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  • Nearly Fell Off Her Chair

    | OH, USA | Awesome Customers, Employees

    (It is Christmas 2012. We use an online service to order a foam chair for our grandson. Within two weeks, the box arrives, but with two of the chairs. I go to return one at the store. After waiting in line for 20 minutes, I reach the customer service rep.)

    Rep: “How may I help you?”

    Me: “I just wanted to bring this back. We ordered one, but they delivered two.”

    Rep: *blank stare for a few moments* “You don’t want a refund?”

    Me: “Oh, no! I’m sorry. I should have said that we weren’t charged for this one. We only paid for one chair, but got two.”

    Rep: “So you…” *another blank stare*

    Me: “Everything’s okay, isn’t it? I’m just returning merchandise that was mistakenly delivered to us.”

    Rep: “I… I’m not sure. This never happens!”

    (I finally convinced her that it was okay to just take the chair back without crediting my account, but left with the feeling that she still wasn’t sure what to do next.)

    Flowering In Adversity

    | MN, USA | Coworkers, Movies & TV, Theme Of The Month

    (I work in a kid’s play area at a retail store where parents can potentially drop their kids off to play for an hour while shopping. The kids mostly want to play in the ball pit, but we also have a movie area. I have a specific coworker that nobody likes working with because she believes she’s always right and acts like she’s in charge of everyone else when she isn’t. One problem I have with her is that she only plays the same two movies when she’s working and won’t let anyone else pick a movie. On this day, it’s insanely busy and two coworkers are watching the kids while my problem coworker checks kids in and I check them out. The movie ends, so I go to put ‘Mulan’ in. She rushes over, getting in my personal space. Keep in mind that my customer waiting to pick their kids up is about two feet away from me at most.)

    Coworker: “No, don’t put that one in.”

    (Something in me snaps and I decide to stop letting her boss me around.)

    Me: “I would like to put this movie in, [Coworker].”

    Coworker: “The kids don’t like that one.”

    Me: “The kids of all ages and genders love Mulan!”

    Coworker: “No, they don’t. I know you want to put it in because YOU like it, not the kids.”

    Me: *looking her dead in the eyes* “[Coworker], do we really need to do this?”

    (She got this look on her face and stormed off, leaving me alone with a crazy amount of customers waiting to check kids in and out. She got on the work phone and I ignored her, putting Mulan in and helping my next check out. Just as I’m starting to wonder where she is and why she isn’t doing check-ins again, five minutes later, she just walks out the door, leaving me to handle all the customers alone while my other two coworkers have to watch the kids. I find out several minutes later when I call the manager’s phone that she left two hours early ‘feeling sick.’ She literally left work two hours early because I wanted to put ‘Mulan’ in and she didn’t.)

    How To Lose Friends And Alienate Managers

    | NH, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre/Silly, Bosses & Owners

    (I have just gotten a job at the local mall. As it’s a small town, many of my friends also work in the mall at other stores, and sometimes they come by to visit me while I’m working.)

    Friend #1: “I’d like to make this purchase.”

    Me: “I’m sorry, sir. You’re not allowed to shop here.”

    Friend #1:Well, I never!

    Friend #2: “Am I allowed to shop here?”

    Me: “No, [Friend #2], you are not. All of you get out right now before I call security.”

    (I look up and notice my manager staring at me in horror and quickly explain the situation. Fortunately, she takes it in good humor, although my friends are more careful about their joking in the future!)

    Can’t Discount The Discount

    | Sydney, ACT, Australia | At The Checkout, Bosses & Owners, Ignoring/Inattentive, Technology

    (We are working a 40%-off everything sale when a note comes through on the registers that an update didn’t go as planned, which should have deleted the sale program and put everything back to full price. We notice that the prices are even more discounted than they should have been.)

    Coworker: *ringing help desk* “We’ve noticed that the prices are wrong. They have too much discount on them.”

    Help Desk: “You need to change every price back to the proper price when you scan in each item.”

    Coworker: “You want us to change the price of every item?!”

    Me: *looking at the line of over 30 people each carrying a large number of items* “You have got to be kidding. We are going to be lynched. Tell him we can’t do it.”

    Coworker: “We have to do it.”

    (Each time we try to change the price it just goes back to the extra discounted price. IT put in place a block that prevents us from changing the price. My coworker calls the help desk again, who again tells us we have to change the price, so she rings our district manager and explains.)

    District Manager: “Oh, I just had [Location] store on the line asking for permission to keep selling at the extra discounted price. I said no.”

    Coworker: “But the computer won’t let us change the price.”

    District Manager: “Are you sure?

    Coworker: “We keep trying and customers are getting angry with us. There’s 30 of them giving us filthy looks right now.”

    District Manager: “Okay, you can do it. I better call back [Location] again and let them know, too. I thought they were being lazy…”

    Assumptions Are Off Color

    | MA, USA | Bigotry, Coworkers, Health & Body

    (I work in a store where, in lieu of uniforms, employees have color-coded name tags designating their sections; blue for kitchen, green for household, etc. I am explaining to a new coworker that I have prosopagnosia, a condition wherein I can’t recognize faces.)

    Coworker #1: “That’s so bizarre! How do you recognize people?”

    Me: “Well, everyone’s faces look the same, so I look for an identifying characteristic, like that you have a purple mohawk, or that coworker has a jacket with [cartoon character] on it that he wears every day.”

    Coworker #1: “So, something that’s really hard to miss and is instantly noticeable? That must make retail interesting!”

    Me: “Oh yeah! Last week—”

    (I am interrupted by another coworker, who has overheard us and come over, interrupting our conversation.)

    Coworker #2: “So what’s my identifying feature?”

    Me: “Oh, that’s easy! It’s because you’re—”

    Coworker #2: “It’s because I’m [race], isn’t it? Everyone’s face is the same except mine, because you just can’t see anything other than a [race] coworker.”

    Me: “Well, you—”

    Coworker #2: “I think it’s disgusting that I’m the only one you can ‘see’ because of my color. You can just ‘see’ me magically.”

    (She continues on for a couple more minutes about racial stereotyping in the workplace. Finally, when she pauses to take a breath…)

    Me: “Actually, it’s because of your name tag. It’s red. You’re the only person with a red name tag, because you’re the manager.”

    Coworker #2: *is quiet for about a minute* “Don’t let it happen again.” *storms off*

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