Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Target: Fun, Fast, and Friendly

Today I got an opportunity to interview an Executive Team Leader of Human Resources for a Target store in my neighborhood. Upon the arrival of our meeting time, I was so excited to conduct the interview for several reasons: A) I LOVE Target!, B) This aspect of an organization is not one with which I am entirely familiar with and C) I think Target has a very unique culture and atmosphere that keeps me coming back.

In our interview I asked a lot of questions about her position as an HR leader. A lot of our conversation related to what I have been reading in class from the Human Resources Administration for Educational Leaders by M. Scott Norton. At first glance, a store such as Target and an elementary school don’t seem like they would have much in common (in regards to HR), the reality of it is that they do! When hearing about this friend’s job as an HR leader, I related it to the job of a principal. When asked what challenges she faces on a day-to-day basis, she said that it is hard to get the scheduling activities done and still be a cheerleader for her Team Members (or workers). The “cheerleading” part of her job relates back to the text when it mentioned the importance of coaching (pg. 203).

Another point of today’s interview that I thought related back to the text was when she mentioned that all new Team Members have to create a Learning Development Plan. After shadowing and working with a mentor, the mentor has the opportunity to sign off on the LDP. This type of plan is suggested in the text (pg. 205); however, it is called a Talent Development Plan. She mentioned that this type of plan allows the new talent to have an organized idea of what is expected while working at Target. This shows that Target cares about its employees and doesn’t have a “Sink or Swim” type of attitude. I wonder how Wal-Mart’s guides new employees compared to Target? Compared to the text that we have been reading for class, it seems that she is approaching Human Resources in all the right ways.

Here are a few things that I learned about Target that I didn’t know before:

  • Target’s motto among Team Members is “Fast, Fun, and Friendly”
  • Team Members who work in the Photo Department, Starbucks, and snack area make more money than cashiers or Team Members who work on the floor.
  • Target is extremely involved in giving back to the community. (I already knew this; however, I think it’s important to note.)
  • Filling out the customer surveys is important because the employees get good comments posted in a common area. Sometimes the CEO Gregg Steinhafel will recognize employees’ good work by writing a letter of appreciation and thanks.
  • LOD=Leader on Duty, ETL= Executive Team Leader, STL= Store Team Leader
  • Target Garden Centers are closing. :(

I certainly enjoyed my time today with this friend and appreciate her speaking candidly to me about her position as the Executive Team Leader of Human Resources.

Thanks for reading (and don’t forget to shop at Target!),
Ashley :)

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