Kimosabe is bestowed with a well-deserved Retail Balls Award for their spectacular response to the tirade of a scamming coupon custy...
To begin, let me make something clear. I’m a friendly cashier. And I generally don’t have any problems with couponers. Most of the time, I can turn a stack of coupons away and still leave the customer smiling. My regulars love me for this. That, however, doesn’t mean I’ll stand by while a customer tries to cheat the system. Case in point…
A while back, I was asked to help a fellow cashier. They had turned a customer away for using fake coupons. This cashier was known to be trustworthy, and I had worked with them enough to not even question their decision. So, when the customer went back into the store instead of out to their car, I was asked to go let the other cashiers know to not accept the lane-jumping-customer’s coupons.I made it to the self checkout registers at the same time as the customer, and immediately knew I was in for a headache. This customer makes a habit of complaining and has been known to call the national managers to complain about our employees following store policy.
As I approached the register, the customer looked at me and knew why I was there. Without giving me a chance to talk to the cashier, they started getting belligerent. They told me I was harassing them. They said they were going to call the complaint hotline. For a good three minutes, the customer yelled at me and I tried backing out politely three separate times. I even told them that if they wanted to complain about me, my name was ‘Kimosabe’ and I pointed to my name badge. Apparently, backing out wasn’t an option, and I got the feeling that the customer was just trying to goad me into snapping. I didn’t get angry. I kept a smile on my face. And then they said the golden phrase:
“If you have something to say about me, say it to my face, and not under your breath.”
I looked them square in the eyes and said “Okay.” Turning to my coworker, and keeping a happy tone, I said loud enough that the customer could clearly hear me, “I was informed that this customer is trying to use fake coupons. Please don’t accept them.”
Without a moment of pause, I turned and walked off to find my supervisor (who I told verbatim what had happened, letting them know that “You’re about to have a sh*t storm on your hands.”) Twenty minutes later, I was in the manager’s office being told that “If the customer decided to complain, it would result in a write up.” I smiled, nodded, and said “That’s fair. No problem. And if it comes to a write up, it was completely worth it.”
I came back to my register to find out that what I said left the customer in tears...genuine, crying like a baby tears.
Knowing that I was that impactful felt great.
Better still, though - I never did get written up for that incident.