A Feint Complaint

| London, England, UK | Right | February 13, 2014

(We’ve been really busy lately. Senior management won’t approve any extra staff, so we’ve been getting a lot of abuse from customers. Because most of them want to complain about the wait before letting us get on with fixing the problem, this just puts our wait times up further.)

Me: “I understand completely, sir. You’re right. I don’t think this is at all acceptable. I’ve been quite happy working here for the last few years, but I’m now looking for other jobs. I would, frankly, be delighted if you would put in a formal complaint to our senior management about this, because I assure you, all we want to do is fix our users issues, and instead we’re wasting a lot of our time trying to calm people down about the wait. None of us are being allowed holiday requests, we often don’t get our breaks, most of us are coming in when we’re ill, and we’re all doing overtime,. The management won’t approve any extra staff because while customers are quite happy to yell at us about it – people who, let’s be realistic, can do NOTHING about the situation – nobody seems to want to complain officially so that something might be done. About the only thing I can think of to say that might improve how you feel about the wait times is that at least you don’t work here.”

(After a brief silence, the caller outlines the problem.)

Me: “Right, so you’re having the issue mentioned on our recorded message which tells you to download the patch from our web site. I take it you’ve done so and it hasn’t resolved the issue?”

Caller: “No. They just put those messages on to get people off the phones. They never change. It’s always ‘download the patch’!”

Me: “Well, you’re right about that in a way, yes. We put those messages on so that people who have the issue mentioned don’t have to wait in a queue to be told they need to install the patch, and thereby increase the wait time for our other customers with issues that take more investigation. I assure you, the messages are changed regularly to reflect the current situation.”

Caller: “What do you know about the messages? You don’t have to listen to them!”

Me: “Actually, I do. I call every line to ensure that the message is clear right after I record them, which, incidentally, was on my lunch break yesterday. I’m surprised you don’t recognise my voice, as you’ve been listening to me for the last hour.”

(Unfortunately, the caller still didn’t put in a complaint, and we still don’t have any more staff.)

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Grand Theft Innocence, Part 8

| Helsinki, Finland | Right | February 13, 2014

(I’m a customer at a popular independent games store in Helsinki. The store is very busy at the moment. I’m third in line when a customer storms in and rushes to the counter.)

Customer: “Hey! I want my money back!”

(The cashier completely ignores him, and keeps serving the customer whose actual turn it is.)

Customer: “Hey! Nerd! I’m talking to you!”

(The cashier still ignores him and serves the next customer.)

Customer: “F****** nerd! Listen to me!”

(When I am next in line the customer tries to grab the cashier’s hand. He manages to avoid this. The cashier looks at me as if asking for permission to deal with the angry customer. I nod and the cashier finally talks to the angry customer.)

Cashier: “There is no way that you are going to get any help from me before I finish serving all these other customers who are politely waiting in line.”

Customer: “F*** that! I have a complaint and I want my money back! Serve me now or you’re going to get your a** kicked!”

(The customer is a big man and the cashier is quite small and skinny. Luckily, at 6’6″ I am even bigger, and having played hockey all my life I’m quite fit as well.)

Me: “No, he is not going to get his a** kicked.”

(The customer turns to me to yell something, but as he sees me he goes quiet. He turns to back to the cashier and continues his rant in a much calmer but still angry and derogatory tone.)

Customer: “Listen, you little s***. I want my money back from this game.”

(He waves a copy of ‘Grand Theft Auto V’.)

Cashier: “I absolutely refuse to serve you before all these other customers, who are being patient and polite. You will get service from me after everyone who acts nicer than you has been helped first.”

Customer: “Get me your manager! Now!”

Cashier: “I am the owner. Now you go to the back of the line.”

(The customer starts to say something, but I push past him in a not very gentle way. He goes to the back of the line muttering. I buy my game but decide to stay in the store until the angry customer leaves. When it’s finally his turn he slams the game on the counter.)

Customer: “Money back!”

(The cashier opens the case and looks at the game.)

Cashier: “Looks perfect to me. Why do you want your money back?”

Customer: “The game is totally inappropriate for my son! No one told me it was so violent when I bought it!”

