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There’s A Difference Between Enthusiastic And Annoying

, , , , | Working | February 3, 2022

I used to be a customer service “manager” at a furniture store. I put that in quotes because the title was a joke and only technically added because one of our sales guys was being an a**, but that’s a story for another time.

Every once in a while, especially on the weekends, my parents would stop by to take me to lunch. They knew that I could be working with customers, so sometimes they’d show up, see I was busy, and wander the store while I finished up. They were never shopping because A) that store was a joke and a half and I’m honestly surprised it was still open at the time, and B) in general, they didn’t need or want new furniture but were always interested in seeing if something might catch their eye. My parents’ attitude is very much, “We’ll ask for help if we need it,” and are very good about actually asking when needed. They’re polite, but they generally hate salespeople trailing them, and they ask to be left alone.

We have this one saleswoman who cherry-picks customers, hovers at the doors, and jumps on people as they come in. One time, my parents stop by and see that I’ve got a customer, so instead of coming directly to the front, they detour and start wandering.

Saleswoman: “Hi! Welcome to [Furniture Store]! Are you looking for anything specific today?”

Mom: “Actually, we’re meeting [My Name]. But I see that she’s busy, so we’ll wait.”

[Saleswoman] apparently slightly huffs but walks away, and my parents start browsing — in the opposite direction of the sales gal. The customer I am dealing with is difficult and it ends up taking me longer to help. In the meantime, my mom finds a couch she thinks is comfortable and sits down because she has a bad ankle and needs to be off it. My dad is nearby, checking a couple of things on his phone. Neither of them has made any indication that they’re actually looking for help. Guess who suddenly pops back up?

Saleswoman: “Oh! This is a lovely couch. We can custom order it if you don’t like this color, though.”

Dad: “We’re not looking to buy. My wife’s just sitting down for a minute while we wait for [My Name].”

[Saleswoman] walks away.

Meanwhile, up front, I’ve finished with the first customer, but we get a call that my manager forces me to take because she doesn’t want to deal with it. My parents see the first customer leave and get up to come to talk to me, but seeing me on the phone, they pause at a dining set. Can anyone guess what happens?

Saleswoman: “Oh, this is one of our best sets! It comes with four chairs, but we can order up to eight more if you get the leaf.”

My dad walks out of the store. My mom gets frustrated with the sales gal.

Mom: “Look, we’ve already told you that we’re not shopping for anything. We showed up to take [My Name] to lunch, but because she was busy, we didn’t want to interrupt, so we just wandered. But we told you that multiple times. Why did you continue to try and ask us if we were looking for anything?”

This sales gal is very… selective in what she chooses to hear or understand. She gets slightly huffy with my mom.

Saleswoman: “Well, why didn’t you tell me that? [My Name] is right up at the front.”

Mom: “We know. But she was dealing with a customer, so we were trying not to interrupt her.”

By that point, I’d finished up the call and grabbed my bag, so I rescued my mom from the sales gal and we went to lunch. Honestly, that sales gal was a pain and a half and did next to nothing in that store, but the owners wouldn’t fire her because “she makes us money”. I, of course, had to hear her complaining about my parents after I got back from lunch. I ignored her.

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