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You Can Tell Them Two Times Or Five Times, But It Makes No Difference

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: Read_lots | November 22, 2022

I work in a small store that specializes in pet supplies. There are three locations that all sell more or less the same items. One of the things we sell is birdseed. It comes in jugs or bags. The bag is more than double the volume of the jug but less than $5 more in price.

We receive eight jugs and two bags of birdseed today, and my colleague calls a customer who requested that we put some aside for her. He has to leave a voicemail, as the customer doesn’t answer her phone.

About an hour after my colleague leaves for the day, I receive a call from the customer’s husband.

Me: “We received our shipment today, and we wanted to confirm that you wanted four jugs. Is that still the case? You’d save money by purchasing the bag, instead.”

Husband: “Can we get five jugs? I didn’t save my jug the last time; I recycled it. Can it be delivered tomorrow along with our food?”

Me: “I can certainly do that, but are you sure that’s what you want? If you buy two bags, you’re saving money and have roughly the same amount of birdseed. I can send you whatever you’d like. The food is ready to go—”

Husband: “I don’t have the jug anymore. What’s the price difference?”

I explain all the math — price savings as well as product volume. I state that I can send two bags tomorrow as that’s what I have to sell him.

Husband: “Oh! I’ll take five bags, then.”

Me: “Sir, I’m sorry. I have two bags physically here in the store that I can sell you if you want them all tomorrow.”

Husband: “Okay! I’ll take three bags, then! That and the dog food.”

I mentally hit my head on the counter.

Me: “Sure. I’ll send you three bags. Your total for the three bags and food comes to [amount]. If you’re all set, I’ll charge the card on file, and my driver will see you tomorrow sometime.”

Husband: “Oh, yes. The credit card. Do you have my wife’s card?”

Me: “Yes. It’s on file. I’ll charge it later today, and she will receive an email receipt.”

Husband: “Wonderful! We’ll see you tomorrow.”

Me: “Have a great day!”

I called the location closest to the customer’s address. Luckily, they had a couple of bags come in, so they were able to supply the missing bag.

Why is it so hard for people to actually listen to what you tell them?!

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