Black Friday: Round Two

I’m sure most of you have had to work doubles or very long shifts at work before.  And if you haven’t, you’ve either never had a job or you just plain suck at life. 

For closing on Black Friday, our staff mostly consisted of the same people who came in to open at 8pm (or in a few cases earlier) the night before.  There were a few lucky people who were coming in for their first and only shift on Black Friday.  Wow, that must’ve been nice.  To have been all rested and full-bellied from the Thanksgiving festivities the day before.

I was in for my second.  And this time I got to pretend in my new role as a front end supervisor.  It was actually marked on my schedule and everything. You just imagine the strut I would have had if I’d had the energy to do so.  I’m still in training for that position, so it’s not technically official yet, but we’re working on it.

Anyway, I was drained.  Most of my cashiers looked like they’d been brought back from the dead.  Half of the sales floor team looked like they’d been through a war and back.  It was tragic to look at us, really.

The store was busy but not hectic, thankfully, and we finally had enough cashiers to cover our asses instead of having to call the sales floor for back up help every fifteen minutes like on a normal day.  Really, our store sucks at scheduling enough cashiers.  It doesn’t matter if it’s Monday, lunch time is always busy and two cashiers are simply not enough.  The Holidays are the only time of the year where we will have a decent amount of cashiers opening or closing the store.  It’s very sad, but very true.

Now, I was not only in my supervisory role.  One of the others was with me, too.  She’s been in the role much longer than I have and has been at the store a lot longer than I have.  So, she really knows what she’s doing and what she’s talking about.  It’s quite effortless on her part.  She does what is needed to please the guest to a point.  But boy, when a guest is raising a fit over something we can’t change, I haven’t seen anyone more stonewall than she.

Both of us were exhausted.  We just wanted to go home and go to bed.  Get the night over with.  One of our bosses kept harassing us about sending a cashier over to help ring people up in Electronics, we finally sent one over there.  However, 8pm was quickly rolling around and we had 8 cashiers leaving at once.  We needed him back.  We finally managed to steal him back after we had a bunch of cashiers leave, but it was hard.  Electronics needed a cashier, but the front end did, too.  We only had six cashiers closing when the original plans, we were supposed to have 8-10.

At one point in the night, a guest approached one of our new cashiers to ask for a price check on a pair of little girls’ shorts.  They didn’t have the price tag, so I showed her how to get the numbers on clothing without a tag.  I walked off thinking it was cool.  Not but a few second later she was calling me back over.  The guest had apparently y found the shorts on a 50% off clearance rack but they were coming up full price for $12.99.  I explained to the guest that someone else probably misplaced it there and that unfortunately it wasn’t 50% off.  We don’t honor those kinds of price changes because it’s very obvious that someone placed it in the wrong spot.  Tell me how “crappy” that is later.  I’m just protecting the store’s revenue.

The guest asks if there are anymore.  So I ask if she’s looking for another size or color, because I was going to then show our cashier how to look that up on her register.  The guest says  “No, I want those.”  I stare at her for a second, trying to compute everything.  Finally I say “I’m sorry, but I don’t understand your problem.  If you want these, why are you asking if we have any more?”  I was thinking maybe she had another daughter and needed a second pair or something. 

“I want these but they’re not 50% off.” She says staring at me like I’m stupid.

“I’m sorry, but they were placed in the wrong spot, so we can’t adjust that price for you.” I stared right back at her, challenging her to say something else to me.

“Then we’ll just go to [competitor].  They always honor that there.”  She starts throwing her other purchases down on the conveyer belt.

Now, I shouldn’t have said the next part, but I really didn’t care, she was being a right bitch.
“That’s fine ma’am.  Our store likes to keep it’s dignity and money.”

She stared at me slack-jawed for a moment and as I walked away she started going off about me to the cashier.  I didn’t care.  Maybe if she had been nicer to me, I would have been nicer to her.  But once you disrespect me and treat me like I’m stupid, I will do the same with you.  There’s been many cases at the service desk where I helped a guest find what they needed and bent over backwards for them and approved larger-than-I-should-have price changes.  Because they were polite and patient with me.

Being a bitch gets you nowhere with me.  Except maybe more pissy.

