Inspiring Customers: "What does the six stand for?"


Carolanne 005

From anotherknockoffcrow Tales From Retail:

I do a lot of cashiering, and while customers watch me ring they frequently ask about my tattoos, specifically several low-quality stick n pokes on my left arm that I did myself. They are all very personal and I did them all very drunk with the exception of a tattoo of six tally marks.

Today I was ringing out a middle aged couple when the man asked me what the six stood for. I don't always tell customers what my tats mean because too often they think I'm looking for a rude opinion but this guy had been polite so far, so I said, > "I did it on my sixth day sober. It helped me get to seven."

Immediately the guy lifted his left arm to show me a tattoo of roman numerals and said, > "This was for four years sober."

It really took me surprise as the coolest part of my day. As yall can probably relate to I go into a lot of interactions with customers dreading what they're going to say to me so it's awesome to have a moment like this instead.









A Tale To Melt the Hell of Working Retail During the Holidays



From  sarahbee_1029, Tales From Retail:

When I was working retail right at a year ago, I had an amazing encounter with such a precious customer. This time of year reminds me of the experience I can't wait to share.

One morning on my way to work, I stopped to check the mail to see if a certain package had arrived. It had (yay!). I had ordered what I thought was a small battery powered heater (like the equivalent of a necklace fan thingy, only a heater). Turns out, it wasn't batter powered (dang it!). I was wanting something I could take outside with me to stay warm on smoke breaks and on my walk home. Oh well, so I just decided I'd find someone to give it to at work.

I was about five steps away from walking through the double doors to the back room to clock in when I was stopped by a customer. She was very soft spoken and very polite, but something about her demeanor made her seem emotionally exhausted. This small lady, probably mid 30's asked me if I could please help her or point her to someone that could.

Knowing I could adjust my clock in time later, I said, "Of course I can! What can I help you with?"

She was looking for a certain brand of blankets that had been on clearance and were in a display bin last week. I worked in the back room at the time and it just so happens I was the one to take the display down the previous day and knew exactly where they were.

When I asked how many she needed, she said, "As many as $20 will buy." I thanked her for being so generous because I knew there were so many people struggling to stay warm this winter (assuming they were for charity). She smiled at me and I went to retrieve her blankets.

When I returned, I still had the heater under my arm (not sure why I hadn't stopped and put it in my locker while I was in the back room) and asked if she would mind taking it to donate with the blankets.

That's when she burst into tears. She explained that her house had burned down and was living in her friend's shed with her two young children and was just trying to keep them warm until after the weekend when they could find a better place to stay. I immediately knew this was why I had been sent the wrong heater.

She didn't want to accept it at first, but then I convinced her that I sincerely wanted her to have it. It was the tiniest gesture. A heater I was just gonna leave lying around. But she was incredibly grateful and gave me the best hug I've ever received from a stranger. We cried together for a minute and then parted ways.

The next week, I got a Christmas card thanking me for being so kind to, "me and my kids." No name on it or anything... and then it dawned on me. The heater was still in the box it had been shipped in and had my address on it. I will never forget this woman and how rewarding it was to be able to make a difference.

Edit: Wow, this story got way more attention than I thought it would. Thank you all so much for your kind words! Sometimes just being a decent human being to someone can create such heart felt response. You never know what people are going through and how far a very simple gesture can go.




Retail Hell Memories: Kindness Brightens the Season


Xmas2009 229

From AviGABS, Tales From Retail:

I want to share this because it's all too easy to only write about the horrible customers in retail.

Back when I worked in the terrible mall store (the same one as my other story, "Stuck in the Middle,") I met this man who was looking for a Christmas card for his nephew. I greeted him, and it was obvious that English was not his first language. He could have been anywhere between thirty five and fifty, my guess would be mid-forties or so? He was a small man, a little frail, and he had hollow cheeks and a beard and a little toque. He gave off a sweet, gentle vibe.

I tried my best to help him, though it was a bit difficult with the language barrier. He asked "Spanish?" I shook my head and apologized. "French?"

As a Canadian, I've taken twelve-ish years of French lessons, but can I remember a word of it? Nope! I smiled, embarassed, and said, "German?" No luck.

Despite our language woes, he managed to tell me that his nephew likes Star Wars. I show him where the Star Wars Christmas cards are, all the while trying to be as kind and courteous as I can. I understand what it's like to be in a country where you can't speak or understand the language--I know it can be stressful, and that sort of situation doesn't improve when someone is impatient or condescending with you.

With all that in mind, I excuse myself so I don't hover over him, and before I go he says (In broken English,) "Thank you for your kindness, thank you. I will never forget it." I don't think I'd ever felt the joy of the season quite like I had then. I saw this fellow a few times after that, but he didn't recognize me.





Appreciative Customer: "One good deed deserves another."



From jackthedruid, Tales From Retail:

I work for a big grocery chain. I was pushing carts and I found a phone. No biggie, gave to CS. A few hours later (30 mins ago) an older gentleman approached me. OG for him me for me.

OG- You were working the carts today right?

Me- Yes sir, I was.

OG - You didn't see a phone on one of the small carts, did you?

Me - I did, I handed it to customer service a bit ago.

OG- Thank you young man :)

He goes on inside, gets the phone and approaches me again.

CG- Here you go, one good deed for another (Hands me a wad of 1s)

Me- I can't accept this, I was just doing the right thing!

CG- I insist, you've saved me a lot of grief. You could have easily pocketed it, and you did the right thing.

(That went on about twice more)

Me- Well, thank you very much! I appreciate it! Have a good night!

A bit later I counted it.

He left $100 in between the ones.. If i would have known, I would definitely not have taken it!

Thank you, kind old man!!!





Liquor Store Cashier Gets a Surprise: A Custy with Phone Manners


Carolanne 019

From sb1925nm, Tales From Retail:

I work at a small liquor store. We generally get the same customers from day to day and it's actually a pretty relaxed retail environment.

My biggest complaint-- aside from corporate of course-- is when a customer comes to the checkout on their phone. It usually happens a few times a shift and it's always a bit awkward as company policy requires that I ask them a few questions during the transaction.

Anyway, a man that i havent seen before came to the counter for the second time that day as he forgot something the wife wanted. He was pretty upbeat and trying to make genuine conversation with other customers and coworkers. I ring him up as usual and make some small talk when his phone begins to vibrate. Then the most magical thing happens, he silences the ringer and says, "Is it alright if I take this call?" I'm blown away. Never before has a customer asked my permission before doing much of anything. I tell him to go ahead and finish the transaction like normal and he leaves with a quick thank you.

I stood there for a while after he left just thinking about what had happened. It honestly made my day a little better. Just a little courtesy can go a long way in making a retail employee's job less miserable.




Gift Card Kindness at a Supermarket Checkout on Christmas Eve


Xmas2009 030

ZusunicStudio, Tales From Retail:

On Christmas Eve I was working a 8 1/2 hour shift at my local supermarket. I was cashiering for almost all of the day and like usual during this time we get a lot of gift card purchases happening.

Anyways I was checking this man and his son out who had a decent amount of gift cards that they bought. They paid for it all and left, a couple of minutes later he comes back and there is a lady and her son behind him. He's got a gift card in his hand and I ring it up for him just thinking he had forgotten to get one.

I hand it back to him after the transaction and see him turn around and hand it to the lady and her son behind him. He said to her that he hoped this would help make their Christmas a little bit better and the lady thanked him profusely.

If I remember correctly it was a 50 dollar gift card from our store which can be used on anything in the super market or gas at our gas station.

It's things like this that restore my faith in humanity.