Friday, October 30, 2009

Why don't these people think FIRST? ? ? ?

So it was quiet at first and then some customer has to say it out loud. Yup, just out and says "Boy its quiet in here, today."


You NEVER say that out loud. Sure enough within half an hour all of the city showed up to go shopping. It was BIZZ -ZZEE!!!!

So anyway, there are only three of us and one of them, on express yet, is so freakin slow, that I had people with one or two items waiting in my line and still getting out quicker than if they had stayed in express!!

When you start at 2:00 the shift is normally a 4.5 hour one, but for some reason I had only a 4 hour shift. Oh well, I was just as happy. I get to go home and visit the hubby for a longer time.

I'm sailing along, 1 hour to go and I get a young lady who is paying with debit. Its refused for insufficient funds. She gives me a five and we try again. Still no go, she takes a couple of items off, still nothing. We take a few more items off and . . . . nope, doesn't work. More items, no luck; more items, no luck. Finally she asks if she can come back for the groceries. I said sure and she goes off to straighten it out. At first I only had three customers behind her, but now with the trying and trying I have a line up of about 8 people. So I manage to catch them up and get them through pretty fast.

I get down to what will be my second last and last customers for the day. I start to scan his items when my computer goes kaflooey. Yeah, just starts to run the start up program. I mentioned it to head cashier and she says they have restarted it from head office. WTF???!!!

Why in the flippin' hell would you choose to do something like that at the busiest freaking time of the day. Did they forget that we are 24 hours. They could update the damn computers in the middle of the night.

I'd like to find out what triggered them doing such a stupid thing at such a bad time. My customer ended up waiting very patiently for more than 5 minutes while this thing had to do the install, the update, the reboot, etc, etc, etc. He became the last customer as the girls at the end asked if they should maybe jump to another line. I suggested it was a good idea as the computer was rebooting.

At least once the stupid computer came back I was able to get him out of there very quickly. I had him bagged and out within five minutes. Kudos to the customer, who has a twenty month old little boy that he was hoping to get home to. He wanted to visit him before he goes to sleep. He could have been crabby and he told me, when I apologized for the delay, that it was okay, it wasn't my fault.

I was not impressed. At all. I don't like having my customers wait and then it makes me late and they are already crabby about hours etc at work. Very inconsiderate as far as I'm concerned.

* * * * *

Well tomorrow is Hallowe'en and I get to work first thing in the morning. YAY! ! ! I have a costume idea already. I was going to go as a big pimple on two rounded pink curves and say I was a boil on the ass of the world, you know, a politician. But didn't think I could get away with it. Then I thought that I could wear doggy ears and have two rows of teats running down the front of me and say I was a 'bitch'. (correct term for female dog). But again, figured they wouldn't like it.

So settled on those little individual serving size cereal boxes with knives sticking out of them. I'll be a "cereal" killer.

BOO, everybody.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Did you ever hear of a little praise??

Why is it that you walk into work to do your job, for MINIMUM wage, and you're in a great mood and someone thinks they have to pick on you?

In the past 10 days I have been 'talked' to about something that merely requires common sense, THREE times.

I get very, very upset by thievery. I would probably beat the crap out of someone that tried to rip me off. I am disgustingly honest and really take it personally when someone steals from our store. I can see the point in wanting the cashiers to physically walk around the end of the register to put the 'last bag' in the buggy. But the reality is that it is, for the most part, the younger, newer girls that are missing items under the buggy.

I find that a lot of my customers that know me will take the bags and put them in the buggy themselves. Even when they don't know me, they do it. The men, especially, don't want me to do it because its"not polite". They don't want me to hurt myself.

So am I then supposed to grab the bag from them and INSIST that I put it in the cart? NO. You can't do that. You don't want to make the customer uncomfortable. So, in that situation, I will walk around the end and look at the bottom of the buggy. I can look over the counter to see that there is nothing in the buggy. I also can see in the reflective plate as they enter the register, and can look over the counter as they pass by. So, three separate times I check the buggy.

Anyway, I had a situation where I put the bag over the end WITH THE CUSTOMERS ASSISTANCE, fully planning to walk around the end to check the bottom of the buggy. I heard my name called and tried to explain that I was going to look anyway. The next thing I know the big boss comes out to talk to me and explain how to do this YET AGAIN. I did let him know that I didn't need to hear it again. So, he asked that I please read the paper anyway and then I could throw it out. I was going to do that, and then decided to write my responses on it and keep it in my apron pocket instead. When the situation comes up again I'll be ready.

I also now tell my customers the reason why I have to check the bottom of their buggy. There are two reasons why I do this.

ONE is that I want them to know why I am doing it and that I trust them but HAVE to do it because head office says so. The SECOND reason is that I hope that maybe, just maybe, someone who was thinking of being dishonest will hear me and realize that its not a good idea to try to steal from us.

I also think that they are putting a lot on the cashiers, which is understandable, as we ARE the last person they see before they leave the store. But, how about putting a rail up that forces people to go through the register area rather than being able to leave the store from SO many places. It can't be that hard to do. I mean we have this totally useless gate that is supposedly there to keep people out from behind the service desk. Except that it is almost ALWAYS left 'open' and in the way. PLUS, if you are on express, which is supposed to be fast, the gate makes it harder to get out and around to put the last bag in.

I was also told that I am not 'fast enough' scanning items through. THAT I find hard to believe. I was told I am only marginally better that Slower Than Molasses Girl. (I stood beside her one evening and put through three customers ( including one with an order of over $185.00) in the time it took her to do one person.) It has been bugging me ever since as to how I could be SO SLOW.

And today it came to me. I have a lot of the older customers that come through my register. They have told me I make their day brighter. :-) Also, they like the way I bag for them and show consideration to them. I also will take the time to help them go through their wallets to get the change out. Older people like to give the correct change and the pennies. Plus they are just sometimes slower than others. Big deal.

