Chain Stores in America, 1859-1962

By Godfrey M. Lebhar | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XV
THE CHAINS AS EMPLOYERS

SOME 2,900,000 full and part time employes were required to operate the 183,000 stores the chains had in 1958, including in that category all firms with two or more stores.1 That includes those employed in the headquarters and district offices of the chains, in their warehouses and in the field as well as those who work in the stores themselves.

What kind of jobs do the chains offer?

They range in responsibility and compensation all the way from that of the beginner behind the variety-store counter or the youngster learning the grocery business in the supermarket to that of the top man of the company -- the president of the chain. Between these two extremes are many kinds of jobs involving manual or clerical work in the lower levels and varying degrees of merchandising and administrative experience in the higher levels.

Most of the jobs the chains provide are not materially different in character from those offered by retailing in general. Basically, retailing involves the same principles of buying and selling, display and promotion, store layout, personnel training and management, financing and public relations whether the operation be conducted under one roof or many separate roofs.

But the chains have one kind of job which is seldom found in single-store operation but which is inherent in chain-store

____________________
1
Retail Census, 1958.

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