The Customer Coefficient

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Today On The Weather Front

It makes me laugh so much when customers come in when it’s raining to buy an umbrella and there is a constant stream of these umbrella buying customers! 

Usually I have no idea what to talk about with customers. We’re meant to make them feel like we really care about them and their lives and their purchases, but most of the time I don’t really care and have nothing to talk about so end up talking about the weather! The weather is just one of those general things that everyone experiences and everyone knows, so you can talk about it to whoever. Today there was a really old man and he was talking to me, and he pulls out his iPhone and starts telling me the whole forecast for the week! In Fahrenheit!! He tells me that next Monday will be 80’F and I said, “Oh wow!!”, but really I have no idea what temperature that is. Is it an old people thing to express the weather in Fahrenheit? More importantly, why does he have an iPhone? He was about 60 years old! 

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On The Love Couch with Dr Love

Doctor, Doctor, I never get the kind of loving I want. Sometimes a really good looking guy comes in and he’s very polite and has big feet too. He’s tall most of the time and has a good head of hair and sometimes stubble. He’s handsome and nice and polite and what more could a girl want? I can answer that, I want his number. I’m not very good at this sort of thing though and asking for his number would be out of the question! So I wonder, why wouldn’t he offer to give it to me or ask me for mine, because I would give it to him. 

What really happens is, the people who come in and are as short as me or shorter (and that is short!), are way into their 30’s or higher, are probably looking for citizenship etc., they ask for my number. They ask in a way which makes me feel really awkward. I try to do my work and move along, but they don’t let me. This is what they do: 

1. Come in to the store. This may be the first or second or third time. 

2. Avoid eye contact and PRETEND to look at items for sale, while hovering.

3. Inquire about a size when really they have no intention of buying. Sometimes they do, but only as a decoy. They are willing to spend unnecessary amounts of money just to get the deed done. 

4. As I help them (because I’m too nice), they start pestering me about how long I’ve been working here, where I live, what my ethnicity is, etc. It’s like an interview and because I’m terrible at lying I actually tell them even though I don’t really want to because it’s none of their business!! MARITAL STATUS: single. I can never bring myself to say that I’m taken to avoid what comes next. 

5. I walk away after being pestered and trying to excuse myself, tell them that the tills are on the other side of the store and they should go pay. Walk away quickly to avoid any further questioning. 

6. They pay, but unfortunately they see me again on their way out. They look at me, they hover yet again, and look at me some more. Having already bought their unnecessary items, they can’t buy anything else so now they come over again and ask the dreaded question. “Can I have your number?” 

I’m no good at situations like this!! I kept hinting to fellow colleagues to save me, but they think it’s funnier to watch me be awkward and uncomfortable. I have to say no, and then they say “You don’t have a number?”, and I say “I do, I just don’t want to give it to you, I’m sorry.” Then they look all wounded and say “Okay.”, and leave, and I stand there red faced and guilty and wondering. 

WHY CAN’T IT BE THE ONES I ACTUALLY LIKE!? 

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That annoying moment when your boss undermines you.

I know what a fucking espadrille is. They are not boating shoes. There is a difference. 

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022 Well, I Suppose

Work at the moment is a bit all over the place. I don’t have a specific place that I need to be, so I’m all over! I am a till girl, clothing person and footwear all in one day. Sometimes it does get a bit overwhelming, but today it was kind of fun because it made the time go a bit faster. 

I was walking around the shop floor when I saw a guy in the distance. (Yes, the distance. Our shop is quite long.) He was wearing a red t-shirt, had a couple of piercings and had some tattoos. Sometimes I like people with tattoos, especially if they’re good looking. He was good looking. So I took the opportunity to use my lovely customer service skills to ask him if he needed help. He did. So I showed him where the shorts were, and he said “Thaaaanks.” I was like, “No problemo :)” 

Then there was a mad rush at the tills so I had to go be a queue buster and walked over to the tills even though the manager told me to run. RUN! Yeah right. 

When I got there, the customer who needed to be served happened to be a guy who was buying the hat so he wanted me to take the tags off and adjust it to the right size of his head, which I judged quite wrongly and made huuuge! He was thankful though and walked off with the hat on his head. Then the next customer was the same cute, tattooed guy I served earlier. 

He asked me if he could wear the t-shirt he was buying, so I was said “Yeah, totally.” I thought he was going to change into it in the changing rooms, which most people do. Then he said “Do you mind if I just do it here?” Hahahahah! I couldn’t control myself and I said “Well, I suppose…I don’t see why not…yeah..” And he took his shirt off right in front of my till and changed into the other shirt. I was giggling like a school girl and after I served him had to excuse myself from the till for a minute to pull myself together!! 

Oh hot customers, I thank you. 

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When Customers…

…hand me a £50 note and I verify it, they ask if it passed the test so they could make some more when they got home. 

