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Thread: G'day

  1. #1
    Junior Member Ramou's Avatar
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    G'day

    Hello, as with everyone here, I've had an inexcusably bad experience at CT. In my case, trying to return defective goods. The clerks were treating me like a liar and a theif. I had to phone customer service on my cell while standing in front of the assistant "manager" while he was texting his "manager" for direction, before they agreed to refund. I never before had such trouble dealing with CT. Then I read the back of my receipt (Quebec): "Our commitment to you: We will attempt to refund you" So I got really mad, because if there's one thing I hate it's being deceived. (also being asked for advice that's then not followed, but that's another story, hee hee) The weaselly worded policy is meant to deceive the public into thinking they are entitled to refunds, like any other big box store. I believe that when the goods are not fit for the purpose intended (defective) the merchant must refund. I'm paying for the item now, I'm not paying for the privilege of owing a something that has had to be repaired at some later time. Anyway enough bitching. I'm here to add to the story survey thread. Let's punish the bad stores and reward the (relatively) good.

  2. #2

    Re: G'day

    Hi:

    I see nothing wrong with trying to punish stores that choose to take advantage of consumers, by refusing to stand behind the products they choose to sell, and by refusing to give 'satisfaction' refunds for unwanted goods. Plus not giving legally required refunds for defective goods.

    However, the real problem is the corporation itself, that has chosen to let these stores systematically cheat consumers, which under-mines the CT brand.

    As a consumer, if you don't get satisfaction from a store, you should have recourse to Head Office, who make the dishonest retailer toe the line. But in the case of Canadian Tire, you find out that HO is giving stores free rein to do as they please, and not even forcing them to follow the meager, worst-in-class policies that Head Office has watered down so drastically.

    My philosophy is to address the dishonesty and poor policies at the corporate level, pressuring them to raise the bar back up to the minimal market level. This would give consumers some leverage when dealing with a wayward store.

    But, I doubt CT will abandon their current path to self-destruction. They seem happy that naive consumers still come to their stores, innocently buying crappy products without the safety-net of the typical return policies that Canadians have become used to when dealing with every other major chain.

    When faced with the growing competition from superior American retailers, I suspect their days will be numbered. Once the still-loyal Canadians realize that they have been betrayed by a home-grown and previously trusted retailer, I think we'll see even more boycotts from spurned consumers.

    Yes, I do think the Zellers-style tipping-point is coming!
    Last edited by CT Challenger; February 17th, 2013 at 11:01 AM.

  3. #3
    Junior Member Ramou's Avatar
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    Re: G'day

    I Completely agree. Would you agree that we are here because we actually very much like, and are even proud of Crappy Tire? I always got a kick out of CT money. I mean, I've been angry at my garage, at Nikon, but so what? I didn't waste a minute on them, but here I am. I hope most people on this site are here to help CT, not hurt them.

    At the core, all the problems we read about on this site are caused by bad and lazy (especially lazy) corporate and local management. I have no patience for threads complaining about staff. Why is the staff so bad? Because management is too lazy to train/evaluate/correct them.

    My personal beef is that I feel the refund policy is dishonest and misleading. Based on 40 years of shopping there, I believed that I could return things. Now that I read the back of my receipt, I'm insulted and disgusted that they should think they can treat me with the contempt that policy expresses. Ok, I've been in line at Rona, when someone returned a mostly empty can of paint because they didn't like the colour, but even I could write a policy that's more sensible and fair. What I read on the back of my receipt could have been written by monkeys (or out-of-control lawyers). There's a discussion on their corporate refund policy on another site: Red Flag Deals (I think). Someone there wrote that CT's policy is to make the dealer eat the refund. If true, that would lead to predictable consequences that CTC is certainly aware of but evidently, have some reason to continue.

    That said, besides voting with our wallets, What else can we do to? Doesn't HQ already understand that every single justified complaint that reaches HQ should be treated as a minor disaster? Why don't they take steps to make sure these problems are resolved at the store level and never repeated? Is anyone at HQ held accountable or is everyone there allowed to just coast along, all too lazy and comfy to do the real work of tackling the hard problems their nonsensical refund policy is evidence of? I did my part to make HQ aware of my personal problem, I phoned them. (Twice actually. the first time When I opened the box and found the defect, I called the MasterCraft support number just to alert them to what seemed to me an unusual problem they may not have been aware of. I just wanted to help them -do I feel stupid now.) Then, of course,I called them again, from the store's service desk. Then I joined this forum.

