Complaint Compliant

| Lexington, KY, USA | Right | June 17, 2016

(For years our store’s deli has had meat/cheese slicing available as an on-demand service, with no additional slicing fee. More recently, many customers have been taking advantage of this, getting up to 14 or more pieces sliced at once. To hopefully put a stop to this and to save on labor costs, our corporate offices have decided to change this policy to an ordering system with next-day pickup PLUS a $2 charge per piece. There are several signs posted around our deli explaining the new policy. However we’ve had several customers either not pay attention to these signs or just think we’ll slice their order anyway.)

Customer: “Excuse me, could I get this ham sliced?”

(I apologize to the customer and explain the new rules to him in case he might not have seen the signs.)

Me: “We can still slice you order for you but it won’t be available until tomorrow morning, and there is a two dollar fee.”

Customer: “This is stupid! I live in [Town 20 miles away] and you expect me to come back tomorrow? AND I have to pay two dollars more? What are you going to do about this?”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, there’s nothing I CAN do. Corporate is the one that started this new policy, not us. All of this is above my pay grade.”

(The customer grumbles under his breath and storms off. I think that’s the end of it but about ten minutes later I see that the same customer has cornered one of our managers. Later, as I’m about to go on my lunch break I ask the manager what happened.)

Me: *to the manager* “So, I’m guessing that guy bugged the crap out of you about slicing, too?”

Manager: *exasperated sigh* “YES! That was one of the most hard-headed people I’ve ever dealt with…”

(She begins telling me about HER interaction with the customer:)

Customer: “I just spoke with one of your associates. You mean to tell me you won’t slice when I ask anymore?”

Manager: “No, sir. Corporate changed the policy two months ago as a cost-cutting measure.”

Customer: “Well, then, what are you going to do?”

Manager: “We’re doing exactly what corporate told us to do, sir. My associate and I have explained the new rules to you.”

Customer: “I don’t think you understand…I’m complaining! I live in [Town] and I shouldn’t have to come back tomorrow!”

Manager: “No, I do understand, sir. You’re not the only one who’s had a problem with the new rules. If you have any questions or complaints, you’ll need to call HQ.”

Customer: “Excuse me, but this is supposed to be customer service and you’re being very rude to me!”

Manager: “Sir, I’m being as nice as I can be in this situation. We cannot slice for you right this minute and we’ve given you alternative options.”

Customer: “You DO understand me, right?… This. Is. A. Complaint!”

Manager: “Sir, as I’ve already explained, this is a corporate issue. If you want to complain, give them a call. There’s nothing more I can do for you at the store level.”

(Apparently, this went in circles a few more time before the customer finally stormed off.)

Whatever Floats Your Oat

| Canada | Working | June 16, 2016

(I’m the worker in this scenario. I see a gentleman looking around for something, so I approach him.)

Me: “Hello, can I help you find something?”

Customer: “Yes, I’m looking for oatmeal.”

Me: “For eating?”

Customer: “Uh, yes. What else would I do with it?”

Me: *realizing what I just said* “Yeah, I’ll admit that wasn’t the smartest question I’ve said today.” *goes red with embarrassment*

(The kicker is that it wasn’t the first time that day I had asked that question!)

The Sting In The Tale Is A Lack Of A Sting

| Omaha, NE, USA | Working | June 15, 2016

(I am working the express checkout at a chain grocery store when one of the assistant managers gets word that another store nearby has just failed a sting. The managers then start informing all cashiers it is likely they will attempt to hit our store next since we get the most stings out of the entire company. They tell us anyone who looks under 35 gets carded no matter what and then explain the consequences if we fail.)

Me: “So, [Assistant Manager], are there any red flags we should be watching for in case they come here?”

Assistant Manager: “Yeah, it’ll probably be some nervous looking kid attempting to shove cash in your hand before you even scan anything with the Hulk in a t-shirt lurking behind him.”

Coworker: “What happens if we fail?”

Assistant Manager: “Well, they’ll hand you a citation and then probably flag one of us down to inform us of the fines and consequences. Don’t forget, you’re liable for the fine and you can get charged with a misdemeanor and also be fired, so be vigilant.”

Coworker: *sounding disappointed* “Oh…”

(The assistant manager and I exchange glances.)

Assistant Manager: “What were you expecting?”

Coworker: “Well, I thought there would be like music or balloons or something.”

Assistant Manager: “You’re giving them the money, [Coworker], not the other way around.”

