Manager In (Need Of More) Training

, , , , , | Working | June 21, 2021

We have a manager-in-training (MIT) program where I work. Usually, people get promoted within the company from store level to a Third Key Manager and work their way up from there to assistant manager, store manager, etc. With our MIT program, we hire people from outside the company with previous management experience and fast-track them to be assistant managers. Since Texas has such strict liquor laws, it’s a serious position, even if it doesn’t seem like it from an outside perspective.

I’m a newly-promoted Third Key Manager when we get our new MIT. She’s in her mid- to late forties and has been a store manager of a home goods store for years before coming to us. She started in November, and now it’s mid-February.

Despite her experience, she’s been difficult to work with and doesn’t seem to be really retaining any information. I personally have had to walk her through the simplest procedures multiple times, not to mention the times our assistant manager and store manager have shown her the same things.

One morning, while I’m counting the highly stolen liquors in the store to confirm that nothing has been stolen in a week, she comes up to me.

MIT: “I’ve got a customer that needs a keg for Friday, but they want to pay for it now. Can we do that?”

Some of our smaller stores have people prepay for kegs because they have small beer coolers and can’t keep a lot of kegs on hand. Making people prepay makes sure the keg isn’t just left there. We’re a big store, though, and have a separate cooler just for kegs, so this is a weird request.

Me: “Wait, is the customer on the phone, or are they here in person?”

Only our main location can take payments over the phone.

MIT: “No, they’re here right now. We have three half kegs of [Beer], so they just want to pay now, since they’re here.”

Me: “I mean, since they’re here, they can pay now if they really want.”

MIT: “Okay! I’ll ring them up, then!”

A few hours pass and I finish up doing my counts when my MIT comes up to me again.

MIT: “So, you know how I sold that keg because I thought we had three of them in the cooler?”

Me: *Already with a sinking feeling* “Yeah, what about it? You checked to make sure that all three kegs weren’t already claimed, right?”

MIT: “Well, we don’t actually have any of the kegs that they want.”

Me: “What do you mean, we don’t have the kegs? Didn’t you double-check? You know that the inventory for kegs is always off and needs to be physically checked!”

I have personally informed her of this at least three different times, and I couldn’t tell you how many times other people have told her this, as well.

MIT: “It’s no big deal, right? We get keg deliveries on Thursday!”

We do NOT get [Beer] kegs in on Thursdays; we get them in on Fridays. So, when the customer showed up at 10:00 am for the keg — FOR HIS GRANDDAUGHTER’S WEDDING — guess who got screamed at for nearly twenty minutes before they fixed it by sending them to another store to pick up their keg and working magic to make sure neither store’s inventory was messed up in the process? Yeah, NOT the MIT!

The keg delivery came in less than an hour after the customers left.

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Computers Can Be Very Tire-ing

, , , , | Right | June 20, 2021

I work in a small local computer retail store. We sell nothing but computers, monitors, and computer accessories. I watch a man pull into our parking lot, look around a while, and hesitantly come inside the store.

Customer: “Where are your tires?”

Me: “Tires? We sell computers.”

Customer: “You mean to tell me that you’re not [Large National Tire Chain]?

Me: “No, we’re a computer store. We just have home and office electronics here.”

Customer: *Pulls out a business card for the tire shop* “So, you’re not [Large National Tire Chain]?”

Yep, that’s us, we just decided to put up a different store’s sign today.

Me: “No… we are not.”

Customer: “And you don’t have any tires?”

Me: “No.”

The man sighed and walked out, looking very puzzled.

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You Got 4000 Problems But Gender Isn’t One Of Them

, , , , | Right | June 19, 2021

I work in a large shopping mall, running a kiosk that sells gift cards for nearly every shop in the mall as well as reloadable Amex/Visa gift cards. As scammers are common, we have strict limits on these cards, as well as a list of potential repeat scammers who are not authorized to buy more than a certain amount due to their history.

A lady comes in to request $4,000 in Visa gift cards, so naturally, I have to run her ID as is policy with any transaction over $500. Unfortunately, her name comes up on the potential scammers list.

Me: “Unfortunately, due to our policy at the moment, the most I can sell you in gift cards today will be $500.”

Customer: “That’s new. I usually get $4,000 without a problem.”

Me: *Trying not to cue in the fact that she’s on a list* “The company has informed us not to process orders over $500 on these systems at this time. I’m sorry.”

