Retail Balls Awards: Photo Lab Customer Gets Told


Retailballsjason From Kris, June, 2008:

Dumb Asses at the Bullseye Photo Lab

Dumb Ass: The kiosk won't read my CD.

Me: OK, let's take a look. Well, your disk is severely scratched and the kiosk will not be able to read it.


Me: Ma'am, I'm sorry but the disk is damaged and will not work.


ME: It is not going to work, see the big scratches across the disk. There is nothing I can do.

DA: I want your FUCKING manager.

ME: Ma'am, I am the manager and if I was fucking right now, I would not be able to help you. I'm not taking that language and you can leave now, have a nice day."








Sales Associate Hell: Lady thinks I'm just a blood sucking leech


Carolanne 023

From u/Moolte Tales From Retail:

Just to get it out of the way, I work in sales. I think their is some intrinsical link between working as a salesperson and being perceived as one of these so called leeches.

Anyway, I work as 1 person in a 2 person team that sells family photos to schools on weekends in a large city. We were on the outskirts of the city one day and we were up to our last client before lunch. The business essentially works by the photos being taken immediately afterwards they are sold to them for a relatively cheap price compared to industry standards, there is no obligation to buy.

So during the process of me showing this lady the photos she makes it abundantly clear to me multiple times that she "[has] no interest" in looking at any individual photos of her children (as there is one free photo given to each family with the booking and the rest are additional purchases) and because of this I decided not to try and upsell the hell out of her and just let her get the free photo.

She chooses the photo, I show her what it's going to look like cropped and edited, she leaves - as does my obligation to her and her appointment.

Just as my colleague and I were leaving the venue for lunch she rushes over in a crazed panic, "YOU DIDN'T SHOW ME MY KIDS PHOTOS, THIS IS F**KING RIDICULOUS".


(At this point I know exactly what is going to happen if I don't give her exactly what she wants, she has the 'can I speak to the manager' hairstyle, you know the one)

"I understand your frustration but unfortunately we've turned off all the machines and are heading out for lunch. If you'd like I can try and be super quick and come back in about 20 minutes (we are meant to have an hour for lunch) and I can show you the photos again"

She begrudgingly agrees

20 minutes pass and I come back with my food and a 'can do' attitude

The lady then proceeds to take another 30 minutes looking at her photos, chooses to buy nothing, complains some more, makes empty threats about shutting us down because of our poor behaviour. At this point I'm just happy she's heading towards the door.

Tonight I just got an email from my boss saying how stupid the call she just had with this lady was where she claimed that I was a "blood sucking leech" who only wanted her money. My boss then said that she knows that we're much more upbeat and happy people than this lady said we were and apologised for having to put up with that.

In the end, people in sales aren't blood-sucking leeches and we'll actually go a long way to get you what you want, we are still people too.







Discount Rat Encounter: They charge less, who CARES if I can’t get it there?!?



From Stepsdad0130, Tales From Retail:

I work at a worldwide RX chain. The location I am currently at is in the parking lot of a mall with the most well known of well known big box stores. Today I was behind my photo counter when two friendly young girls came in. Our interaction went something like this.

Girl:”Is your photo kiosk working?”

Me:”Yeah all three should be good to go.”

G:”oh thank god. The last three time I went to (Big Box) their machines have been broken. “

More generic customer service banter while the girls start to upload and pick their photos.

G:”Hey,idk if you know anything about this but I’m trying to crop this photo and just need the top half.”

M:”Yeah just switch the cropped area 90 degrees it’ll be great. Oh, you are getting 5x7 photos? Click on our deals button, there’s half off enlargements right now.”

G:”Sweet, you guys know what your doing here. There’s never even anybody THERE at that place.”

They complete their order and get to the checkout screen.

G:”Oh uhh, that’s the total?!? It’s almost half that at (Big Box Store w/broken machine) I’ll go there”.

