I’d just like to explain this a little. I have some perspective as I worked for Demoulas when I was in high school and have shopped there since.
My first job was with Shop’n’Save. Shop’n’save was a savvy food store with sharp managers and a transient work force. They hired college kids to manage their stores and high school kids to run their stores.
My second job was at the Demoulas store in Seabrook New Hampshire. It was night and day. The manager was an old man named Vincent Clancy. All the managers were people who had started as baggers. That’s how it worked. If you were good at sacking groceries, you got to stock shelves. If you were good at stocking shelves, they made you a ‘full timer’ when you graduated — more money, more hours, and full benefits. I run into kids I sacked with all the time. They are not managers of Market Basket stores.
So this guy Arthur T. Demoulas built a business that was so successful that anyone who wanted to work hard could be a store manager and stock holders could make millions while consumers got the best deals in town from very happy employees.
My family will stay away from Market Basket until ATD returns. It saddens me to see this characterized in political terms. This is not a political issue. These workers are not unionized. They are not part of some Occupy movement, and they are supporting a major 1%’er.
What we are seeing here is management, employees, and consumers outraged that a business model that has benefited each is threatened by disengaged stock traders. Stock traders who have been gutting the US economy for decades in the name of dividends. We are all outraged because we see this in our jobs and fear for our children’s future.
Arthur T. Demoulas is a rare CEO who has enriched his shareholders while sharing that success with his employees and providing great value to the community. Everyone should support him because we all want to work for that kind of company.