Customer: “I saw the man before me in line just leave with [amount of gift cards around $1,000]. This is because I’m a woman, isn’t it?! This is sexual discrimination! You’ll only sell him more cards because he’s a man!

With an accusation as wild as this, I feel compelled to tell her the truth.

Me: “Ma’am, I was trying to avoid getting to this point, but the reason I can’t sell you the cards is that you’re on a restricted list in our system for potential fraud based on your previous purchasing history. There’s nothing I can do but sell you the lower amount.”


Me: “As I mentioned, it has nothing to do with your orientation; it’s a fraud alert list.”

Customer: “Show me the list. Show it to me right now! I don’t believe you. I think you’re making it up because I’m a woman.”

I flip the screen that is well-hidden behind the lip of my desk with a privacy filter outward so she can see that I’m serious.

Customer: *Screaming again* “This is outrageous! How dare you display my name publicly where anyone can see?”

I want to say, “How DARE you use our gift cards for money laundering?” But instead, I say:

Me: “I promise nobody else sees this list. It stays minimized on our privacy screens which are tucked behind the desk, away from the shoppers.”

Customer: “This is ludicrous! I still insist this is sexual discrimination! I’m going to contact the management and you won’t have a job by next week!”

Me: “Sure, feel free. I’m following company orders, so I have nothing to worry about.”

She stormed out. Management never heard a word from her. The following week, she came back, and instead of asking for $4,000, she asked for $500 as per her limit.

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Knows Zip About Zip Codes, Part 4

, , , | Right | June 18, 2021

I work in a national call center for repair service. We often get callers who think we’re local, but this one takes the cake.

A man calls in for service. I have to get his information in order to send the tech out. Everything up until the end goes smoothly — specifically meaning he doesn’t seem to be really young, have a hearing problem or a learning disability, or any other reason that could explain what happened next.

Me: “Okay, I just need your city, state, and zip code.”

Customer: “[City].”

Me: “Okay, state and zip?”

Customer: “What? It’s [City]!”

Me: “Got it, [City], and what state is that in?”

Customer: “I live in [City]!”

Me: *Guessing that he thinks we’re local* “Okay, I’m sorry, sir, but this is the national call center in [Town], Texas. I don’t know what state your city is in.”

Customer: “Oh. [State].”

Me: “Great, and what’s your zip?”

Customer: “My what?”

Me: “Your zip code.”

Customer: “How should I know?”

Me: “Well, it’s part of your address.”

Customer: “I don’t know.”

Me: “Do you have some mail laying around?”

Customer: “I don’t know. Maybe.”

Me: “Okay, well, if you could find some mail and let me know what zip code it says on it, that would be helpful.”

Customer: “Okay, hang on.”

I hear some rustling around.

Customer: “Okay, I’ve got it.”

Me: “Great, if you could just read me the numbers after [State].”

To this day, I have no idea how this guy functioned without knowing his own zip code or possibly even knowing what a zip code was. Had he seriously never had to fill out a form or send a letter?

Knows Zip About Zip Codes, Part 3
Knows Zip About Zip Codes, Part 2
Knows Zip About Zip Codes

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This Salad Needs Addressing

, , , | Right | June 14, 2021

I have just started working at a restaurant. An elderly man is seated at one of my tables, one of my very first customers.

Me: “Hi, my name is [My Name] and I’ll be your waitress. Do you know what you’d like to—”

Customer: “Spaghetti.”

Me: “Okay, the spaghetti and meatballs, and would you like soup or salad with that?”

Customer: “No.”

Me: “Oh, uh, it’s included with your meal—”

Customer: “NO!”

Me: “Okay, no soup or salad, just spaghetti and meatballs, is that right?”

Customer: “Yes.”

Me: “Okay, I’ll go get that started for you.”

When his food is ready, I bring it out to him.

Customer: “What the h*** is this? Where’s my salad?”

Me: “Oh, uh, well, you said you didn’t want one—”

Customer: “You’re supposed to bring the salad first!”

Me: “Okay, uh, sorry, I’ll go get your salad. Did you want Caesar, or—”

Customer: “No! Regular salad!”

I go back into the kitchen and ask the person at the salad station to make me one. While I’m waiting, I mention to another waiter what happened.

Coworker: “Oh, yeah, he’s a regular. He always gets salad and spaghetti.”

Me: “He was pretty adamant about not wanting a soup or salad.”

Coworker: *Shrug* “Weird.” 

Once the salad’s ready, I bring it back out to him.

Customer: “You know, no one’s ever gotten this wrong before.”

He didn’t tip.

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