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Old 12-03-2010, 11:09 AM
1,596 posts, read 1,943,570 times
Reputation: 1101


Originally Posted by Aptor hours View Post
Yes in general the 30 to 55 year old woman is your most horrible customer! Now granted that is what I fall into and I'm great!! I find that men are easy going and many women are fine, but, sometimes there is just something going on with that age group of women that is HORRIBLE

There are always exceptions but this is generally true for restaraunt/bar customers as well.
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Old 12-03-2010, 11:13 AM
Location: Both sides of the Red River
778 posts, read 2,331,884 times
Reputation: 1121
Worked retail for 2 years while in college. The only good thing I can say about it is that it makes me incredibly greatful that I was able to get an education and get the hell out of that situation.

I worked in a mall in a pretty upscale area. While the majority of customers were actually pretty nice (I always strived to be of great service) we did get plenty of people who would be like "I make 120K and you're just a retail worker, blah blah blah..." Holiday season...just forget it. Every jackass is going to come out of the woodwork and blast you with "holiday cheer" on why it is taking you sooooo long, ya know a whole 3 minutes of their very busy life, to check people out when you have 1 register trying to check out 10 people at a time. Honestly, I could deal with the customers. It was my psycho boss and his even crazier manager I couldn't deal with. I actually later found out my boss was clinically bipolar and for whatever reason didn't take his meds. He would literally be laughing about something competely obscure and then blow up on my like "THERES A SPOT ON THE FLOOR!!! WTF!!!" I'm pretty sure I was fired 3 times, only to be rehired each time within the hour, because I was the only one halfway responsible there. I was also expected to cover for him when his wife called because he would be too busy bringing back ladies after hours to his office for late night "meetings." And quite frankly I think the guy was driven to insanity because of the owner and his crazy antics. When he came into town (usually every other week) it was literally hell on earth. Lots of profanity laced public beratings in front of customers if something wasn't stocked right or our work shirts weren't pressed enough. And we would always have to do these stupid "pow wows" every month were we would do chants like "I will succeed" and "the customer is always right" in unison. I felt like I was in a cult and having to give my soul to these people for a crap $9/hr job.

Going shopping now, I try to be very nice to all of the people working, and they all respond well, because I know the kind of hell these people have to put up with. If everyone worked retail at least once in their life, I think the world would be a lot nicer because everyone would know how it feels to be berated like a child for slave wages.

Last edited by #1soonerfan; 12-03-2010 at 11:21 AM..
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Old 12-03-2010, 03:54 PM
2,757 posts, read 4,015,928 times
Reputation: 3139
Originally Posted by annika08 View Post
I don't work retail but I work in the hospitality industry and I will honestly say that people make me so sick to my stomach now that I don't want to deal with the public-period-on my off time.
Neither do I. They are idiots. They can't drive. They don't know (or care) what another's "personal space" is. They are rude. They are jackasses.

Thankfully EVERYONE'S NOT like that. However, enough are so that I would LOVE to be shipwrecked on an island for a while. Maybe I could tolerate 6 other people with me (Gilligan's Island), but that's it.
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Old 12-04-2010, 03:51 PM
Location: Cheektowaga, NY
2,008 posts, read 1,256,680 times
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Originally Posted by rfr69 View Post

When I got out of colleg eand got my first professional office job I was shocked that your actually able to manage your own time, people aren't keeping tabs on if you came back from lunch 2 and a half minutes late or if you came clocked in one minute late. At retail yoru treated like a kid.
excellent point... 10 months into my first full-time position at an engineering firm here in Northern VA, I'm still getting used to that.
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Old 12-04-2010, 04:05 PM
Location: In a house
13,250 posts, read 42,910,094 times
Reputation: 20198
Originally Posted by rfr69 View Post
I also agree with being talked down to. People assume b/c you are working retail you are their whipping boy or you are an idiot, uneducated, etc. I have had people tell me things like "I drive a Jaguar, your working a register at such and such store" etc things like taht.
This was funny to me. I worked fast food in one place for 3.5 years. I had only -one- customer THAT arrogant as to even suggest that he was superior based on his choice of vehicle. He told me that his used BMW cost more than I earn in a year. That got a laugh out of all the people behind the counter with me...

and then I pointed out the window to my Jaguar and told him "Yeah so did mine. Good thing I don't have to work for a living, like you do."

I work because I LIKE to work. I prefer retail because I'm really good at it. I LOVE the customers. I even like the self-righteous, myopic, ego-centric cell-phone clones. I consider it a challenge to get them to turn the phone off and pay attention to the world beyond a 30-inch range of their faces. They are the ones who keep my mind sharp, my reflexes fast.

They're the ones who are completely oblivious to the fact that their lit cigarette is about to drop ashes in a puddle of gasoline at the gas station. And the ones who don't notice that their toddler has just flailed his arm toward the table next to them, and spilled their neighbor's soda all over her lap. And the ones who tell the cashier to "hold on a minute" while they finish their sales call, during the lunch rush, with 6 customers behind him and a busload of tourists coming toward the front door from the parking lot.

But - like I said. It's a challenge, and it's fun. I'll never forget that guy with the BMW. Definitely a highlight of my fast food career.

