The Real Reason Clarke Was Pushed!

Because he never listened to anyone, least of all the customers.

Just like a child
Just like a child he thought he knew best, but unlike the child who learns to listen…

Who says?
Well, firstly, followers of this blog, know that I do and have frequently said it on many a blog post, including the very first one and Facebook status over the last couple of years. I have described how, many times he has ignored the comments of customers, ignored the complaints, ignored ideas to improve customer service and ignored opportunities to do something different and not just cut prices. Stick “Tesco complaint” into Google and up come the contact pages and my blog! I think that’s quite funny. But on a more serious note, what that and my statistics on which pages get the most views and comments (and their content) on Tesco posts show, is that people really want to complain about Tesco, are interested in other complaints about Tesco and want to know what else to do when they can’t get redress from all the contacts.

But hey, I’m just a customer, what do I know?

What did I say?
I won’t bore those of you who have read all, or at least some of my Tesco posts by going on one of my rants but in short I have always maintained:

  1. he ignored emails from customers (and by this I mean he didn’t even pass down to his executive team and many people have said this) Justin King of Sainsbury’s didn’t
  2. he didn’t go to the shop floor and talk to staff and find out what was going on, or ask for their ideas (after all they are customers too) Justin King of Sainsbury’s did…
  3. he didn’t look at or respond to my posts on here, Justin King did….
  4. he didn’t thank customers for bringing complaints to his attention, or apologise for  or learn from, complaints sent by customers,  Justin King did..
  5. that Clarke should have been sacked..

Justin King left Sainsbury’s this month having turned the place around, maybe he was getting out when he knew things were going to change who knows? But what we do know is that Justin King took up the post when the place was in trouble, Phillip Clarke didn’t. Although it was about to hit trouble of course and King’s replacement may be in the same kind of sinking ship as Clarke was. The new Tesco chappie has the opportunity to do what King did.

But hey, I’m just a customer, what do I know?

What did others say?
A few things:

  • One former Tesco director said Clarke, 54, “confused activity with progress,” took a series of “short term knee jerk decisions” and had failed to listen to colleagues. “Phil has never listened, Phil is a teller,” he said (Reuters)
  • Analysts said that Lewis’ “…experience with branding could help a company that was no longer associated by many Britons with either low prices or quality.”
  • ” … as shareholders and business analysts bemoan the falls in revenues, profits and market share. But he said: ‘I don’t listen to what others have to say about us'” said Clarke, quoted just 9 days ago…

But hey, I’m just a customer, what do I know?

New chappie
Dave Lewis, currently the head of Unilever’s personal care division. Lewis will be the first chief executive of Tesco who has not come from within the company. As someone who worked in local authority for many years and saw people being promoted from within to jobs way beyond their capability and by the same token seen many a useless highly paid consultant come in when the authority could have given someone extra duties and back filled the post, I personally think that’s probably a very good move.

But hey, I’m just a customer, what do I know?

According to this article in the Guardian today, Nick Bubb a veteran retail analyst said “Dave Lewis knows nothing about retailing, but maybe that doesn’t matter, because as a leading supplier he certainly knows how to win price wars and perhaps that is the big issue now facing Tesco in the UK.” Sir Richard Broadbent, chairman of Tesco, says Lewis knows the supermarket chain well”. “He knows the brand. He knows consumers. He is the right person to bring that perspective.” Ah now there’s the thing. He “knows consumers”. Does he? Does he listen to them and deliver what they want or is he going to tell everyone what consumers want? Clarke believed he knew consumers and what they wanted but he didn’t listen to any of them.

But hey I’m just a customer, what do I know?


Links to all Tesco posts and contact details


The Complaining Cow’s Tesco other related posts:

9 thoughts on “The Real Reason Clarke Was Pushed!”

  1. This is true yesterday Sunday I and my wife called into Tesco to do a bit of shopping and silly me due to my poor memory due to stroke forgot my wallet with payment cards in, now simple mistake you might think and yes it should have been as I instructed the checkout assistant to leave my trolley behind the till as I would be back in 10 minutes as lived not far from shop and as my wife would not be coming back if they took the trolley away due to my stroke I would not remember what the wife put into it.

    Blow me when I get back in 8 mins the trolley had disappeared so went to customer services to see if they knew as it would be there whoever took it would inform right? well no she did not have a clue so called someone to gohave a look.

    30 mins later someone comes over to tell me they did not know were it was and would I like them to make up another trolley well no twats because as I explained before I left I would not know what was in the trolley as my memory is poor and why I instructed it to be left and in the 30 mins it has taken you I could have paid and been on my way home with the goods.

    Upshot I left without the goods very cross and them about £60 lighter and to this day still do not know were it went although sometimes they can be too keen to do well and end up doing the opposite of what they intend as now another upset customer who will think twice before shopping there again.

  2. Pingback: The bursting of the Tesco bubble. When it comes to Customer Experience, bigger does not necessarily mean better! - IJ Golding

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