I hate to admit it, but I have to work part time at a deparment store, that will remain nameless, to make ends meet. Everyone knows that the retail world has taken a beating during this recession.
Although, I don’t think that shoppers understand the changes that retail stores have made and how that filters down to the associates and then the customers.
The big guys at the top of the stores food chain have cut payroll hours so drastically there are people that have gone from working 40 hours a week to working less than 10.
I am very thankful to have a job, especially during these times when so many don’t. The entire seasonal staff was laid off and we have even said goodbye to some employees who have been there for years. We are operating with a skeleton crew, the least amount of employees that they can possibly schedule and still have the store function.
This means that there won’t always be someone to help the customers the minute they need it. Often times we are trying to operate a department, work on price markdowns, clean up messes and help customers all at the same time.
There have been many times that I work alone on a Saturday and I am enraged with the way customers act. People preach all the time that good customer service died a long time ago. I think it goes deeper than that. I think respect in general is lacking in the retail world.
I have witnessed customers try on a pair of shoes or a piece of clothing and then throw them on the floor. How difficult is it to put them back on the shelf or hanger? If every customer picked up their own mess the sales associates would have the time to assist everyone instead of picking up other people’s messes.
I have seen customers snap their fingers to get an employees attention, or speak to them like they are their maid. We are here to assist you but we are not here to be disrespected or ridiculed.
I am not saying that every customer is this way, nor am I saying that every associate is a good worker. Please respect your retail workers. For the most part, we want to be there and we want to help you. If employees and customers can live harmoniously it will make our working environment and your shopping experience much more pleasant.