They’re People, Too

Hey guys! It’s not just thanksgiving, but pretty soon it is gonna be early black Friday shopping, which means only one thing…. LET THE CHRISTMAS SHOPPING BEGIN!! Fight to the death for the things you want…Right? Wrong. No one should ever raise their voice at someone who is clearly trying to help them get the products they want. I’m talking about the retail workers who don’t have a choice, but to work on holidays like Thanksgiving, Christmas, Etc. These are holidays where spending time with families and making memories are a crucial part of what make the holidays what they are. Special. I’m talking about all the general managers of the big toy stores, Office supply stores, Supermarkets, etc., who have to be at their jobs, especially on a day like today because they need to oversee operations, get everything in order and get merchandise stocked so that they can be sold to customers, among many other things. You guys are the real MVP.

Today and Tomorrow are going to be chaotic and because we live in a society where we want things right here and right now, it makes it difficult for people who aren’t retail workers to be conscious of how crazy they sound. But how the hell would I know, you ask? I used to work in retail. For 3 months. Now, 3 months doesn’t compare to 3 years of retail experience but its something that I can put on my resume, right? Haha.  I know that 3 months isn’t enough to know everything there is to know about the inner workings of a store, but it is enough to provide some insight to how retail workers feel and since I have had and exposure to what Season (what my co-workers and I would call the Black Friday/Christmas shopping season) is like. So without hesitation, I’m going to tell you all about how retail workers feel, how you can be conscious to their feelings, and most of all, how you can control the anger that comes with wanting everything here and now.

From a retail worker standpoint, their job description does not entail that they take your shit. Honestly, is it plastered on their forehead, “Hi, Welcome to *insert store name here*, I am ready to take your shit”? NO IT DOES NOT.  So before you go all, “This isn’t the product I wanted”, “Can I please speak with your manager”, “You’re doing an awful job”, Think about the fact that these are HUMANS. They are living and breathing humans, like you and me. They deserve the same amount of respect that everyone else does. You, the customer have no right to look down on these people. They take the time out of their day from their families, to go to work and to help people like you. Before you think about raising your voice at an employee, PLEASE consider the following:

Do you think you can make your point without yelling?

Are you harboring a deep seated anger that has nothing to do with the person who is trying to help you?

If you answered yes to the 2 questions, then you need to re-evaluate how you can diffuse the situation. Be conscious of the fact that they can make mistakes too. They’re not superhuman.  If you want respect from someone, you can’t just demand it. You have to earn it, regardless of where and who you are. Take a deep breath and realize that maybe you, the customer, need to make your needs known, so that the employee can do their part in helping you get what you need. It’s hard enough that you’re in the middle of chaos, but please understand that employees are in the middle of it, too and they are doing all they can to make sure you get what you need.

Please take a deep breath if you need it and ask, politely, where you can find your item. In the midst of all this chaos, keep in mind that one little deep breath can go a long way in making sure that the situation goes smoothly. If you’re a retail worker, don’t constantly do this every time you come across a guest who needs help, as it will look like you’re huffing and puffing and blowing down the house made out of straw (hah 3 little piggies remark), but do it as needed. Customers included. I don’t care what your level of patience is, but learn to be patient with the employee and customer, vice versa. Yelling at someone and constantly being on their ass, does not make them bring out your product faster. Calmly, but firmly telling them that you need something does. You have to understand that on days, like today and tomorrow, these employees have what feels like, 501+ things to do, please don’t be a dick and scream obscenities at them when they’re not bringing out your product. It’s disrespectful and quite frankly makes you look like a child throwing a temper tantrum. Don’t do it.

Keep in mind that the employees are there to help you, not be your second class citizen who you can just shit on. They are there to make sure you have a pleasant experience while shopping, in the midst of this chaos. Don’t chuck items at them and expect them to catch it, they’re people, too. Chucking things at them not only causes more chaos and does not diffuse any situation. Help them help you. Do your part as the customer and they’ll do their part as the employee/gen manager.

Have you ever realized that some employees, have to work on a day like today? Do you ever realize that more than half of these employees have their own families they need to get home to? Be considerate of the employees this holiday season, their job isn’t easy, but they’re the ones doing it. Holiday shopping is stressful, but we can all help each other have a good experience.

Happy thanksgiving, everyone!

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