Monday, July 13, 2015

I was not happy......

Let me explain.

On Sunday morning I went to do my grocery shopping early to miss the crowds.  It was 9 am when I got to the check out.  In front of me were two guys each had a grocery cart full of bottled water; so there was nothing on the belt where you put your groceries.

I started to unpack my groceries, but quickly filled the end up, so I asked the cashier if she could please make the belt move so I could unpack the rest of the groceries.  Not unreasonable, right?

Her response was something along these lines:

"I was going to do it after I finished serving this man (the man in front of me)."  Remember he wasn't using the belt as he had cases of bottled water.

She said it in such a way that both the man in front of me and myself looked at one another and raised our eyebrows.

I wondered what on earth I had done/said as she was really snarky.  So I said, "I am sorry I didn't mean to offend you."

She then turned around and said she had a bad back and had been on "duty" 42 hours (?)

Now I should have left well enough alone, but I said, "I know how it feels as I have a bad back myself, you should go home then?"

Well that set her off again.  By this time the other guy had gone and it was just me.  I was so uncomfortable and was in two minds about unpacking anymore of my groceries on the belt, as it was only at this point she moved the belt up so I could put more of my groceries on it.

Then just to add to it all not only did I have coupons I was price matching.  I am one of these shoppers where I am organized.  I always put everything I am price matching along with the competitors flyer on the belt first.  Quite often I will circle what I am price matching and highlight the date etc; I hadn't this time.  It makes the cashiers job easier and I get out of the store faster.

So the first things up are the price matching items, all from one store and all on the same page of the flyer.  There was a sigh of course from her, and she proceeded to put through the tea, tin foil and cling film.  I had a coupon for the cling film/wrap that I handed over, and again with a sign she processed it.  There were two tubs of yogurt I was price matching  from the same flyer, but she decided that no she would process them later as she wanted to put something that wasn't cold in the bag with the other items?  

At this point I just shut up and let her get on with it, other than giving the other coupons.  She tried to make small talk, but I was so past this whole shopping trip I wanted to get the heck out.  However I didn't want to let her get away with how she had made me feel, as I was shaking.

So I paid for my groceries and walked over to another employee and asked her who was the supervisor in a quiet voice.  She told me she would get her for me, but unbeknownst to me, there was the unhappy cashier right behind me.

She said," are you complaining about me?"

I said yes and she then went on and on, she did say sorry, but believe me she did not mean it.  By then the supervisor walked up, and the cashier intercepted her and told her I was complaining about her, and went onto her about me.

I turned around at this point and said,

"Listen sweetie if your back is that bad you should go home."  As that was what she was griping about.

I talked to the supervisor and told her what had gone on, and the gist of it was she had, had complaints about this woman before???  She would talk to her.  My parting words to her was:

"She needs to go home if she is in that much pain."

I would not be a cashier if you paid me a million dollars.  In this country they are on their feet for the whole shift, they are not allowed to sit down, like they do in Britain.  They deal with some horrible people and are paid probably minimum wage.  That being said, if you have a problem whether it be physical, mental or what ever  don't take it out on the customers.  

I am not sure if the store opened at 7 or 8 am.  If she was already in a lot of pain by 9 am imagine what she was going to be like by the end of the shift.  She said her back pain made her grumpy; again yes I know as I have a bad back.

She was older than me and there are a few other older ladies that work there and they always seem to be there, as one of them told me the other week:

"the younger ones party on a weekend then call in sick or just don't turn up, so it's up to them to cover for them!"

She also said: "the managers know what they are up to as they go on Facebook to see what they have been up too."

Suffice to say, I will not stop shopping at this grocery store as it's the closest to where we live and has the best prices.  I will just avoid this woman.  I just hope this supervisor did do something.

What are your thoughts?


Plowing Through Life (Martha) said...

I would have done the same thing. In fact, I have done the same thing. Many years ago, I had horrible service (similar to yours) from a cashier. I'm typically quite patient and tolerant, and I can count on one hand the amount of times I've ever complained about service. But this cashier was so horrible that I was shaking by the time I was done paying. I just couldn't let it go. So I asked for the supervisor/manager and informed him of my experience. I sympathize and I understand people have problems/issues they're dealing with but I refuse to be someone's punching bag.

Cheryl mylittlepieceofengland said...

I can't bear situations like that, I too would have had a quiet word with the supervisor. I know pain and can probably be a bit snappy at home sometimes, but I really hope I would never take it out on anyone else, we all have our own burdens. She sounds an unhappy person. Xx

EG CameraGirl said...

The attitude and service of the cashiers definitely influence where I shop. Fortunately for me, the best prices (and price matching) are at a store where the cashiers are wonderful. It's not the closest store to me, though. For me, it's worth the drive. :)

Paula said...

