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Ok so I got a part time job in retail. Thought much of my job is walking around searching out customers and offering help, some of it is taking special orders for customers. Customers come at times to ask about or finalize their orders. All orders are in the computer system and here is where people do something I just totally can NOT understand. To look up an order the store associate types in the customer’s phone number so when I ask for the phone number the customer rattles it off at break neck speed often times giving me more than one number to look up at the same time. Now I don’t think I am stupid or slow (perhaps I am wrong) but seriously how fast do they think someone can type in a phone number? And just and FYI to any customers out there, to type in a second phone number the associate needs to start a new search… so ONE phone number…. search wait for results, hit the search again button and then type in the NEXT phone number. Yes people the search will only accept ONE phone number… yes ONE!

So tell me why on earth would someone try to say their phone number so fast? I mean really is the purpose of their visit to find out info about their order or is their purpose to prove how quickly they can say their phone number?

I got so sick of this behavior the other day, I actually told a customer that “the computer will only accept one phone number at a time, you can either give me your first number and I can look it up, then the other number if needed or if you have to tell them both to me right now, I can write them down on paper.” I would have thought that the customer would have given me the first number and waited for the search but NOPE they just had to tell me both for me to write on a piece of paper.

I totally don’t get the idea of telling someone your phone number at such a high speed that it is nearly impossible to even write down, let alone type in to a computer. Is it some kind of weird head trip or do they think there is some kind of race out there called who can rattle off their phone number the fastest? if there is, is there a prize?

Seriously, if you are ever giving your phone number to anyone of any reason please give it slow enough that they can actually comprehend what you are saying and just another FYI, when you are giving it to a store for them to look up your order include the area code. Actually with all the cell phones out there, you should probably tell everyone your area code when giving out your phone number, not everyone has a local area code or even know what the local area code is.

And while I am on the subject of working in a store, I just want to let everyone know, and I am sure this will come as a surprise to many…. hey, you are not the only customer in the store and that person I am walking with through the store when you ask me to help you is, guess what another customer that actually asked me to help them FIRST and I am helping them, so even though you need help, they asked me first and though you think I am rude for asking you to wait while I finish helping this customer who asked for my help FIRST, I think you are rude for being such a jerk about it. Put yourself in the first customer’s shoes…. they ASKED ME FIRST and they should not have to wait behind you just because you are an impatient, self absorbed jerk that thinks the world should revolve around you.

And another thing… another FYI, standing in an isle at a store thinking that through some form of osmosis a store associate is going to know you are standing there, wanting help, when they can’t even see you does not constitute waiting for help.

If you really want help go find someone or go to the service desk and ask for someone to help you. THERE IS NO WAY FOR ME TO KNOW YOU ARE STANDING IN AN ISLE when I am several isle away. If you want help or have a question ask for it. If you have been waiting for an hour standing in an isle where no one can see you, you are not waiting for help you are just plain stupid!

Believe me when I say I can empathize with you. I have been a customer in a store hoping someone will walk by so I can ask them a question, but I have to be totally honest, the way most stores can offer you such low low prices is by cutting their staff to one associate per department and that associate CAN NOT SEE YOU, because they are in another isle probably helping someone else and the associate doesn’t know you are waiting, they don’t even know you are there.

My job is to help customers, I don’t go to work to NOT help the customers. Oh and just so you know I  walk my department often seeking out customers to see if they need any help or have any questions, and I know it may sound hard to believe, but sometimes, I  just walked down the isle you are now in and you were not there a few moments ago when I was. No one was there, the isle was empty.

The whole purpose of my job is to help YOU the customer and I’d love to help you if I only knew where you were. So please stop hiding in an isle waiting for an associate to happen chance by. If you have been in the isle for more than a few minutes, be a little pro active and walk up to the service desk and ask for an associate to be called to the isle you need help in. I am happy to meet you there if I am informed that someone needs help and where there are. But keep in mind I could be helping someone else so it may take me a few minutes to get there.