I'm tried of rude customers (customer service stories) [See Staff Post]

Meelow

Member
Oct 31, 2017
3,597
So I am Lebanese, however I was born and raised in Canada (And still living in Canada). I was working today and a customer randomly looked over to me and said...

Customer: "Where are you from?"
Me: ...I'm from here
Customer: "Oh...I thought you were like East Indian or something"

Like, how is that not rude? Just because I'm not white that somehow makes me not from Canada?

And this isn't the first time this happened to me, i'll post my other stories if you want to hear.
 

PMS341

Member
Oct 29, 2017
4,024
That is incredibly shitty and I'm sorry to hear that happened to you. I worked retail for almost a decade and I won't ever get dragged back into it. Truly free mental abuse.
 

King Alamat

Member
Nov 22, 2017
2,921
My last job, half the people I worked with asked me where I was from while the other half just assumed I was Puerto Rican.
 

Squarehard

Member
Oct 27, 2017
11,627
Lol, that's not the only story I have, it just happened today.
Indeed, give us some of the worse ones, because I'm sure there are plenty. ;P
Oh, you done it now.

You're wrong BTW. The situation above sucks.
Why am I wrong?

I never said the above situation wasn't wrong, nor implied it.

Just stating that in retail, it gets far worse than that, and much, much worse, speaking from personal experience.
 

Based0ne

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
716
USA
Used to be a teller at the bank. Had a white lady tell me that the problem with banks nowadays is that they hire too many immigrants and this is why the US is going downhill. Fun times.
 

Mankoto

Member
Oct 28, 2017
557
Don't worry OP I'm right there with you. As someone that works with mortgages over the phone, I'm required to give my NMLS ID to everyone I speak to, which is fine. What's not fine is when someone decides to doxx me right over the phone.

It's only happened once in the 3 or 4 years I've been here, but Jesus man. It weirded me out the rest of that week and made me set everything to private or make new accounts with fake names entirely.
 

Landawng

The Fallen
Nov 9, 2017
2,275
Denver/Aurora, CO
If that's what you use as an example of rude in retail, you haven't worked in retail long enough.
What? It doesn’t matter how often racist customers decide it’s their business to know the ethnicity or race of the person they are speaking with. It should never be tolerated.

I work for an insurance company who have outsourced to the Philippines and Bangalore and the shit these associates have to deal with from rude/racist members makes my blood boil almost on a daily basis, not to mention the call center we have in California where we have a huge number of Mexican reps on the phone who have to deal with people complaining about their accents. It fucking sucks people get treated like this
 

iRAWRasaurus

Community Resettler
Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,538
I don’t work in customer service but there has been plenty of times when someone says I am from X East Asian country and I have to say nah I am from here (America).
 

atomsk eater

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,515
Working Apple support sure was an experience. Just like any job most people were polite or at least ok, but those few calls out of dozens a day where people would be absolute dicks really ruined my general mood.

Worst few days was when they pushed some ios update that ended up in a lot of devices getting bricked. I swear like everyone who called also hadn't ever backed up a single thing so I had the joy of additionally breaking the news that all their photos and stuff were gone.

Also yeah that's a shitty thing for someone to say. Had a call once where someone was like "oh thank goodness you're not Indian" and I was just like uhhhh ma'am. People say some weirdly insensitive borderline (if not full-line) xenophobic stuff.
 

bananab

Member
Oct 27, 2017
259
Nothing that compares to racist stuff but I've

1. had a customer lift the gate and enter the store after I'd closed it for the night (shopping mall)
2. been crushed against the counter by hordes of customers entering on black friday
3. had a customer blow up at me for trying to close, citing that "they came all the way from canada"
4. had a customer try to get me to make copies for her when the originals were so disgusting even she wore gloves when handling them
5. had a customer joke that I couldn't get any other job after they observed me drop something by accident
6. had one report me and a coworker for attitude to the boss after we worked an hour late for her (I legit thought this meeting was gonna be kudos for a job well done)

Wierdly these all sound kinda mild to me compared with the overall super negative impression I have when I look back on my time in retail! I can only assume time has washed away my worst memories to help me heal.
 

Squarehard

Member
Oct 27, 2017
11,627
Way to undermine someone being racist to the OP.
It's really more to point out that the problem is far worse than what's framed in the op, particularly in retail and the service industry in general.

The story in the op was just more tame than I thought, particularly from person experience having worked in retail previously.

The situation is awful, but it's not really representative of what rude actually is in customer service, which is all I'm pointing out.

