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Thursday, February 18, 2010

Top Ten - Convenience


10. Customers get mad at us clerks for not selling them tobacco or alcohol when they do not have valid ID.
          It is the law for us to card people before selling tobacco or alcohol. Our company policy states that we have to card anyone who looks younger than 35. Even if I've carded you before, and even if I've sold to you before, that does not mean that I am not required to do so again. Besides, I see HUNDREDS of people every day and I cannot remember everyone. It is illegal and will, at the very least, cost me my job if I sell to a minor. I could possibly go to jail for selling alcohol. So yes, I will card you, and I will refuse you if you don't have ID.

9. Setting an item down wherever you happen to be standing instead of taking it back where you got it.
          My store is not that large, it would not take you 30 minutes to cross the store and put something back where you got it (more like 30 seconds, if that). At the very least, if you decide you don't want it, bring it to the counter and I will take it back to it's proper location. It is very frustrating to walk through the store and find a pack of gum in the box of crackers.

8. Leaving trash on the counters and floor when there is a trash can right next to you.
          I have on many occasions had to dispose of creamer tubs, stirrer straws, napkins, straw wrappers, and may other things that someone has left lying all over the place. Or in a few instances, they attempted to throw something away only to miss the trash can and will just leave the trash where it falls. I find this extremely frustrating, do these people do this at their house too? Or is it just the lazy mentality that someone else is there and it's 'our job' to clean your messes?

7. Setting an empty coffee pot onto a hot burner, and then not even bothering to mention that you emptied a pot.
          I don't know how many times a day this happens. Someone will get coffee, get the last (or most of the last) of a pot of coffee and then set the empty pot back on the HOT burner. Really? They don't bother to turn the burner off (which is really easy, just flip a switch) or even tell me that they used the last of the coffee. As a manager, and even my clerks, we have a lot of things that we are required to do and cannot check the coffee pots every couple of minutes. A lot of times we don't realize this has happened until we smell the stench of burning coffee. It's not that hard to tell me (or whoever is working) that the pot is empty so that we can either A- turn off the burner, or B- make more coffee.

6. Thinking that the little latch that holds the gas pump open for fueling is fail-safe.
          Those little latches are for convenience, so a customer can let go of a cold handle or even wash a window or two. Theoretically, they are supposed to click off when your tank gets full. However, it is a man-made mechanical device, therefore it can and will fail occasionally. It is still your responsibility to watch your fuel, our pumps are Self-Serve. If you do not watch your fuel and the little latch does not click off and gas spills all over our parking lot, we will not give you a 'refund' for it. And if you threaten to set that spilled gas on fire (again...I actually had someone say that to me when I refused to credit the spillage) I will call the cops so fast your head will spin.

5. Failing to read obvious signs.

These lovely signs are right at the checkout counter and inevitably someone will come up and ask me if we sell money orders or if we accept bill payments.

Can you guess what people do instead of reading this sign? Yeah...they yank on the door (or push from inside) more than once, because they didn't figure it out the first time. I've seen people try three and four times to get through this door, with this sign up, before finally trying the other door. I honestly don't know that they ever saw the sign or if they just thought they'd try the other door.

I know what you're thinking...people will slip on the wet floor. Nope, luckly that hasn't happened yet. But what they will do is run into this sign. Trip on it, kick it across the floor, all because they did not see it.

4. Customer: "Can you turn that pump on?"
    Clerk: "I'm sorry, our pumps are Prepay."
    Customer: "I'm going to fill up." or "I don't know how much it will take."
          We have these fairly large stickers on all of our pumps that state, Please Pay Cashier Before Pumping. You'd think that would make sense, that you have to pay money first. If you have a card, you can even pay at the pump and never have to come inside. However, people seem to think that the Pay First portion of that sticker does not apply to them simply because they are going to 'fill up'. The whole point behind having customers prepay is because of all the idiots that thought it'd be 'fun' to pump and then drive away without paying. So, companies had to do something to stop this theft and loss of hundreds of thousands of dollars, thus PREPAY. If I don't know you from Adam, do you really think I'm going to just turn the pump on because you want me to? Our company policy states that I am not to turn that pump on without recieving payment first or possibly lose my job over it. You needing to fill up is not worth me losing my job. If you don't know how much you'll be getting, overpay and we actually can give you your change back.

3. As I am marking and checking currency to ensure they are not counterfeit I hear "I just made that." or "It better be real, it just came from the bank."
          I realize that you are trying to joke around and make casual conversation, but I hear it over and over and over and I can only laugh so many times before I just want to roll my eyes and tell you to kiss off (only not nearly as politely). I check every bill that comes into my hands from $5 to $100 with the nifty counterfeit marker. The larger bills get a closer inspection of the strip and the watermark. EVERY SINGLE ONE, I will mark bills from my own wallet when I purchase something! I have seen fake $20s in my hand that someone handed me (and I did not need the marker to tell me those were fake). I also know that one of my clerks took a counterfeit $100 because the marker said it was real money (and it was...it used to be a $5). All I'm saying here is that you should stop and think that we have heard these lines over and over and don't get offended if we don't laugh every time you say it.

2. Customer: "This pot says Decaffinated, does that mean it's Decaf?"

Yes, I was actually asked this question.

1. Customer: "Is that your bathroom?" or "Can I use your bathroom?"

This picture is actually from my store, and you have NO idea how many people point at that door and ask me the above questions. In the small version of this pic, it may be hard to see the pink sign on the wall that says PUBLIC RESTROOM with an arrow pointing at the bathroom. In a conenient store, if the clerks, manager, or owners don't want you in a room, regardless of where it is positioned, there will usually be a sign on the door that says something like EMPLOYEES ONLY. Not RESTROOM, which imples that yes, it actually is a bathroom.

*All of the above images were taken at the store that I work at and manage. I in no way am trying to ridicule anyone....ok maybe I am. I really am just trying to help anyone who reads this become a better customer, because no matter how many times I've been told "The customer is always right." I say "Like hell they are!"

1 comment:

  1. I have never worked in a gas station, but I've done lots of customer service and much of your list applies. It doesn't matter how big or obvious a sign is, I swear the majority of people will not read it.


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