You are supposed to lock off the register when you go on break, or between customers, or anytime you leave the register. I suppose I should start logging it off every time I am not scanning.

Maybe I don't understand the numbers but wouldn't the proof of workmanship be in the amount of money you run through your register as opposed to how many items you scan in so much time?????

One last thing: Just once it would be nice to hear from one of the higher ups that you do a good job. I know for a fact that at least three of my customers have filled out a comment card, and handed it in. And yet I have never heard anything from our store or the owners or anyone.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Reception for a lost loved one

As I said a few days ago, one of my customers lost his wife. I wasn't really sure whether it was my kindly gentleman or not. I was 95% sure but not 100%. I had made up my mind a long time ago that if his wife died I wanted to see him and offer condolences.

I have been watching the paper for weeks and then one day last week I caught the notice in the paper. As an aside, I had been at work about two weeks ago waiting to go in to start work. I saw my gentle man get out of his car and was going to go talk to him. But something about his posture made me stop. He just was walking different. Its hard to describe, but I remember thinking that something had happened. I watched the papers and didn't see anything. Then last Thursday I saw the notice about his wife passing. As I said I wasn't sure, but did some internet research and tried to figure it out.

I found that the address listed for his unique name was not far from the store and that one of the children's names was one I recognized. He had brought his daughter in shopping with him one day and went out of his way to introduce her to me. (very sweet of him)

My final thing was to trade away my shift today as I was determined to go to the reception and see if it was him. I got there and asked someone there if they could point him out to me so I could be sure. Sadly, it was him. I went over and he was talking to another lady. His back was to me. The lady looked at me and said hi and my older gentleman turned. The smile on his face was amazing. He was so touched when he saw it was me. He hugged me and thanked me for coming and then wiped tears from his eyes.

You know, the absolute best feeling in the world is to do something nice for someone else. I felt so good when he hugged me. I did this for him. As I said, I had made up my mind to be there for him if the time ever came. It turns out he has talked to his daughter and caregiver about me. They knew who I was and were so touched that I came there for him.

I wish I could put into words what I feel for this man. There are so many similarities between him and my Dad. I told him I loved him and kissed his cheek and before I left gave him a kiss on the nose. He kept telling me how happy he was that I came.

How could I not?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Not Fair

Just a short post today.

The older gentleman who reminds me of my Dad? The one with such a kind heart and the sweetest face?

He lost his wife on the 3rd of October. There is a service this Sunday that I plan on attending. They were married 69 years.

His heart must be breaking.

On October 7th of this year my Mom and Dad would have been married for 70 years.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Boy ! ! ! Where have I BEEN ? ? ! ! !

Well, It has been a rather trying couple of months at the store. I was beginning to feel better about summer being over when they messed it up again.

See, with students away in the summer we are down to the regular customer base. But this year, whether because of the economy or what, we seemed even quieter than normal. SOOOOO...... The answer is that head office cuts hours.

And cuts hours, and cuts hours.

I usually average around 20 or 22 a week, but to be down to 13 ??!!! Why bother?

So it was tense and when we were crowded you'd be working like crazy to cover for the lack of bodies. Causes quite a lot of stress. When you add onto that the fact that some of the younger girls have no idea about responsibility etc, it was not a pleasant few months.

We had one new girl that came 'recommended' from another store. Bull doo doo!!

She was so bad. Didn't like to work, yapped all the time, late to work, early to leave, too long for breaks, no idea of courtesy, too loud, and very inconsiderate. She was pretty though, so she at least has that to fall back on.

Well, two weeks ago was the final straw for me. The hours were just starting to pick up and I was scheduled for a late afternoon, over the supper-time-crowd, shift. We were SO freakin' busy and we had only two cashiers, myself and express. She finally shows up 45 minutes late and is standing around yapping. I snapped at her to get on a register and start working. Turns out she was going on express. So it was no immediate help to me. Luckily the head cashiers were able to come out from doing office work and help.

She gets on express, the head cashiers are working and we get the crowd down. The other girls start to come in and they are all of the same approximate age and go to school with Miss Yappy Pants.

AND so the talking starts. No working, but lots of talking. The rule with express is that you stay on that register! No if and or buts. You are to be there at all times for customers. You can walk away a little bit but you have to be ready to work when the customer shows up. Simple!!

Part way through the evening, she was given a break. She sort of really didn't have one coming because of being so late, but head cashier thought she's give her ten minutes to at least go to the washroom. Doesn't she take 20 minutes and only that short because Head cashier paged her back to the register!!!!

She works for another ten minutes or so, and the next thing I know she is all the way down at number 6 talking to the girl who just got braces. I've got a line up, and the other young cashier is listening to the story. Head cashier comes out and tells Yappy Pants that she has a customer at express. Doesn't YP just ignore her.

I was fit to be tied!! I have been working my butt off, no easy feat in itself, and the other three girls on the registers are doing squat!! For some reason customers are lining up at my register, and even though the lights are on at the other ones they keep coming to me. I keep telling them that the other registers are open, mainly so they don't have as long to wait. They actually look disappointed (confused) when I say the others ARE open. I guess they impression wasn't that they were.

Finally, I go on my break and I was so close to saying that's it, see ya' later.

I came in early the next day, because I was so livid about the way they were treating Head cashier and myself. I talked to the boss and told him I wouldn't work with her ever again.

She's gone.

Good thing, too. I think it has opened the eyes of a couple of the others. About time they realized that this is a JOB! You have to be responsible. Heck even the 'always late girl' has been on time the past two weeks.

That's it for now. Got to get ready to go to work.

More stuff later. And I'll try to not be so delinquent in my posting.