IT services and solutions for retail and hospitality

  • 24 Sep 2010

Rog Day 9

Today, I had a good Webex with Girish from SPI to discuss Merret and Infinity, and specifically how they may be a fit for one of SPI’s existing customers. I’ve sent him a few PDF’s of the various presentation decks we have, and he’s now going to review and have some conversations with the customer to gauge their thoughts.

I came across something funny at lunchtime when I went to a local Mall with Des who needed to buy some teabags. We went into a specialty shop that sells tea, and he asked for teabags, and I couldn’t believe when they gave him a box of teabags…that didn’t have any tea in them! The idea apparently is that you buy loose tea to put inside them – they just don’t get it do they?!

After Skyping the family back home, and catching up with a couple of colleagues at Retail Assist in the UK, the working day was over and Des gave me a lift back to the hotel. I’ve decided to have a quiet night in the room, as for one I’m flying to Connecticut (via Chicago) tomorrow for a couple of days to do a couple of face to face meetings with Jack, and because of that I’ll be travelling all day and won’t be able to Skype home at the normal time and hence I have to get up at 3am so I can do this before my eldest son goes to School.

Before I go, a few random things have popped into my head about life over here, so here goes…

1. Unless you go to a big metropolis such as New York or Boston, there’s no such concept of a city centre that has retail outlets; instead ‘downtown’ houses businesses and bars/restaurants, although the latter are scattered around. Instead, the out of town ‘Mall’ is where it’s all at, and for that you have to drive there (you could walk but they are typically quite a way from public transport stops, plus you often have to navigate your way across multi-lane roads!) and hence need a car, which leads me to my next point…

2. You don’t see many people walking around in the States! Again, large cities are an exception, but generally most people drive.

3. The tipping culture over here is just crazy! People expect you to tip them for doing the slightest of things, for example the other day when Des came to pick me up, one of the attendants outside ran to the car ahead of me to open the door and as I was getting in, just stood looking at me as if to say, money please! I’ve even noticed tip baskets or similar in some retail outlets.

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