You can be forgiven for not knowing regional supermarket chain Market Basket is undergoing some upper-level shakeups — resulting in the clearly displeasing ouster of a CEO called “Arthur T.” by employees — but you should see what’s going on in a company that is clearly no longer going to accept this scenario.
In this enduring recession and shaky job climate, the employees of Market Basket did a really, really bold thing — and it appears the staff is “all in” as operations at the chain seem to have ground to a screeching halt. (A noticeable effect in the supermarket genre, as bare shelves definitely cause shoppers to experience a level of panic.)
If we’re being honest, most workers are not at all loyal to their company’s CEO, and many might be hard pressed to even identify the man (or sometimes, woman) at the helm of their business. Not so at Market Basket, where images from the past weekend seem to reveal that workers not only know Arthur T., they’re willing to commit a sort of workplace hari kari in order to attempt to bring him back into the Market Basket fold.
Boston Herald opinion columnist Margery Eagan explains briefly what’s going on up there with Market Basket — not so much the corporate and board-level machinations that have led to the shakeup and departure of Arthur T. (whose face has amusingly adorned Shepard Fairey-style posters carried by protesting workers), but what the employees have been up to since he’s been gone.
“If you put your job on the line, I’m impressed, since I can’t think of anybody else I’ve seen do what nearly 3,000 non-unionized Market Basket employees did Friday. Cashiers and baggers and managers, people who depend on Market Basket paychecks, drove for miles to the company’s Tewksbury headquarters to demand the reinstatement of ousted CEO Arthur. T. Demoulas, fired last month in a seemingly never-ending soap opera of a feud with his rival cousin and shareholder Arthur S. Demoulas.”
Ah, cousins. As an aside, how funny would it be if the next time you and one of your cousins had it out that like, thousands of people took your side? Arthur S. must feel like such an unpopular jerk right now.
We can probably all agree on one thing here — as people struggle to retain their homes, their health plans, and their careers, Americans are scared. Scared to rock the boat and scared to fall out of it… which makes these Market Basket employees even more impressive to us all, given how openly and wholly they’ve defied standing leadership en masse:
— Mark Garfinkel (@pictureboston) July 20, 2014
It’s Massachusetts, so…
One of the signs at the #MarketBasket rally in support of former CEO Arthur T Demoulas. Rally begins at 10. pic.twitter.com/jVo4o96wJu
— Todd Kazakiewich (@ToddKazakiewich) July 21, 2014
And the Teamsters stepped up, even though Market Basket isn’t unionized:
— Teamsters Local 25 (@Teamsters25) July 21, 2014
You can follow the Market Basket protests over on their official Facebook page.
[Image: Save Market Basket Facebook]