Here's the first of many feel good stories to prove that I am not always a hateful, toiling clerk with a chip on her shoulder or a goblin in her apron pocket.
There is this woman that has come into the store as long as I have work there (years) and probably long before that. She stuck in my mind because she 1) is always nicely dressed. Like, age appropriate AND stylish. The sort of older woman you see and think "that's what I want to be when I grow up." 2) she has these amazing eyes and always wears this bold, colorful lipstick. This sort of ties into the clothing part, but it is different because she is Working What She's Got and that's always hot. AND 3) she is always unfailingly polite, courteous, and respectful. It freaked me out at first. "Why is this woman so . . . neighborly?? And in a good way?"
She comes in often and makes small purchases. Do I treat her any differently because she buys little things instead of big ticket items? Hell no. She comes in 100 times as much as someone that buys a piece of furniture. And there is her good attitude. A smart clerk will always appreciate a good attitude.
I quickly learned her name and after awhile called her by it. "Good morning, (let's call her) Maxine!" And I was genuinely glad to see her. She was a little freaked out that I knew her name, but instead of treating me like a psychopath, she learned MY NAME (because I do have one) and now we talk to each other like real grown ups. Even when I see her out of my work, I say hi to her and she to me because we have made that human connection. We are part of each other's lives and we do not pretend that the other does not matter or exist.
Clerks, I recommend this, even for regular problem customers. Those regulars that are little pills will appreciate you getting to know them and will become more malleable. (I had to throw in a little evil!! BWAH HA HA HA!)