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I Don’t See Why…

  • Customers have to be rude. That gets you no where. One ounce of rudeness and I will just not serve you. If I do, I’ll walk into the stock room, walk around a bit and then come out and tell you that I don’t have your shoe in stock. You deserve nothing more. 
  • You can’t put things back where you found them. It’s really not hard. It makes someone else’s job a million times harder when they have to spend a million hours looking for something because it isn’t in the right place. Unfortunately this one goes for staff and customers. 
  • Customers never believe me when I tell them stuff. They need to hear it from the manager. Who do you think told me to say that? I don’t have time to stand around making this stuff up! 
  • I should know what size your kid is! Telling me that he’s 4 years old means nothing to me. He could be the smallest four year old in the world or he could have big clown feet! I don’t know these things.
  • If you’re a size 9 and I only have a size 7 in stock, you would even want to waste my time by thinking that will fit you. I just don’t understand how your foot will magically shrink to fit into a size 7. Please don’t waste my time like that. I do have other stuff to do. 
  • I should have to feel where your toe is when you’re clearly older than 10! You should know if the shoe fits you. When you’re a 25 year old woman, that’s just degrading.
  • People ask for my advice regarding footwear and then don’t take any of it. This 15 minute time period could have been effectively used to do something more worth my time and you could have just picked the worst shoes for your feet on your own. 

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021 Cute Socks

Every so now and then I actually get a customer that I fall madly in love with just for a moment. This one was super cute! First I walked by him and looked at him because I noticed he was very cute. The second time I walked past I decided to ask him if he needed help, he didn’t. So I just pretended to do stuff in the vicinity because he looked like he may have needed help at some point! 

Then he came over about 10 minutes later and said, “Now you can help me.” I smiled and went a bit gooey inside. His voice was very swoon worthy, so I was listening, but not really listening if you know what I mean. So I didn’t know what he said. When he was done I snapped myself back to reality and said, “Sure, I’ll just go check that for you.” As I walked to the stockroom I thought about how cute he was. Then when I got there I thought about what the hell he wanted. Darn your cuteness mister, you made me not know what you wanted! 

I was totally listening, but evidently not listening because I was thinking about other stuff. I think he said 8, maybe it was 9, so I took out both sizes and told him that I forgot by the time I got there. He said that it was fine, and he used to always do that! He had really cute socks, it made me giggle. He was very nice and polite, and nothings better than someone who is cute and polite. After he paid he came over and said thanks again. 

I couldn’t say much. He might have been “The One”, but I let him go without doing anything about it. Fingers crossed he doesn’t like his shoes and comes back again sometime! 

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020 What Have You Done To My Arm?

This customer was standing at least a metre away from me and caught me as I was on my way to the stockroom. She was asking if the shoes she had were waterproof and I told her it would be all right as long is she didn’t stand in a puddle for ages! So she thought it was necessary to have a 10 minute conversation about whether or not her shoes were waterproof even though I told her they would be okay. I slowly started walking away and said to her “You should just get those, I’m sure they’ll be fine.” So she said “Okay.”, and I made my escape! 

When I came out of the stockroom, she appeared right in front of the door and gave me a fright! The shoes weren’t in her hand any more and she asked me if I could help her with some other ones. I said that I would but I had to serve my other customer first, so she said that was fine. As I was walking to my other customer she said “Sorry about your arm.”…

Me: What about my arm? (Ponderfully looking around at my arms!) 

Customer: I hurt it. I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to. 

Me: But you didn’t even touch me! You were nowhere near me! 

Customer: I did do something. I just wanted to say sorry because I really didn’t mean it. 

Me: *Oh my god, what the hell has she done to my arm!!?* Er..It’s fine. 

I spent the next half an hour stressing about my arms and looking at them all the time because what if she did some creepy voodoo nonsense to my arms! I was genuinely creeped out! She was nowhere near me, she didn’t even touch me!! 

She was very strange. 

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019 You’re Doing It Wrong!

Description: Male. Middle aged. 

I still get the giggles thinking about this! A gentleman asked if there was anywhere he could sit to try some shoes on. My supervisor pointed him in the general direction of one…”You see the ladder over there sir? Opposite that there is a seating area.” The man acknowledged these instructions, which seemed fairly simple to follow. Apparently not! The gentleman walked up to a ladder that was just before the one he was supposed to go to and for reals tried to sit on the ladder!! It was folded up and leaning up against the wall and he tried to fit his butt into one of the gaps! Even if he had succeeded in sitting there, how would he have put his shoes on!? Some people!! 

So I had to go up to him and physically take him to where he was supposed to sit, while trying not to laugh in his face!! When he got there and I guess realised what a fool he had been he said, “Oh! Sorry!” Hahahaha! 

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018 You’re So Welcome

Description: Male. 20’s. Suited. Brown hair. Styled. Tall. 

I think that some guys are finally starting to realise that how people dress on Gossip Girl is how men should dress the majority of the time. It makes your sexiness increase 10 fold! Ask any woman, a man in a suit is hot! If you look smart, we’ll be more attracted to you. My ovaries almost exploded today. I didn’t see this customer originally, but I was told to serve some shoes to a customer that was in the seating area. When I got there he was sitting away from me and the only thing I could see was that he was tall. I undid the laces, like I do for all customers and handed it to him with a smile, “size 10?”, he took it from me gently, faced me and said “Thank you darling.” etgergbiebwpeildkcn!! He was so adorable!!! 

Take note future customers! (and future boyfriends!) A MAN IN A SUIT WILL GET WOMEN FLAILING ABOUT YOU IF YOU CAN PULL IT OFF. IT IS WORTH A TRY. IF YOU HAVEN’T GOT A SUIT, GO GET ONE. MAKE IT SNAZZY!