Cashier: “I clearly remember you buying it. You had your son with you, who looked to be about 10 years old. I told you it has sex, killing, torture, crime, and drugs in it. I advised you several times not to buy it. You even told me it was for you, not your son. My guess is that the boy’s mother threw a fit after seeing the game and now you are taking it out on me. You will not get your money back. Ever. And you are not welcome in my store anymore.”

Customer: “Look here, you little—”

(I have walked to stand behind the customer. I cough and he turns to me and goes pale. He leaves without saying a word.)

Cashier: “Thanks, man!”

Me: “No problem, I love the way you handled him. Maybe a little provocative but he deserved every minute of it.”

Cashier: “He was a complete a**hole when he bought the game, and the minute I saw him today I guessed what his issue was. Customers like that are the reason I started my own store. I hate to see bullies get special treatment for acting threatening and being difficult, while all the nice customers wait. I try to be as slow and difficult as possible to customers like him. Honestly, their business is not worth it.”

(The store is still thriving. I guess there are still enough nice customers out there!)

Related:
Grand Theft Innocence, Part 7
Grand Theft Innocence, Part 6
Grand Theft Innocence, Part 5
Grand Theft Innocence, Part 4
Grand Theft Innocence, Part 3
Grand Theft Innocence, Part 2
Grand Theft Innocence

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Making A Monumental Mistake

| Right | February 12, 2014

Doesn’t Know Their Rights

| CO, USA | Right | February 12, 2014

(I get a call around 2 am from a caller not staying at the hotel. I’m not busy so I help her anyway. The caller is articulate, but not exactly polite.)

Caller: “I’m looking for a bar to the right of your hotel.”

Me: “[Bar] is out in front of our building. Is that what you mean?”

Caller: “NO! The one to the RIGHT of your hotel!”

Me: “Ma’am, there is only a river on the right hand side of our building. If you give me even part of a name or any more information I can probably find it for you.”

Caller: “Look. Can you ask someone else? I know it’s there.”

(We go back and forth about this for a good ten minutes in which she escalates to saying that people like me shouldn’t have jobs. She laughs at me and demands she be transferred to a slightly fancier hotel a few miles away.)

Caller: “Just transfer me to [Other Hotel]! THEY’LL know what I’m talking about.”

Me: “With all respect, they are not near here and are unlikely to know about bars in this area.”

Caller: “JUST TRANSFER ME!”

(I do, and after fifteen minutes I call the other hotel to apologize for sending her to them. The employee at the other hotel cracks up laughing immediately at mention of the woman.)

Employee: “Oh, my god! She was crazy! I told her I didn’t know of any bar around there and she told me that she was going to ‘take this to the press!'”

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Walking A Very Fine Line

| ID, USA | Right | February 12, 2014

(My husband and I have just walked into the library, when we hear another patron berating one of the employees.)

Patron: “Nobody told me I had library fines! Now I can’t even use the library computer cause of that and it is an EMERGENCY!”

Employee: “Most people know to check when their books are due, to prevent having fines.”

Patron: “I can’t be bothered with that! I’ve told all you employees multiple times! I expect you to personally CALL me the night before I have a book due. EVERY TIME.”

(At this point, the employee, my husband, and I are biting our lips to not laugh out loud at her ridiculous request.)

Employee: “Well, I’m sorry about that, but due to the number of people on file, we can’t personally keep track of your books. That’s why we print out receipts with due dates.”

Patron: “USELESS! THOSE ARE USELESS TO ME! Oh, and don’t you DARE try emailing me either! My email is only for certain uses and getting emails from this library is not one of them! I will get extremely angry if you email me! I’ll just ignore it!”

(She continues to berate the employee for her own mistakes, and finally leaves after paying her ridiculous amount of fines. My husband and I go up to the employee.)

Me: “You handled her so well! I’ve worked in customer service before, and you were definitely a lot nicer than I would have been. I just paid off my library fine, and it’s really not that hard to keep track of when things are due and what I owe.”

Employee: *sighs* “Oh gosh, thanks. Sometimes… people… ugh… just people. Sometimes people suck.”

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