Retail businesses face challenges of Christmas season

Retail businesses face challenges of Christmas season

CHICO — Some retail workers are experiencing busy stores and staff shortages this holiday season.

Aidan Hinson, a retail ops manager at Bevmo, said that people have started shopping early this year. He said that a lot of the typical Thanksgiving shopping happened at the end of October. Hinson said that the store’s shipments came in early this year and that they got all of their Christmas items in the beginning of November.

“All of our Christmas stuff was basically sold out by the time we got to December,” he said. “Everyone is just buying things really early.”

Hinson said that there are probably going to be people who wait too long and that the store will probably be sold out by then. He also said that the store has experience some staffing shortages this year.

“It’s just competing with wages and people not necessarily wanting to work minimum wage and a retail job,” Hinson said. “It’s been harder to find employees that are long lasting.”

Ohshinnah Bluewolf, a Sally Beauty assistant manager, said that it has actually been slow for the month of December compared to last year.

Ohshinnah Bluewolf works at Sally Beauty in Chico, California on Thursday, Dec. 9, 2021. (Rebekah Ludman/Enterprise-Record)

She said that working at Sally Beauty has been an overall great experience this holiday season, but that she is more stressed out due to her promotion at the store.

“I did get promoted so there’s a lot more stuff to know,” Bluewolf said. “There’s a lot more pressure.”

She said that staffing hasn’t been an issue for their store this year since they often get a lot of applicants who want to work in beauty and end up working there for a long period of time.

However, Anika Burke Rodriguez-Kronmiller, owner of Anika Burke, has had challenges in filling positions this holiday season.

Anika Burke Rodriguez-Kronmiller packages a sweater at Anika Burke in Chico, California on Thursday, Dec. 9, 2021. (Rebekah Ludman/Enterprise-Record)

Rodriguez-Kronmiller said that the store is short about 180 hours a week out of a typical 200 hours a week. She has only been able to staff 20 hours.

“My husband and I are both working from 15 to 18 hour days, six days a week,” Rodriguez-Kronmiller said. “We have had to close one day a week.”

Although she said that she does wake up every day excited to go to work, Rodriguez-Kronmiller has experienced some stress this holidays season.

“In the middle of the day I give myself a really big pep talk, go walk around the block, then have someone look me in the eyes and tell me that I can do this,” she said.

Her husband, Scott Wesley Kronmiller, said that this has been something they deal with on a day-to-day basis. He said that taking it day by day has been the only way they know how to handle it.

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