Microsoft Justifiably Poaches Apple Store Employees
by, September 22nd, 2009 at 12:00 PM
In one month, Microsoft is planning to open its first round of retail stores. Unsurprisingly, the retail stores bear a striking resemblance to Apple's retail stores, and as reported by The Loop will also employ prior Apple store workers.
Microsoft's retail stores, scheduled to open around the same time as the October 22nd launch of Windows 7, are designed to compete directly with Apple's retail stores. In fact, the first Microsoft stores will be located in close proximity to those of Apple's and also will have a similar floor plan and decor. It's hard to ignore the Apple mirrors that Microsoft is putting into place, and now, there will be more similarities.
Supposedly, Microsoft has been contacting current employees of Apple's retail stores with promises of higher salary and moving expenses if they come work at Microsoft's stores. Apple fans are now using this as continued fodder to point out that Microsoft cannot create its own success, but instead mooches off of Apple's success. Although I agree that Microsoft has a difficult time innovating, this employee-poaching practice is extremely common in the business world. When there are people with the appropriate skills and training, it is more effective to poach them from other companies rather than hire unskilled people and spend time training them. It's nothing more than that.
I have my doubts of Microsoft finding success in its retail stores, especially considering that they sell very little consumer products when compared to Apple. Microsoft has Windows 7, Office, Xbox, Zune HD, keyboards and mice, and a few other products. Those are hardly enough to fill a store. More than anything, Microsoft is likely trying to create an image of having culture and a good customer experience by mirroring Apple's retail stores.
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