You Have Someone Else In Store

, , , , | Right | September 30, 2017

(Until October, I was working for a department store, [Store A], but they let me go. In January, however, I got a job the hardware and home improvement store where this story takes place, [Store B]. However, at [Store A], I was so popular that people actively tried to find me if I was working, and one of the customers happens to find me during my first official day on the register at [Store B]. I am being shadowed, as per [Store B]’s policy with any new hire.)

Me: *walking around to scan the customer’s order, not seeing who it is at first* “Good evening. Will this be on your [Store B] credit card today?”

Customer: *not noticing me yet either* “No, not today. It’s just some pla—” *looks up from her purse* “Hey! Aren’t you supposed to be at [Store A]?”

Me: *looking up and realizing it is a regular from said store* “Oh, hey! How are you? Yeah, they let me go a few months ago.”

Customer: “Oh, that’s a shame, but at least you found another place, which is good. So, how long have you been here?”

Me: *finishing up the large items on her carts and going behind the counter* “This is my first official day on the registers, but it’s nice here. A lot better than what I had at [Store A].”

Customer: “That’s great! I heard a lot of stuff about [Store A] over the last few months, and they’ve really gone downhill.”

Me: *bagging and finishing her order* “Well, I guess they shouldn’t have let me go!”

Customer: “Oh, don’t say that! You’re too good for them; besides, most of them are ignorant a**holes.”

(I laugh before tendering her out and circling survey information on the bottom.)

Me: “That’s true, but make sure to take the survey at the bottom of your receipt. It could get you a [Store A], I mean [Store B] gift card!”

(My customer chuckles at my slight mistake, but then turns to my shadower.)

Customer: *to my shadower* “Make sure you keep him; he’ll be great for your company. [Store A] most likely let him go cause he was too good for them.”

(My shadower chuckles before nodding.)

Shadower: “Do you really need me to stay here? Because I can open another register.”

(I shook my head, but he stayed close enough to assist with the different features [Store B] had on their registers that [Store A] didn’t. Even though I hadn’t been at [Store B] that long, people that knew me from [Store A] started to find me, just like old times.)

Stay Glassy

, , , , , | Working | September 28, 2017

(My boyfriend and I are at a popular Australian-themed restaurant. I’ve never worked in a restaurant, but I’ve worked retail and customer service, so I always try to be nice and tip a lot. I take a bite of my baked potato, and my teeth stop on something crunchy. I pull out a shard of glass just as our server comes over.)

Server: “You’re looking concerned. Can I help with anything?”

Me: “I am so sorry. I never complain, but there’s a shard of glass in my potato. Normally, I wouldn’t say anything, but I thought I’d tell you so you could check the rest of the food back there.”

Server: *looks horrified* “Oh, my gosh! I am so sorry! I’ll be right back!”

(In a few minutes, the owner comes out.)

Owner: “I hear you had some glass in your food?”

Me: “Yes, but I don’t think I ingested any, so we’re good.”

Owner: “Wow, it’s not often you meet someone who’s nice about stuff like this. Because of that, we’ll comp your meal.”

(They also gave us a gift card for our next meal. We still eat there; we only found glass once, so I figure it’s okay!)

Time To Draw A Line In The Sand

, , , , , | Right | September 28, 2017

(I’m a cashier. An older lady comes up with her grown son, looking for construction sand. The son explains that there are only two bags left in the bay where the sand is kept, and they need eight. I radio the back and the backlot staff tell me they need about ten minutes to bring more over with a forklift. Ten minutes go by, and the pallet still has not arrived. The mother checks back with me and I give the back a call. They tell me the forklift was in use and they are waiting for it. I tell the customers it will be a bit longer. Another ten minutes pass, and the mother is getting visibly annoyed and muttering under her breath.)

Mother: “I can’t believe it’s taking this long. We should have been out of here ten minutes ago. What kind of customer service is this?”

Son: “Mum, weren’t you just saying today that you want to make sure you don’t develop bad habits as you get older? This is how you end up as an angry old lady shouting at cashiers because your coupon is expired.”

(The mother shut up and waited patiently for the sand to arrive. The son flashed me a knowing smile as he paid. I get the feeling he’s worked retail before.)

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It Literally Pays To Be Nice

, , , , , | Right | September 27, 2017

(I’m working customer service for a well-known bank when a young woman in her late teens or early twenties approaches my desk.)

Customer: “I’d like to see about getting overdraft fees removed from my account, please.”

(These types of transactions rarely go well. The customer is almost always angry and agitated, and I’ve been instructed to not write off legitimate overdraft charges unless there’s a really good reason. I’m allowed to use discretion, but if I do it more than once in a great while, I get in trouble. I steel myself for a tense interaction with this customer.)

Me: “Let me see here. It looks as if these overdraft charges are valid. You overdrew your account by [amount #1] on Thursday morning, and then made four more purchases over the next few days totaling [amount #2]. The $175 in overdraft fees you incurred are valid, and I can’t delete them. I could enroll you in overdraft protection though, so you won’t need to worry about this scenario again.”

Customer: “I’d like that, please. To be honest, I know this is my fault. I should have been more careful with my money, and I wasn’t keeping track of what was in my account. The blame is on me. I just figured it wouldn’t hurt to try to get these charges removed. Can you tell me how to enroll in overdraft protection?”

Me: *flabbergasted* “Wow. You’re the first customer in years to take full responsibility for an overdraft charge. I’ll take care of this for you, and delete the charges. Thanks for being so nice!”

Prioritize Yourself

, , , , , , | Hopeless | September 26, 2017

I suffer from many disabilities, including one that causes debilitating chronic pain. I was having an awful day. I was told by an office they couldn’t hire me because I was a liability (uncontrolled seizures), and because some of the other office workers were afraid of dogs. (I have a service dog.)

On top of that, one of my clients for my virtual assistant business was dragging his feet on paying me. It got to the point that I refused to help him with anything else until I got at least half of what he owed me. That resulted in a less than kind email about how I was terrible and would never get ahead if I behaved this way to all of my clients.

Unfortunately, I had very few people to help me financially. My boyfriend, who I lived with and was one of my caretakers, was leaving for deployment in just two months, and I was having a very hard time. My parents were going through financial issues. Then, I found out some bills were about to be sent to collection. I panicked, ready to call it quits, when I tried my last-ditch effort.

I had another client who was amazing. She was always good at giving me work, and was on time with her payments. Even though she was not due to pay me for another week, and I was not high-priority, I sent her a text to see if she would pay me early. Her response left me in tears.

“[My Name], you are ALWAYS a priority. Never let anyone tell you otherwise. Of course I’ll pay you today. You’re a blessing to me and deserve to be treated as such. God bless!”

Her kindness and encouragement meant so much to me. My future is still scary and uncertain, but I feel better knowing that I have people like her in my life.

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