This Time It’s Personal (Shopper)

, , , | Right | January 20, 2020

(I’m a personal shopper at a grocery store. A few months ago, our lead quit; however, she still comes in once a month or so, always on Sundays, to help out since we are busy. She was a favorite among our customers, since she was really good at her job and would often go out of her way to make them happy. One day, this happens.)

Me: “Home shop, [My Name] speaking.”

Customer: “Yes, I’m having trouble placing an order. Are there any time slots available?”

Me: “Yes, they’re all free for this evening.”

Customer: “Free? I thought you had to pay a fee for them.”

Me: “No, free as in available.” *looks at time* “The earliest you could place an order would be for 5:30 today.”

Customer: “5:30? Isn’t there anything sooner?”

(In order to give us time to actually shop, all orders must be placed for a pickup time of at least four hours in advance. However, we more often than not shop the orders an hour or two before the scheduled pickup time.)

Me: “We will probably shop it sooner, but the earliest you could choose is 5:30.”

Customer: “Hmm… who’s shopping today?”

Me: “Me, [My Name], [Coworker #1]–” *the new lead* “–[Coworker #2], and [Coworker #3].”

Customer: “What about [Former Lead]?”

Me: “No, she’s not here anymore.”

Customer: “What do you mean?”

Me: “She doesn’t work here anymore.”

Customer: “What do you mean?”

Me: “[Former Lead] doesn’t work here anymore.”

Customer: “Are you sure?”

Me: “Yes. [Former Lead] doesn’t work here. She quit.”

Customer: “What?”

Me: “She quit. She quit a long time ago.”

Customer: “I just saw her Sunday!”

Me: “She will come on one Sunday a month to help out. She came in last Sunday, so she’s not going to come in again.”

Customer: “Did she change stores? I’ll go shop wherever she is.”

Me: “No, she quit. She doesn’t work here anymore.”

Customer: “Did she quit or was she fired?”

Me: “She quit.”

Customer: “But I just saw her Sunday!”

Me: “She doesn’t work here anymore.”

Customer: “But she was so good at her job! Why would she leave?”

(By this time, everyone who is in the office listening to me is staring at me, wondering who I’m talking to.)

Me: “It was time for her to move on. We are more than happy to shop your order, though.”

Customer: “Are you sure she quit?”

Me: “Yes, she quit. She quit a long time ago. If I could get your name, so I can keep an eye out for your order…”

Customer: “No, I won’t even bother anymore if [Former Lead] can’t do it.” *hangs up*

Me: “Well, then…”

(I texted the former lead and told her what had happened. She said I should’ve told the customer that I was lying and that she really just moved to Hawaii or something.)

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