Friday, December 14, 2012

customers in space

Yesterday I helped a customer with a return without a receipt.  I had originally sold him the product months ago and remembered and it was not really a big deal.

The reason for the return was that when his wife was using it, she tipped the product 270 degrees in opposite direction of proper usage and some of the liquid contained in the product came out.  It surprised her and caused her discomfort.

When I processed the return, I labeled it as "defective" because it seemed the most logical at the moment.  I'd never heard of this happening before, but I also thought it was a little weird that his wife was using the product that way.

After the customer left, I did a little testing with the product and similar items from another brand.  I found that all of them will pour out liquid if turned backwards to that extreme degree.  I called the customer and let him know as he was going to purchase the product again and expect different results.  He decided to buy back his return, but suggested that it was a major design flaw and that I should contact the companies and let them know about their dangerous product.

Now, for the most part, I found this customer pleasant and easy to work with, which is why I am sad that I can't say "WHY THE FRICK DOES YOUR WIFE NEED TO TURN THIS PRODUCT UPSIDE DOWN WHEN IT IS FULL OF HOT LIQUID?"  And if you used something once in a weird way and it had unpleasant effects, why wouldn't you learn from that and NOT DO THAT, especially when that is not necessary for the function of the product?  Why do you need to turn it upside down?  Is your wife an astronaut?

And, though I'm sure companies love consumer feedback, I don't want to be the one to email them and tell them about how when you weirdly used their product, stuff spilled out.  I mean, I'll do it if I have to,  but it's embarrassing.

Afterwards, my co-worker who observed the whole transaction, asked, unprompted, "why wouldn't you just use it normally?".  Yes.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Christmas songs

Hmm.  Sounds like Mrs. Claus does all the work.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

let me facilitate your Christmas!

It has, obviously and thankfully, been busy at work since there are 2 weeks until Christmas.  From the moment I get to work until I'm chasing customers out after closing time, I am so busy that I can't get anything done.

As much as I try to be ready by knowing everything in the store and by having helpful gifts suggestions  cued up, I am flabbergasted by some of the gift purchases.

-The elderly aunt, coming in on payday, purchasing a very nice knife for her nephew because he thinks he wants to go to culinary school.  I hope he appreciates how she budgeted and fretted over that knife!  He better go to culinary school and become a serious fucking chef!

-The families that purchase extravagant gifts for their new daughter-in-law.  There is a part of me that always thinks "she did pretty well for herself," but then I also wonder what sort of family drama she has to deal with.  These situations are especially interesting when the huge gifts are "stocking stuffers."

-The classic scenario of the customer that needs to purchase a gift for their [insert person to whom they are very close] and they don't know what to get them because they have everything, are extremely picky, have exquisite taste, have no known hobbies or interests, and are also wealthy.  (I know the wealth part shouldn't really be a factor in this process, but it's funny how often customers mention that).

-The middle-aged couples that are actually buying gifts, REAL GIFTS, for not only their adult children, but also their 10+ nieces and nephews (also adults) and their children.  I like to imagine what it must be like to be a 27 year old married mother who actually gives her aunt a wish list with 2 items. At what point are you like, "You know what?  I don't need a present.  Being with you on Christmas is enough of a gift."?

But then I remember that my job is selling all those gifts.  It's not just my job, it's my livelihood.  I need to make sure those people get what's on their lists so I can eat and pay rent.  That really changes my attitude quickly.  Give the people what they want!  Merry Christmas!