Follow The Leader!
It’s rare to find someone who can say they’ve worked for the same employer for twenty years, but on August 28th, Chris Stagg will be able to say exactly that: he has been a valued employee at Walmart East Super Centre since he began back in 2001.
In the early days, Chris worked strictly nights. For 9 years, he did maintenance, sweeping and buffing the floors. These days he works the day shift and prefers it.
“I like days way better because it’s too hard to sleep during the day,” he says.
As a Store Standards Associate, Chris helps customers carry out their shopping, assists cashiers when they are busy, and collects buggies from the buggy corral to sanitize them. To keep staff motivated, they keep track of how many buggies each employee brings in from the parking lot.
“I average about 150 buggies an hour but I’ve done as many as 300 an hour,” he says, proudly.
Osa is the assistant manager of fashion at Walmart. She’s worked here for 22 years, so she has been Chris’ colleague throughout his time there.
“Chris takes great pride in his work. He is reliable and very health and safety conscious,” she says.
Osa also says that Chris often checks to see how many accident-free days the store has had so that he can take advantage of the safety incentives offered by the store: ice-cream for every 10 days accident-free or pizza for 50 days accident free.
Chris’s work ethic and experience have led to a promotion of sorts: he now trains others in this work.
“I tell them ‘follow the leader!’” he says with a laugh.
Since safety is so important to Chris, he ensures that trainees wear their safety vests and know their boundaries. Along with learning how to clean carts, trainees also learn how to do claims and returns, including specific returns, like car batteries, which have a special spot.
When asked what the best part of his job is, he answers without hesitation.
“The pay cheque!” he exclaims enthusiastically, adding that the exercise is also good for him.
When he’s not working, Chris enjoys seeing his friends at the Community Living Drop-In at Communitas Supportive Care Society. The pandemic has meant this resource is now a virtual one, so it’s been a while since he’s connected with friends there. Still, he remembers the fun he’s had.
“I like playing – and cheating – at UNO during Drop In,” he says with a laugh.
He also appreciates the relationships he’s built with staff at Communitas. Krista Petrie, a life skills counsellor, says he is a loyal friend.
“He takes a bit of time to warm up to new people but once he gets to know you, you’re a friend for life,” she says. “He’s a jokester and enjoys poking fun at staff.”
Lisa McIntosh manages the Community Living Program and has known Chris for decades. She is not surprised that he’s been employed at Walmart for such a long time and says that while Chris has been a good worker, the company has also been good to him.
“Chris has always been committed to his job, even when he worked graveyard shifts for all those years. He’s responsible and does things independently,” she says. “Things got better for him when he began working days. He has become more social and seems more comfortable being with people. It might have been easier (for Walmart staff) to leave him on nights but they didn’t, it shows that his work ethic was valued.”
Chris enjoys his work and is grateful for a good working environment.
“I like my coworkers. Everyone helps everyone here,” he says. “I have a pretty good team.”
Congratulations to Chris for being a faithful employee and good friend.