Please Be Nice These Holidays
Trolley in sunset, basking alone, not used or abused, not even for fun.
Although what I am going to say is for all of the world, it is directed right into the third eye of americans. I am a cashier in a retail liquor store, and I am begging you, please be nice to the workers. I am not going to rant and rave and go on and on, I am just going to get on my knees, and beg you, please, be nice to the workers. The retail workers of america are the hardest working and least paid people you will encounter, for the most part, in any business. The walk outs on walmart, those are just the beginning. Everyone in retail is being killed slowly by their jobs, and most do not have any way out of their current situation. A lot of them will be grumpy, but realize, that most of these workers have put in holiday after holiday, for years most of them, with no living wages, with no benefits, for the most part, without holiday pay or overtime or anything that might help.
There are some retail workers who make good money, but I guarantee you they are protective and secretive about the money they make. They are not going to put thousands of people into the know about their money or their good luck, because it would not be long before the bosses realize that they could cut wages and hire anyone. There are exceptions to this idea as well, as there are owners and bosses who actually care about their employees, knowing it was them who made the success happen, but for the most part, it is tighter wages, no wage raises, and no future for most retail workers.
And guess who the worst people are for these workers? There are two groups specifically who antagonize the workers. The first and typically the worst, is the customer. Americans have become self entitled little snots, and have gotten so rude as to be ridiculous. Now it is only about 20%, but those 20% ruin the day for every worker they encounter. One in five, yep, that’s about right. So if you think you may be one of those one in five, take these short notes down as to what you may be doing to antagonize the situation.
- Let the clerk or worker guide you through the process of checking out. Every store has different methods of dealing with checkout, and usually, the fastest person who can get you through the check out is your clerk. Allow them to do the exchange. They do not need to hear what you think is first, your phone number or name or anything, they will ask you, and you just need to reply. A simple fool-proof way of doing business, allow the expert to do it.
- If you want help, wait until the clerk is done with the customer in front of you. I really can not tell you how many times a day I am checking someone out, handing them money, or something else that requires my attention, perhaps entering a long string of alpha-numeric, and there is someone out of line and place demanding my attention now. And oh the sighs of OMG when I ask them to wait their turn. It is not rocket science.
- We know you are in a hurry. Everyone in the whole damn country is in a hurry. All the time. Especially when we have 10 people in line waiting for a transaction. Your party is the most important, your time is the most precious, you are the one who needs service now. We know. The one before you, and the lady behind you, they all have the exact same thing in their heads.
- Get off the phone for at least one solid thank you. We know how important your call is, we do not care if you are on the phone much, but please, let us know you just encountered a human who did something for you. Nothing can ruin a good mood more than someone laughing in your face about crap you don’t know or care about, then you just saunter off, leaving us feeling like lumps. That is rude, and there is no reason other than selfishness to be that way.
- If you can not, absolutely not be nice, be quiet. We’ll get your grumpy ass off of our grumpy register quicker. We’ll both be happier.
A bit for bosses.
- We make all your money, all your success. How about being fair and giving people a raise, a bit of encouragement, and a nice bonus? The holidays are the worst time of the year in retail, and it seems there is always half of the management doing their best to be pushy, obsessive, and irritable about the said holidays. And then you fire half the staff after the holidays are over.
- Do some work with your staff. Pushing papers may seem more important, but leadership always comes to those who show they can do the work better than the ones under them. Prove it once in a while, and watch respect grow.
- Stop separating management and workers. Managers should be on the level with the lowest employee, not imposing, pushy and needy. Micromanagement leaves people feeling angry and rebellious, it makes no sense to nitpick, when you could encourage and reinforce positives.
- Make sure people have some choices about time. Leaving people without any choices in the schedules is like stabbing them in the face during the holidays Let the curmudgeons who want to work pick up some overtime, and let the family folks get on with being with their families.
Only one of these cost money, but it is time for american business to let loose the pay, or rebellion on a grand scale will start to take place. We all are seeing the grandmothers thrown out of their houses, we are seeing the cops be heavy-handed with protesters. It is not long before a lot of people get tired of being short-handed, short paid, and even shorter treatment. Be nice these holidays, make someone smile, instead of frown. I want to remember america as the place I learned a lot, even if I didn’t like the way I turned out. Don’t make it the worst place on earth, and a hell I am glad to escape.