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#21 treeduck

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Posted 09 February 2015 - 03:59 PM

A punch to the gut and then a backwards headbutt to the chin as they double over! :aliensmiley:

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#22 LyndseyG

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Posted 09 February 2015 - 05:35 PM

View Posttreeduck, on 09 February 2015 - 03:59 PM, said:

A punch to the gut and then a backwards headbutt to the chin as they double over! :aliensmiley:

I like this plan. Simple. Effective. Easy to remember.

Plus a swift kick in the crotch.

#23 Moonlit Dreamer

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Posted 09 February 2015 - 05:52 PM

View PostPrincipled Man, on 09 February 2015 - 03:52 PM, said:

View PostLady Guinevere, on 09 February 2015 - 07:33 AM, said:

View PostPrincipled Man, on 09 February 2015 - 02:46 AM, said:

View PostLady Guinevere, on 08 February 2015 - 07:54 PM, said:

Hello everyone!

I work overnight with the general public (Many of them are quite intoxicated.), and I have to deal with a lot of rude and malicious people. How do you handle a situation where you are put down and treated like garbage? I use the 'kill them with kindness' method, but after a while it's extremely difficult to force a smile and be nice to these people. How do you block it out and ignore them?

Thanks.
:hug2:

1.  Be a professional at all times.  Do not sink to their level.  
2.  NO ONE has the right to insult or abuse you.  Let the customer know this in very clear terms.  Let the customer know that you will refuse service to him/her if the abuse continues.  Let the customer know that the police will be called if it continues.  
3.  Inform your supervisor immediately, and make it known that you will not tolerate the abuse.  If your employer doesn't support you, then find a new employer ASAP.  
4.  Be ready to call the police at all times, and DO IT if it becomes necessary.

But Be Careful.  If there is any chance that these rude and abusive customers would physically assault you, then you should be very cautious.  Get your supervisor on the spot.  Get on the intercom and call for Security.  Protect yourself.

I've never considered contacting the police; I'd hope to never be in a situation that would require that... though I have felt afraid a few times. Lately, rather than dealing with an unfriendly or unsatisfied customer on my own, I've been calling my manager to speak with them. I don't always; only if they are particularly rude or aggressive.

Night shift police officers always want to have something to do......  :lol:  

But seriously, if customers get nasty with you, spew profanity, and disrupt your business, that is disorderly conduct, and the police will take action.  Once the assholes in your neighborhood get the message that your store will call the police, they will probably leave you alone.  Probably....

Yeah, my manager has threatened to call the police before, after a customer threw a beverage at me over the store counter.

Haha... people really are that mean where I live.

#24 Moonlit Dreamer

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Posted 09 February 2015 - 05:54 PM

View PostLyndseyG, on 09 February 2015 - 05:35 PM, said:

View Posttreeduck, on 09 February 2015 - 03:59 PM, said:

A punch to the gut and then a backwards headbutt to the chin as they double over! :aliensmiley:

I like this plan. Simple. Effective. Easy to remember.

Plus a swift kick in the crotch.

:lol:

I agree... excellent idea!

#25 jamie

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Posted 09 February 2015 - 07:47 PM

I'm a teacher's assistant for the attendance office at my school, so I basically just write and run passes for parents picking up kids. I'm always polite but I occasionally get some rude people. I just try my best to be nice, but if someone goes overboard then one of the attendance office secretaries will handle it, luckily that's never happened. I just try to not let it get on my nerves. As annoying as it can be, you never know if they might've had a bad day or there's a lot going on in their life.

Edited by thegirlintherushshirt, 09 February 2015 - 07:48 PM.


#26 Xanadu

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Posted 09 February 2015 - 07:53 PM

If your job is mainly dealing with customers via the phone, also make sure you have a partner in crime you can turn to when they say, "I want to speak to your supervisor." A co-worker of mine and I were each other's "supervisor" for these calls. Screw 'em. :7up:

#27 Aikenrooster

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Posted 10 February 2015 - 06:32 AM

View PostMara, on 09 February 2015 - 12:21 AM, said:

View PostLady Guinevere, on 08 February 2015 - 08:20 PM, said:

View PostBlue J, on 08 February 2015 - 08:13 PM, said:

Working with the general public is always dicey, but especially if they're drunk and obnoxious, you don't have to keep smiling a big smile at an obnoxious asshat like that.