Out the door they walk






Dumbass Customers: Photo Lab Reading Comprehension



From  The_H1R0, Tales From Retail:

I work in a photo lab for a big box store that has both hour and self service. For the past week our machines have been on the fritz (as technology tends to do) and because of this we are unable to do certain jobs we normally do. Not a problem though, all I had to do was make some large bright yellow signs and affix them to every machine at the front.

The signs read "ATTENTION CUSTOMERS. DUE TO TECHNICAL DIFFICULTY WE ARE UNABLE TO OFFER "X", "Y" AND "Z" SERVICES. WE APOLOGIZE FOR THE INCONVENIENCE". Now in addition to each of these signs being at least 8"x10", they are posted right beneath the screen where anyone who ever hoped to make a single photo must look.

So that should be easy right?

I have since started a check sheet after the first two days and my results are as follows;

126 counts of "Are the machines broken?",

87 counts of "Can I not make (x,y or z. Take your pick.)?",

54 counts of "Can I not do (completely unrelated task) here? ",

13 counts of "If I can't do them can you just do them for me.",

and last but not least one very aggressive middle aged mother who decided it was inconvenient and I the clerk should just fix the machines if they are broken.

Not sure why I didn't think of that first! If this trend gets worse I think warning labels may lose all effectiveness, and I can decide if that will be a good or bad thing.

-- The_H1R0








Dumbass Customers: Out of Service



From RubberReptile, Tales From Retail:

It's post holidays in the photo store and it feels like everything is broken. One of our print kiosks is offline because it's likely caught a virus or something that's stopped it from processing orders. Anything submitted through it literally disappears into oblivion, never to be seen again.

One lady takes the giant "out of service" sign off the screen, turns on the screen, closes the virus scan we were running then opens the kiosk app and proceeds to start her order. That's about when I notice what she's up to and intervene.

I politely tell her to please use one of the other two available kiosks, but she whines about how she's already started her orders. I remind her of the sign that she didn't read: the kiosk is out of order, and anything done on it does not go through. She replies some snarky, "it seems to be working just fine." So I shrug and let her do her thing. I was with another customer anyways. Boxing day, you know.

Fifteen minutes later she finishes her order and stomps up to the till, pushes aside other customers and asks how long her prints are going to be.

Of course we hadn't received the order. l said to her that we hadn't received it and included the politest retail, "I told you so," that I could get away with.

To her credit, she didn't totally fly off the handle. She got red in the face and said, "well thanks for wasting my time" and stormed away in a tizzy.

The other customer I was helping had seen the entire interaction. In his deep booming voice, he laughed and said,

"You can't fix stupid."

Truer words.






Retail Redemption: Today I Made a Customer Cry


Carolanne 019

From  RubberReptile, Tales From Retail:

I work in photo finishing and I was helping a friendly lady who wanted prints off of her phone. She off-handedly mentioned that she recently lost all the photos on her phone so she was only able to get prints from the last few weeks.

I found it odd that the photos would just disappear but the phone was still working. She insisted, despite being a "technology illiterate" that she didn't accidentally delete them. She also off-handedly mentioned that she thought her phone had a memory card in it.

This needed further investigation. I fully expected her to not have a micro SD card, since many older folk call the Sim Card a memory card, but lo-and-behold there was one inside.

I put the card into one computer and it didn't show up at all so I tried our Windows PC instead and it told me the disk was unformatted. Likely corrupted somehow by her cheap off-brand Android.

I didn't want to get the her hopes up, but since Windows was able to see it I thought there might be a chance... So I took a deep breath, formatted it and threw it into our recovery software.

I was able to recover 90% of the photos and video on that card.

The lady had been waiting for her prints anyway so I waved for her to come around to my computer and take a look. She looked at the photos on the screen and literally started bawling. It was all her most important pics - her grandson's grad, her dog that had passed a few months ago, family trips... Years worth of pics that weren't backed up anywhere. In the end she bought a new Micro SD and I gave her a DVD of the pics at no charge. After paying, she ran behind the counter and gave me a big hug.

I later found out that she hand wrote my boss a letter and said it was the best customer service she'd ever had.

Today has been a good day.

-- RubberReptile