The Old Navy from Hell

By Ron Pereira Updated on January 13th, 2011

My blogging goes in spurts.  I seem to get on a “theme” and roll with that for a few posts.  Well, regular readers of LSS Academy have likely sensed I have been on a “take action/5S” rant as of late.  Well, tonight it’s time to share the story that inspired these recent articles.

Houston, we have a problem

Last weekend my wife and I went to Houston to attend a conference.  Since we left our kiddos with Manna and Papa we were able to have two very nice (and quiet) dinners. 

After dinner my wife wanted to go to Old Navy since she had a gift certificate burning a hole in her purse.  So off we went.

I have been in many Old Navy stores in my time.  I like Old Navy.  We buy lots of stuff from Old Navy.  Generally speaking, Old Navy is a fine establishment.

Old Navy from Hell

old-navy2.JPGBut not this Old Navy.  This Old Navy looked as if a freaking bomb had exploded in it.  See Exhibit A for proof I am not whistling Dixie. 

After a few minutes in the store I looked at my wife and she looked back at me.  We just started to laugh.  It was unbelievable.

I wondered if perhaps we had just walked into a bad area of the store so I decided to take a little tour.  It didn’t take long to notice the issue was, um, systemic.  I took a few more pictures but could have spent half the night snapping photos. 

old-navy1.JPGRefer to Exhibit B for more proof.  Stuff was everywhere.  And I am not even showing you the worst of it!  It seriously looked like a WWII battle had just been fought in the Houston area.

Then I got ticked

As I already mentioned, my wife and I started to laugh when we first walked in.  Then, the longer I walked around the madder I got.  I saw all the “workers” just standing around.  In fact, they were having a good old time talking, laughing, and even moving to the groove of the funky beat pulsing through the store.

I finally spotted the store manager.  A kid probably in his early 20’s.  He was a cocky looking kid and I came inches away from lighting him up like the fourth of July.  But I didn’t.  Probably should have (in a respectful manner).  But I was too mad by that point and didn’t want to make a scene.

I do plan to write to Old Navy (and may not need to after this post) since generally speaking, as I stated before, Old Navy is a really nice store.  As such, I think they deserve to know when one of their stores misrepresents what Old Navy is about.

Broken Windows

As I stated a few nights ago, this so called broken window theory is real.  I don’t care what the skeptics say.  All you have to do to “believe” is walk into this Old Navy store.  There were so many “broken windows” about no one cared.  People just threw clothes everywhere. 

Heck, I even fell into the trap!  I was walking by a rack of clothes and had to do a couple of side steps to miss some pink panties laying on the ground.  When I did this my arm knocked a shirt off the rack.  I paused, looked at it lay on the ground, and kept going.  Then I felt guilty and went back and picked it up.  And, no, I didn’t pick up the pink panties.  Only the good Lord knows where they had been!

Live like animals, behave like animals

I firmly believe that your surroundings impact your behavior.  If you take a wild lion out of the jungle and throw him into a cage, you will likely destroy his spirit. 

Likewise, if an establishment – Old Navy, your house, your office, your plant, etc. – resembles the living quarters of a pig… you are very likely to start acting like one.

Subscribe to LSS Academy

If you enjoyed this article please consider subscribing to our full feed RSS. You can also subscribe by email and have new articles sent directly to your inbox.

  1. Kathleen

    April 11, 2008 - 3:44 pm

    Lol, do write them. Our entries rarely have the impact matching our disgruntlement.

    Wow, this place is a disaster area!

  2. Ron Pereira

    April 12, 2008 - 9:29 am

    The funny thing is my pictures don’t even come close to showing how bad it truly was. Thanks for the comment Kathleen.

  3. Mark Graban

    April 13, 2008 - 8:21 am

    It’s amazing that people fail to notice when they’re in a place too often. Does the store manager not notice it’s such a mess anymore (no points of reference?) or doesn’t care?

    In a similar vein, I went into my local Circuit City store and was reminded why I don’t normally go in (and maybe why they’re struggling so much financially).

    The store was dark. I mean really dark. I’m relatively young and it was hard to see the products. It’s not that there was a power outage. Lights were on, but it was dark. A misguided $$-saving move on their part?

  4. Ron Pereira

    April 13, 2008 - 12:45 pm

    Mark, I think I know which Circuit City you mean! Too funny. Have a great Sunday afternoon… I have flower planting duty with my kiddos!

Have something to say?

Leave your comment and let's talk!

Start your Lean & Six Sigma training today.