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Old 10-03-2012, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Fairfax County
1,534 posts, read 3,317,220 times
Reputation: 507

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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoomBoxing View Post
You have to love hyperbole like this. "Oh everyone knows my opinion in this completely subjective matter is the truth. How can you not know that? I just said it so it's the truth!"
single anecdote <> data set
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Old 10-03-2012, 01:52 PM
 
2,688 posts, read 5,954,114 times
Reputation: 1288
I still remember when Safeway required employees to do this, in a quite overdone way:

My Supermarket, My Friend - Page 1 - News - San Francisco - SF Weekly

with, it turned out, some unanticipated negative consequences:

Business | Safeway Clerks Grimace Over Mandatory Smiles | Seattle Times Newspaper

I think one difference in the perception of friendliness here versus some other places is the population size. One of my aunts was a bank teller in the small town she grew up in where long-time families all knew each other. My dad did some banking in the same town and when he called, even though he hadn't lived there for years, the employees knew who he was because he had grown up there and still had family there. In the town my parents lived in, the person they usually dealt with at the bank was the mother of one of my classmates; they lived in the next neighborhood over. Plus most of us don't need to go into a bank very often any more because of online banking, paying by credit or debit rather than cash or check, direct deposit, drive-up windows (you see the tellers but don't really chat), and direct deposit.

(Just to clarify, those articles are archived from 1998!)
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Old 10-03-2012, 02:43 PM
 
298 posts, read 596,117 times
Reputation: 142
I really wanted to comment on this thread... about the flirting with hilsmom (not creepy), the teller being dinged for not asking some customer how his weekend was (stupid). But more than anything, this thread made me realize how long it has been since I've set foot in a bank. You guys go to banks? The last time I went, it was Christmas 2011, and I was getting $2 bills and dollar coins for the kids. The last time before that was probably 7 or 8 years ago!
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Old 10-03-2012, 02:45 PM
 
1,109 posts, read 2,338,401 times
Reputation: 416
Quote:
Originally Posted by Future Home Seller View Post
A friend of mine worked up to recently for Capital One Bank as a teller. She quit last week for a very interesting reason. She was forced to be friendly with everyone! They had secret shoppers who would rate her on her small talk and how often she smiled at customers. If she did not act friendly she would be written up. She was given a list of friendly questions to ask customers..

How many of you have gone into a branch bank office in Northern VA recently? (Especially Capital One) The Tellers are told that they have to make small talk with every customer. There are the standard questions they are told to use:

How was your weekend?
Any plans this weekend?
How about those Nationals?
Enjoying the nice weather?

Trouble is most people in Northern VA don't want to make small talk with anyone. They are TYPE A, rush rush, "I am just to busy for you" types. Lots of her customers at Capital One either did not reply or gave a one word answer to her questions. A number of them told her that was none of her business, or looked at her like she had two heads. A few even complained to the manager that she was wasting their time.

Would this fake friendly work in a regular town outside the Dc area rat race? Is the negative reactions she got to her friendly chit chat based on the culture of the area or something else?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nate_VA View Post
I had a 'friendly' teller at Suntrust in Tysons on Monday. She asked if I had a nice weekend. I found it to be a little creepy. It was almost like she knew what I was up to, and was goading me into giving details. They should stick to the basic courtesies without getting too personal.
I use to think making eye contact/smile/talk to strangers meant that people were friendly to you or whatever.

Now I'm not completely sure. Maybe people who don't immediately talk to you are trying to be polite by not wanting to get all in your business.

Anyways, my experience w/ CapOne has been more than positive.

Last edited by rsh56; 10-03-2012 at 03:12 PM..
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Old 10-03-2012, 02:47 PM
 
1,783 posts, read 3,354,799 times
Reputation: 1374
Quote:
Originally Posted by SallyField View Post
I really wanted to comment on this thread... about the flirting with hilsmom (not creepy), the teller being dinged for not asking some customer how his weekend was (stupid). But more than anything, this thread made me realize how long it has been since I've set foot in a bank. You guys go to banks? The last time I went, it was Christmas 2011, and I was getting $2 bills and dollar coins for the kids. The last time before that was probably 7 or 8 years ago!
This is so true. Unless I need a cashier's check or to open/close an account, I never set foot in one.
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:05 PM
 
Location: Fairfax, VA
1,449 posts, read 2,803,107 times
Reputation: 471
Quote:
Originally Posted by SallyField View Post
I really wanted to comment on this thread... about the flirting with hilsmom (not creepy), the teller being dinged for not asking some customer how his weekend was (stupid). But more than anything, this thread made me realize how long it has been since I've set foot in a bank. You guys go to banks? The last time I went, it was Christmas 2011, and I was getting $2 bills and dollar coins for the kids. The last time before that was probably 7 or 8 years ago!
haha - thank you for not thinking I am creepy for flirting a little with the customer service guys Much appreciated.

As for going to the bank, I have had to go a lot more than I would like in recent years. Sometimes I go to cash small checks, sometimes I'm there to get tooth fairy money, sometimes to use the coin machine with my daughter and recently I was there to apply for a loan. I also had to go deal with closing down my bank account/getting new account numbers s in the wake of having my wallet stolen (that was pretty miserable) - I thought my bank account numbers may have been on a card in the stolen wallet. Some things just can't be done as easily online, through an ATM or on the phone.
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:59 PM
 
5,121 posts, read 5,537,831 times
Reputation: 5800
You know, I always wondered why the bank tellers at Capitol One did this--and I noticed it's usually one of those four questions mentioned or a variation of it. Now that I know the truth, I am going to have some fun with this and make up wild stories about my weekend or weekend plans and such...

And yeah, I have to go to the bank. My paycheck is automatically deposited, but I have a monthly rebate I get that comes in check form--so every month I am there chit chatting about weather and weekends.
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:00 PM
 
Location: Reston
560 posts, read 1,107,015 times
Reputation: 447
I noticed this at my bank a couple of years ago, too. I think itís a tactic to get more people to use ATMs or bank online. I donít think the bank is tying to be nicer since they do it even when the bank is crowded and thereís a long line. They probably have seminars about this at bankerís conventions. The teller is just doing what theyíve been told to do, so Iím always nice to them.
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:07 PM
 
75 posts, read 79,038 times
Reputation: 133
I've never worked as a bank teller but I worked a lot of customer service type jobs over the years. It's a given that you have to be friendly and polite to a customer but IMO asking personal questions is way over the top. I took customer service courses too and this type of thing was discouraged.

I would feel a bit creeped out if a bank teller asked me what my weekend plans were, but I suppose "nice weather we're having" or something like that would be ok.
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:09 PM
 
Location: Arlington, VA and Washington, DC
23,587 posts, read 33,333,953 times
Reputation: 32220
I have a hybrid position at a credit union that involves teller work. I don't get the secret shops or none of that. I usually can just focus on doing the transaction or solving the problem of the member with little more than courteous respect and service. Don't get me wrong, I have members who I like and can totally shoot the bull with, but many times I'm working the line by myself since the regular at the branch is on medical leave. So obviously I can't really engage you if i have 3 or 4 other folks waiting in line.

I really don't like what the commerical banks are doing in this regard. They are forcing interaction that ain't there and want you to reach extremely high sales goals. It is nuts!
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