Yeah, pretty sure Ontario labour laws don't let people be 'on duty' at a grocery store for 42 hours :)

I'd consider sending an email to the store manager, just to make the complaint more 'official'. I've seen some fairly useless supervisors for dealing with people like her. I'd also complain about the way she complained about you! You did nothing wrong -except try to give that store your money!

Wisewebwoman said...

That is horrible. I've had that in the past but never got satisfaction from a supervisor. "Busy" is always the answer - I mean increased business, whatever, cause surly cashiers?

In your case, I'm afraid I would have walked out leaving the cart. I've done this. I know, not adult behaviour but sometimes my head just explodes at the injustice of it all, and if they don't want my business.......


Craig said...

Remember that your job depends upon customers like Gill, dear! So try smiling through the pain! I generally have good luck with cashiers here.

T'Pol said...

Oh that was terrible! That is why I love the self check-outs. I keep telling "if you can not tolerate people, don't work in the service industry!".

Rose said...

This makes me so thankful for our little grocery store...we have the best cashiers. And a lot of them are young people--in high school or just graduated. And I have watched them for at least the past 15 years, so I have seen a lot of different kids, and they always seen them kind to older people...asking if they need help to get to their car, telling them to take their time when they are trying to find/write their check. The older I get the more I appreciate them.

I suppose part of their attitude has to do with this being such a small town...but honestly, they do treat the people with such respect...

As for your cashier, I am not sure I would have complained, but I know I would have wanted to. There is no excuse for that. You can be in pain and still not be snarky.

But I did complain about a cashier once...she was cheating us of money...would not have complained but she did it to the woman in front of me..I was not sure I was correct. It is hard to explain how she did...but another cashier ask us if there was something wrong when she saw us putting our heads together...and we told her what had happened...she told us not to worry she would take care of it, and I never saw the thief again after that.

mamasmercantile said...

I would have put my complaint in writing when I got home, that way there is no confrontation to contend with. On the other side of the coin I also put in writing any extra help that I receive from staff as well I am not always negative.

One Family said...

That is good you told the manager. Like you said, her shift had probably just started - imagine what she will be like to the customers as the day goes on! It was also very wrong of her to approach you, while asking for the manager, and make you feel even more uncomfortable! I wouldn't stop shopping there either, if you like the store and prices, and I'd definitely avoid her checkout line in the future.

Jackie said...

I have been lucky in regards to cashiers. All so so very pleasant here.

So sorry that you had to go through this. Glad you complained and now hopefully this cashier will be on her best behavior.

God bless.

William Kendall said...

That's unpleasant to say the least.

The only similar circumstance I've ever had was getting short changed by one cashier, knowing I was getting short changed, and she was just acting like that wasn't relevant. I should have spoken to a supervisor... but any time I've ever been in there since, if she opens up her cash and other cashiers are busy, I will wait for another cashier.

Tracey said...

Like others above, I've complained before; but only when I really felt I had to, like you.
More often I'm pleased to seek a supervisor to say how lovely a member of staff has been if they have gone out of their way to help us.
One time I actually left my items on the conveyor belt and walked away due to the rudeness of a cashier who did not make eye contact, speak to us (she was too busy talking to another cashier about a night out), and just started scanning items and slamming them down with no regard that we were even there!
It made me furious!
She surely noticed us when we just upped and walked out, and we've never been back to that supermarket.

carolann said...

We had a older lady be the same sarcasm remark character as she was. To my hubby. Apparently last year we got a turkey given to us by the Manger to boot free. As we had bought one and it was just terrible tasting and it was a Butterball. So manager said. Go get another one when you come in next time. So hubby told her. She turns to my hubby and said. Ya right a free turkey. What world are you in. She then phoned at the desk. Then she hung up. Looked at my hubby. Okay.

I was ready to jump over the counter and bonk her one. Just four days ago our friend said. There is an old bag on cash. She is a mouth piece. he described her. I reporter her but first told he myself how I felt. She was yelling at a little old lady because she could not put her card in the slot properly. And her choice of words was not lady like to hear. So our friend confronted her.

So my hubby went to the manager as he knew him as soon as we went through. Told him the situation with the turkey.

The next two weeks no lie. She was on the isles stocking and in the parking lot pushing all the carts into the store. In the rain. She looked like a drowned rat.

So our Manager a big thumbs up to him.

Now she is as polite as icing on a cake spread. Good Morning or good afternoon.

Thank you for shopping at or grocery store. And yes we watch our dollar also. We buy when on sale. And if it is not. We don't buy.

The yogurt, cottage cheese, fruit is expensive. So all have to watch the dollars.

