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Audio recordings of an interview of D.W. Smith (former Sainsbury's employee, circa 1950s to 1990s). Interviewed by Bridget Williams for her book 'The Best Butter in the World: A History of Sainsbury's'. Mr Smith started work at Sainsbury's as trainee salesman, later became leading salesman, then assistant manager. Topics include working in stores and store development 1950s to 1990s.

Summary of contents:
98_A and 101_A: National Service. Sainsbury's job interview in London. Personnel Recruitment Officer. Trainee Salesman. Lived in Finchley Road. Attracted to working for Sainsbury's, reputation. Training boning bacon, butter, cheese, groceries. Shown around stores in London. Comparison with Selfridges. First store Temple Fortune, Barnet. Lived in above Temple Fortune. Meat department in store next door but one. Started on dairy counter. Pressure of serving. Temple Fortune more Jewish customers. Demanding quality. Bacon counter laid out every morning. Manager arrived 6.30am. Cut bacon on no. 7 on machine. Bacon hanging up on display work of art. Service to self-service employee traits. Competitions selling products. Sales techniques. Promotion. Proficiency tests to become salesman. Leading Salesman, Senior Leading Salesman. Assistant Manager after 10-12 years. Pass out through each grade. Golders Green, Kilburn Highway. Haverstock Hill unusual as you served customers from the same side. S.E. Smith manager Haverstock Hill. Brent Street, Hendon 18 months. Manual store windows dressed from street side weekly. Mr Halford (ph). Detail of window dressing. Reading 1963. Wanted to transfer from manual store to self service. Non-believers of self-service in early 1960s despite opening Croydon in 1950. He believed in growth in supermarkets. Married 1960, living in Finchley. Property cheaper outside of London. Self-service training at Marylebone and Paddington. Manual operation in early self service stores as no pre-packing. Done in-store in preparation area. Push-up lifts. Chutes. Wrapping. Pre-prepared food stored in K11 bin. Brent Street preparation room cold. 1963 progress of build c.2 years. Leading Salesman at Reading in preparation area on bacon. Handover day 7am didn't know what to expect. Cleaned the builders' mess. Team of central display specialists laid store out. Standardised store layout team Bert Mervin (ph), Frank Allen (ph). Opening Manager Reading Mr Speed.

98_B and 101_B: Promotion to Assistant Manager 1966. Mr Speed returned to Chichester. Replaced by Mr Spragg (ph). Victims of company's learning curve. Appointed 1966 display specialist to Mr Carole Dyer (ph). Progressive style. Difference between manual and self-service. Increase in number of staff. Incompatible managerial styles. Display specialist role. Graduates could be Assistant Managers in 18 months. Reaction from long term employees. Display specialist role. Layout of grocery products cheapest to the left, dearest to the right. JS (Sainsbury's) product generally on the left. Colour blocking. Merchandising. 1975 Northampton productivity measure sorting sweets at checkout a waste of time. First cigarettes kiosk at High Wycombe.

99_A and 100_A 1961 five day trading, closed Sunday and Monday due to staff recruitment. Transferring money from store to bank 2 or 3 times a day. Money chained to wrist. Escorted butcher or warehouse man, walked 3 paces behind. Major Welham (ph) dressed up in sylvester to sell sardines. Green Shield Stamps. 1976 £19million pound reinvested. 1977 launched Checkout. 1976 Area General Manager of Romford. 1977 depot and transport strike. Tactics used to deal with strike. Team spirit. Competition c.1958 David Gregg identical market and strongest competitor. Agreement not to trade in the same towns. 1950 vision self-service store, supermarkets before this. Known for hygiene. Lipton's Home and Colonial taken over. Tesco. Customer Service.