Hold On Until The Weekend

, , , | Right | October 21, 2019

(At my store, and many others, cashiers answer the phones and then pass the call on to whoever needs it, or takes care of the customer themselves. I answer a call. The woman is immediately rude and condescending, with thinly disguised contempt for all retail workers in her voice.)

Me: “Thank you for calling [Store]! This is [My Name]; how can I help you today?”

Rude Customer: “Listen. You are going to get an item for me. You are going to put it on hold for me. I was in your store yesterday and one of you—” *I can practically hear her lip curl on this word* “—told me the wrong aisle for this item. So, you are going to go get it. You will put it on hold. You will hold it until Saturday for me. Is this clear?”

(I try to be understanding, because it’s frustrating to not find the one thing you need and made a special trip to the store for, and we have some new workers that are really bad at telling people where items are located.)

Me: “I’m sorry you had this experience. May I have the item number or a description of it so I can find it for you?”

Rude Customer: *sighs heavily, as if I’m supposed to know exactly what she needs without her going through the strenuous effort of telling me a six-digit item number* “Listen carefully. I’m only saying this once. [Number].”

Me: *a lot less sympathetic now* “Okay, the item number is [number]. It’s a [item description]; is this all correct?”

Rude Customer: “Of course it is. I told you the number!”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. And just so I can help our new members learn the store, do you remember where they incorrectly said the item was?”

Rude Customer: “No, I will not tell you this. You don’t need to know that. Put my item on hold. I will get it Saturday.”

Me: *in my best customer service voice* “Oh, well, I’m so sorry, ma’am, but we can only hold items for 24 hours. If you want, I can have it held until the end of business tomorrow, which is an extra six hours, or you can do site-to-store shipping, which guarantees your item will be waiting for you whenever you want to pick it up, or you can ship from site to your home.”

Rude Customer: “What?! I want it on Saturday. You will hold it until Saturday!”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. That’s against store policy.”

Rude Customer: “Well. I guess I’ll just have to come back on Wednesday, then. You’d better have my item waiting for me!”

Me: “Yes, ma’am. May I have your name for the hold?”

Rude Customer: “Why would you ever need that?”

Me: “Ma’am, it’s so we know who the item is for. Otherwise, someone else could purchase it.”

Rude Customer: *another sigh exuding her contempt for my very existence* “Fine. It’s [Rude Customer]. Did you get all this right this time?”

Me: “Yes, ma’am. One [item] will be on hold for you until closing tomorrow. Our hours are 9:00 am to 9:00 pm each day. Your item will be next to the registers. Is there anything else I can help you with today?”

Rude Customer: “No.”

(The line goes dead. I go to get her item. It’s a rather distinct thing, and not something we sell a lot of. I ask the department who is near the item if anyone had trouble finding this item yesterday.)

Coworker: “Oh! This lady! She demanded someone walk her from the front of the store back to here and that we point out exactly where the item was. [Coworker #2] did exactly that, and then the lady glared at all of us and left in a huff.”

Me: “D***, okay, then. Some people just want to be mad at the world, I guess.”

(I then put the item on hold and let my manager know what happened. My manager makes a note to ensure that the item gets returned to the floor at the end of business tomorrow.)

Manager: *grinning while writing a note to tomorrow’s closing manager* “Malicious compliance!”

(The lady did not come in to claim her item. I work all day on Saturday, and I’m sure I’ll see her smiling face then. Wish me luck!)

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