Too Chicken To Toast It Without

| New Zealand | Working | June 15, 2016

(Our grocery store has an extensive deli which is great for lunch foods, and are known for making great toasted sandwiches. I see a hearty vegetable sandwich that looks great, and indicate my choice to the man at the deli.)

Me: “Oh, could I also get that toasted?”

Cashier: “Ahh… hmm…”

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry, is the sandwich too wide for the machine?”

Cashier: “No, it’s just, well, it wouldn’t taste that good. It’s just vegetables.”

Me: “Oh, really? It’s the kind of vegetables you usually have hot—”

Cashier: *cutting me off* “NO! IT’S WEIRD! If you want a toasted sandwich, you get the chicken! You don’t toast vegetable sandwiches!”

(I took the sandwich back to my office and toasted it there!)

You Can Scream Your Lungs Out But They Still Won’t Listen

| Round Rock, TX, USA | Right | June 11, 2016

(It’s nine pm. I am outside working “curb side” service, which allows customers to drive up near the store and have us load their bags. A lady comes up in an SUV loaded with her kids. I’m momentarily confused because we don’t have any carts with her groceries, but then she comes around to explain.)

Mom: “Hi, my son was in a car accident. We just got out of the hospital and I just need to grab a few items and it’ll take five minutes. Can I leave my car here?”

Me: “Well, no, we might have other customers come and we need this area clear for carry out.”

Mom: “Well, my son has broken ribs and a punctured lung and I don’t want to leave him.”

Me: “Well, if it’s only going to take a minute, I guess it’d be okay if you park a little ways down.”

(It was a fire lane area, but I’d seen people park there before for brief periods of time, so I figured it’d be okay.)

Mom: “Yeah, thank you!”

(She parks and goes inside. Since I don’t have any curb side orders to pack, I go over to talk to the kid, just some casual chit-chat. He’s 18 or 19 and the mom wasn’t lying; he’s clearly under pain killers and pretty out of it. Unfortunately, the other kids in the car are the most unruly children I’ve ever seen. At one point, one of them, about 10 years old, gets out of the car holding a one-year-old and just starts running around the car.)

Son: “Get the f*** back in the car!”

Kid: “You can’t tell me what to do!”

(The son has to get out of the car for the kid to obey. I have to go back and work, and after being busy for a while, I’m surprised to see the car is still there. It’s been nearly an hour and our security lead comes out. I explain the mom said she said she was only going to take minutes, and he goes over to ask them to move since it’s on a fire lane and has been parked there for almost an hour.)

Son: “You guys f****** said we could part here. This is bulls***!”

Security Guy: “You’ve been parked here for almost an hour and it’s a fire lane. You have to move.”

(The son isn’t pleased but he limps around to the driver’s seat and parks in a spot only about 20 feet further from where they were parked. Finally, the mom comes out of the store. It’s been about an hour and a half and the bags are literally stacked over the top of the cart. She finds her car, and then comes back up to me at the curb side. A coworker happens to be taking a break with me, and he had also seen this whole thing play out.)

Mom: “Are you f****** kidding me?! My son was just in the hospital and has a punctured lung.”

Me: “Ma’am, you said you were only going to take a few minutes and you were parked on a fire lane.”

Mom: *absolutely steaming at this point* “What are your names?!”

Coworker: “It’s [Coworker]. Let me spell it out for you.” *spells his last name*

Me: “Yeah, mine is [My Name]. Feel free.”

(She storms off back to the car and for a second I think it might be over, but no. She gets the son and they both walk back up to the store. I’ve already grabbed the manager and security lead and we meet right inside the store. The mom is screaming and cussing him out.)

Mom: “YOU SAID WE COULD PARK THERE! YOU HAD NO RIGHT TO MAKE MY SON MOVE! HE WAS JUST IN THE HOSPITAL!”

Security: “Like I said, it’s a fire lane and you were parked there for more than an hour.”

Me: “You clearly said it was only four or five items.”

Mom: “F*** you! My son was in the hospital. See? Show them, honey.”

(Walking up to the store, I had seen the kid stop and cough pretty violently, probably, you know, because he shouldn’t have been walking around with a punctured lung. Now, he spits at the feet of the manager, and some of it is clearly blood. My manager has finally had enough.)

Manager: “I need you to get the h*** out of my store, and don’t bother coming back.”

(The mom finally left with her son. That was probably the fastest a night at work ever went by.)

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