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08-29-2019, 12:45 PM   #1
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Please read this about Adorama

Helen Oster on LinkedIn: "I worked for Adorama in NYC remotely from Israel as the online reputation manager for 11+ years For 11+years we took no family break unless I could get good Internet. For 11 + years I worked til 3 or 4 in the morning, back o

I am sure many here have dealt with Helen over the years and remember how hard she worked to ensure the satisfaction of the Adorama customers. Seems like she was treated badly by the company though, and they will not get another dime from me. I wish her the best and hope she can find an employer that's worth her dedication and effort.


Last edited by BigMackCam; 08-29-2019 at 01:13 PM. Reason: Edited masked vulgarity
08-29-2019, 01:15 PM   #2
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Helen was always a pleasure to deal with at Adorama. I'm so sorry to read this.
08-29-2019, 01:22 PM - 1 Like   #3
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It sounds like she's upset if she's posting about it on LinkedIn, and perhaps she has very good reason to be. But I'd advise just a little caution when looking at only one side of a story. We don't know the fine details of her relationship with her employer, management and colleagues. I'm not casting doubt, here... just making the point.

In the past, I've let people go from departments and teams I've managed for a number of different reasons, and a few of those bit back. Their stories were very convincing (and, in some cases, perfectly sincere). Without a deeper understanding of the issues, folks could have viewed my treatment of those individuals as poor. But it never was... I never let anyone go without very good reason, but I never publicly disclosed my reasons...

All that said, Helen seems like a very decent sort, appeared to do a great job at Adorama, and the situation is highly regrettable I wish her the very best and hope she gets something else arranged soon.

Last edited by BigMackCam; 08-29-2019 at 06:02 PM.
08-30-2019, 12:43 AM - 8 Likes   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
It sounds like she's upset if she's posting about it on LinkedIn, and perhaps she has very good reason to be. But I'd advise just a little caution when looking at only one side of a story. We don't know the fine details of her relationship with her employer, management and colleagues. I'm not casting doubt, here... just making the point.

In the past, I've let people go from departments and teams I've managed for a number of different reasons, and a few of those bit back. Their stories were very convincing (and, in some cases, perfectly sincere). Without a deeper understanding of the issues, folks could have viewed my treatment of those individuals as poor. But it never was... I never let anyone go without very good reason, but I never publicly disclosed my reasons...

All that said, Helen seems like a very decent sort, appeared to do a great job at Adorama, and the situation is highly regrettable I wish her the very best and hope she gets something else arranged soon.
I wasn't let go. I quit in April.

I quit because I was being bullied and intimidated for doing the job I was taken on to do - which was to listen to customers, empathise with their issues and work towards long-term resolutions? The regime change at Adorama closed that door in my face. And ultimately in the faces of customers. Could no longer deal with the lies.

Still waiting for some kind of written...."Thank you so much for your 11+ years of loyalty and dedication to Adorama......" Have you any idea what it is like to close up your computer and leave a job without your manager taking the initiative?

A gold clock would be nice, but no expectations there......

08-30-2019, 01:10 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by HelenOster Quote
I wasn't let go. I quit in April.

I quit because I was being bullied and intimidated for doing the job I was taken on to do - which was to listen to customers, empathise with their issues and work towards long-term resolutions? The regime change at Adorama closed that door in my face. And ultimately in the faces of customers. Could no longer deal with the lies.
I'm truly sorry to hear that, Helen. Bullying and intimidation are entirely unacceptable, unforgivable and unhealthy. In the circumstances, it sounds like you did the right thing in leaving.

QuoteOriginally posted by HelenOster Quote
Still waiting for some kind of written...."Thank you so much for your 11+ years of loyalty and dedication to Adorama......" Have you any idea what it is like to close up your computer and leave a job without your manager taking the initiative?
Sadly, I have... I worked for financial institutions for 26 years. It can be a very impersonal, cold and unappreciative business where oftentimes the only thanks you get is the monthly pay check. I've never experienced the kind of written thanks you mention... only ever verbal (never on official record), and even then, not in every instance. So I can empathise and sympathise with your situation.

I sincerely hope you find something new and rewarding in which to invest your efforts, and wish you all the very best. Don't let 'em get you down!

Last edited by BigMackCam; 08-30-2019 at 03:58 AM.
08-30-2019, 05:07 AM - 2 Likes   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by HelenOster Quote
I quit because I was being bullied and intimidated for doing the job I was taken on to do
Something similar happened to me many years ago with a US company. When I was being bullied, I bought a labor law book and I hired two labor law specialists and one lawyer to collect evidence material (documents, emails, etc), then we sued the company at the court for about two years. I was asking for a 6 figures $ compensation, but of course they didn't agree to pay that much money, even my lawyer recommended me to agree on what they offered, but I didn't. After two years of negotiation, we settled for about 70% of the money I initially asked (tax free). I didn't ask my former employer for a thank you letter, it's me who thank them very much for transferring the money to my bank account .

Maybe instead of asking for a thank you letter, you could ask a lawyer if there is any chance to get some compensation money. Otherwise move on.

Last edited by biz-engineer; 08-30-2019 at 05:17 AM.
08-30-2019, 12:49 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by HelenOster Quote
I wasn't let go. I quit in April.

I quit because I was being bullied and intimidated for doing the job I was taken on to do - which was to listen to customers, empathise with their issues and work towards long-term resolutions? The regime change at Adorama closed that door in my face. And ultimately in the faces of customers. Could no longer deal with the lies.

Still waiting for some kind of written...."Thank you so much for your 11+ years of loyalty and dedication to Adorama......" Have you any idea what it is like to close up your computer and leave a job without your manager taking the initiative?

