Dealing with people in public..
by, 05-28-2008 at 01:39 PM
Blog Entry #2.
I don't know about anyone else here, but I work in the retail industry. It is amazing what we have to put up with.
When you have a job that consists of interacting with the public on a daily basis, you are bound to have some stories to come home with! I know I do! I have seen it all!
Sometimes, there are situations that just make you think, "What was this person thinking?"
For example, one time, a customer walked into the Employee's Restroom, and went to the bathroom on the floor! What the heck??? We definatly did not sign on to clean poo up off the floor.
Then another time, a customer came up to me and asked if the cut on his finger looked infected. I mean, this was a deep cut from one side of the finger to the other and it was black and blue. I told him to go over to the urgent clinic, but I guess he didn't.
Sometimes people can really test your patience too. They act like they can just waste our time. There are many times where I am trying to get something done by a certain hour and working the register at the same time. Yes, multi-tasking is common in the retail industry. So, I would drop what I'm doing, come up to the register and proceed to check a person out. Then after I tell them the total, they decide that they are not done shopping and vanish back into the store!!!
So I typically give them a minute or two of my time until I decide if I should cancel their order or not and go back to what I was doing. That kinda stuff really gets irritating after awhile because not only are they holding me up, but they are holding the other customers up as well and that is rude.
One day I had a customer who kinda irked me. I was checking out a customer and this woman over by the clothes yelled at me, saying that a rack almost fell over on her and hurt her. Of course that wasn't true because even though the rack was a little wobbly, the legs would have prevented it from falling over and hurting anyone. So I pushed it to the side and went back to the register. THEN the woman wanted me to get her a lawn chair. I though she was going to buy one so I got one from the back and showed her the price. She said she didn't want to buy one, just needed one to sit on before she fell over. So I put that chair back and brought out a folding chair for her. Then she told me to get her a Diet Coke and I rang it up for her.
What did I get in exchange? Nothing! Just a lousy attitude. Then about an hour later, a customer was starting to give me problems about something ringing up for the wrong price. Of course, the register has always been right. So I went back and checked the tag all while muttering to myself "Why the heck am I being treated like this?" So I was nice enough to reduce the price for this one customer even though I did not have to. Then, when I tried to reduce the price, the register started giving me problems! This all happened within the first two hours I started to work that day!
But I dealt with two customers in less than an hour that put me in a bad mood and I got no thanks from them for going out of my way to make them happy.
By this time people could clearly see I was frustrated and I even told my manager, who was right behind me, that I was not happy with the people I had to deal with that day.
It's also very common for several customers to try and get the attention of one clerk at the same time. One time, I managed to help four customers at once, not kidding.
I helped ring up a customer on the register while answering the questions of another customer who was on the phone, while telling another customer where a certain product was, and while running outside to give another customer a bag of stuff they had forgotten.
Things can get pretty crazy. But regardless, I do enjoy 98% of my customers and have gotten many compliments from them about my constant smiling and good attitude. Hearing stuff like that from them really does cheer me up, especially if I had been having a bad day. It's also nice to know that many of my customers are patient and understanding.
They are patient with me when I have to deal with other customers who just won't listen to the truth and are patient with me when the registers are acting up.
I LOVE all of our regular customers too. They are the nicest people I have met.
But I have learned something. You can only deal with one customer at a time.
If everyone decided they want to check out at the same time, which happens a lot, and complain to me about the long line they just made, tough. They need to wait, period like all the other customers do. I give every customer the respect of my sole, individual, attention to them when I am helping them out.
I believe everyone should work in the retail industry, or with the public somehow just to see what it's really like.
Now that my rant is over, what are your thoughts? Who here has had the same frustrations when it comes to working with the public?