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Will Black Friday affect your work life balance?

One of my favorite parts of Thanksgiving is the afterparty -- you know that part of the day when your belly is full and you slump into the couch and chill. So, I totally understand why employees of retailers like Target and Best Buy are revolting over this mania to open stores and start the Black Friday hoopla on Thursday. Target had close to 100,000 people sign a petition against its early opening.

ShoppingmaniaHere's what some customers have said to the Baltimore Sun

Bryce Allison: “It's a national holiday not a national shopping day... maybe try giving thanks for your employees that bring you so much money.”

Scotty Brookie: “Encouraging people to shop in the middle of the night is bizarre. And forcing employees to be there to help them, when they could be home with  their families, is insensitive and cruel.”

Sonia Rodriquez: “Hard-working store associates deserve their family time on Thanksgiving. I will definitely be taking my business elsewhere than Target over this policy.”

Of course, now I'm torn. I like bargains. No, I love bargains! But I want to show solidarity. I want to let these workers know that understand that family time is important and that they should be able to enjoy their holiday. I realize that some workers  -- those who work in hospitals or public safety roles -- must work all day on Thursday. But this is different. This is corporate greed. Do Americans really need cheap TVs at midnight? Can't they wait until 6 a.m. on Friday to buy them?

For an employee stuck working in an office on Black Friday -- which was me for many years -- the Thursday night openings give them a chance to hit be a part of the mania. Still, do they really need it? They now have the option of shopping from their computers or smart phones. No more feeling like you're missing out and wishing you worked for a kinder employer who let you run through the malls stuffing your bag with sweaters at rock bottom prices. You can do that while earning income on Friday.

And make note of this: According to Consumer Reports, last year more than a quarter of the most popular electronics were marked down in the two weeks after Black Friday.

"If you miss Black Friday weekend -- fear not, there are going to be more deals all the way through, week after week," said Marshal Cohen, chief retail analyst at NPD Group.

I've decided I will boycott Black Friday sales at retailers who don't respect their employees family time. I'm going to wait until Friday to do my shopping. I'm sure Target will feel the impact of my decision. Right?

Readers, what do you think about disgruntled employees, shopping from your office cubicle and Black Friday sales? Will you boycott Thanksgiving night sales? Will you shop online from work or take a vacation day on Friday to shop? Would you rather forget about this shopping mania and spend Black Friday doing something more relaxing?

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