Following Instruction To Leave

, , , | Right | August 23, 2017

(I have recently started working in retail, and this is my first time on the checkout. I am serving a customer who is paying by card.)

Customer: “What do I do?”

Me: “You put the card into the bottom of the chip and pin machine.”

Customer: “How do I do that?”

Me: “Umm, there’s a slit at the bottom you insert it into.”

Customer: “Which way?”

Me: “Chip facing up and into the machine.”

Customer: “And how far do you push it in?”

Me: “As far as it will let you.”

(He stares at the machine for a LONG time before doing what is expected perfectly the first time. I process the charge.)

Me: “Okay, just put your pin number in and press okay.”

Customer: “How do I do that?”

Me: “You press the number buttons?”

Customer: “…I would like to speak to your manager.”

Me: “Oh, sure. Have I done something to upset you?”

Customer: “You have terrible customer service!”

(A manager is called. She walks up to me and rolls her eyes at the customer. She looks at the register screen.)

Customer: “Oh, [Manager]. Excellent—”

Manager: “You need to enter each number of your pin number sequentially in order of left to right as they were originally dictated to you when you first received them.”

Customer: “And th—”

Manager: “You then press the green button labelled OK on the bottom right of the machine. There are 18 buttons on the machine. Starting from the top left button, you go left to right by two, and top to bottom by five.”

(The customer spends an excruciating amount of time staring at the machine, so long that the machine times out, and the manager gives an very long and detailed description of what happened. Finally, after several minutes, he enters his number and the receipt prints out. The manager takes it.)

Manager: “This piece of paper is your receipt of purchase. You need to hold on to this to ensure you are able to return your items without difficulty should they fail to meet your expectations.”

Customer: “Thank you very, very much.” *to me* “THAT is how you treat your customers. *to Manager* You need to train your staff more!”

Manager: “Of course; however, many of our staff assume that our customers have the common sense to know how to pay in the same manner that have done every week for years without having their hands held through the entire process.”

(The customer sputters out of a retort before screaming that he’s calling our HR department as he storms out.)

Manager: “Here’s hoping he doesn’t come back this time.”

Me: “Does he have a mental illness or something?”

Manager: “I thought that at first, until I met his ex-wife on a night out, and she told me he puts it on to make our lives difficult.”

Me: “Can’t you just ban him?”

Manager: “After five years of trying to, he just keeps coming back. Even getting the police involved doesn’t stop him.”

(He came in a week later but I was more prepared this time, and I gave such a convoluted description of the entire process, with as many large words as I could think of, that he didn’t come back for nearly a month. I got Employee of the Month for “excellent custom service.”)

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The Only Victim Is Productivity

, , , , | Working | August 23, 2017

(We have an (admittedly very attractive) woman working in my office. She spends most of the day online or at the coffee machine. I’ve noticed this getting even worse as she has started to take two lunch breaks and generally do very little work. She gets away with it as all the guys (apart from me) fawn over her, rush to be the first to buy her a coffee, or help her out. Being snowed under this starts to irritate me, but I keep my nose out of it until I’m told that she now works with me to help with my work.)

Me: “Can you send me over [Report] when you finish it, please?”

Woman: “Oh, [Guy] is doing it.”

Me: “But it’s not his job!”

Woman: “I know but I was struggling and he offered.”

Me: “Okay, well, can you update [Presentation] like I showed you, and send it to me, please?”

Woman: “Yeah, I guess.”

(I get on with my own work. An hour later I still don’t have the email; it should only take 15 minutes. Another hour later, still nothing. I look up to find she has disappeared! I give her another half hour before I go to look for her. I find her chatting in another office.)

Me: “Have you finished my presentation yet?”

Woman: *looking at me like I have asked the most stupid question* “No, I’ll do it in a bit.”

Me: “Well, I need it by the end of the day.”

(Before I even finished she had turned away and started chatting again. Her attitude carried on for a full nine months, while the whole time I was getting stick for not completing my work. Then our boss was replaced with a woman who was immune to her charm. The worker put in a complaint with HR but it was thrown out. She left feeling “victimised” for being asked to do her job.)