:D

I guess you're right... I should be nice to the customer, but not to the point where they take advantage of my kindness.

When I worked retail and had an asshole customer, I found it quite helpful to give them the middle finger under the counter or otherwise out of sight.  Made me feel better to be quietly saying, "fuckyoufuckyoufuckyou" in a way that wouldn't get me fired.  And then, after they left, my coworkers and I would make fun of them and imitate them.
Only once did it ever get me canned.  It is OK to think, "will that be all today, you come-guzzling gutter slut?"  It is not OK to say it.  Really, though, it was kind of worth getting fired from that $5/hour drudgery.
This is laugh out loud funny. I guess it's the way you wrote it. I don't know.  I be cussin people out all the time, but there's nothing I can do but put up with it.

#28 Moonlit Dreamer

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Posted 10 February 2015 - 07:03 AM

View Postthegirlintherushshirt, on 09 February 2015 - 07:47 PM, said:

I'm a teacher's assistant for the attendance office at my school, so I basically just write and run passes for parents picking up kids. I'm always polite but I occasionally get some rude people. I just try my best to be nice, but if someone goes overboard then one of the attendance office secretaries will handle it, luckily that's never happened. I just try to not let it get on my nerves. As annoying as it can be, you never know if they might've had a bad day or there's a lot going on in their life.

That is very true. I've never really considered that they might be experiencing a difficult situation in their life. I think people who are unkind to others are miserable with themselves in some way.

#29 WorkingAllTheTime

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Posted 10 February 2015 - 10:12 AM

View PostPrincipled Man, on 09 February 2015 - 02:46 AM, said:

View PostLady Guinevere, on 08 February 2015 - 07:54 PM, said:

Hello everyone!

I work overnight with the general public (Many of them are quite intoxicated.), and I have to deal with a lot of rude and malicious people. How do you handle a situation where you are put down and treated like garbage? I use the 'kill them with kindness' method, but after a while it's extremely difficult to force a smile and be nice to these people. How do you block it out and ignore them?

Thanks.
:hug2:

1.  Be a professional at all times.  Do not sink to their level.  
2.  NO ONE has the right to insult or abuse you.  Let the customer know this in very clear terms.  Let the customer know that you will refuse service to him/her if the abuse continues.  Let the customer know that the police will be called if it continues.  
3.  Inform your supervisor immediately, and make it known that you will not tolerate the abuse.  If your employer doesn't support you, then find a new employer ASAP.  
4.  Be ready to call the police at all times, and DO IT if it becomes necessary.

But Be Careful.  If there is any chance that these rude and abusive customers would physically assault you, then you should be very cautious.  Get your supervisor on the spot.  Get on the intercom and call for Security.  Protect yourself.

This is all sound advice.  (In the interest of clarity, I run a very large public business).  Given my own background, I would also suggest having a proactive conversation with your manager/leader about what you have faced and ask them:

A) What is their attitude/philosophy regarding rude and hostile customers?
B) What would they suggest you do?

If they are worth their salt, they will tell you that, yes, you do have to deal with the occasional abrupt or rude person, but you do not have to accept being cursed at, yelled at, or threatened.  They should say that once the person becomes profane or belligerent, you need to get them.  (As a leader, I, by the way, very clearly - but politely - tell that person that if they continue the behavior they will be leaving the place.  Usually that brings it down a notch to let me diffuse whatever the issue is.  If it escalates them, I politely inform them that I will be contacting some people who will help them leave - as the average person does not realize that a business, while open to the public, is privately held and once you are told to leave you actually have to leave or the police *will* escort you.  Only one time have I ever actually had to go so far as the police arriving and taking the person away in handcuffs.)

The reason I suggest you have a proactive conversation is, again, if the manager/leader is worth their salt, it will set their radar to pay a little more attention to you and your interactions, possibly helping them to step in earlier if needed and perhaps even offer you a little coaching (maybe on how to be more firm, yet still polite?).

Also, keep in mind that once the manager/leader steps in, the person often takes a different tone.  Even though the manager/leader is telling them the very same thing you just said in likely a similar way, the person accepts it from the manager/leader.  Do not take that personally.  That just means they accepted the rule of the positional authority.  People are weak like that sometimes.  They don't have the moral compass to be polite to others, but they will listen to "The Man".  

