Apple accused of meticulous planning and intensive control

Posted on by Mike Evans

So Apple’s retailing business exhibits intensive control over staff, telling them exactly what to say and what not to say. This insight comes from the Wall Street Journal via AppleInsider. If a customer misprounounces a trade name the staff member is instructed not to offer a correction because it could be construed as condescension. And new staff are forbidden to speak to customers for a running-in period while they shadow a more experienced colleague. Instead of the dreadful word “unfortunately” the Apple salesperson has to say “as it turns out”.

All this is perhaps too much information, for the simple fact is that whatever is done to set the scene, the stores “just work” (to steal a phrase from Steve Jobs). The experience of shopping in an Apple Store is wholly positive and is in direct contrast to other tech stores. When I go to one of Apple’s flagship London stores I can’t help comparing the ambience and the attitude of the staff with entering, say, PC World. Even if you find someone to help you (and they certainly don’t rush over) it’s odds on that the staff know nothing about your problem.

Apple is often criticised for control freakism, not just in relation to the Apple Stores but in administering the online App Store. But better control and faultless service than the take-it-or-leave it attitude of competitors. Anyone for a MuckBook Pro?

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