Your Customer Service Is On Form

, , , | Right | March 5, 2019

(I work at a store that has a similar set-up to many big-box retailers. We have a specific program at our service desk for sending out money. I come in for my shift today, and everything is fairly normal until about halfway through my shift. I am at our jewelry counter helping a coworker when a clearly angry customer comes marching over.)

Customer: “Does this store have any customer service that isn’t terrible?!”

(My coworker and I look at each other, confused, then look back at her. We’re thrown off by her randomly rushing up to us and yelling, so we don’t respond.)

Customer: “I have to go to work very soon! This is ridiculous! I waited in line at the service desk and was there before all of those other customers! The woman took all of them before me! Where is another store that offers [Program] but with better customer service?”

Coworker & Me: “[Competitor] has [Program] also.”

Customer: “Well, I’ll have you know I spend hundreds of dollars here every week, but it’s the end of that!”

(She’s yelling loudly, and other customers are turning to stare. We’re not sure of what exactly happened, but we want to diffuse the situation quickly.)

Coworker: “Would you like for us to call a manager over?”

Customer: “Yes! I would!”

(We call over the store director. He comes out to talk to the woman, and she immediately begins screaming at him and talking about our awful customer service. My coworker and I watch from a distance, glad we’re not dealing with her as we have been on the verge of laughter since she started throwing a tantrum. They call over a different girl to help her at the service desk. After she’s done, the customer leaves and I go up to the service desk to get the full story.)

Coworker #2: “She came up, grabbed a form, and stood off to the side of the desk to fill it out. She was over there—“ *points to end of the desk, outside of the line area* “—and normally, you finish filling it out and get back into line. Well, she just stood over there. I kept helping people in line. Then she starts yelling at me about how she was here first. If she had been nice, I’d have helped her really quickly, but since she was so rude I told her she had to get into line when she was done filling out the form in order for me to get to her. She just kept arguing with me and finally stormed off.”

(I go back to my area and kept working. About a half an hour later, [Coworker #2] walks past and simply says:)

Coworker #2: “I quit.”

(Not a second later, the angry customer came back. This time she headed straight for a manager, still upset with our store. The manager helped her, and after another fifteen minutes, she left for good. Dealing with her in total took probably about an hour and a half, including the half hour she was gone, and I wondered how soon it was she had to be at work. The highlight was that after she was gone, I sarcastically said to my coworker from the jewelry counter that I just needed a few more customers to randomly yell at me because I just love it so much. A customer overheard and popped out toward us, yelling, “AHHH!” I just about had a heart attack, but we had a good laugh.)

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