Customers Suck: A Public Service Announcement

by Ed Lau on August 9, 2007

Y’know what, kids…avoid working retail if you can. I mean, I thought I was already a bit stricter with my policy of never working in any sort of food service but it didn’t take long for me to figure out that retail is probably just as bad. In the case of tech retail, it’s probably worse. If you were to work at McDonald’s, I’m guessing there isn’t too much to explain since everything is rather straight-forward other than trying to manuver questions from overweight soccer moms negotiating how to cut calories and fat (tip: don’t eat at McDonald’s).

Working retail at a computer store isn’t as simple as it sounds, really. Most of the time, you’re not even selling anything. You’re answering questions from idiots that don’t know the first thing about computers because, due to the fact that you work in a computer store, you know everything there is to know about computers.

“My computer’s slow…what’s wrong?”

“My computer won’t start…can you fix it?”

“I need a cable but I don’t know which one it is…”

Not ten seconds ago (yes, I’m blogging at work) did some jackass come up to me asking whether he needed DVD-R or DVD+R’s for his writer. The answer is…I don’t know, you need to check which type your computer uses or what kind of writer you have. But, of course, he has no idea what kind of DVD writer it is and didn’t quite comprehend what I was asking him to do. These are just some of the many questions I get on a daily basis. Granted that I do know what I’m talking about and could probably answer most of these questions given the correct information but dammit, I work here to ring things up at the til. I’m not some kind of free service that can fix all that’s wrong with your adware-from-porn-infested systems.

What’s worse is when people come in simply to bother you or tell you their life story. Here’s a little bit of inside information for those who do…no one that works retail gives a rat’s ass about what’s going on in your life today. Everything I tell you is probably a lie worked out to get you out of the store as soon as humanly possible.

Well, it’s not always horrible. I mean, without customers, my day job would kick ass. What with me and the cool co-workers taking four hour breaks, opening DVDs to watch and building massive Hot Wheels tracks that span our entire department (this actually happened…). But take it from me, kids…customers suck. There’s nothing worse in this world than someone that thinks you’re getting paid to serve them. Maybe communism but it would be real close.

in Random

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Malcolm Owen August 9, 2007 at 2:56 pm

I’ll one-up you on that.

Do not work in a callcentre as customer service.

People will
(a) believe you’re in India (which, bearing in mind my almost perfect BBC English accent and the fact that I was born, raised and still live in the UK, still amazes me just on the numbers that think I’m somewhere in Bangalore…),
(b) believe you to be useless at your job because you’re new (despite me doing the callcentre thing for 2 and a half freaking years!),
(c) verbally abuse you (despite them handing over all of their credit card information, and you having the power to instantly block their phone…),
(d) complain to a supervisor over the simplest thing because you “Can’t help” (despite the managers knowing very little about the systems themselves, due to them managing people instead of working on the phones. I myself have to help people out by pretending to be a supervisor at times)

I would write more, but I kinda like being employed…


krillz August 9, 2007 at 3:20 pm

dude that’s why buying from online sites that just have one huge bad ass storage somewhere on the country side, not much tax thus things are a lot cheaper.

Don’t know about canada but that sounds like a chill job, a order is printed out, you walk or drive down the huge storage pick the thing out wrap it around and leave it in the outgoing box/room.

Nothing stressful and you sure don’t have to deal with the mindretarded people coming in and asking you why the computer is slow after downloading pr0n from some very strange site.


Dennis August 9, 2007 at 7:52 pm

its the old people who suck the most. They won’t stop talking.


Stephen August 9, 2007 at 8:50 pm

I’m going to write you great comment cards just to piss you off! :lol:


ms danielle August 12, 2007 at 11:24 pm

i guess any technical position where you have to deal with the public could be like this… the average person probably isn’t very technology savvy, to put it in a PC way


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