Finally, one other thing to keep in mind.  Right after this kind of situation, I often remind the people on my team this reality:  "We interact with tens of thousands of people a week.  There's a good chance that 3 or 4 are jerks."  I say it in a way to convey humor and the person almost always laughs.  The reason I do it is simple:  To remind the person it is not them, it was the other person who was the problem, and that I understand and have their back.

Hopefully your manager/leader does, as well.

#30 Moonlit Dreamer

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Posted 10 February 2015 - 01:33 PM

View PostWorkingAllTheTime, on 10 February 2015 - 10:12 AM, said:

View PostPrincipled Man, on 09 February 2015 - 02:46 AM, said:

View PostLady Guinevere, on 08 February 2015 - 07:54 PM, said:

Hello everyone!

I work overnight with the general public (Many of them are quite intoxicated.), and I have to deal with a lot of rude and malicious people. How do you handle a situation where you are put down and treated like garbage? I use the 'kill them with kindness' method, but after a while it's extremely difficult to force a smile and be nice to these people. How do you block it out and ignore them?

Thanks.
:hug2:

1.  Be a professional at all times.  Do not sink to their level.  
2.  NO ONE has the right to insult or abuse you.  Let the customer know this in very clear terms.  Let the customer know that you will refuse service to him/her if the abuse continues.  Let the customer know that the police will be called if it continues.  
3.  Inform your supervisor immediately, and make it known that you will not tolerate the abuse.  If your employer doesn't support you, then find a new employer ASAP.  
4.  Be ready to call the police at all times, and DO IT if it becomes necessary.

But Be Careful.  If there is any chance that these rude and abusive customers would physically assault you, then you should be very cautious.  Get your supervisor on the spot.  Get on the intercom and call for Security.  Protect yourself.

This is all sound advice.  (In the interest of clarity, I run a very large public business).  Given my own background, I would also suggest having a proactive conversation with your manager/leader about what you have faced and ask them:

A) What is their attitude/philosophy regarding rude and hostile customers?
B) What would they suggest you do?

If they are worth their salt, they will tell you that, yes, you do have to deal with the occasional abrupt or rude person, but you do not have to accept being cursed at, yelled at, or threatened.  They should say that once the person becomes profane or belligerent, you need to get them.  (As a leader, I, by the way, very clearly - but politely - tell that person that if they continue the behavior they will be leaving the place.  Usually that brings it down a notch to let me diffuse whatever the issue is.  If it escalates them, I politely inform them that I will be contacting some people who will help them leave - as the average person does not realize that a business, while open to the public, is privately held and once you are told to leave you actually have to leave or the police *will* escort you.  Only one time have I ever actually had to go so far as the police arriving and taking the person away in handcuffs.)

The reason I suggest you have a proactive conversation is, again, if the manager/leader is worth their salt, it will set their radar to pay a little more attention to you and your interactions, possibly helping them to step in earlier if needed and perhaps even offer you a little coaching (maybe on how to be more firm, yet still polite?).

Also, keep in mind that once the manager/leader steps in, the person often takes a different tone.  Even though the manager/leader is telling them the very same thing you just said in likely a similar way, the person accepts it from the manager/leader.  Do not take that personally.  That just means they accepted the rule of the positional authority.  People are weak like that sometimes.  They don't have the moral compass to be polite to others, but they will listen to "The Man".  

Finally, one other thing to keep in mind.  Right after this kind of situation, I often remind the people on my team this reality:  "We interact with tens of thousands of people a week.  There's a good chance that 3 or 4 are jerks."  I say it in a way to convey humor and the person almost always laughs.  The reason I do it is simple:  To remind the person it is not them, it was the other person who was the problem, and that I understand and have their back.

Hopefully your manager/leader does, as well.

Thank you, WorkingAllTheTime. I greatly appreciate your response, and time you took to write it.  Being firm with others is something I've never been good at, because I'm concerned about how others perceive my disposition. I guess what I mean is I don't want to seem offensive or insulting towards the customer. I've never considered consulting my manager for advice on how to handle an aggressive customer; excellent suggestion.