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Old 12-05-2010, 10:22 PM
Location: Southern California
12,857 posts, read 15,174,425 times
Reputation: 15435
I've worked my share of retail:

Robinson's May (now Macy's) lingerie dept
Short-term at Nordstrom kids' shoe dept
The Guess Store
Vertigo...this small womens' clothing boutique also at the mall

Believe it or not, the customers I worked weren't bad. I can't recall a single situation when I had a horrible customer. I did my best & that's that.
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Old 12-06-2010, 07:51 AM
24,494 posts, read 23,217,857 times
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I may have to go to bat for retail managers on this. Yes, there has been a developing problem with too much management going on on all levels of retail. But the managers get treated like children by THEIR bosses just as much as they treat their workers like children. Look at it this way. Computerization and streamlining in the never ending hunt for maximum profit is to blame. They get handed down schedules from the home office. They get told how long it should take a certain job to get done. They get told where to put people and what to tell them to do. You have more managers now in many retail companies than ever, all with the extra burden of documenting what gets done and making it look like everybody is working as efficiently as possible as per their schedules. Its been an attempt to make the job idiot proof, but its also undermining decision making abilities of the management staff. In short, sometimes the home office needs to keep its nose out of what goes on stores and realize that not every store has the same problems and a one fix fits all plan generally causes more problems than it solves.
Naturally most, or at least many, people work better without somebody looking over their shoulder and telling them what to do constantly. Experienced , good staffs can pretty much run the store themselves, doing their jobs and making decisions themselves. Not everybody fits into this category, but good managers will know who to leave alone and who to give extra supervision or assistance to.
I've seen the micro managing and adherence to company guidelines eat away at sales and productivity. Then store level managers get put under fire for it. Can they tell their superiors that its the companies fault? I don't think so. Experienced managers would know this, but less experienced managers might not even realize what the problem is, never having been allowed to learn their job from the people under them.
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Old 12-06-2010, 08:03 AM
1,135 posts, read 2,199,871 times
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I think everyone should work in retail at least once in their lives. It was my first job and even though I didn't get many rude customers, I did get the snobby ones and even MORE of just plain old stupid people. I never realized how dumb that seemingly intelligent people actually were. But, being on straight commission, I just smiled and later shook my head. It did renew my appreciation for manners and common sense on a daily basis.
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Old 12-06-2010, 08:27 AM
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The climate in retail has changed and it does get frustrating at times. I got into it temporarily but found my niche and liked many things about it. Convenient hours, no commute, low stress( LOL, its true). Or was.
But many things have changed the last few years and I've seen the company lose ground and make some glaring mistakes and its hard to try to ignore them when you do have loyalty to the company and want it to succeed.
Micro managing is a big problem. I've said they've tried to make managing a store idiot proof, but thats not helping train better managers. Good managers learn from their employees and also help teach them. Thats pretty much gone at this point. Everything gets handed down from above and only the best and most experienced managers will know when to ignore what they're told to do. We have 6 managers on a shift where there were once 2. You have experienced people who see problems, potential opportunites and ignore them all due to computerized schedules and staffing shortages and time tables. Then sales suffer and nobody can figure out why. Oh yeah, people must not be working hard enough. No, its the home office assessing how long it takes to do a job and the minimum people to do it. Let people do their job, stay out of their way.
Another problem is trying to keep inventory under control. In bad stores, ones with poor workers( not necessarily poor managers although that was often the case) you'd have inventory out of control. So they decided to computerize and track everything and assign people to process backroom merchandise. Instead of just putting merchandise into a bin and taking it out again, you have to now wait to get a printout telling you waht to get and when and where to get it and only certain employees can get it. All this needs to be done and the inventory system numbers updated. You might have no Twinkies on the shelf, 4 cases of them in the bin, but if it doesn't say to pick it, it stays in the bin. It might not have been scanned in and will never be picked or it may get picked tomorrow. And if you ask to get the item, that extra time spent getting it counts against you and the stock picker. Everybody is given a time allowance to get their assigned job completed. Yeah, that hurts sales. Somebody expereinced with a department could bin merchandise in minutes where it takes somebody else a half hour or more scanning it in. You could also retrieve merhcandise in minutes while it takes them a half hour or more to scan it out. But thats all so they can keep tabs on inventory. They've created problems with losing productivity, sales and management training, the exact opposite of what they were trying to do. But money being what retail is all about, I have no doubt many of the recent changes they've made will be scrapped before long. You just have to hang in there.
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Old 12-06-2010, 01:32 PM
Location: Atlanta
4,439 posts, read 5,539,228 times
Reputation: 3395
Default This is why we need to unionize the retail sector!!

Reading this thread is just sooooo discouraging. If this is how retail employees are treated these days in this country, then I want no part of it. How to do my x-mas shopping, then? Maybe I just won't do any this year...LOL.

I used to work retail back in the day, in a different era. While there was some rough edges to the job (as with any job), there wasn't anything like what's been described in this thread...my gosh, being chewed out for just not selling those "upgrades" that nobody in their right mind wants to pay for?!? Good grief, why don't these managers get a frickin' clue that you can't force customers to pay for stuff they don't want or need??

Sadly, with the way things are going in retail, I think the retail workers of America need to form a huge, powerful union, like the autoworkers did in Detroit to correct the abuses that were occurring in their day (yes, there were many, it was bad back then in the factories, which is why unions were such a force for good before they became greedy and corrupt). Imagine if all the workers of all the "big box" stores all got together and went on strike on November 15th and stayed off the job to the 2nd of January, with a promise to repeat that action each and every year unless they got HUGE increases in pay and benefits, along with vastly improved working conditions (like lots of sit-down time, lots of breaks, no "micro-managing" by pimple-faced "bosses"...LOL.) And for the customers, have ALL the cashier lines filled, even if it means long wait times for cashiers to check people out. I'd much rather have them waiting on me to check out than for me to have to wait TO check out...lol.

Yeah, anyone else with me on this "no shopping Christmas" thing? Get a few of us together, maybe we can have a "retail sucks" party...LOL.

On a more serious note, I really do wish more retail folks would just stand up to idiotic bosses and say "No, I will not stand for this anymore,", even if it does cost them a job. No job is worth a person's dignity or self-worth, EVER.
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