A Drive Towards Technological Dependence

, , , , , | Working | August 23, 2017

(I’m waiting in for my husband’s new car to be delivered. Note: we live on a new estate that doesn’t always show up on old sat nav maps.)

Driver: *calling* “Hi, yeah, I’m looking for your house but it’s not on my sat nav. Are you on [Newly Built Estate]?”

Me: “Yeah, that’s right. Don’t worry, we’re used to this. I can give you directions.

Driver: Well I’m at [Supermarket] car park.” *about half a mile away* “I can leave the car here for you. Can you come and pick it up?”

Me: “No, I can’t. You’re supposed to deliver it to the house. Look, I’ll give you instructions; we’re easy to find.”

Driver: “I can’t drive without a sat nav! You’ll have to come and collect it. I’ll leave the keys in the visor.”

Me: “No! For one, that car’s not insured yet, and two, I don’t have a driving licence! So here’s the directions…”

(He found us with no trouble, in about the same amount of time it took him to argue with me.)

Your Argument Is Redundant

, , , , | Working | August 18, 2017

(A few years ago I could see my company failing. As I have two small children, I decide to find another job with some stability. Towards the end I talk at great lengths with some of my team and try to get them to at least look at their options, but as the pay is higher than average, due to the bad reputation of the company for firing people, many of them ignore my advice and some ridicule me for going to somewhere else for less money. A year later, I get a message from one of my former team. He is a decent guy but utterly hopeless. Due to him being friends with the boss, he was never pulled up on his behaviour and was massively overpaid. But I still want to help him out.)

Ex-Coworker: “Hey, [My Name], did you hear the news?”

Me: “Hey, about the redundancies? Yeah, I heard. Are you affected?”

Ex-Coworker: “I don’t know yet. We will soon.”

Me: “That’s a shame; it really is. How is the job hunt?”

Ex-Coworker: “Oh, I haven’t started yet.”

Me: “Maybe worth looking soon. I mean, it is better to find something now then be desperate later.”

Ex-Coworker: “Yeah, you’re probably right.”

(I know this guy won’t bother; as much as I want him to sort himself out, I know he will struggle.)

Me: “Tell you what. I will send you over anything I find.”

Ex-Coworker: “That would be great, thanks!”

(Over the next couple of weeks I send a list of jobs, each of them are more suitable to his “skills.” I deal with recruitment companies anyway so I get them to take a look at his CV. I don’t hear anything for a couple of months until I get another message.)

Ex-Coworker: “Hey, [My Name].”

Me: “Hey! How are you?”

Ex-Coworker: “Not great. I found out I’m at risk.”

Me: “That sucks; how goes the job hunt?”

Ex-Coworker: “Okay, I guess. Those jobs you sent over weren’t really what I was looking for.”

Me: “Really? Why not?”

Ex-Coworker: “Well, if I’m going for a new job I want to get more money.”

Me: “More money? But you might not have a job in a couple of months.”

Ex-Coworker: “Yeah, well, I need to find a better job.”

(I was stunned. This guy knew that he struggled in his current job, he knew that he was overpaid, and that any more money would mean an even more challenging job. I just didn’t know how to respond. Eventually he signed off and said goodbye. I heard nothing from him again for months, later learning from another friend that he did lose his job, and that apparently I didn’t help him out and that I promised to get him a job. He still messages me time to time asking for work; I occasionally send him over vacancies. None of them are ever good enough.)

Take Your Internet Fame And Shove It

, , , | Friendly | August 18, 2017

Friend: “Here.” *hands me a shovel*

Me: “Okay?”

Friend: “And stand here.” *moves me to behind a door*

Me: “What’s going on?”

Friend: “My sister gets home in a couple of minutes. I want to hit her over the head and flee.”

Me: “WHAT? I’m not doing that!”

Friend: “I thought you were my friend?”

Me: “Not enough of a friend to knock your sister out!”

Friend’s Mum: *in the Kitchen* “OH, PLEASE, HIT HIM OVER THE HEAD WITH IT! MAYBE IT’LL KNOCK SOME SENSE INTO HIM!”

Friend: “SHUT UP!”

Me: “What the h*** is going on?”

Friend: “I want to get famous on YouTube, and I thought I would make a viral video like that Shovel Girl.”

Me: “…”

(I didn’t do it.)