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Unfiltered Story #56927

Unfiltered | August 27, 2016

(In this story, I am covering the front cashier’s thirty minute lunch break. I am the Cosmetics employee, and besides the cashier and I the only other person in the retail section of this drug store is our Assistant Store Manager, henceforth referred to as ASM. The ASM is currently doing cigarette inventory and is squished in with me behind the front register. I am a young woman and have been working for this drug store company for a full year. The Cashier used to work for the company about three years ago and recently rejoined. The ASM has been working for this company for fifteen years, but was promoted to ASM a year ago and was transferred to this store a few months ago. At her other store, all of her manager tasks were handled by a shift lead, so she is still learning from the Store Manager how to do her tasks. She is not well-liked at this store, both for her incompetence and her general attitude.

It is lunch time, and the store is (predictably) busy. I have a line of at least three people the entire time I am covering Cashier’s break. Fifteen minutes pass, and a pair of regular customers reaches me. I instincively flex, as I know the Woman is tough on employees and treats us as below her. She is white, and her significant other is a black man who speaks little English. She speaks both his language and English fluently. The man is a bit more sympathetic towards employees.

Woman: *finishing up talking to her SO* Hello, we both need passport photos.
Me: Okay, my manager can handle that. *turns toward ASM, who is currently counting the cartons in the case* Can you do their passport photos?
ASM: *nods* Yeah.

The couple walk away towards the photo counter. It’s important to know that the photo counter is out of my view behind the register due to a drink vending machine. To see behind the register, one must stand very close to the wall. I continue to ring up customers, since that short bit of interaction allowed the line to grow even more.

During a short lull, I look to my right to see if people are coming up to my register…and lo and behold, my manager is STILL counting cigarettes! I check the time on my computer, and at least five minutes have passed. Past my manager I can see the mean customer staring ASM down and her SO giving me an exasperated smile.

Me: Hey, can you do their photos? They’re waiting, [ASM].
ASM: I’m in the middle of something! *sees the customers watching her* They can see that I’m busy.

Knowing she is my manager, I can’t say anything back. On top of that, another customer reaches my register and I have to ring them up. Time flies by, and suddenly the Cashier steps back onto the floor and jumps to help the waiting couple.

Woman: *very loudly so everyone can hear* Thank you so much for helping us, instead of treating us like we weren’t there! That other woman was such a bitch and made us wait! What’s her name and yours? I want to complain to corporate about her and put in a good word for you.

Cashier gives both names and takes their passport photos. I was too busy with customers to see ASM’s immediate reaction to this, but after the customers were gone and the lines weren’t so long, she complained about how that woman was “such a bitch! What, does she want my address and social security number too? Couldn’t she see I was busy?”

So far, I have not heard of any official complaints or compliments about Cashier or ASM. ASM is still working, and still an ASM. Me and Cashier documented this incident with the shift leads and the store manager, but ASM still thinks her daily duties come before the customers and that the woman was in the wrong.

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