Though, maybe not the best framing of my response, so I'll take the heat for that.
 

Brinbe

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
20,140
Terana
I hate it so much. Hate hate hate. Fucking racist pieces of shit. There's a lot of them here in Toronto, unfortunately.

They're 95% usually entitled white ppls, both young and old that think any colored person is somehow some fob that speaks no English.

Drives me mad. I'm sorry you had to deal with that shit, OP. You're not the only one.
 
Oct 25, 2017
162
Dundee, Scotland
Had a call once where someone was like "oh thank goodness you're not Indian" and I was just like uhhhh ma'am. People say some weirdly insensitive borderline (if not full-line) xenophobic stuff.
Every single day since we moved our operations back to the UK. I cannot remember the last time I went an entire work day without at least one of our trash customers starting a complaint with "I'm not racist/sexist/homophobic/transphobic but...."

Interestingly, the last couple of years have also seen a spike in "Urgh, you're Scottish?" complaints too from our customers south of Newcastle.
 

RDreamer

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,777
I had some hilariously terrible customers when I worked at gas stations for a while. The biggest example were those who could not follow instructions and/or did not know how to fucking pump gas. Pumping gas is not hard. My first day of working there having literally never pumped gas in my life I was sent out to help someone and just followed the directions.

Anyway, we would always get someone who didn't push the button for what kind of gas they want. They'd fucking storm into the building and scream "TURN ON PUMP 7" in the doorway and storm out in a huff sometimes quicker than we could say anything at all. Sometimes I'd then have to walk out and push the button. People would go from ridiculously angry to embarrassed in about a fraction of a second sometimes.

One time on Christmas morning I was working and someone did that. My manager tried to run after them (had to walk around a counter to get to the door), but they got in their car, held on the horn and flipped her off as they drove away.
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,177
Toronto, ON
Customer: *brings an assortment of medicines to the counter* Can you explain how all of these work? I want to know the best one to take for back pain.

Me, a 19 year old cashier at Walgreens: I can't tell you much about these, so you should check in the back with the pharmacy. They'll definitely be able to help you.

Customer: Don't you work here? Why don't you know? That's the problem with this country, nobody takes their work seriously.

Me: I...I'm 19.
 

Camwi

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
3,981
Indeed, give us some of the worse ones, because I'm sure there are plenty. ;P

Why am I wrong?

I never said the above situation wasn't wrong, nor implied it.

Just stating that in retail, it gets far worse than that, and much, much worse, speaking from personal experience.
This is a terrible contest you've invented.
 

Temascos

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,983
Man, the amount of shit customer service staff get is insane, I was pretty damn lucky all things considered when I was in the tourism industry, a lot of my colleagues got a lot of shit though.

You know how a lot of politicians crow about bringing back national service and conscription? They should just replace the army with being a customer service employee so then everyone has understanding and empathy in what kind of shit staff have to put up with on a daily basis.

The customer is NOT always right. That's a damn myth made up by people who never had to deal with racism at the till or processing a refund through some complicated system.
 

Squarehard

Member
Oct 27, 2017
11,627
I think we should recognize the discomfort and hurt of racial profiling regardless of the level of belligerence. Let's take care not to minimize their experience.
Retail is a cesspool of this kind of behavior, but this is just the very surface of the issue.

Having worked previously in retail for years as a person of color, at multiple positions, and multiple levels, I can tell you that this situation while incredibly insensitive, is just a small representation of how bad the industry is as a whole on this issue.

Retail and service industry employees in general gets treated like crap, so when you include other factors into it such as race and ethnicity, it creates an even wider quagmire of bigotry and insensitivity.

If anything, this is pointing out that the issue is far larger, particularly in the service industry, and while this example certainly falls under that category, I just didn't feel it really captures how bad it is for those in the service industry.

Maybe my comment wasn't clear enough in regards to this, but hope it is now.
This is a terrible contest you've invented.
It's not a contest, it's reality.

This is from what I've seen in others, and my own experiences, and in general other conversations.

There are no winners here. :P
 

Nepenthe

When the music hits, you feel no pain.
Moderator
Oct 25, 2017
6,989
Had a white man insist recently I must have a bunch of kids because apparently that's a past time for black women. Like.... Sir, this is a pharmacy. Mentioned it to my white pharmacist who insisted he must've been joking. I gave up that day.

Speaking of which, I made another dude mad recently because I didn't put his change in his hand. And that's because he threw it down on the counter first.