#31 Principled Man

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Posted 10 February 2015 - 06:32 PM

View PostWorkingAllTheTime, on 10 February 2015 - 10:12 AM, said:

Also, keep in mind that once the manager/leader steps in, the person often takes a different tone.  Even though the manager/leader is telling them the very same thing you just said in likely a similar way, the person accepts it from the manager/leader.  Do not take that personally.  That just means they accepted the rule of the positional authority.  People are weak like that sometimes.  They don't have the moral compass to be polite to others, but they will listen to "The Man".  

This is an excellent point.  The rude/abusive customer assumes that the employee is powerless to do anything (especially if the employee is a female).  The abusive customer's mentality is, "What are YOU going to do about it?  You're just a lowly cashier...."   When the Boss shows up, the abusive customer almost always shuts up.  

My niece went through this in her last job.  Female, in her late teens, and overweight, she was a perfect target for abusive customers.  They didn't respect her, so they had no problem with being rude or insulting to her.  Sadly, her corrupt managers were completely apathetic about it.  She finally got fed up with the dysfunction and quit, even though she was the best worker in the place and was one of the owner's favorites.

#32 Moonlit Dreamer

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Posted 11 February 2015 - 01:14 AM

Hi Principled Man,

Aw... I'm sorry she had such a terrible work experience. All of my managers, including the head manager, seem to like me, and have told me I'm one of their best employees. The other night I was even told I was a candidate to become a manager myself, which was a complete surprise to me. :huh: I enjoy working, I just wish customers were friendlier.

You're right; most customers will listen to the manager, however I had one exception this evening; a customer was unsatisfied and demanded a refund, and harshly criticized my manager... then decided he would never come back to our store. "I'm never coming back to this place again!!" My manager's response was pretty amusing though; she said, "Okay." :lol:

#33 Babycat

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Posted 11 February 2015 - 04:15 AM

View PostLyndseyG, on 09 February 2015 - 05:35 PM, said:

View Posttreeduck, on 09 February 2015 - 03:59 PM, said:

A punch to the gut and then a backwards headbutt to the chin as they double over! :aliensmiley:

I like this plan. Simple. Effective. Easy to remember.

Plus a swift kick in the crotch.

And another in the butt.

#34 Moonlit Dreamer

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Posted 11 February 2015 - 08:59 AM

View PostBabycat, on 11 February 2015 - 04:15 AM, said:

View PostLyndseyG, on 09 February 2015 - 05:35 PM, said:

View Posttreeduck, on 09 February 2015 - 03:59 PM, said:

A punch to the gut and then a backwards headbutt to the chin as they double over! :aliensmiley:

I like this plan. Simple. Effective. Easy to remember.

Plus a swift kick in the crotch.

And another in the butt.

:lol:

#35 WorkingAllTheTime

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Posted 11 February 2015 - 09:48 AM

View PostLady Guinevere, on 10 February 2015 - 01:33 PM, said:

View PostWorkingAllTheTime, on 10 February 2015 - 10:12 AM, said:

View PostPrincipled Man, on 09 February 2015 - 02:46 AM, said:

View PostLady Guinevere, on 08 February 2015 - 07:54 PM, said:

Hello everyone!

I work overnight with the general public (Many of them are quite intoxicated.), and I have to deal with a lot of rude and malicious people. How do you handle a situation where you are put down and treated like garbage? I use the 'kill them with kindness' method, but after a while it's extremely difficult to force a smile and be nice to these people. How do you block it out and ignore them?

Thanks.
:hug2:

1.  Be a professional at all times.  Do not sink to their level.  
2.  NO ONE has the right to insult or abuse you.  Let the customer know this in very clear terms.  Let the customer know that you will refuse service to him/her if the abuse continues.  Let the customer know that the police will be called if it continues.  
3.  Inform your supervisor immediately, and make it known that you will not tolerate the abuse.  If your employer doesn't support you, then find a new employer ASAP.  
4.  Be ready to call the police at all times, and DO IT if it becomes necessary.

But Be Careful.  If there is any chance that these rude and abusive customers would physically assault you, then you should be very cautious.  Get your supervisor on the spot.  Get on the intercom and call for Security.  Protect yourself.

This is all sound advice.  (In the interest of clarity, I run a very large public business).  Given my own background, I would also suggest having a proactive conversation with your manager/leader about what you have faced and ask them:

A) What is their attitude/philosophy regarding rude and hostile customers?
B) What would they suggest you do?

