Retail workers have a lot to deal with. From maintaining their stores to helping customers, they've got a lot of things going on. Unfortunately, the customers don't always care.
Retail workers on Reddit share the most entitled customer they've encountered. Content has been edited for clarity.
“Already I Smell Trouble”
“I worked at a quick-service restaurant where the mascot is a cow and the meat we sell is chicken. Not going to lie, I actually enjoyed my job. Managers were awesome, except the one I was terrified of, and the woman who managed it all in place of the actual owner/operator man is the sweetest woman I’ve ever met.
That said, even the customers weren’t so bad. Most of them were your run o’ the mill college town folks…minimal screaming and rudeness here (not counting the students of course).
I’d been working for about half a year here, gotten used to the filling of orders and where the heck everything was, and it was a busy afternoon. I should also mention that it was a football day. For my town and basically anywhere else with a college football stadium, the customers were here in full force, line is out the door. Naturally, I’m completely freaking out on the inside (first jobs tend to make you do that), but handling it pretty well–I didn’t knock anyone over that day.
So this lady comes in, and already I smell trouble. She is dressed in Louis Vuitton designer clothes.
First thought: Why the heck are you coming in here if you’re so bloody rich?
‘Welcome to Chick-fil-A, how may I serve you today?’
Her order is to-go. She ordered one of the biggest orders ever, and wanted five milkshakes. Cue panic attack Shakes take for-bloody-ever.
Luckily, Jay, the awesome manager makes four of them for me, and I just have to deal with the one (I hate making shakes). I go back up to the register, put it in the cardboard drink holder, and get ready for the next customer. No dice. This woman would not leave the counter.
Then, she looks at the strawberry shake, and takes the bloody lid off.
To anyone who makes shakes–True or False: When you make a shake with that fancy dome lid, it tends to end up a little fuller than the lip of the cup. So naturally, the whipped cream, shake mix, and cherries start to fall out.
The woman pushes it away like it’s diseased (please note that she didn’t even put the lid back on, so it’s still oozing everywhere).
‘I don’t like how this one looks. Make it again,’ she demands.
What the heck?
Your order was incredibly crazy to begin with, you make us put in four extra cherries–which we are not supposed to do, by the way–and then you and your stupidity ruin its ‘looks’–and you want me to help you more? Ugh. Have I mentioned that the line is still out the door?
I run over to the shake machine, get a weird look from Jay–til she sees the woman I’m helping. Jay pats my shoulder and makes the shake again for me. Finally, the woman leaves, and I can take care of the other, less awful customers.
I hate morons. I especially hate arrogant, rich, entitled morons who think the world revolves around them. She pretty much fits the bill.”
“There Was Something Familiar”
“I work as a Registered Nurse. That has its own brand of awfulness. For some reason, hospitals have now begun pushing the ‘customer service’ aspect of a visit to the hospital. They have gone so far as to give nurses scripts containing exactly what they want registered nurses to say to these ‘customers.’
Things like ‘Is there anything else I can get for you? I have the time.’
Now I don’t know about you, but if someone said that to me every hour for three days, I’d probably shoot them (or myself).
I thought I’d gotten away from such nonsense when I took my job as a clinic nurse in a county mental health clinic (my specialty is psychiatric nursing…a whole other story). I adore most of my patients, but we get some awful people.
To top that off, every single one of our patients is on welfare, and 99.9% of them have ‘entitlement syndrome’.
Any how one day, I had the following encounter with a patient over the phone:
Me: ‘Hi, can I help you?’
Patient (Pt): ‘I need my Xanax script called in early. I’m going to California because my dad died and the pharmacist says I need an override from you to get it filled.’
Me: ‘Sorry to hear your dad died. Really all I can do is call in the prescription for you but it’s up to your (state-run) insurance whether they’ll pay early or not. What’s your name?’
Pt: ‘Just call it in! God! I don’t care what you have to do. My dad is dead.’
Just then, I realized there was something familiar about his voice.
Me: ‘Hey! This story sounds familiar, are you ‘X’? Because if you are, you must have more than one dad because you called with this same story about six months ago! And if you are X, there’s no way I’m calling it in early for you.”
Pt: ‘Forget YOU, woman!’ click
Me: giggles and goes back to charting.”
“I’m Older Than You!”
“So I’ve been working at a senior citizen center for nearly nine months now, and about six months ago I learned how to call bingo. The general concept of calling is very simple but it is also quite complicated.
Anyway before this, I hadn’t called bingo in a good few weeks and now I’m calling it for the next two weeks due to the regular caller being on holiday. Whatever, I haven’t got a problem with this. I get to talk to people and have a laugh too.