Free Allyship Hack for white American folks: DO NOT put the money down on the counter for non-white folks to fetch it for you. It is amazingly rude. Double fuck you if you hold your hand out expecting me to put the change/credit card in your hand.
 

ty_hot

Member
Dec 14, 2017
4,173
You just wrote that “you are Libanese” so I guess the guy had a point when he asked you that. Maybe not the appropriate setting for the question, but far from being rude specially because apparently he didnt mean it in a bad way.

also: I swear there was a thread 99% like this months or years ago.
 

Fanuilos

Avenger
Oct 27, 2017
1,195
A liquor store I used to work at years ago was a locally owned one and over the years people got used to being able to come in and fill coolers (most of the time they were small ones) with ice without having to buy anything. Not a big deal, but the ice machine started going to shit so the owner said they would have to buy something if they wanted to use the ice machine. Most people groaned a bit but would do it but some people got so indignant it was crazy. You'd think they were being told to give up a limb.
 

TheMadTitan

Member
Oct 27, 2017
6,494
Call them out on this kind of shit. I moved from retail to hotel hospitality so I still see and hear this kind of shit, but I try to call it out whenever I catch it live. And fuck all of that "I want to speak to your manager" shit. They can complain about me after I call them on their bullshit.
 
Nov 23, 2017
4,269
I got fired from a job like this basically because I just wouldn't let some 55 year old Becky with a crop cut in Wilimgton Delaware embarrass me to my bosses. Yeah, I called it out, and yeah, my boss threw me COMPLETELY under the bus. Because she left 0/5 star Yelp reviews!

Love this show, if theres anything I can unironcially agree with (the character) larry on, its this and the stop and chat
 

Elitist1945

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,273
Ottawa
One of the nice things about being a manager in retail is the ability to tell rude customers off. This is my store, bitch, and if you're gonna come in here and be rude to me and my staff, I will go out of my way to make sure you get the opposite of what you want, and there's not a single thing you can do about it, because I run this show :)
 

TaySan

Member
Dec 10, 2018
7,853
Worked 6 years as a Deli Clerk and the amount of abuse i faced made me swore off ever working in food and retail ever again unless I literally have no choice.
 

HaL64

Member
Nov 3, 2017
282
If you were in the states and you said "Saury" instead of "Sorry" and the person says "Oh you sound Canadian". Would that be rude?
Sounds like you are sick of people noticing your cultural heritage based on your appearance. That doesn't make people rude.
 

VariantX

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,690
Columbia, SC
Would love to get out of retail in the next few years so I can not have to deal with crap like that. What gets me its almost always the older folks that give you shit for what would just be an uneventful day at work. I miss when most of my customers were college students and those kids were actually reasonable and a joy to work with.
 

sensui-tomo

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,177
Would love to get out of retail in the next few years so I can not have to deal with crap like that. What gets me its almost always the older folks that give you shit for what would just be an uneventful day at work. I miss when most of my customers were college students and those kids were actually reasonable and a joy to work with.
Moms are the best at my store (but then again it's target... I've only ever had 1 bad parent experience and most bad experiences are old dudes and some people with very very hygienic problems)
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,102
Victoria, BC
It's really more to point out that the problem is far worse than what's framed in the op, particularly in retail and the service industry in general.

The story in the op was just more tame than I thought, particularly from person experience having worked in retail previously.

The situation is awful, but it's not really representative of what rude actually is in customer service, which is all I'm pointing out.

Though, maybe not the best framing of my response, so I'll take the heat for that.
Dude, just fall on your sword already.

Unless you're a visible minority yourself, you cannot possibly know how awful it feels to be so utterly fucking "othered" just because your skin ain't pink.

Its fucked up and you shouldnt be trying to minimize it AT FUCKING ALL.

Edit: oh, you're not white?

Ok makes your commentary less insulting, apologies for my presumption.



Crazy thing is there was really no reason to identify race.
Thank you.

Why do ppl do this still?
 
Oct 26, 2017
213
Crazy thing is there was really no reason to identify race.
I agree.

Had a white man insist recently I must have a bunch of kids because apparently that's a past time for black women. Like.... Sir, this is a pharmacy. Mentioned it to my white pharmacist who insisted he must've been joking. I gave up that day.

Speaking of which, I made another dude mad recently because I didn't put his change in his hand. And that's because he threw it down on the counter first.

Free Allyship Hack for white American folks: DO NOT put the money down on the counter for non-white folks to fetch it for you. It is amazingly rude. Double fuck you if you hold your hand out expecting me to put the change/credit card in your hand.
Can you ban a mod?