Things You Should Know About Retail Employees: Part Two

25 Jul

After another lovely week of working in retail heaven, I decided to pay special attention to things that I felt should be included in this post. So let’s continue with where we left off, shall we?

5. Use your hands! By the way that a large majority of my customers act, you’d think that we, as employees, all have leprosy, poison ivy, or some other terrible thing that screams “Don’t touch me!”. Ask any retail employee and I am sure that they will all agree that one of the most frustrating things a customer can do is hand money to a cashier by doing any of these things: 1) Throwing it/tossing it/flicking it onto the counter, 2) Setting it down on the counter, or 3) Setting it down on the counter so far away that the cashier has to bend across the counter to grab it. Yes, we do handle more cash in a day than probably even the most successful hookers and strippers do, but it doesn’t mean that we are crawling with germs. In fact, my hands are probably cleaner than yours considering each of the registers that I work at have economy-sized hand sanitizer bottles near them. In addition to that, we clean our counters and card readers religiously because we don’t want to get sick from any of you sniffling and coughing customers. With that being said, please hand your payments of choice to us by hand. Doing otherwise is disrespectful to us, and in most cases it also slows down the line. If a customer hands me crumpled-up bills, they are going to have to wait longer for the transaction to be completed just because, yes, I do have to straighten them out to put in my register. Also, it really makes me sad to see how many customers just literally toss change and bills onto the counter only to have half of the money dive across the counter and onto the floor. I once had a conversation with my father about how much it frustrates me when customers don’t hand me money, and he told me that he doesn’t like touching people’s hands so he puts the money on the counter. He also mentioned that he never once considered what he had been doing to be rude. So, with that being said, if you weren’t smart enough to figure out that putting money on the counter is rude, consider changing your ways for the better!

6. Preschool 101: Let’s Form a Line, Kids! Lines in stores are part of everyday life, and they should be respected for the impeccable way, when done correctly, that they maintain order. It saddens me to see when such preschool basics are violated by customers that, at one point, I considered intelligent. Since when has it been socially acceptable to just jump to the front of a line with five other customers waiting? I know it sounds crazy, but people actually do this, and it really upsets me and the rest of the customers patiently waiting in line. And, while we’re on the subject, I’d also like to point out that waiting in lines is a part of life: going to the bank, the airport, traffic jams and stoplights, heck there’s probably also a big-ass line for wherever we all go when we die! What I am trying to say is that customers need to take a chill pill (yay for 90’s phrases!) because, no matter how many times they huff and puff, the line still will always go at its own pace, and I can only ring as fast as I can! This world needs to learn a bit more about patience, I think.

7. Preschool 101: Wait Your Turn/The World Doesn’t Revolve Around You This has a lot to do with the much-needed patience that customers need to have as described in #6. If you have a question, comment, or complaint, please do not try talking to me while I am helping another customer or ringing another customer out. I find this to be so incredibly rude. Since when do people think that they are so amazing that a cashier will stop what they are doing with another customer and serve their needs? And don’t ask me to check a price for an item while I am scanning someone else’s items, either! Once again, this all goes back to patience and manners. Sadly, it seems that a lot of people don’t have these things.

8. Embrace Your Reading Skills “Excuse me, do you work here? Can you tell me if this is on sale?” I cannot tell you how frustrating a question like this is. Every drug store in America is required to have little weekly sales fliers in the store. These sales fliers highlight the sales for the week, the specifications for the sales (for example, a certain sale on Gatorade might only include bottles with the specific ounce listed), and when the sales will end. In addition to these handy fliers, retail workers spend about an average of six to eight hours a week taking down and putting up little sales stickers underneath every item that the store is having a sale on. Given such clues, one would think that finding at item and deducing whether the item is on sale would be quite an easy feat. It seems, however, that customers would rather take the easiest route for them (i.e. not taking time to read things) and just ask us. Frankly I am starting to wonder if sale stickers are even necessary at stores because it doesn’t seem that they are being utilized. With the economy being the way it is, people need to learn to be smart shoppers–this includes reading about sales and the fine print of all sales! Yes, a lot of retailers will try to trick customers with small print, but if you take the time to read an entire sale you will always be able to read the fine print yourselves, which hopefully will allow you to avoid making such comments as “That’s not what the sale sign says!” or “Why isn’t this ringing up on sale?” to me.

9. Be Polite I could go on and on about all the things that customers do that completely annoy me, but I believe the best way to sum all of this up is by asking, no–pleading, that customers at least attempt to be polite. I understand that everyone has bad days, but cashiers have bad days too and we are required to keep smiles on our faces, take criticism, blame, money thrown at us, and standing on our feet. If we can be at work and be polite, so can you! And you know what? Being polite and nice to others is a great happiness booster. The world is full of enough rottenness, and everyone holds the key to bringing happiness to themselves and others. Yes, I know this all sounds cliché, but it really seems to be true, and it is the main reason why I truly love working retail: the more I am up there focusing on being positive and nice to even the most terrible customers, the more happy and fulfilled I become. If customers could just avoid being rude, have some patience, and leave their problems at the sliding doors, the world would certainly be a better place.

Well, I think I’ve covered all of the important things! Feel like I need to add something? Let me know!


One Response to “Things You Should Know About Retail Employees: Part Two”

  1. Drew Hunt September 8, 2010 at 7:51 pm #

    This article is indeed informative and all the content is well explain and very elaborated. And i’ am very agree on the topic above. Great Job! Please check out my blog at

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: