One step backwards, two steps forward on Milwaukee Avenue

November 7, 2008

2620-food4less-vacant-11-6-08-003Store closing

Last weekend, Food for Less closed its doors. It was a short-lived venture, and there have been probably three other similar dollar stores in the same space in recent years.

To my dismay, the building owners have reinstalled the window grates, once again creating a perception that Milwaukee Avenue is unsafe (see Spring cleaning).

The new “for rent” signs have an Indiana telephone number. I find this interesting because over and over again when I have talked with the business and property owners on Milwaukee Avenue, those that do not live in the neighborhood were surprised that I do live in the neighborhood. They have a perception of the area as not being safe. I’ll grant you that we still have more than our fair share of crime. With Milwaukee Avenue, though, it seems to me a chicken or the egg situation. What comes first: a change in perception or reality? Read the rest of this entry »


Milwaukee Avenue hygiene

August 26, 2008

Yesterday, marketing expert/author/speaker/etc. Seth Godin posted a piece, More vs. enough, about the application of Herzberg’s Motivation-Hygiene Theory .

There are applications for Milwaukee Avenue in Logan Square.

Herzberg’s work, concerning attitudes on the job, shows that there are two factors at work: motivation and hygiene (I know, I know; stick with me). Motivators or what may increase satisfaction are things like
challenging work on the job, or low prices at Milwaukee Avenue stores.
Hygiene factors or what may reduce dissatis-
faction are things like job security in the workplace or the cleanliness of Milwaukee Avenue.

Milwaukee Avenue merchants and property owners must address both satisfaction through prices and products, for example, and the absence of dissatisfaction through, for example, cleanliness and maintenance.


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