A young woman will never forget what she experienced working as a cashier a few years ago:
“A few years back I was working at an office supplies store. I wanted to earn a little income while studying for my bachelor’s and also like the job and my colleagues. The busiest time was always ‘back-to-school,’ when parents wanted to buy all of the school supplies for their children. Even the managers worked at the registers to try and cope with the large crowds. One day an upper-class woman with bleached blonde hair and a designer purse came up to me at the register. She threw her stuff on the counter and proceeded to toss her coupons at me. I smiled at her through gritted teeth and asked if she’d managed to find everything that she needed okay. She completely ignored me and typed on her phone, while her daughter, who was about 7, stood quietly next to her.
I scanned the items and her coupons then realized that one of the coupons had already expired — over a year ago! Apart from that, the coupon was not applicable for the item that she wished to purchase. As I politely informed her, she argued: ‘But why? It is a coupon and you should accept any coupon that a customer gives you!’ None of the explanations that I offered helped, she got really angry: ‘I’d like to speak to your manager, I don’t have time for this crap!’
I motioned to my manager to come over from where he was standing nearby. While he was on his way over the woman leant down to her daughter and said in a sarcastically sweet voice: ‘See honey? This is why you should go to college and get an education so that you don’t end up working on the register like her!’
What did she just say? My face turned bright red and tears started forming in my eyes as I muttered that I was, in fact, attending college and that this was a part-time job. At this moment, my manager arrived behind me and quietly asked the lady to repeat herself. With a smug look on her face, she repeated her comment and continued to explain that the customer is ALWAYS right and that the coupon needed to be applied.
My manager stood there for a few seconds and looked at her before taking all of her items back out of their bags. ‘What the hell are you doing?’ she screeched. My manager calmly replied: ‘I won’t let you stand here and ridicule and abuse my employees. I am going to ask you to leave. We no longer wish to do business with you.’ The woman looked at us dumbstruck and red in the face, as all of the customers in the line stared at her. She started to cry and threw an enormous tantrum. Her 7-year-old daughter behaved better than this grown woman!
She snatched up her purse, all the coupons and grabbed her daughter’s hand and stormed out of the shop screaming: ‘I AM NEVER COMING BACK HERE AGAIN! I AM GOING TO CALL YOUR BOSS AND HAVE YOU ALL FIRED! DON’T YOU KNOW WHO I AM?’ My manager chuckled and then told me that I could go and take a breather — probably because by that point I must have looked like I’d seen a ghost.”
What a reaction from the manager — everyone wants a supervisor like him!