Saturday, April 24, 2010

Why don't Bosses learn !!!?????

1) Okay, so we're busy as the dickens, scanning our little fingers to the bone, all cashiers out front trying to deal with the line up, when head cashier gets paged to pick up the bat phone.
your light isn't on.
(WTF) She has a line up of customers and you've just paged her to make her stop and listen to your dumb observation while taking her time away from her customer. I think they had figured out that she was open.

Several days later:

2) We have one cashier, temporarily, on express (me), one doing office work (priority) who is also to handle customer service (CS) when the first CS person is busy on cash (which she was), one on a regular register and one (the express cashier) that is on lunch at the moment. The line ups are not long and we are doing pretty good. Then a product demonstrator asks me to scan a plastic table gadget set for a customer as the little old lady wanted to know how much it was. Okay, I'm not busy right now so I scan it and its not in our system. (This in itself is odd because the same question came up the other day and its not clarified yet?)

The demonstrator says there are all these prices over there but its hard to figure out which one it is. So I leave the register (no customers at the moment) to see if I can figure it out. I tell her a low price that looked like it could be the product and suddenly she can read the sign enough to point it out to me that it says something slightly different. All the time she is talking but not listening to me. I now have a line up again, so I tell her I have to go back to work and that I will call someone to help her.

In the meantime, Big Brother is watching on the cameras and decides that he will send out the office worker. He calls the regular cashier to tell her to tell a customer to go to register 3 and office worker will be out to help her. Office worker (OW) comes out to help at customer service (her other priority) and customer has gone to 3. Express girl is back now and I return to my register. Regular cashier comes to tell office worker that BB told her that she (OW) is to go to 3, whereupon office worker is confused and slightly angry and says she is already helping a customer at Customer Service. Regular cashier is taken aback by the slight anger as she is only doing what she was told. (Obviously, BB didn't tell OW which customer he wanted her to help.) When I return to 4, my spot for the day, I see this lady standing at 3 with her groceries all piled up. (at this point I was unaware of the BB call) I told her that no one was coming there but that I would help her on 4 and I start to take her groceries over. She says okay, but she had been perfectly fine waiting at the other register in the first place.

So.... We have a cashier who got spoken to harshly, because she thought she was doing what she was told to do.

We have the office worker confused about what she should have done, because she wasn't told what she was expected to do, so did what she thought was the priority.

We have a customer who was confused and inconvenienced because she had to move and then left standing there and only one person knowing why she was there.

We have same customer wondering why she had to move, when she had been perfectly fine waiting where she was. She didn't have a problem with it.

We have customers picking up on the slight tension because the flow was disrupted. They thought all was okay before the stone got thrown in the pond. (mob mentality)

Before that silly little phone call, everything was fine. We have been doing this a long time and can tell when we need extra help. In fact this all started to happen because the little old lady wanted to buy this stupid little plastic thing that should have had its information cleared up a few days previous.

We have two cashiers who are upset because they did what they were told to do and it turned out to be 'wrong'.

If it had just been left alone, there would have been no tension on the floor, the customers would have been served, and none of them would have known there was a 'problem'. In fact there wasn't even a problem until the customer asked about the plastic table thing.

That same product came up the other day and BB said, then, that it was $10.00 or whatever, but it was never added to the computer. When OW tells the customer what BB says it should cost she points out that that isn't one of the prices on the display. If BB had just come out and dealt with the customer himself and left us to do OUR jobs we wouldn't have had a little ripple turn into a big wave that took several minutes to dissipate.

In other words.......

Have faith in your employees to do their jobs and don't try to micro manage or to try and curry favour with customers by making announcements that can't be fulfilled. Most people don't know there is a problem until you paint it red and put a big arrow over it.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Customers. Again.

So, over the past week, there have been interesting goings on.

First off, its now officially five weeks since I was the victim du jour. Kinda neat. Makes the job so much more enjoyable.

* * * * *

The rest of this is about various customers last week.

- Had a guy who I've seen quite regularly for a long time. Always basically nice. Anyway, today he was a little louder than normal and a little inappropriate with some of his language. Too boorish, and a little rude. Also some cursing involved; or at least curse words. I think he was a tad hungover but wasn't close enough to smell booze. Luckily another customer finally came and he cleared out.

- One of the cashiers was busy counting change out of her tray when this customer comes up quietly behind her and asks her, in a hushed tone, "Do you have a fifty dollar bill?" Not a good thing to do when someone is busy and unaware of someone creeping up behind them. She nearly jumped out of her skin. Turns out he wanted a 100 or a 50 so he could give it as a gift. Still, don't creep up behind people. At least clear your throat or something.

- Some of our buggies have a child seat that is positioned in such a way as to leave a small gap under it where the odd few items can slide. I've learned to check that because you never know what you'll find under there, that a customer has forgotten about. So, this lady puts her stuff on the belt and I ring it through. There are about five items under the seat of her cart. I took them out and put them on the belt and this is what followed:

I asked her if she wanted the little package of salad dressing. She says "it comes free with the salad." I said not that kind and besides you didn't buy a salad. "Oh, well, then I don't want it."

Then you don't want the other one either? Looks at me a little wide eyed and says no.

Okay, do you want the blueberries.
"Aren't they free?"
Uh, no.

"Then I don't want them."

Same thing happened with a can of cat food, and two other smallish items.

Now she had paid for all the other stuff, it was bagged and she was going to leave with these items in her cart. She seemed quite surprised that I called her on them and that she couldn't just have them. I've never seen her before so I don't know if this is something she does all the time. I will give her credit for being the most brazen thief I've seen.

- Had a lady buying a giant watermelon for $4.99 and I asked if she wanted a bag. "Do you charge for them?" Yes, a nickel. She seemed a little perturbed that I wanted to charge her a nickel and she was NOT paying for a bag. Fine, thinks I. I'm not wearing a light coloured suit jacket and going to have to carry a dirty watermelon.

- A customer today told me that I was in the wrong business. I should be on an improv stage.

- A customer two nights ago said that her husband thinks I should be in a customer relations training position and that he wanted her to tell me that. That was nice.

- Two weeks ago a customer went out of her way to tell the big boss that we were wonderful cashiers and that she especially liked the way I treated her and her elderly mother, and that I bagged the items so carefully. I only know this as another cashier overheard her talking to him. None of the conversation was ever mentioned to me by management. In fact none of the good things customers say about us gets back to us. We no longer get an appreciation pin or certificate, either.

Sorry its been so long since the last post.