Extracts from a Diary of a Lidl Supermarket Worker


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Supermarket work at best is dull and monotonous. It is an area where workers are constantly exploited.

It should be noted Lidl have a long history of exploitation, poor working conditions and spying on employees

What follows is a Diary kept by a Lidl worker.

The Diary is in its original form

Name is withheld for fear of victimization

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Posted by Lidl Bylidl at 09:35  


Help the Aged


Lidl can feel like that sometimes. I think the whole disillutionment with my job has led me to probably come across at work as a bit heartless and not caring. Probably right somewhat.


A partially sighted old woman approaches. She struggles to reach to the depth on the trolley to pull out the items. The lassie on second till comes out of the office, and helps her pull her trolley to the checkout. Then leaves. So I help her to pack. I can hear the people in the queue behind saying,

“That’s shocking that is he no gonna help her. Terrible that.”

I pay no notice. I help her pack, rush her away, on to the next customer I think being honest without ever saying cheerio. Maybe if the checkout girl had helped me with this, I wouldn’t be so stressed and rushing them out the door.


Queue queue queue



Posted by Lidl Bylidl at 09:39



I was also seen by the manager, in passing, as changing my break recieved from 15 to zero when clocking out. He asked me what I was doing, I told him. As I went to the canteen to collect my coat, I seen him and the soon to be also manager smirking.


Well? Why the f*** should I give the money to you. It’s better in my empty empty pocket.


This after being scheduled in for yet another 4hour shift, which means no breaks. Which is bullshit when 4hours & 5 minutes does.


And the fact that we were out half an hour late, as always, I had a break entitlement. Which I didn’t get



Friday, 1 March 2013


Stock Take

Posted by Lidl Bylidl at 04:23


The scales are broken, so I’ve to sift through, literally, over a thousand polly bags, for the purposes of counting them. Then, floor cleaners broken, so I’ve to mop the entire shop floor, just the two of us, before being allowed home.


& I didn’t get home until after midnight.


This after again being scheduled for exactly a four hour shift, which means no breaks. As per my shift went over the four hours, which meant I never got the breaks I should have.


Sixteen hours I’ve worked since my last break.


& I don’t think I’ve left that building on time in 2013.


Thursday, 14 March 2013

Losing patience

Posted by Lidl Bylidl at 16:18 Thursday

Each day is a step closer to me telling those above to ram it.


An example, if you don’t mind from both of my two most recent shifts.



I am approaching the end of my break. A break which was delayed half an hour until 4.30pm, (during a 0800-1800 shift). The manager who took over the second till while I was away rings the bell. I’m in the toilet. I hear the bell. My break is not yet over. I emerge to find six people standing at my queue, and catch him jumping in his car and driving away in the background. YOU COULDN’T MAKE THIS SHIT UP




I am first till. The queue builds up, around 8 people. I ring for a manager to jump on, theres only two of us in the shop. He doesn’t come. I’m getting flustered and shaky. I RING AGAIN. I jump off the till to check if he’s still in the office. With 10-15 people stood there! Three full minutes pass of me nervously passing through shopping. HE WAS OUTSIDE WITH THE PLUMBER. YOU COULDN’T MAKE THIS SHIT UP.


On both occasions I confronted them afterwords. The first brushed over it. The second almost managed to prove my own point.


P.S, I just walked home 3 miles in the pissing rain, because I had to re-sweep and re-clean the floor.


& Heaven knows I’m miserable now



Posted by Lidl Bylidl at 16:24

Phoned home as I raged hurriedly along the road from work tonight in the rain. I can’t help but talk about it even though I know It’s pushing people away. My mates laugh it off and take the piss. But I’ve worked in retail for five years. In five different jobs. I know how I expect to be treated, not just at work but in life. And this is bollocks. I can hear it in my mums voice that the way I’m being treated and talking is upsetting her. Worrying about me. She said she wished it was different. And so do I


Posted by Lidl Bylidl at 16:45


Feeling Trapped and so Low

Manager told me it was my fault. If I had done it right first time I wouldn’t have to do it again. It’s almost comparable to how a victim of domestic abuse must feel. I’ve been almost brainwashed into thinking the way I’m treated is okay. Because I’m trapped in this job. Thoroughly miserable and trapped. What a thankless task. Even after racing about like a blue arsed fly to get out on time, It’s my fault. Feeling worthless lonely and miserable. It’s already come to blows. It’s a matter of time before i put an end to this shit. But I can’t afford it.



