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You Can’t Sweep Weak Managers Under The Rug

, , , , , , | Right Working | June 4, 2022

I worked in a membership-based store at the customer service desk. We can look up basically anything you’ve ever bought with relative ease. We also have an overly generous return policy. A man approaches my counter, hands me his membership card, and asks if I can find the receipt for a ten-foot rug he purchased two years prior. I start the process and ask what he needs it for.

Customer: “Oh, my basement flooded and the rug got ruined. We can’t get the smell or stains out. I want to return it.”

Me: *Pause* “Sir, we can’t accept that as a return. That’s not a defect with the rug. I can give you the receipt so you can give it to your insurance company but not for a refund here.”

He argues with me for a few minutes and then demands a manager. My store manager happens to be walking by, so I grab him and give him a rundown of the situation. 

Store Manager: “Sir, she’s correct. That’s not a reason to return the rug. You should get your insurance company to reimburse you, not us.”

This sets off more arguing. Finally, the man says he’s going to call corporate. My manager knows they’ll most likely approve it and we’ll both get in trouble for denying the return. He prints the receipt and writes, “Return approved by [Store Manager],” on it.

Store Manager: “We can return this rug for you this one time. When you bring it in, please have it as dry as possible. If you have any issues, have the cashier call me.”

With that, the customer and my store manager walked off. The next day, the customer brought in that stupid rug. It reeked of mildew and was still damp and heavy as can be. We called a supervisor up to scan it and get rid of it immediately because it smelled so bad. The man left with his several-hundred-dollar refund and a smug smile. Between this and a woman returning a thirteen-month-old bag of frozen ham, I left soon after. It was too infuriating.

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