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It’s Not About The Refund; It’s About The Journey

, , , , | Right | October 27, 2017

(A customer barges up to our customer service desk and slams her receipt on the counter.)

Customer: “I want a refund!”

(I check her ticket and see she hasn’t left the store with the item, or checked in to even pick it up, and has just purchased it a few minutes before.)

Me: “Absolutely, I can do that for you. Give me just a few minutes.”

(I start refunding the customer as she glares daggers at me and only seems to become even angrier as I respond to her demand.)

Customer: “Get me a manager!”

Me: “I am a manager, ma’am. Is there something else I can help you with?”

Customer: “I want a store manager!”

Me: “Okay, sure. Let me get one for you.”

(I bring up one of our sales managers.)

Sales Manager: “Yes, ma’am, how can I help you?:

Customer: “He is being very rude!”

Sales Manager: “I’m sorry about that; how is he being rude?”

Customer: “I said I wanted a refund and he just started refunding me! He didn’t even try to save the sale!”

(Yes. That is correct. I was rude for doing exactly what she asked, with no fuss or questions. Not in the way I acted, but because I was doing what she wanted.)

Party To Your Demands

, , , , | Right | October 26, 2017

Customer: “I need to book a birthday party. How much advance notice do you need?”

Me: “Okay, we can do that. We need at least one week of advance notice.”

Customer: “Well, that won’t work! I need it to be next Sunday!”

Me: “No, that’s fine. That’s a week, so we can do that.”

Customer: “What time is my party going to be?”

Me: “We have one spot open that day. Our only available spot for [date] is 10:00 to 11:45.”

Customer: “Well, that won’t work at all! We have a very important church event that morning. What other times do you have?”

Me: “There are three other parties going on here that day. The 10:00 am spot is the only one open.”

Customer: “What if we did it earlier in the day? Can’t I do that?”

Me: “We open at 10:00.”

Customer:You are inconveniencing me! Fine, what about Saturday?”

(I check the system, and see that we have three parties on Saturday as well. I groan inwardly because I can just tell this is going to be a problem for this customer. Also, I shouldn’t be booking a party less than a week in advance, but I figure that since it is nearly a week, my boss won’t mind too much.)

Me: “There are three parties Saturday as well, but there are two spots open. You could book your party from 4:00 to 5:45 or from 6:00 to 7:45.”

Customer:Ugh! This is not going to work for me! You people are very inconvenient about this; it’s like you don’t even want people to have their parties here!”


This story is part of our Birthday Party Roundup!

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Read the Birthday Party Roundup!

An Idiotic Gift

, , , , , | Right | October 26, 2017

(I work at a movie theater. An older gentleman comes up and buys six tickets for himself and a group of friends for the upcoming weekend. He’s a bit cranky while selecting his showtime and seats, but otherwise the transaction goes smoothly. When it comes time to pay, things take a turn. He pulls out a wad of papers and throws them at me without even making eye contact.)

Customer: “Use these.”

(I unfold the crumbled papers to find about a half-dozen receipts.)

Me: “Um, these are receipts.”

Customer: “Gift card receipts. Use ‘em.”

(I look again. They’re receipts for gift cards he’s purchased for the theater from the local [Retailer]. They literally just say “Gift Card” and the amount he paid — no card number, no scan bar, nothing that I can use.)

Me: “Do you happen to have the cards that you purchased? I can’t just use a receipt like this.”

Customer: “I’m not an idiot.”

Me: “I didn’t say you were.”

Customer: “Use ‘em.”

Me: “Unfortunately, I can’t. I either need the gift cards themselves or the sixteen-digit serial number from the back of the cards to redeem them.”

Customer: “Look. I’m not an idiot.”

Me: “I didn’t say you were.”

Customer: “Use ‘em, then!”

Me: “Sir, I have no way of using your gift cards with just these receipts. I either need the cards themselves or the serial number from the back.”

Customer: *deep sigh* “It’s always a different story from you clowns! Out to get the little guy while you line your pockets.”

Me: “Sir, the way the gift cards work has never once changed in the seven years I’ve worked here.”

