Ringing Some Alarm Bells

, , , , , , , | Right | July 19, 2018

(I work for a retail company specializing in high-quality body jewelry. We operate out of stores and kiosks located in malls. This customer browses our kiosk on a relatively quiet Wednesday night, about 15 minutes before closing. NOTE: she has no visible piercings, and is dressed in jeans and a t-shirt.)

Me: *specific but friendly company greeting* “How are you tonight?”

Customer: “I need a new ring.” *playing on phone*

Me: “Great! Were you looking for a ring for a piercing, or a finger ring?”

Customer: *seemingly disinterested* “I don’t know! Just a ring!”

Me: “Okay, unfortunately we don’t carry finger rings here but—”

Customer: *slams phone on counter* “Why do you keep talking about finger rings?! I obviously need piercing rings!”

Me: “I apologize for the confusion. All right then, what gauge—” *girth of jewelry* “—are you looking for?”

Customer: “Uh… I don’t remember.”

Me: “No worries; that happens all the time. If you have a spare piece of jewelry, you can always bring it in and we can measure that one. Or you can remove your current piece in the bathroom and bring it to us.”

Customer: “I only have the one piece of jewelry! I don’t want to take it out unless I know I have a new one. Can’t you just measure it yourself?”

Me: *reluctant because it’s not recommended* “I can try, but only if it’s a clearly accessible piercing. There’s a lot of kids in here, and anything we show must be kid-friendly.”

(I turn to grab my callipers and hear a zipper unzip loudly. I spin back around to find my customer sitting on the floor, attempting to take off her skinny jeans in the middle of the mall hallway.)

Me: *alarmed* “Ma’am, please don’t take your pants off!”

Customer: “But you need to see the piercing!!”

Me: “Ma’am, where exactly is this piercing?”

Customer: “Well, obviously, one of those!” *points into her jeans*

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but I told you it has to be easily accessible and basically child-appropriate. I can’t have you remove or show that piercing in the mall.”

Customer: “Oh, please! They’ll all know what it is soon enough. Just measure this!” *begins unzipping again*

Me: *firmly* “Ma’am, I need you to stop. I cannot help you with this today. You can either take the piece out and bring it inside a sealed ziplock bag, or you can phone your piercer and ask if he knows the gauge.”

Customer: *pleading* “Please? Just this once? I’m so excited for a new piece!”

Me: “I’m genuinely sorry, but those are your only options.”

Customer: *disappointed* “Oh, man, okay. I guess I’ll just come back tomorrow, and then you can put the new piece in for me!”

(She turned and walked away before I could point out that we were in the middle of a hallway next to the food court, and beside a number of children’s stores. There was no way we could do jewelry changes at my location. It was now twelve minutes AFTER closing. She returned again three separate times more to argue the point with managers.)

The Hottest Thing On The Menu

, , , , | Right | July 18, 2018

(I’m halfway through making a customer her hot chocolate.)

Customer: “Could you make it hot, please?”

Me: “Um… It is made with boiling water.”

Customer: “Yes, but I want it hot.”

Me: “Do you want me to not add any milk?”

Customer: “Well, no, I just want it hot.”

Me: “Don’t worry. It will be hot; it’s just boiling water and hot chocolate power.”

Customer: *getting frustrated* “Yes, I know that! But I want you to make it hotter!”

Me: “…than boiling water? So… Steam?”

Not Thinking Outside The Inbox

, , , | Right | July 17, 2018

Me: “Good afternoon. This is the [Operating System] IT service desk. My name is [My Name]; how may I help you?”

Caller: “I hope you can. How do I make it so I can’t see my emails when I click on them?”

Me: “Excuse me, sir, but I don’t quite understand. Could you explain this issue to me?”

Caller: “When I click on my emails, it opens them. I don’t want to read them.”

Me: “Sir, if you do not wish to open the emails, the only thing I could suggest would be to not click them.”

Caller: “How do I make it so that I can click on my emails without reading them?”

Me: “What is it that you are wanting to do with the emails?”

Caller: “Nothing!”

Me: *unsure what to say* “Um, if there is nothing you wish to do with the emails, you should just be able to leave them in your inbox without having to click on them.”

Caller: “Will I still be able to open them later?”

Me: “Yes, sir. The emails will remain in your inbox until you choose to delete them.”

Caller: “Oh, okay. Thank you for your help.” *click*

Shoulder Turn Up Your Nose, Then

, , , , | Right | July 16, 2018

(I’m serving behind the register when a woman approaches the till with her shopping, complaining the entire time about our air conditioning — how it’s too cold, blowing her hair all over the place, etc. I explain to her the reason why the store has its temperature so low — the building is largely made of glass and the heat generated spoils the food — and the transaction finishes. I begin to serve my next customer when the woman stands DIRECTLY UNDER the air conditioning unit, blocking the entrance to the store, and yells:)

Customer: “You know, when you stand under here, it blows straight up your nose and it’s just awful. Awful!

Me: *my patience is running incredibly thin* “Yeah, well, we have to stand under it for hours on end, so…”

Customer: *points at our automatic door* “You should have this open all the time now; it’s a beautiful day outside and you don’t need it closed all the time. Then, when this door is open you can take all of this mess out.” *points at the air conditioning unit’s metal pipes* “And it won’t blow up people’s noses anymore.” *leaves store*

Me: “…!”

Other Customer: “Oh, my God. Did that just happen?”

Won’t Be Credited For Trying

, , , , | Right | July 16, 2018

(I work for a fairly large Internet company who provides free emails addresses for our customers. In customer service, we can only change the email password, nothing else. Tech support actually troubleshoots.)

Me: “Hi, thank you for calling customer service and billing. How can I help you today?”

Customer: “Yeah, I forgot my email password.”

Me: “No problem. Let me secure your account with your username and I’ll give you a temporary password… Okay, so, I’ve got your temp password set up; go ahead and try to log on.”

Customer: “It’s still not working; this is a scam!”

Me: “Go ahead and tell me what the page is showing, and we’ll go from there.”

(Our customer reads off a fairly common system error, which usually happens after his account has been locked out for quite some time. It just needs a simple reset, but only tech support can put in that order. I explain this to the customer.)

Customer: “Well, this is just bulls***! Get me your supervisor. Even better yet, get me my bill for free!”

Me: “Sir, I know this is frustrating, but this will be solved in five minutes if we get you in the correct hands. I can’t credit off your bill, because your free service has been down only because you forgot your password. Tech support will finish what I started with you, okay? I’ll even stay on the line until the issue is resolved.”

Customer: “And you’ll credit my bill?”

Me: “No, I cannot credit your bill.”

Customer: “But it’s only $220 dollars, and today’s my only day off. Your supervisor will credit my bill! Get him on the line!”

Me: “No, we cannot credit for your free service being temporarily down. We cannot credit for inconvenience. We’re a big center, sir; waiting to speak to my supervisor will be approximately a 45-minute wait, and he’ll only reiterate what I said just now. I’m connecting us with tech support. In five minutes, you’ll be on with your day.”

(I called tech and the first thing the customer screamed was, “That b**** in billing didn’t apply my 300-dollar credit!” while I was still on the line. As promised, his email was up in minutes. He’ll never get that credit.)

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