Motorized Thievery

, , , , , | Right | July 2, 2018

(I’ve taken a job at a home improvement store doing general floor sales. An understaffed department quickly takes a shine to me and trains me on selling their products.)

Coworker: “And…” *sigh* “…here are the bathroom fans.”

Me: “What’s wrong?”

Coworker: *picking up an open box* “These are the worst for angry customers and theft. People will come in and insist on just buying the motor. You can tell them again and again that the motor isn’t standard between models and that you can’t just swap the motor. Some will buy the kit then return it when they realize we told them the truth. Some will bring tools into the store and discreetly steal the motor. But every last one of them will argue with you when you tell them you can’t swap it.”

(He shows me the open box, which contains a kit but the motor has been stolen.)

Me: “Oh. What can we do?”

Coworker: “Nothing really. Tell them you can’t just swap it, but if they’re not afraid of a bit of ducting tape, electrical work, and maybe some drywall cutting, it’s fairly simple to install a new kit. We have this book that shows step-by-step instructions; you can try to upsell it with a kit, but it’s not a popular seller.”

Customer: *walks up* “Yo, I need to swap a motor for a bathroom fan. Where do you have just the motors?”

Coworker: *looks to me*

Me: “Hi! I’m glad to help with that. Unfortunately, you can’t swap just the motor, but the kit’s only $12, and it’s a pretty simple project. We even have this handy book that walks you through it.”

Customer: “F*** that. I know you can just swap the motor. I just want the motor.”

Me: “Well, I’m happy to be proven wrong. You’re welcome to buy the kit and try to swap the motor. If it doesn’t work, you can just install the kit, instead.”

Customer: “No. I’m not paying for the full kit. I just need the motor. What don’t you understand?”

Me: “Sorry, it’s my first week. But unfortunately, I’m told we don’t carry just the motors. You can try a different store, if you like.”

Customer: “Whatever.” *walks away*

(Less than an hour later I was making rounds and found another open kit box with the motor stolen. Seriously, you can’t afford $12?)

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