There’s something about Black Friday that seems to bring out the worst in GameStop’s corporate leadership, and this year the video game retailer has found a weird new way to appear mean and out of touch. The company invited employees to submit dance videos in hopes of winning prizes that include extra hours of work during this holiday shopping week.
“Be creative, team up with your team and have fun with it! Don’t worry, you can’t look as bad as the event team! Read the prompt for one of GameStop’s latest employee contests, the Incisiv TikTok dance challenge. Stores are supposed to send their best #redwinechallenge videos (any dance routine set to “Red Red Wine” from UB40) to marketing company Incisiv. The winning store will then receive an Echo 8, Echo Auto, a $ 100 Visa gift card and “10 Hours of Extra Work” to use during Black Friday week.
“Imagine what you could do with all these prizes! The contest reads. The company’s events team posted their own #redwinechallenge video to YouTube on October 28 as an example for stores to follow:
GameStop did not respond to a request for Kotaku for comment.
Like many retailers, GameStop stores have a limited total number of hours that employees can work in any given period. Even if a manager wanted to give extra shifts during a particularly busy time, like Black Friday, for example, he couldn’t go over his monthly budget. As anyone who has ever worked in retail knows, work that cannot be done within the allotted number of hours still has to be done, it just isn’t paid. It is also wage theft and various forms of theft add up to an estimated $ 15 billion a year in money taken from workers, according to the Institute for Economic Policy.
“Hours have always been a sensitive subject for managers,” said a former GameStop employee. Kotaku. “They usually run their stores on strict hours, which means that managers are overworked or run their stores with limited help.”
GameStop was criticized in the past to keep its stores open on Thanksgiving Day to stay one step ahead of Black Friday shopping, but unlike last year, the company keep its doors closed this time. Instead, the TikTok contest comes at a time when stores are gearing up for the launch of a new set of consoles even as the rate of new covid cases. starts climbing all over the country again. “Some of us have help with hiring and training in 3 weeks and would rather not be on tik tok,” one employee said. wrote on the GameStop subreddit.
Earlier this year, Gamestop attempted to call itself a “essential business”During the pandemic, in order to remain open as state governments order closures. They did it while the employees of the company called him on the lack of resources and procedures necessary to operate more safely. In one September call for results, Jim Bell, CFO of GameStop (who earns $ 700,000 a year just in salary) announced the closure of an additional 100 stores by the end of the year.