So you never did a thing wrong. Great you told on her and also confronted her. You were being considered to tell her about your back but the old buzzer needed to go home. I mean what would she have been like if she kept going. I am sure either someone would of given her a shiner by the end of the day.

Marilyn K said...

I think you have a right to be upset and complain. I personally would not have complained however. I am not a confrontational person. Also after working as a nurse for many years I have a high tolerance for people not on their best behavior. I tend to try to defuse situations like that. She probably can't afford to go home. I'm not sure how it is in the US jobs like that are low paying, few if any benefits, and no paid sick time. I likely would have told her I was sorry she was having a bad day and just let it go. I do not think how you handled it was wrong but its not my way.

Anonymous said...

You felt uncomfortable. Just be glad you weren't the one in pain. Pain makes people snappy. Sometimes you can't control even if you try. I'm sure she would have loved to have gone home I'm sure but probably couldn't afford to. It is not your place to tell her what to do. You said she tried to make small talk - perhaps in an effort to make amends- but you weren't interested. How rude are you? Everybody is having a hard time these days. Its only the grocery queue for heaven's sake. Not sure how life is in Canada these days but if that's all you've got to be upset about then I think I might join you and emigrate ;-).

Anne in the kitchen said...

Both of the stores nearest me have delightful cashiers, but they both pride themselves in customer service. One store a little farther away has crappy service and unless their buys are stellar (rarely) I stay away from them

I am sure I would have complained to the manager, but then I ofter compliment employees to managers as well.

~Carla~ said...

Thankfully I rarely have issues like this, I probably would have given her a look & went on my merry way. lol! I don't see how she could have pulled a 42 hr shift however.. i'm thinking that's a crock of sh*t in my opinion. ;)

Country Gal said...

For one they do not do 42 hour shifts I know I have been a cashier for grocery stores full time and worked on the floor of both a grocery store and a large department store and I would of told her to buck up and get on with it and do her job and never mind the huffing and puffing at me then I would of spoken to her manager and told them to get nicer staff as it will kill the business if they dont and to remind them that no matter what the customer is always right even if wrong and a happy customer is a returning customer and that negativity from staff will travel faster from the customer then a positive one for their store and remind them that my money is whats paying their pay cheque . I cant stand people who have an attitude like this cashier. I hope she was reprimanded for it as she has been complained about before in any other business three strikes your out ! Thanks for sharing , I hope next time she is nicer . Have a good week !

angela said...

You have every right to complain. Yes she is in pain and I'm sorry for that but it's not your fault and you do. It need to suffer the brunt of her grumpiness.
Good on you. Yes I'd avoid her as well for as long as I could. But if I can't well you have every right to shop there and she has to be nice to you

Evelyn said...

I agree that if you work in the service industry, you have to provide good service no matter how you feel. I have only complained once and that was a cashier who thumped my apples into a bottom of a bag intentionally. I would not have gone to the manager though, these people need the work obviously. My biggest beef about cashiers are the ones who like to talk on and on. I just avoid them. After a hard days work and many errands, the last thing I am in chatty.

Maggie said...

Oh dear, not a good day for anyone it seems :-(

I think you were right to complain if she made you feel uncomfortable.

I have worked on check-outs though and it does get mind numbing and some customers can
be very demanding and rude, i once had a £ coin thrown at me because the customer
wanted to get cash back on a card payment of less than £, when i tried to explain that
the tills do not offer cash back with transactions of less than £ she argued with me
then relented and threw the coin at me!!!

People have bad days but taking it out on someone else is not on, but perhaps she would
have liked to go home but needed to work her shift because she needed the money?
Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

I think it's really unprofessional when staff talk about personal problems to customers. Years ago, I overheard an exchange between a customer and one of my young staff: "You look tired." "I am sooo hung over!" Last time that ever happened! Even now I remind staff, when customers ask how you are doing, you can't give them an honest or detailed answer! When the staff and customers get to know each other really well, they can sometimes have a side conversation when there is no transaction going on or no line-up. Of course, a lot of people line-up to chat with real people rather than using a machine. We find they mostly value listening and pleasant exchanges.

DeniseinVA said...

A difficult and uncomfortable situation. I'm sorry you had to deal with it.. Fortunately where I shop, for the most part, they are very polite and I get on well with them. There was one time, a very long time ago, a male cashier made me feel very uncomfortable with his attitude, but as it was the closest store and so convenient I still shopped there as I basically enjoyed the place, and I avoided his line. He left eventually.

Out My window said...

I think you were in the right, If you are in customer service you just cannot act like that no matter what. She handled the whole thing very poorly. It sounds like she really has no social skill set at all.