Customer: “I. Am. Not. An. Idiot. If I couldn’t use these receipts, why would I have thrown out my gift cards, then? Huh?”

Me: “Wait, what? You threw out your gift cards?”

Customer: *after a pause, looking concerned* “I didn’t say that! I’m not an idiot! Just use the receipts!”

Me: “Sir, I can’t.”

(This back and forth continued for another two minutes. The customer kept insisting that he “wasn’t an idiot” and becoming angry that we couldn’t use his receipts. A nearby manager even got involved, and it just continued on in the same circle of idiocy. The customer ended up throwing some cash at me for the tickets and leaving. So, he bought gift cards, immediately threw them away, and then threw a hissy fit when he couldn’t use the gift cards he threw away… but don’t worry, he made sure to let us know he “wasn’t an idiot.”)

The Couponator 3: Rise Of The Coupons

, , , , , , | Right | October 24, 2017

(I am working at the cash register during our supper hour when we get a lot of customers coming through. Note that very recently, we have released coupons to arrive in the mail for every household, as well as printable versions. Customers are allowed to use more than one coupon at a time.)

Me: “Hi, I can help you over here.”

Customer: “I have multiple coupons today.” *pulls out her purse and proceeds to pull out five printed coupons*

(These coupons are “Buy one, get one free.” So, with a sandwich and a medium fry, one can get a second sandwich for free. She starts giving me her order, consisting of four burgers, four orders of nuggets, two chicken burgers, one large wrap, two small wraps, and five orders of fries.)

Me: “So that’ll be $51.95. Is this for here or to go?”

Customer: “That’ll be to go, dear.” *sits down and waits for her order*

(A coworker helps me deal with the rest of the customers in line. While they come and go, the first customer patiently waits for a while, staring at her remaining coupons, before coming back up to the counter. She calls me over to help her.)

Customer: “I would like to remake my order, using these coupons instead.” *she presents five printed coupons for a “two can dine for $10.49” deal*

Me: “Um… Let me ask a manager to see if they can help out.”

(I find the closest manager and explain the situation, and my manager refunds the order and hands her back her money. She then proceeds to put in the same order, using the new coupons. These coupons come with two sandwiches, two medium fries, and two medium drinks per coupon, so her order now also includes ten orders of fries and ten drinks. When asked if this is all right with the customer, she responds that it was fine.)

Manager: “So, after putting in the new coupons, your total is now $70.08.”

Customer: “But each coupon is $10; that can’t be right.”

Manager: “It’s $10 per coupon, but this is also with your drinks and extra fries, plus your wraps.”

Customer: *slams down her refund money from earlier* “Well, this is unacceptable! I want my order done the way it was before!”

(My manager had to redo the order once again, leaving my coworker to deal with the rest of the crowded lobby. Our line-up didn’t get any smaller as long as she was there, who kept us busy for about 20 minutes to make sure her order was done correctly.)

Not Heeding Your Own Counsel

, , , , | Working | October 24, 2017

(I work as a counselor at a day camp in the preschool division. One of my division heads is great, the other is not so much. The great one often works in the camp office for our division, leaving the other head to deal with the campers and other staff members, which can be quite difficult. One sunny day, we take the kids out to play. There is a canopy on one end of the playground, and all the staff members gather beneath it and sit down.)

Division Head: “You guys have to spread out. I want two of you by the basketball hoops, two by the swings, etc. You also need to be standing.”

(This seems like a perfectly reasonable request. My friend and I head for the swing set. We are able to watch the kids while also chatting. We are generally recognized as good counselors, and neither of us has ever even had a kid get injured on our watch. We start to chat but while facing the campers in our area.)

Division Head: *yelling* “Guys, you can’t get distracted. No talking to each other except on break.”

(This is annoying, considering our track records, but fine. We stop talking except as relevant to our campers. Two minutes later:)

Me: “Look at [Division Head]. Really keeping a close eye on the kids, isn’t she?”

(She had sat down, under the canopy, and was staring intently at her phone, not noticing the two kids fighting right in front of her.)