The only thing that I find hard to maintain is speed. I never know if I’m going too fast or too slow and it does annoy some people if you call the numbers too fast, but most people are fine with it.
I was calling one of the sessions (each day has a few different sessions – each a few games long) and during the game a woman shouted at me to slow down but I didn’t see anything wrong with how I was calling, so I carried on as normal. After the session I went to the main reception and the woman followed me, and started shouting at me, something to this extent:
‘You’re an awful caller, we don’t pay to see how fast you can say numbers, I’ve never had to complain about anyone besides you. I’m older than you, you know!’
I was stunned. People have criticized my calling before, but I’ve never had someone be so vicious to me. She said the same thing to my manager, who backed me up 100%, but I didn’t even know how to react. I would never talk to someone like that, especially when they were doing their job.
I was calling again the next day, something I was really anxious about after this, but it went off without a hitch. I got so many people complimenting my calling and I even got a hug off somebody who had won. A couple of customers said they wanted me to be the regular caller, but sadly I’m only a part-timer!”
“We Almost Had A Riot”
“I worked at a store that had a service department. They couldn’t ring up anything at the service counter, but they had a computer which made it look like a register. Guy is standing there patiently waiting to be rung up. Finally, somebody notices him and asks what he needs.
‘I’d like to pay.’ he says.
‘I’m sorry this isn’t a register,’ replies the service tech.
The guy then proceeds to try to convince the service tech to let him pay, because the line for the main registers is three hours long. Of course the service tech couldn’t because he didn’t have a register. He just had a computer for making appointments and such. So after 15 minutes of argument, the guy moves off to find the line. Here’s the fun part. While he was arguing, somebody else saw him standing by something that looked like a register and so got in line behind him. Then people saw the shorter line and got in behind them. With nobody to control it, the line to nowhere grew quickly. Fifteen minutes was all it took for the not-line to snake all the way around the department.
So when the idiot who started this whole fiasco went to find the right line, he found the end of the line he had started. Then the guy behind him heard that there wasn’t a register, so he followed the first guy. Then the next customer followed the 2nd and so on. They walked around in a circle for an hour before somebody noticed them. We almost had a riot when a manager had to tell 100 people that they weren’t in line and had just waited an hour for nothing. That same year we had several scuffles at points where the register line had forked into two lines. From then on, we marked off a huge register path and had several employees just manage the line.”
“They Were Out Of Luck”
“I worked at Walmart years ago. One of my mangers thought she was being sneaky and swapped my Black Friday off shift, starting at nine am (My shifts normally didn’t start until one, and ended at nine, so this was utter lies). I was in the bakery department and had to work all of Thanksgiving the day before, and they ended up needing more help. I came in at six am that day, and worked a 14-hour shift, because most of my team had been given the holiday off.
My manager’s excuse was ‘You’re young! They have families they need to be with and kids to celebrate with!’ so I was pretty angry.
I found out that the Black Friday sale was a 65″ LCD TV in electronics and PS3’s, so needless to say it was going to be a bloodbath. I stayed in my department because there was literally no one else there and caught up on much-needed sanitation, when the manager found out before the sale started she came my way to rain down fire, brimstone, and other nonsense on me.
Thankfully, I could use their own stupid policies against them. There needs to be at least one member of the bakery crew on hand to write on cakes, and since I was the only one there, they were out of luck. I got out of Black Friday madness, got an easy day of work, and the perfect spot to watch the chaos all while purposefully messing with a manager I hated. It was a beautiful day.”
“I Need These”
“I work in a pretty gigantic grocery store. This particular chain of grocery stores is well renowned and respected, and I’m at one of the largest stores. I’m pretty sure our store is around 130,000 square feet. It’s also self-service, like 99.9% of all grocery stores. It’s one of those places where, if you are on a budget, you can buy some of the best quality, the least expensive foods and if you aren’t then you can buy some pretty expensive gourmet things.
Because this particular location of the store is in a ‘wealthy’ (middle class) area, many of our customers have serious attitude issues. A few weeks ago, a woman walked up to the service desk (where I work – lucky me) hands me a gigantic list of groceries and says ‘I need these.’
Clearly, I’m a bit shocked, but I collect myself and hand her list back, along with a preprinted store directory, and tell her that the directory will help her find things. She hands it back to me and says ‘No, I need YOU to get these for me. I’m in a hurry.’
I try to kindly explain we are a self-service grocery store, and we don’t have a shopping service and that furthermore it would probably take me longer to do her shopping because I wouldn’t know specifically what she wanted. She refuses to accept this and soon my manager is involved, trying to tell her that we can’t do her shopping for her.
She continues to make a big deal about it and asks for the front end manager (above the service desk manager). So, our gigantic Paris-Hilton-Meets-a-Hippo Front End Manager comes up. The woman starts crying to her and telling her she just came from having surgery, and her mother is in the hospital, and she is in a hurry, blah blah blah.
