‘Twas I That Set The Economy Ablaze!

, , , , | Right | October 1, 2020

I’ve recently been promoted to keyholder at a chain clothing and skateboard shop in the mall. This morning, I’m opening alone and taking care of some store-to-store transfers. A woman comes in with a return.

Me: “Hi, how can I help you today?”

Customer: “I’ve got a return from another store, but their computers were down so the receipt was handwritten.”

Me: “Well, let me take a look at it and see what I can do.”

She hands me the handwritten receipt, which has the printed credit card receipt stapled to it, so I can tell it’s an actual transaction and not a fake. I check the totals and they match, and as I check the date, I notice that the purchase was almost three years ago in a store out of state. Our return policy is within ninety days.

Me: “Ma’am, I’m sorry. But you bought this almost three years ago; I’m not sure that I can take this return.”

Customer: “But I paid for it! The tags are still attached and I have the receipt!”

Me: “Yes, I see all of that, but our return policy is thirty days for cash back, ninety days for store credit.”

Customer: “I want to speak to the manager.”

Me: “I’m the current manager on duty. I’m sorry, but I can’t take this return.”

Customer: “Is there anything you can do?”

Me: “Give me one moment.”

I call my store manager, who will be in later on. I ask her if there’s anything I can do. She tells me I can return the item for whatever price it rings up as in the computer, but I can’t do a full return. I explain this to the woman.

Customer: “What do you mean?”

Me: “Well, you bought the item so long ago, it may have gone on sale since then or moved to an outlet store only.”

The purse is marked at $29.95. I scan it into the computer to check it, and it is coming up as $19.99.

Me: “Well, that’s not so bad. Sometimes items can go down below a dollar after this amount of time. Do you still have the credit card you used to purchase it? I can refund you the $19.99 to that.”

Customer: “That’s unacceptable. I want to speak to your boss.”

Me: “Ma’am, I just got off the phone with her; she is the one who is even letting me do this refund.”

Customer: “Then I want to speak to her boss!”

Me: “Umm… all right.”

I call my district manager and leave a message telling her to call me back right away regarding a customer complaint. While we wait for her to call me back, I apologize to another woman and her son who I was helping find shoes before the woman doing the return came in. My district manager calls back, I explain the situation, she tells me the same thing my store manager told me, and I tell her the woman wants to talk to her. I give the woman the phone and she argues with my district manager for about ten minutes.

I turn to the second woman and her son.

Me: “I am so sorry about all of this. If you’d like to leave your items here and come back in a little while, I’ll be able to ring you up.”

Customer #2: “Oh, don’t worry about it, sweetie. Honestly, I don’t want to leave you alone with her in case this gets bad.”

The woman gets off the phone with my district manager and hands the phone back to me.

Customer:You are the reason retail is a failing industry!”

She takes her purse and receipt and storms out of the store.

Customer #2: “If I were you, I’d be pretty proud of being the reason for an entire economic downfall!”

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