An Open Letter To Retail Customers

Saturday, 21 November 2015
Dear Retail Customers,

We love you, we really do. Without you lot, our jobs would be pretty pointless. But, there's some things you do that get on our nerves a little bit. And I don't want to whinge, but maybe it's time you were made aware of what makes us mad.

First, if we don't look particularly happy-smiley, telling us to "cheer up", or saying "she's got a right face on her" isn't going to help. Bear in mind that we spend our whole days pretending to be happy. We're probably just tired, we've been stood up for the last six hours, the manager's breathing down our neck and the last place we want to be on a Saturday afternoon is here. Give us a break.

You might not realise, but we spend hours merchandising and tidying our displays. And watching you obliterate the section that we had just straightened out makes us cry a little bit inside. Please, just be a little bit considerate. If you take something out of a box to look at, put it back when you're done, don't leave it all over the place for one of us to deal with. Leave displays as you found and you'll avoid not-so-subtle glares from us.

Hey, we can't magically summon up items that are out of stock! We're not personally attacking you, so please don't go on at us as if we are, or mutter about how it's a joke when we apologise and suggest that you try ordering online.

Please don't take it out on us when you forget your own carrier bag and have to pay 5p for another one. Despite the fact that you find the charges "ridiculous", no we can't just give you one. Have a problem, take it up with Mr. Cameron.

If we're carrying armfuls of stuff and ask you to hang on for two minutes before we look in the back for a different size, please don't tut as if it's the biggest inconvenience in the world. We're not superhuman. We were clearly in the middle of something, and whilst we're happy to put that on hold to help you, let us unload all of the crap that we're carrying first.

It's Saturday afternoon and it's busy. We're trying to get through the queue at the till as fast as we can, but seeing you huffing and puffing, tapping your foot and muttering about how unbelievable it is that there aren't more staff isn't going to make us go any faster.

And while we're at it, when you're at the till, don't stand there chatting on your phone while I'm trying to serve you. It's just rude and difficult for me to signal to ask whether or not you'd like a gift receipt.

It's a common misconception that retail workers actually live in the stores, but I can tell you now that is a myth. So when you duck under the shutter just as we're closing and ask a million and one awkward questions, it delays us from getting home on time. And that really annoys us.

Don't get me wrong, most of you are lovely. But remember, working in retail can be much harder than you think. Be kind, please. You'll get much happier, smilier service. Promise.

Yours,
Retail Workers Everywhere

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