Not Always Right: The Magazine

| Right | January 26, 2016

(I’m checking out a woman’s groceries while her boyfriend flips through the magazines at the checkout, looking increasingly dissatisfied.)

Customer: “All of your magazines are messed up! You should offer me a discount.”

Me: “Messed up in what way? I’m not authorized as a cashier to offer discounts, but I’ll be happy to have a look and let my manager know when he’s back from his break.”

Customer: “See, right here where the outside edge is messed up, and all of them are like that!”

(I look and see that the outside edges are indeed a little rough looking, but not so much that the magazines are ruined for reading.)

Me: “I’m sorry about that, sir, but again I’m not authorized to offer discounts. If you don’t mind waiting, I can push the call button to call my manager now, and perhaps he can offer a discount.”

Customer: “Well, it looks sloppy and unprofessional. You should fire whoever is responsible for this!”

Me: “It’s not a store employee that we can fire, sir. All of our magazines are stocked by an outside vendor. Again, I’m not authorized to offer discounts, but my manager should be available shortly if you’d like to take it up with him.”

Customer: “No, YOU should offer me a discount! The customer is always right, and YOU should be able to fix this without me having to wait for a manager! I used to work in a grocery store, and I know how things should work!”

Me: “If you used to work in a grocery store, sir, then you’ll know that customers treat the register magazine racks as a personal library, and aren’t always careful about how they return items to the rack. Once again, I am not authorized to give discounts, but I’ll be more than happy to call my manager over for you.”

Customer: “But I’m the customer, I’m right, and you can’t argue with me!”

(I once again offered to call my manager, and said nothing more while I finished his girlfriend’s transaction. He ended up purchasing the magazine, grumbling all the while that the condition of our racks was “unprofessional” and he shouldn’t have to wait for a manager.)

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