December 16, 2008

Best Buy Voluntary Separation

This is a ten page transcript of the Best Buy investor conference call.

The company announced that it is offering voluntary separation to 4,000 salaried employees, nearly every salaried individual. The company says it may not get enough volunteers, requiring involuntary separation. The company also makes the brazen statement (multiple times) that it is "employee-centric", in the midst of communicating the need to fire employees.

And from page three to page ten, the investment community are given the chance to ask any question they wish.

They ask about capex, about inventory management, about gift cards, Rewards Zone, Geek Squad, vendors, gross margins. They ask multiple questions about Circuit City, for goodness sake.

They do not ask one single question about employees, about voluntary separation, or about involuntary separation. And you'd think they would care about how much money would be saved, wouldn't you?

Our system of business harvests people, uses people, exploits people, manipulates people, over-works people, under-pays people, scams people, and demands revenue from people. The system praises those who shed "headcount", then grumbles when "headcount" has no money to spend to fuel capitalism.

Our system of business does not care about people
. If it did, would we be knee-deep in The Great Implosion?