If they are worth their salt, they will tell you that, yes, you do have to deal with the occasional abrupt or rude person, but you do not have to accept being cursed at, yelled at, or threatened.  They should say that once the person becomes profane or belligerent, you need to get them.  (As a leader, I, by the way, very clearly - but politely - tell that person that if they continue the behavior they will be leaving the place.  Usually that brings it down a notch to let me diffuse whatever the issue is.  If it escalates them, I politely inform them that I will be contacting some people who will help them leave - as the average person does not realize that a business, while open to the public, is privately held and once you are told to leave you actually have to leave or the police *will* escort you.  Only one time have I ever actually had to go so far as the police arriving and taking the person away in handcuffs.)

The reason I suggest you have a proactive conversation is, again, if the manager/leader is worth their salt, it will set their radar to pay a little more attention to you and your interactions, possibly helping them to step in earlier if needed and perhaps even offer you a little coaching (maybe on how to be more firm, yet still polite?).

Also, keep in mind that once the manager/leader steps in, the person often takes a different tone.  Even though the manager/leader is telling them the very same thing you just said in likely a similar way, the person accepts it from the manager/leader.  Do not take that personally.  That just means they accepted the rule of the positional authority.  People are weak like that sometimes.  They don't have the moral compass to be polite to others, but they will listen to "The Man".  

Finally, one other thing to keep in mind.  Right after this kind of situation, I often remind the people on my team this reality:  "We interact with tens of thousands of people a week.  There's a good chance that 3 or 4 are jerks."  I say it in a way to convey humor and the person almost always laughs.  The reason I do it is simple:  To remind the person it is not them, it was the other person who was the problem, and that I understand and have their back.

Hopefully your manager/leader does, as well.

Thank you, WorkingAllTheTime. I greatly appreciate your response, and time you took to write it.  Being firm with others is something I've never been good at, because I'm concerned about how others perceive my disposition. I guess what I mean is I don't want to seem offensive or insulting towards the customer. I've never considered consulting my manager for advice on how to handle an aggressive customer; excellent suggestion.

I think any leader would value a team member with your interest in not being viewed as insulting or rude.  That is a wonderful trait for not just business, but life.  The trick is finding the balance between being polite and service oriented and not being run over or borderline abused.  

Here's the thing, in my business, I can teach pretty much any operation needed to run the business.  Those things are processes and processes are pretty easily picked up.  What is harder to teach is interpersonal skills or what I refer to as "give a damn" (as in a person gives a damn about doing a good job).  You seem to have the latter, but are just learning how to keep the pendulum centered.  It comes with time and practice and reflection.

One other thing to consider.... above I referred to manager/leader.  The reason being is I don't know which your boss is.  The actual position title used in by your employer is irrelevant, but their style either makes them primarily a manager or a leader.  You manage processes.  You lead people.  The best bosses know how to do both (although still lean a bit to one or the other).  The absolute best lead people in, with, and through processes.  Hopefully you don't just have a manager, but also a leader.

Edited by WorkingAllTheTime, 11 February 2015 - 09:50 AM.


#36 WorkingAllTheTime

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Posted 11 February 2015 - 09:55 AM

View PostLady Guinevere, on 11 February 2015 - 01:14 AM, said:

Hi Principled Man,

Aw... I'm sorry she had such a terrible work experience. All of my managers, including the head manager, seem to like me, and have told me I'm one of their best employees. The other night I was even told I was a candidate to become a manager myself, which was a complete surprise to me. :huh: I enjoy working, I just wish customers were friendlier.

You're right; most customers will listen to the manager, however I had one exception this evening; a customer was unsatisfied and demanded a refund, and harshly criticized my manager... then decided he would never come back to our store. "I'm never coming back to this place again!!" My manager's response was pretty amusing though; she said, "Okay." :lol:

First paragraph... I am not surprised they see potential in you.  You care.  That is important.  Question, though, do you always work only the overnight shifts?  If so, then this is likely always going to be a challenge because of the alcohol factor.  Do you have the option to occasionally work other shifts?  That would probably be a sort of a respite for you... to work and to deal with fewer angry drunks.