    What else can I do? I'll be buying my motor oil and bicycles at Walmart. (I can count three CT bikes in my backyard, and one in the basement.) Cheap tools at the local BMR or big-box hardware stores. Expensive tools at the high-end tool store.
    Small housewares at Walmart. Tires, bought once, never again. CT has no tires I would buy. (I so recommend Hakkapelitta).

    What else can we do?

    It's so all up to them. Why aren't they on this forum making things right?

  4. #4

    Re: G'day

    Ramou:

    You make several good points, and raise some interesting questions, and I plan to share some ideas in a couple of messages.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ramou View Post
    At the core, all the problems we read about on this site are caused by bad and lazy (especially lazy) corporate and local management. I have no patience for threads complaining about staff. Why is the staff so bad? Because management is too lazy to train/evaluate/correct them.
    I agree 100%. Even the staff in stores who are passing on incorrect information have either 1) been given incorrect information, and assumed it was correct or 2) have been told to deliberately mislead consumers, about return policies and consumer laws.

    That being said, I continue to object to the incorrect statements being made by CTC employees, acting unofficially, and in their own spare time, on forums like this one.

    If they are going to offer information to the Canadian public about store policies and consumer law, then they have a moral and ethical duty to ensure that what they state is correct, and that it is not merely a re-telling of the BS they were fed by their employer. At the very least, they should be qualifying their statements with, "When I worked at Returns, I was told ...". Instead they often say things like "There is no Sale of Goods Act" or "The Sale of Goods Act doesn't apply to consumers".

    You don't have to look very far on this site to find instances of these mis-statements, which are at the very least negligent, and at most self-serving and deceptive.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ramou View Post
    It's so all up to them. Why aren't they on this forum making things right?
    If you take the time to read what the CT Rep's have written here in the past, you will mainly see:

    - Repeated denials about the very existance of anti-consumer policies, such as Repair Only, "No Refund" and "No Warranty".
    - Posts defending the Repair Only and the "No Refund" policies, saying how great they are.
    - Insults directed at consumers who've tried to make the public aware of the terrible policies at CT.
    - Bragging about the income being raked in by the CT owners, presumably as a result of their greedy policies.
    - False stories about policies at other stores (in an attempt to make them sounds almost as bad as CT).
    - Misinformation about the Sale of Goods Act and Consumer Protection Act, in order to convince consumers to abandon their rights.
    - Repeated complaints about consumers, calling them whiners, scam-artists, criminals and even "robbers".

    I think their position is very clear: they like the policies they've established. As long as consumers remain unaware of just how bad these policies are, then consumers will continue to innocently shop at CT, not knowing the risk they are taking.

    Until it hits the corporation 'in the wallet', there will be no change. More on that in a future post.

  5. #5
    Junior Member Ramou's Avatar
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    Re: G'day

    Again we agree, please allow me a small redirect: I am aware of some of the posts you refer to. Of course all kinds of people, both CT reps and some customers will post all kinds of nonsense, that's a whole separate issue. I meant "making things right". Not denying, insulting and misinforming. There must be intelligent life at CT?

  6. #6

    Re: G'day

    Quote Originally Posted by Ramou View Post
    Again we agree, please allow me a small redirect: I am aware of some of the posts you refer to. Of course all kinds of people, both CT reps and some customers will post all kinds of nonsense, that's a whole separate issue. I meant "making things right". Not denying, insulting and misinforming. There must be intelligent life at CT?
    Quote Originally Posted by Ramou View Post
    Would you agree that we are here because we actually very much like, and are even proud of Crappy Tire? ... I hope most people on this site are here to help CT, not hurt them.
    An interesting question.

    And I asked myself: what would I think, if Canadian Tire Retail took out a full-page ad in every newpaper in Canada, and apologized to all Canadians for their terrible policies, poor service, and rip-off auto centers?

    What if CTR promised that heads would roll, they were turning over a new leaf, and they were going to put Customer Service back on the front burner?

    And also imagine that I believed them!

    I thought about it, and I decided that CT Retail has been too deceptive for far too long, and has exploited the loyalty, good will and patriatism of Canadian consumers. Over and over again.

    They are also the authors of their own future, as explained below. They aren't victims here - they are chosing to become the villains.

    So, yes, I decided that I DON'T want these Red Triangle of Crap stores to succeed.

    (Now, CT has managed to acquire Marks and Forzani, and has not yet ruined those stores, so there's an argument that they shouldn't be dragged down with CTR, too. Ditto for Petrolium and Credit - so far!)

