Wish You Could Be (S)Miles Away

, , , , | Right | December 19, 2018

(I get paged to speak to a customer who has a complaint about his service with another employee. When I get there, the customer is red-faced, furious, and barely keeping his voice down as he complains to the employee who contacted me. As soon as I introduce myself, he lays into me, shaking his shopping bag in my face the whole time.)

Customer: “I was over in menswear, buying a belt. And the girl at the checkout was so horrible. She wasn’t smiling! So, I said she should smile. And she didn’t smile. So, I told her to smile. And she wouldn’t smile. And I said I wasn’t leaving until she gave me a smile. And the next customer in line got angry. So, I left. But she didn’t smile the whole time.”

Me: “Was everything rung in correctly? Was she professional?”

Customer: “Yes, but she didn’t smile for me! A girl can’t be friendly if she doesn’t smile!”

Me: “Sir, as far as I can tell, my employee didn’t do anything wrong. She is not required to smile on command.”

Customer: “You have to smile if someone tells you to smile!”

Me: “Would you smile right now if I asked you to?”

Customer: “No! But I don’t feel like smiling; I’m angry.”

Me: “And she has her reasons, too, I’m sure.”

(He stormed out of the store, and I heard he later contacted corporate complaining about both me and my employee. The funny thing is, that employee was on her first day back from having all four wisdom teeth removed. Between pain and swelling, I doubt she could have smiled if she wanted to, but I wasn’t about to tell the customer that. Her medical issues were none of the customer’s business, and customers don’t own my employees’ faces.)

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