Posted by Lidl Bylidl at 16:52

Feel like I could burst into tears. If Morrissey sings just the right line It’ll come

Reblogged from http://lidlbylidl.blogspot.co.uk/





About Old Boy

Love the past and the future but live in the present

Posted on March 20, 2013, in activism, buisiness, Health and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. I can so believe what u have been through !
    I lasted at Lidls 5 days, I couldn’t believe the work load and the running about you were expected to do.
    My training was out of the handbook I was given, and then told to put it into practise when out in the shop!
    Nobody had the time to help me and I felt so helpless.
    I’m so glad I’m out of there….Lidls is such a nightmare to work for ….FULL STOP !!!!

  2. Mate, you are not alone, I know how you feel. I am a Latvian hence seen by many as one of those dirty ready to kill for a job Eastern Europeans (I am not, I’m too smart and I wouldn’t kill for a crap job in Lidl and we not as poor as many people believe) but I lasted in Lidl exactly four weeks before saying my wife that she has to look after me until I find another job. I encountered many shit employers but Lidl traumatised me for life. If I didn’t have an English Mrs and son I would have been back in Latvia or homeless for I can only take so much shit but humiliation experienced in that shitty Nazi store is something very different and evil. Good luck dude and walk out from that place if you can afford.

  3. wow .. I had my heart set on a job at Lidl.. hmmmm glad I did some research & found your diary in the nick of time!!.. looks like I will try B&M they are planning to open a new store near me.. they promote a hard working but fun ethic…they promote charity & community networks .. I will be right at home 🙂

  4. Don’t go there…don’t shop there…I worked for them for few years…I didn’t realize it’s change my life …so stress..so cheeky(poor) managment..Lidl is full of crap and pure deep shitty hole….Work is monotonous, hard and when you say something about it you gonna be abuse and then they cut your hours to min…then they kick U out.Always short on staff and you have work like 3 man…Lidl-full of shitt

  5. I recently went for an interview at Lidi and discovered what a lousy company they’re. They arranged a group interview and the 20 candidates were expected to stand up in a small hot room for 3 hours without refreshments to wait to be called for their interview. Here are some facts:

    1/ It was pointed out to you that you’re expected to work much harder at Lidi than if you were at Asda or Tesco for example.

    2/ They craftily get you to sign a contract for an un -set number of hours, eg 21 -30hrs for instance. By doing this, they can get you to work anything between 21-30 hrs a week.

    3/ The rota is done from a week to week basis so you never know where you’re. You’re trained to do everything in store and sold the idea that it gives you variety, the real truth is to get every drop of blood out of you and avoid you standing around for even a minute without doing anything.

    4/ The wages advertised states £6.90 – £8.10 ph. What that means is you start at £6.90 an hour and in 2yrs and 3 months time then you will earn £8.10

    5/ On the wall in the Sleaford branch where the interviews were being held, there was a poster asking everyone to hand in their 4 weeks holiday requests by the 22nd February. That’s what I call being a flexible with your holiday entitlement expecting you to plan a year’s holiday in advance. (This may not be applicable to every branch)

    Don’t work for them it just isn’t worth it,you will end up doing three people’s work. The reason they can sell their food cheaper is because the staff are subsidising the food by getting them to work like dogs!!

  6. Oh god I know how you feel. Currently working at Lidl and it is utter hell. I cry before most shifts but can’t afford to leave. Have been in hospital so had to call in sick for a few days, now so scared to go back in case I get fired. It should not be this way, stay strong Lidl workers! Xxxx

