Recently we asked members of the BuzzFeed community to share things that annoy them as retail workers. And whew, the tea is HOT, honey. Here are some of the best responses:
1. When y'all be on the phone while checking out — PUT THE PHONE DOWN:
"People on their phones who hold up the line because they are incapable of doing more than one thing at once. Then they get mad at you because you aren't doing anything, but that's because you need them to swipe their card and finish paying."
2. When y'all want us to play babysitter while you shop:
"Customers who don’t watch their children while they shop frustrate me. I don’t have the power to discipline your children nor do I want to. I’ve actually had customers tell me I can yell at their children if I want to, and those same customers are always surprised when their child gets hurt from running through the store, or hanging off the clothing racks."
3. When y'all ask for my discount, like, get out of my face:
"When customers TELL me to give them my employee discount. Who are you? I don't know you. Secondly, I'm not even able to ring myself out! Third, insisting and telling me that I CAN give you my discount (as if you know) when I've already told you five times that I can't. Lastly, who are you?!"
4. When y'all have a problem with us just doing our job:
"I work as a morning-shift stocker at Walmart. I hate when older people, generally always men, yell at me for stocking the shelves. We literally stock shelves 21 hours a day so people can shop."
5. When y'all toss your card at us:
"I hate when people just throw or toss their card or money on the counter. Like, I KNOW you saw me holding my hand out, and you went out of your way to just toss it on the counter?"
6. When y'all just toss things everywhere like this is your house:
"It’s amazing to me how little people care about items that aren’t theirs. People constantly leave clothing on floors, shoes everywhere, and trash on shelves. Most of the time, the first people who complain about the look of a store are the ones that help trash it."
7. When y'all don't put things back where you found it:
"One of my biggest pet peeves is when people leave their empty shopping carts in front of my register, and then get annoyed when we ask them to not abandon them. You know damn well that's not where they go!"
8. When y'all ignore the signs:
"I was a manager at Dollar Tree, where everything in the store is $1. It was plastered all over the store, but I couldn’t count how many customers a day asked how much something was. A freaking dollar."
9. And you don't read your coupons, dammit:
"My store sometimes offers gift with purchases (gwps). In order to get the item, usually a bag, the customer needs to show us the coupon and meet the minimum spending requirements after all other coupons are applied. You’d think it’d be fine because on the coupon it says while supplies last, but no. Customers are constantly fighting me on the fact that they didn’t get the bag, even though the promotion ended weeks ago."
10. When y'all try to teach us about our jobs. WHO ARE YOU?! :
"Whenever a customer tells me I'm doing my job incorrectly. Yes, the job I've worked for over a year."
11. When y'all play the name / race game:
"As someone with a foreign name, every single goddamn time:
Me: Hello how are you, did you find everything you were looking for today?
Them: *ignores question* Oh?! How do you pronounce your name?
Me: *sighs* (tells them)
Them: Oh, that’s so pretty. You know I have a friend who’s Indian! Do you know them?!
Them: aRe yOu SuRe??
Them: You know, the wife and I love making curry at home!
Me: That’s wonderful Steve, would you like paper or plastic today? "
12. When y'all try to justify what you do by saying you've also worked in retail:
"I used to work in the clothing department at Target and one of the things I hated was when I was working in the dressing room and a customer would give me back their clothes in a big, unorganized pile with no hangers, and say, 'Oh I’m sorry. I work in retail too I know how much this sucks.' Then bitch, WHY DID YOU DO IT TO ME?!"
13. When y'all want us to do the guesswork for you:
"People will ask me if a clothing item will fit them, then get angry when I suggest they try it on."
14. When y'all make those 'free' jokes that are really not funny:
"One of the things that annoys me most is when a customer comes up to me with an item that is missing a price tag and says, 'It doesn’t have a price tag, so it must be free.'"
15. When y'all are rude, just so, so rude:
"The people who refuse to respond at all to politeness. 'Hi, how are you?' 'Pick up.' Okay, first of all, fuck you. Saying hello back does not take an hour. Second of all, if you cannot listen to a simple pleasantry, I'm not trusting you to listen to the other questions I really DO have to ask you, like DO YOU HAVE QUESTIONS FOR THE PHARMACIST?"
16. When y'all pull out that entitlement thing:
"Just about everything customers do annoys me but the worst thing is probably when they act entitled. Coming up to me while I’m helping someone else and expecting me to immediately turn my attention to you, and then getting mad at me for something that was your fault? It's infuriating.
17. When y'all judge the hustle:
"Judging you for working retail. I’m a university student working towards a PhD and I only work a few days a week, but it’s clear how some people look down on retail workers and it’s honestly TRASH. Because I’m in my 20's, I can’t tell you how often I get asked, 'Do you work here full time?' or 'Do you have other goals?' with a condescending stare and tone."
18. When y'all go wild with the samples:
"When a customer comes 10 minutes before we close and fills sample cups to the top with every expensive cream. Plus they don't let you help them and they empty your testers. Every week. Week after week. No shame."
19. When y'all just be lying for no reason:
"I’ve been in retail a long time, and I think overall the worst is when customers lie. Lie to return clothing they’ve already worn, or haven’t bought from the store. Lie to managers or supervisors about how they’ve been treated. I work in a retail store that sells and fixes electronics. Customers with beat up phones yell at me, saying they 'take care of their phone,' and 'it’s always in a good case,' and it’s 'never been dropped.' It wouldn’t be so badly dinged and scratched if it were in a case, and basic physics means it’s been dropped somehow to get all that damage."
20. When y'all come to the store for the wrong reasons...and then get mad with us:
"I think the best thing is when a customer gets REALLY angry with you because you don't carry a specific product. On more than one occasion, someone has walked into our craft store and asked for towel racks, shower curtains, dryer balls, towels, LUMBER, grass, bird seed, curtains and curtain rods. Then they get ABSOLUTELY LIVID when I tell them we don't sell that."
21. When y'all want a customized experience while shopping:
"I worked at a certain retail store known for loud music, dim lights, and heavy scents, and people would ask us all the time to adjust things. Sorry Karen, I actually just spent an hour making sure the lights are at the exact corporately-mandated level of darkness, and your whining will not change them."
22. When y'all have sweaty boob cash:
"Ladies, for the love of God, please stop carrying cash in your bra, especially in the middle of summer. Money is filthy enough without being drenched in your boob sweat. No one wants to touch that."
23. When y'all want us to become educators overnight:
"I work at a fabric and craft store. When people come to get fabric and have NO IDEA how to sew and want you to explain the entire process, find a pattern for them, help them pick out a sewing machine, and what fabric they need. I literally had a teenage boy with no sewing experience tell me he wanted me to make him a Cinderella dress. No, sir. I’m here to cut your fabric, not to sew it for you."
24. When y'all try to play smooth operator with us:
"When a customer would mistake my friendliness as an invitation to hit on me. I was being kind and never flirty, but some customers would take it in that direction very quickly."
25. Lastly, when y'all want a discount because you choose to shop there:
"Telling you they deserve special treatment or to bypass policies 'because of how much they’ve spent there.' I don’t get any of the $2,000 you spent Carol, I don’t care. I’m off in five."