Tuesday, January 30, 2007

The wonder of customer service

I was reminded of this story by something I read this morning, and the memory made me chuckle, so I thought I would share...

Awhile back I was shoe shopping with my friend Janelle at a store we'll call...Valueless City. This was pre-baby, and I think it was pre-hubby as well. Between she and I we had pulled five or six pairs of shoes off the shelves and had tried them on, and they were on one of those little benches in the middle of the aisle, along with our purses. Random saleslady comes by, picks them up, and starts to put them back on the rack. I approached her to stop her.

Me: Could you please leave those, we are going to buy them.

Shoe Department Genius: You can't leave them in the aisle like that.

Me: But we are going to BUY THEM. If you put them on the rack someone else might take them

SDG: We can't leave them in the aisle.


At this point I realized I was dealing with Valueless City's very own rain man.

SDG: We can't leave them in the aisle.

Then she put them back on the racks. Janelle and I waited until she was gone, and then got them back off the rack and put them on the bench again. A few minutes later, we both were turned away from the bench, and when we turned back.....

yup, they were gone. Shoe department rain woman strikes again.

So we had to track them all down again, pull them off the racks, and put them on our ill-fated bench. We were almost done at this point, but before we could make it to the register, she appeared again, and again tried to take our shoes.

Me: Could you please leave those there? I understand you are trying to keep the aisle clean, but WE ARE BUYING THOSE SHOES AND WE ARE STANDING RIGHT HERE!

SDG: Well, there is no need to be so rude about it.

Me: Eye twitch

We collected all our shoes and went up to the register. They were green dot shoes, so they were supposed to be 40% off. The register had different ideas though, so again I got to tangle with the Valueless city brain trust.

Me, after the price came up wrong: Those are 40% off.

Cashier: They did not ring up that way.

Me: They have green dots. They are 40% off.

Cashier: They did not ring up that way. Who told you they were 40% off?

Me: The signs all over the store, and the announcement running over your PA every two minutes. There it is!

We listen to the announcement tell us all about how green dots are 40% off.

Cashier: Well, they are ringing up full price. They are not on sale.

You might wonder why I did not just leave the shoes there and walk out. But I was determined by this point that Valueless City was not going to beat me. So I pressed on.

Me: Is there a manager I can speak with?

Cashier: *heaves big sigh and rolls her eyes*

Cashier, on little in-store phone line: Can you come up here? There's this woman who says these shoes are on sale, and I told her they aren't, but she won't go away. Can you come tell her they aren't on sale?

My brain: You are SO fired when I talk to your manager, little chippy.

I should have known the universe was conspiring against me, but I have to confess, it took me a little off guard when I saw my very favorite Shoe Department Genius walk up to the register.

My brain: Crap.

Me: These shoes have green dots. They are 40% off.

SDG: Who told you that?


OK, not really. In reality, I sighed, paid full price for the shoes, and asked when there would be a real manager in the store. On Monday afternoon I returned and told my sordid tale to an increasingly horrified manager. It was amusing to watch his face change colors. He gave me 60% off the shoes, and I never saw either of the women again.

Yesterday I put those shoes in a box to go to Goodwill. I hope they bring someone a lot of joy.


Holli said...

I'm wiping the tears away...too funny! It doesn't even sound like a real story when the show aisle lady comes walking up as the manager-of course!
Thanks for sharing, I'll be thinking about that one for a while. At least you stood your ground, i cave so easily with those people.

Mast Family said...

Wow can I ever relate to that story! I feel your pain sister. We were practically cussed at and meanfully served by a drive thru lady at a BBQ place. We left in a huff and didn't bother to try to buy the food. Joey called the manager on her and he gave us 20.00 worth of free food and oh she doesn't work there anymore.

Melody said...

Talk about an Alfred Hitchcock ending...I was stunned!..HA..you are so adorable. Way to go Erin.."standing" your ground.

Jonathan said...

I'm sorry but this made me laugh out loud. I have run into exactly the same people over here in the UK.