I managed to piss off several guests that night.  One woman had a stack of DVDs that she was claiming were supposed to be $10 a piece.  I head over to the checklane to see what the deal is.  Well, the DVDs that we had in our sale and advertised on the sales floor for $10 were just DVDs.  Nothing else.  No digital copies, no blu ray copies.  Just the plain, run-of-the-mill DVDs.

This woman had the combo packs.  You know, the ones that run at least $24.99 a pop.  Sometimes even higher.  She was mad and walked me over to the endcap where she got them from and pointed at the signs.  I pointed out to her that the signs also said in legible, bigger text that the titles that were $10 were also regularly priced at $19.99 or $14.99.  And then, to be even more of a snarky bitch since she was already huffing at me, I pointed out that the titles she got were placed over the correct label strips that said their regular prices were $24.99 and above.

She was mad.

“Well why are they here then?”

“Because earlier today the other movies were placed right above the sales signs and as you see, we are out of them now.  Our electronics team has been very busy and unfortunately hasn’t been able to get back here to fix anything.  Other guests have been putting movies back willy nilly all over the place.”

Okay, so I didn’t actually use the phrase “willy nilly” but I wanted to.

She said a few other things to me.  Something about the signs being wrong, but I’d honestly tuned her out.  I’d already brushed her off and was waiting for the next round.  I may be a small, sweet-looking girl, but I won’t budge when you push me.  There was no way I was letting her get movies for $14 and $20 off the original price.  The signs were clear and the signs weren’t placed in a confusing way.  Learn how to read, freak shows.

And to be completely honest, I think those signs had fallen off the shelves at one point during the long business day and had just been picked up and put back up randomly.  While they weren’t placed with the movies that actually were $10 (at least all of them were gone), they were still clearly labeled and anyone with half a brain would see that the blu ray, DVD, digital copy, 3D combo packs they picked up did not match the sign.

Sometimes I wish I could rub it in a human’s face the way you rub a dog’s nose in its own business on the carpet.
But, I’d rather stay out of jail for assault.  So, I keep my hands to myself.

Again came the questions on if we were price matching anything.  No.  I realize that we have Holiday Price Match signs up all over the store, but take a second to read everything that they have to say, please.  Black Friday is excluded!  I don’t care if Ding Dong City has this exact sweater vest for $3, we are selling it for $10 so either buy it here or leave.  Black Friday sales are special and store-specific.  Every store does different promotions for it.  Some stores have loyalty card pricing, too.  We don’t have that.  Those stores get paid for their loyalty cards, we do not.

I really do wish we had pamphlets available at guest service on our return, price match, and coupon policies.  It would make it a lot easier for the guests who actually WANT to know how our store operates.

The night was long and irritating.  I wanted to scream or crawl into a hole and sleep forever.  Finally, the store closed and we found peace.  Okay, we didn’t find peace until about 11:30 as we still had guests shopping and one lady just never got the memo that we were CLOSED and she COULD NOT shop anymore.  As my girlfriend tells me, this guest was told at least five times by several different team members that the store was closed, that the registers would be closing, that the registers were CLOSED and she just kept shopping.

I’d seen that woman leaving the rest room at one point during the night.  She was just strolling around the store texting without a care in the world.  Look, lady, we’re not a park.  Take your leisurely stroll elsewhere.

We stayed until 1 AM that night.  However, the last 45 minutes of my night was spent at the service desk bullshitting with several other female co-workers.  Mostly, we were gossiping about the dating habits of one of the cashiers-turned service desk girls.  Telling her that it’s not okay to be in a committed relationship with one dude and date other dudes behind his back.   Though, she was young and having fun.  Oh, to be young again…

Okay, what am I talking about?  I’m only 24.  Reality check!  Sometimes I feel and act like an old woman, though.

When the girlfriend and I finally made it back home that night, I made the big mistake of opening my brand new DS game before bed.  Plants VS. Zombies.  I played for nearly an hour, and then upon seeing her interest in it, handed it over to my girlfriend who is now obsessed with it.  I haven’t heard from her in a few days now.  We live together.  I should probably make sure she’s still breathing, huh?

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