Flowering Disorder

, , , , | Right | February 27, 2019

(I work in a small flower shop which takes the majority of its orders over the Internet or over the phone. If a customer calls to place an order, a record of their information is made in our system to help us find any orders or information about that customer in the future. This woman called to check on an order about an hour before, and we cannot find any record of her or an order such as she’s describing in our system. This means we have not ever taken an order from her OR for her, and there has been no payment for an order that day. She is upset and says she will be coming in to “explain it to me.” She comes stomping into the shop, obviously on a mission, with her young son in tow.)

Woman: “I’ve been on the phone with you guys and you apparently lost my order.”

Me: “Yes, ma’am, that was my associate you spoke with. I am so sorry about the confusion. Are you sure that we are the shop you place an order with?”

Woman: *obviously outraged* “Um, yes! Do you think I am stupid?! Look me up again!”

Me: “Of course, ma’am. Would there be any other phone numbers or names that the order would be under?”

Woman: *giving me more names and phone numbers* “Try those, but there isn’t any way it’s under those, because I know it’s under the name I gave you the first time!”

Me: “As I said before, ma’am, I have absolutely no record of an order for today or for the next week under that information. At this point, my hands are tied.”

(I am trying to keep my cool, but she looks like fire is going to come out of her eyes at any moment.)

Woman: “So, what, you are telling me that you lost my order and you just aren’t going to give me any flowers?!”

Me: “Unfortunately, there was never any order made with the information you are giving me, so I cannot give you flowers that haven’t been paid for. I can have two arrangements made up for you right here and now, but I will have to collect payment before they can leave the shop.”

Young Son: “Mom, she already told you that they don’t have our flowers.”

Woman: “I heard her, but she isn’t listening to me! Why would I drive an hour to this shop just to try and get flowers I never ordered?!”

Me: “I am very sorry, ma’am, but at this point, we only have the option to pay for the flowers now, or I can refer you to other flower shops that might have your order.”

Woman: “Well, this is unbelievable. You must have some extremely stupid people working here, because I know I placed this order. I am not leaving without my flowers!”

Young Son: “Mom, let’s just go; they don’t have them—“

Woman: “Can you just be quiet?! I can’t believe this!”

Me: “I am again very sorry, but the options I have stated before are our only way forward.”

(I was not going to stand down and give her any free flowers. I had seen people try this scam before and I was not letting her get away with it. Before I could say another word, she let out a little scream, grabbed her son, and stomped out. I exchanged wide-eyed glances with my coworker, but went about my business. Funnily enough, about an hour later, the woman called and meekly explained that maybe she hadn’t placed an actual order and was wondering if she could pay for two arrangements now and pick them up. I agreed, and when she returned, she wouldn’t look me in the eye and took her flowers quietly. All that screaming and hollering — she could have saved herself a lot of time if she would have just paid in the first place.)

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