A gold clock would be nice, but no expectations there......
I'm sorry for your experience, Helen. I always appreciated your quickness to step into negative situations and I truly hope you can find a better opportunity to explore in the future.
08-30-2019, 04:01 PM   #8
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Very sorry to hear. Regime change at Adorama?

08-31-2019, 01:50 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sholom Quote
Very sorry to hear. Regime change at Adorama?
The founder of the business retired. I found it increasingly challenging to work with the changes in attitudes towards customers - which were implemented by the CEO recruited to manage the business.
Trying to battle it out put me under huge pressure, which led to severe stress - which ultimately damaged my eyesight.

Last edited by HelenOster; 09-22-2019 at 08:48 PM.
09-01-2019, 01:51 PM - 1 Like   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by HelenOster Quote
The founder of the business retired. I found it increasingly work with the changes in attitudes towards customers which were implemented by the CEO recruited to manage the business.
Trying to battle it out put me under huge pressure, which led to severe stress - which ultimately damaged my eyesight.
Unfortunately, businesses going downhill after management changes are very common. New people come in with no relationship to any employees. I was in that situation several years ago when a management change came to the company I had worked for for over 10 years. We did contract maintenance for a truck fleet. I was literally days away from leaving when the customer announced they were moving all fleet maintenance in house. They were just as unhappy with the regime change and were concerned that the garage staff would leave so they accelerated their plans a year early. Ultimately, my previous employer lost every customer and has ceased operations in NY state altogether.

It's extremely stressful when your customer is happy with your work but your manager tells you that you don't work for them, you work for me. In my case, I was hired by the customer and even given seniority for the years I had worked as contractor so I lost no benefits such as vacations. I wish you well and hope you find a good and well paying job.
09-01-2019, 02:37 PM - 2 Likes   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by HelenOster Quote
The founder of the business retired. I found it increasingly work with the changes in attitudes towards customers which were implemented by the CEO recruited to manage the business.
Trying to battle it out put me under huge pressure, which led to severe stress - which ultimately damaged my eyesight.
Hi Helen,

I'm really sorry to hear that you had to go through this. You were one of the main reasons that our users shopped at Adorama, and I'm sure this goes for many other groups as well. Thanks for the many years of dedication and support! If there's anything I can do to help, please feel free to reach out.

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09-02-2019, 03:15 AM - 1 Like   #12
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"My way or the highway" type management - glad you chose the highway! Here's hoping your action results in nothing but positive things in your life! You helped a lot of people and surely that karma will come back to you.
09-02-2019, 05:17 AM - 1 Like   #13
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Manglement strikes again, it seems. I'm so sorry you had to endure such a situation for so long.

This idea that higher-ups come into companies and "manage" them cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all style is ridiculous and yet, somehow, also ridiculously widespread.
09-21-2019, 06:09 PM - 2 Likes   #14
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Thank you, 'pingflood' for bringing this to our attention.


I figured internally that company was a sheer mess after trying to correct a simple issue with mapping multiple lens hood images to the actual product description and having to go through multiple people (including Helen who stepped in and did her best to direct) to no avail. I even made a concise infographic with correct lens hood image and arrows pointing to the correct item description and model number. Even with that the staff in charge of this couldn't get it right.. eventually I just gave up.

That was just the tip of the iceberg from other oddities with this company I've experienced.

----------------------------------



I pray you will land in a better position, Helen. More jobs out there than just that one.. but what an eye opener.

Helen was a large reason I shopped at Adorama since 2013 (first purchase there was a brand new K-30 kit). She supported me on a number of occasions where other Adorama staff just couldn't get it right. It troubles me she was apparently treated so poorly internally.


I use Flashpoint branded flashes though so I still have to use them... but beyond those I cannot foresee myself buying much from this company from here on. There are other competitors that (hopefully) are doing better to their employees.

On my first job outside of high school, a meatgrinder call center job, I managed to stay sane enough to work there a full year (2nd to last of a group of 30+ that left before me; revolving door; some literally quit crying). When I realized I was emotionally damaged from the job (customers are REALLY vitriolic -- death threats, constant yelling/screaming, etc) and put in my 2 weeks notice no one seemed to care. All my coworkers were literally huddled around a PC when I announced my final shift was over and I was leaving, none even bothered to turn around or say bye. Just total ghosting. What a gut-punch. But that entire job experience further convinced me to go to college though and stick it out.. which lead to a Computer Science degree and better opportunities (despite the crazy bosses later...).

I too can empathize with her as I have had really crummy bosses too. One, first meet, and some of the first words out of his mouth "I'll break your neck as soon as look at you." Then months later he shouted in the middle of the office that "anyone who believes in Christianity would have to be a moron." lots of other 'fun' moments. It was a hostile environment. Thankfully he was removed months later though and eventually he moved out of state.

I had another boss who would tell us to do one thing on Monday, then on Tuesday get very upset for doing what he told us to do. Further, he would argue he never said those things... total narcissistic sociopathy. Eventually we all learned to get everything in email. When he would claim he never said something, we'd just show him the email. Talk about dividing by zero.

Those are just two of others... I think sociopaths and people with narcissistic tendencies are inclined to leadership positions.. HR really needs to get educated and check down on this because it will destroy business.

Last edited by mee; 09-21-2019 at 06:16 PM.
10-07-2019, 03:30 AM - 1 Like   #15
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Reading this is disturbing. I've used Adorama for years after having a bad experience with Bhphoto(they were my first go to company). I have always been happy with Adorama as a customer but it sounds like there may be problems ahead. Often times the way management treats their employees translates down to customers in both tone and service. Regime changes can improve a business or destroy it.

I prefer to spend my money at companies that treat their employees fairly and with respect. That appears to be in question now at Adorama.

Im going to have to think about my camera suppliers again which is not something I relish.

I wish you luck Helen in your next endeavor.

Al
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