Second paragraph.... sometimes there is nothing that can be done (within reason) to make a customer happy.  Although rare and usually only after extensive attempt, I have occasionally had to tell a customer "Sir/Ma'am, it seems that we are not going to be able to satisfy your needs.  I wish that was not the case, but I understand if you decide to do business elsewhere." In other words, it is a tactful way of suggesting they don't come back.  Sometimes it reaches that point.

Edited by WorkingAllTheTime, 11 February 2015 - 09:58 AM.


#37 troutman

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Posted 11 February 2015 - 11:05 AM

This is why I work behind the scenes,

I wouldn't last a day working with the general public! :madra:

#38 Moonlit Dreamer

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Posted 12 February 2015 - 05:03 PM

View PostWorkingAllTheTime, on 11 February 2015 - 09:55 AM, said:

View PostLady Guinevere, on 11 February 2015 - 01:14 AM, said:

Hi Principled Man,

Aw... I'm sorry she had such a terrible work experience. All of my managers, including the head manager, seem to like me, and have told me I'm one of their best employees. The other night I was even told I was a candidate to become a manager myself, which was a complete surprise to me. :huh: I enjoy working, I just wish customers were friendlier.

You're right; most customers will listen to the manager, however I had one exception this evening; a customer was unsatisfied and demanded a refund, and harshly criticized my manager... then decided he would never come back to our store. "I'm never coming back to this place again!!" My manager's response was pretty amusing though; she said, "Okay." :lol:

First paragraph... I am not surprised they see potential in you.  You care.  That is important.  Question, though, do you always work only the overnight shifts?  If so, then this is likely always going to be a challenge because of the alcohol factor.  Do you have the option to occasionally work other shifts?  That would probably be a sort of a respite for you... to work and to deal with fewer angry drunks.

Second paragraph.... sometimes there is nothing that can be done (within reason) to make a customer happy.  Although rare and usually only after extensive attempt, I have occasionally had to tell a customer "Sir/Ma'am, it seems that we are not going to be able to satisfy your needs.  I wish that was not the case, but I understand if you decide to do business elsewhere." In other words, it is a tactful way of suggesting they don't come back.  Sometimes it reaches that point.

Usually I work overnight, but I also work the day shift sometimes if I'm needed. I chose the overnight shift because no one else wants it (I can't imagine why.).

That was an excellent point you made about managers and leaders. I have a few managers that I love working with, and others not so much - you can tell that they don't care much about their job. The work experience is entirely different if I work with a manager that actually works with the employees as a team player.

#39 WorkingAllTheTime

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Posted 12 February 2015 - 05:04 PM

View Posttroutman, on 11 February 2015 - 11:05 AM, said:

This is why I work behind the scenes,

I wouldn't last a day working with the general public! :madra:

Trust me, Trout.  There are days that I wish I did the same.

But the reality is I am too A-D-D to be behind the scenes.  My first career was in education and I was eventually principal of a very large high school.  I loved the energy and buzz of a campus and absolutely loved working with kids.  What eventually drove me away was the f***ing adults... nearly all legislators, most school board members, all central office types, the few teachers who didn't get it, and, frankly, a good number of parents (not all of them - many were great - but some were just absolute lunatics).

I shifted over to business leadership and love it, particularly because I have so much more freedom to do creative and flexible things (sad, educators don't have that, eh?), but also because, at my core, I am still a teacher.  My favorite days are promoting people and helping them along their station of life.

Still, education had adults who ruined the party and pubic business has the occasional jerk.  Don't get me wrong, the vast majority of patrons are wonderful people, but there is always that handful that make you want to go Office Space and bash a printer in an open field....

Edited by WorkingAllTheTime, 12 February 2015 - 05:05 PM.


#40 John V

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Posted 27 February 2015 - 01:16 PM

As a customer myself, I can say this attitude thing goes both ways.
In particular, customer service reps handing customer phone calls is where I have found the issue.

I try my very best not to call anyone and try to work things out myself.  But sometimes you have to call them.
I can honestly say, most CSR's are polite, but many have no clue as to what they are doing.
I had one yesterday from the phone company.
His way of doing business was to talk and talk and talk until the customer either hangs up or blows up.
I had to tell him to please be quite for one minite so i could ask one simple question.  He f***in hung up on me!

So, if you work as a CSR and have telephone duties, please see the other side of this argument.  The majority of people performing these jobs are highly under paid and under trained.
So I do get it.

Edited by John V, 27 February 2015 - 01:17 PM.





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