Ten Things Retail and Fast Food Employees Are Tired Of

I’ve been working retail and food service for about five years now. I actually prefer retail to food service and honestly, I don’t think I’ll ever go back to working in food service. This post is half joking half serious. Don’t get me wrong, I love my job and my coworkers but there are some things that just get on our nerves!

1. Customers who whisper to their children about doing good in school so they don’t have to work a dead end job like these people. Just stop. You don’t know the cashier’s life situation. Yes, there are a few deadbeats working every job but most of us are college and high school students looking for some extra money while we study. In fact, I don’t have excessive bills yet (thank God) but I don’t want to have to rely on my parents for everything. They do enough for me already. I used to be one of those kids who though fast food jobs were for losers until I started working for a fast food company. It’s actually quite insulting to the employees and very rude. And by the way, at least we are working. We could be sitting around doing nothing and causing trouble.

2. If it’s not scanning, it must be free! You realize that I can type the number in or look it up in my system right? That joke is old and we hear it a million times every shift. If we chuckle at you when you say it, it’s because we are being nice but we aren’t amused.

3. Customers who walk right up behind an employee and stand there silently until they are noticed.  I’ve had that happen to me several times and it scares me. Just last week, I was refilling the candy and some lady came up and stood about an inch from me staring me down. I actually screeched when I noticed her and she gave me a dirty look when I told her she should have said something. Sometimes we get caught up in our chores and so it’s nice for you to say “Hello.” or “I’m ready to check out.” Plus, it’s creepy to stand there silently.

4. Customers who use their carts as weapons. The number of times I’ve been restocking something and instead of saying “excuse me” they bump me with their cart. Like seriously? Give me a second to move out of the way. There is no need to hit me. This happens on a daily basis.

5. Customers who talk on the phone while at the register.  I can’t stand that. Most of the time they aren’t paying attention and do something wrong. They’ll use the wrong card and then it’s my fault somehow. Or they’ll put their hand in my face and think I can wait for them. Don’t get on line if you aren’t ready! And don’t hang up the phone in the middle of the transaction and apologize for your rudeness. If you were sorry, you wouldn’t be on the phone in the first place. I usually just give them a tight lipped smile and won’t say anything at all.

6. I shop here all the time so you should bow down to me. We will be nice to you but we are not going to bow down to you and give you unauthorized discounts. Get off your high horse and stop acting so entitled.

7. Letting your children run around unattended. I like kids but please, I’m a cashier not a babysitter. Please control your children. The number of times I’ve had to redo a display because of out of control children is starting to get out of hand.

8. Buying a bunch of Visa gift cards with several different cards that decline and giving me a sob story. We are on to you. We know you stole the cards. We aren’t stupid. Find a new way that’s not so obvious if you are going to stoop that low and steal credit cards.

9. Pulling coupons off of other products and trying to use them on something else. The place I work at has coupons stuck on things that are going to expire soon. We know when you pull them off and try to use them on another product because there is another layer of the coupon that is missing. I’ve actually called out a few customers on that and walked them over to the item they took the coupon off of and ask them if they wanted to buy it so they can use the coupon.

10. Not reading signs or reading them wrong. Don’t get mad at me when I point out what the sign actually said. No you can not get a 100 count store brand pain killer for $3 because the sign said “Save $3 by buying the store brand instead of the name brand.” That is not a price sign. It’s a sales tip sign. Read!

Like I said, I like my job but some things just get on my nerves. Try to be nice to employees and smile at them because you don’t know what they may be going through. There were some days at work in the last month where if the customer had just smiled instead of glaring or staring at me blankly, it would have made my day. With recent events, it’s been very hard to show up at work with a smile on my face so a friendly customer was always nice.


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