees have a lot of shitty customer interactions I never really saw them as the losers when it came to internal shittiness.
If you want to talk about really shitty places to work Circuit City was far and away the worst company I ever worked for. They made Best Buy look like Google. I don’t know that this is common knowledge outside people who worked for the company, but apparently after Best Buy became so successful Circuit City moved to the non-commission model. Because their hourly commissioned employees were making so much money hourly to off-set the loss of commission they laid off a bunch of very experienced salespeople and hired a bunch of people with no experience at $8 an hour and their entire internal morale went to shit. People stopped caring and weren’t knowledgeable about their products and they went out of business, I think, directly because of this bad decision.
Edit: No offense to the OP, but the management of one store doesn’t speak for the entire company. I had a lot of shitty experiences at Best Buy other than being locked in the store, but working with managers from other stores and at other stores I realized that I just had a shitty manager on a power trip and the experiences I had working under different people restored my faith in the company as an employer. I would go back to Best Buy in a heartbeat.
tl;dr – I was kept locked in a Best Buy on purpose by a shitty manager, but later realized the company had some very good points to balance out the shitty ones and would go back no questions asked.