  7. Lidl Surprises Indeed

    If I could burn them all to the ground I would. Certain members of management should not be in management or customer service full stop. Moaning, bad-tempered, touchy and simply rude big children. Yes, you are indeed expected to be doing the work of 2 or 3 people. For instance unloading pallets and stacking onto shelves or the chiller have a set max time to be completed. A time that is usually completely unrealistic yet you get made to feel lazy if you don’t get it done on time, even though you are working your arse off. I once opened the main warehouse chilled unit for a colleague to pull out a pallet. I literally stood back for 10 seconds waiting to close it for them again, when the manager told me to stop standing with my hands in my pockets and proceeded to tell me what I could be doing in the meantime! Seriously? Many little instances like this will gradually wear you down and you are always looking over your shoulder just incase you may be mistakenly observed to be ‘idle’ or not doing something in the correct, crazy procedure. Even if you do manage to have the bottle to explain what you are doing and show that they were wrong, you don’t get any apologies anyway. It is all just your fault all the time. Till queues. Oh man. Ask ANY customer and they will moan about the queues. Rightly so too. By the book, we are supposed to open another checkout when 3 people are behind the person you are serving. Now, if you have a few people with only a small basket each then obviously this can have some common sense applied as there is no point in calling someone to a till to serve one extra person with a loaf of bread. However, the queues get really busy with a mixture of full trolleys and some with just a basket and oftentimes you are desperate to call another till operator but you have been told that no one else is available as you are understaffed. I’ve worked on the closing shift where in the evening it has been me on the till and a single duty manager in the entire store to serve customers, clean the tills, handle queries, decard the shelves, check food dates, sweep the whole floor and use the machine to clean it, do office duties, cash up, clean down the whole bakery, bring all the plants in from outside etc…oftentime serving a steady stream of customers right up to 9:30pm or even close at 10:00pm. My shift is supposed to finish at 10:30pm but a lot of the time never got out until 11:00. Even then things remained unfinished or had to be rushed and poorly done, which I hate. If you call in sick a few times through no fault of your own or do not take random shifts thrown at you last minute then you are a problem and you normal hours will be cut. I guarantee you. Depending on the store also I guess, it is very ‘clicky’. If the powers that be just like someone for some reason then they will get the hours and exceptions made. But YOU. You better keep your head down and graft like your life depends on it, for no thanks or recognition. I am on a 30 hours per week contract. It started out not too bad, but quickly the hours were in the range of 19 to 25 per week consistently. Apparently, the hours aren’t available as they haven’t met productivity levels and have to ‘save’ hours. Yet on the other hand they take on new staff….what? So the hours available are stretched even further. Why would they do this since it is not logical? Easy, they view you as just a simple resource that can be abused or called upon whenever they see fit. They want a large pool of expendable resources to call upon at short notice as this increases the chances of getting someone to cover shifts. They make it so YOU are solely at their mercy and left feeling ruefully grateful for any extra hours that get you closer to what your contracted hours should be anyway as standard! Once you have accrued a deficit of 30 hours ‘undertime’ any further undertime (which is in no way your fault!) will be chopped off your wages. I got paid only two thirds of my wage one month because of this. I have bills to pay, rent, food, child maintenance etc…they don’t give a flying fiddle about this though. They tried to blame me for my hours deficit as I had 2 days off sick, y’know that thing that happens to ALL humans at some point. They also have tried to pressure me into going down to a 20 hour contract, saying that if I then get 23 hours that week, then those 3 extra hours would go towards paying off the hours I owe…so I can get the wage that I should be getting in the fricking first place anyway! I said no, as they are sneaky making out that they were thinking of me in this regard. Never, ever believe that any decision they make or offer you is anything to do with your best interest. I knew that if I went down to a 20 hour contract then I would not get the extra hours anywhere near promised. In fact I might have then got under 20 the same way I am getting under 30! Then I would have been screwed completely. Anyhow, the problem is systemic in the company and it comes from the top down. Outrageous expectation from staff and ludicrous sales targets, efficiency numbers and productivity targets all create stress down through management and at the very end, as a store assistant, you get all the inevitable crap that comes out the other end. The only good point would be hourly salary, but sadly even that is not true. I would be better working a minimum wage job which actually gave me my contracted hours, plus that job would not expect me to do the work of 2 people, so the Lidl hourly rate that seems so generous and tempting is actually a dangling carrot. The way they try and squeeze the soul out of employees, you would think Lidl where on hard times and had to save a few notes. Ha! Greed inspires more greed. This is a company that thinks they are making great headway and expansion in this country now. But if they don’t get a grip, eventually they will have an even worse reputation to work for, only be able to employee desperate people, service and standards will decline further, less people will want to shop there and round the vicious circle will go. Work here only as a last option, but even then try to get a backup plan as soon as possible as it will destroy your soul.

    • I known how you feel I work for lidl on Streatham. When i calling sick my manager put down the phone on me. She accused the staff of shop lifting. They don’t give you your contract hours. They stop you from going to toilet. Manager curse you and call you black bitch.

  8. When you sign up to work for this
    Company you are signing your life away to
    The devil !!!
    Everything written in this article is
    Still practiced At all the stores.
    Nothings changed !! It’s always been like
    That . The best advice than
    I can give to anyone wishing to work here is
    to RUN ..o

  9. as a customer , here in italy , I noticed that the staff is also exploited at doing the security duties. It is completely ILLEGAL . the cashiers are not legally allowed to ask customers to check their own personal bags for not even one single reason by the way !!!. I had a strong argue and I called the police on site since I was reluctant , But this time I will ALSO press charge.THESE people must be exposed !!

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