    Quote Originally Posted by Ramou View Post
    Doesn't HQ already understand that every single justified complaint that reaches HQ should be treated as a minor disaster? Why don't they take steps to make sure these problems are resolved at the store level and never repeated? Is anyone at HQ held accountable or is everyone there allowed to just coast along, all too lazy and comfy to do the real work of tackling the hard problems their nonsensical refund policy is evidence of?
    This is the second point: No way are these 'justified complaints' (as you say) any some kind of dumb accident. CTR has not just dropped the ball, and needs to pick it back up. It isn't that HQ isn't aware of what's happening. Are they at all horrified to learn what's going on in the stores?

    No, if you read the corporate thinking, as revealed by the CT rep's and the written policies in the stores, you'll realize something:

    The way things are going, is exactly how the Corporation wants them to go.

    They have laid out their plans, and they are executing them in the way they desire.

    Each and every complaint about the 'No Refunds' and 'Repair Only' policies are 100% expected and accounted for.

    They knew customers would run into these problems one at a time. But so what? The sales figures are still good, and as long as they hide their actual policies, the number of Canadians who find out about it will be low.

    It's a simple cost-benefit analysis. As long as they can replace the customers they lose with new naive ones, things will be in their favour.

    Seems to be working, right? "Damn, that math!!", as the alleged owner likes to say.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ramou View Post
    What else can I do? I'll be buying my motor oil and bicycles at Walmart. (I can count three CT bikes in my backyard, and one in the basement.) Cheap tools at the local BMR or big-box hardware stores. Expensive tools at the high-end tool store. Small housewares at Walmart. Tires, bought once, never again. CT has no tires I would buy. (I so recommend Hakkapelitta).
    Indeed, Canadian consumers need to become informed about the terrible policies and poor customers service that the Corporation has deliberately chosen as cost-savings measures, to keep up their profits.

    It is up to us to inform our fellow consumers of the facts that CTR and their Rep's try so hard to conceal and deny.

    The Canadian public will vote with their feet. And eventually, it will bite them on their 'bottom line'.

    At that time, will there be a full-page ad coming out in your local paper?

    I don't expect so. The last I heard from CEO Whitmore, it was all about 'swagger'. Are you kidding me?

    If they lose enough money, they might be desperate enough to try winning us back.

    But I think it will be "too little, too late" for more people than just little old me.
    Last edited by CT Challenger; February 18th, 2013 at 04:57 PM.

  7. #7
    Senior Member CTH8R's Avatar
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    Re: G'day

    Quote Originally Posted by Ramou View Post
    Would you agree that we are here because we actually very much like, and are even proud of Crappy Tire?
    Used to like Crappy Tire, then found out they rip off customers at their Service Centers, so warned everybody not to use them.

    Then found out they also rip off customers in their stores, so now I hate them.

    Proud? Hardly.

    Ashamed is more accurate.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ramou View Post
    I hope most people on this site are here to help CT, not hurt them.
    Actually, they are the ones hurting consumers.

    If by "hurting them" you mean telling everyone about their terrible policies, service and practices, then yes, I guess they will be hurt when Canada finally wakes up and stops giving them our hard-earned money!

  8. #8
    Junior Member Ramou's Avatar
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    Re: G'day

    Absolutely Fabulous: CT's crappy return policies made today's Globe and Mail. Thank you, Carsen from Calgary. Below is a link to the letter to the editor most excellently titled "Point of no Return". In it he refers to another story, in yesterday's Globe and Mail business section, on management staff reductions at Loblaws and CT. If there's a God, let the VP Customer Service be one of those lazy asses canned , and please let me not be breaking copyright laws with this link!

    Ok, I can't seem to post the link correctly. "You can look it up!"

  9. #9

    Re: G'day

    Thanks for the 'heads up'.

    Have you checked out this thread yet? Will Crappy Tire Survive The Coming Competition?

    Here's the G&M page, with Carsen Campbell's comments: Feb. 19: Let

    Carsten talks mostly about CR collecting personal info. Here's a thread on that topic: Collecting ID and Personal Information

  10. #10

    Re: G'day

    Quote Originally Posted by Ramou View Post
    If there's a God, let the VP Customer Service be one of those lazy asses canned ...
    Here's some info on the exec's who got the boot, just before Christmas:

    Will Crappy Tire Survive The Coming Competition?

    This is probably what you were looking for:

    "... they were paying that Butt guy $1.8 million for "Customer Experience and Automotive" ..."

    Hey, this is interesting. If you look at the current list of CTC exec's, the word "customer" doesn't even appear. Just in cases you wondered how important customers are to Crappy Tire. LMAO!

    Executive Management
    Last edited by CT Challenger; February 20th, 2013 at 09:38 AM.

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