The front end manager isn’t buying it, but after a while she says to me ‘Can you just get these things, it’s the only way to get this lady to leave.’
We’re now about a half hour into this lady’s stay in our store.
So, begrudgingly, I begin to do this woman’s shopping. Her list is a work of art in itself. Instead of specific items and brands, she has such things listed as ‘spaghetti sauce,’ ‘bread’ and ‘snacks.’ So, wanting to provide her with the best quality items, I decide to select the most expensive items offered in each category. So instead of $1.49 store brand spaghetti sauce, $.99 white sandwich bread, and $2.00 store brand potato chips, I select two jars of $14.99 imported pasta sauce, an $8.00 loaf of fresh baked organic whole wheat bread, and $25.00 gourmet cookies. You get the idea. I fill the entire cart in this manner.
Oh yeah, and I went really slow. About an hour and a half of shopping. It was a long list!
I get everything on her list and then bring it back up to the desk, where she is just standing there with a bored look on her face, getting in the way of people trying to buy lotto tickets. I give her the cart and tell her she can get in the lines and cash out. She scoffs at this and demands to be taken care of at the service desk. Normally we can cash out short orders, but not big ones like this. We don’t have a moving belt, and we only have a portable bag stand (the registers have two bag stands each which are bolted in place, so they don’t move all over the place). She complains until we finally give in and take her order. Because we are not properly equipped, it takes me about a half hour to ring in her order.
If you’re keeping track we’re at over two and a half hours.
Now, if this were my shopping, on my budget (hey, I’m part-time) the same list would have cost maybe $150. But due to my creative shopping style, this cart of groceries comes to about $1,400. She starts to argue with me but I cut her off and say ‘Have a great day, ma’am, you’d better rush along to get to your mother in the hospital- I’m sure she really needs you now!’
She didn’t know what to say after that, so she just left- albeit not very happily. We printed up a second copy of the receipt and hung it in the back supply closet ‘Hall of Fame.'”
“I’d Like A Little Privacy Here!”
“It’s midday Thursday at the office park. The boss tells me to replace a couple of ballasts in the fluorescent light fixtures in a third floor ladies room. I get the necessary equipment, put up a large plastic A-frame sign that reads:
‘Restroom Out Of Service.’
I then prop the door open, place one six-foot tall step ladder in the doorway and place bright yellow ‘Caution’ tape across the doorway.
I then set up a second ladder in one of the stalls in order to reach the overhead light fixture. Five minutes into the job, a woman comes into the rest room. I tell her the ladies room is closed. She says, ‘No problem, I’ll only be a minute.’
Before I could say anything else, she walks into the adjacent stall, drops her panties and begins to pee.
She then looks up at me and says, ‘Do you freaking mind? I’d like a little privacy here!’
So my question is: What the heck is wrong with people?”
“We’re Just Not Having It”
“One of our basic rules is we don’t leave the store to look at people’s appliances they have in their truck. I’m far too delicate and someone could decide to kidnap me, and we’re just not having it (plus we’re not techs, so we don’t really know what to look for on your machine). Yesterday this was well tested when I had a customer come in and ask me to go look at their gas stove to try to figure out what is wrong with it.
Well, first off, if there’s no power hooked up to it, or gas, I can’t really figure anything out. Second, it is a brand we don’t even deal with, so I’m batting somewhere around negative 300. I tell the guy this and where he needs to go, and he gets all upset off because I won’t walk out to his car to look at a machine that will result in me telling him the exact same thing. Fine, whatever, he walks off yelling about great customer service.
Maybe half an hour later I get a customer that comes, tell me he has his part in the car and asks if I will come out and look at it. Great, another one. I explain that no, he needs to bring the part in. He grumbles, says he just wants me to come look at it. I again refuse and tell him to bring it inside. Keep in mind he has said part, not machine, so he has a part in his car. I’m thinking maybe a console or a motor or something he just doesn’t want to carry.
Nope. It is a thermostat. A high limit dryer thermostat that is about the size of a quarter and weighs almost the same. He wanted me to walk out to his car to look at a thermostat that he just didn’t feel like bringing inside with him.”
“I’ll Just Go Somewhere Else”
“Not too long ago, I switched over to the meat department in my retail store. We get our pork from a supplier that got affected by a hurricane. We got a one time temp shipment by a different supplier and our pork was full for about a day or two (I was off, so I’m not sure exactly) but now we have pretty a bare bones supply. This is the story of an older lady who doesn’t believe that recent local events can affect stores. ‘Ol’ for old lady.
I was pulling some chicken that wouldn’t go on the shelves back into the backroom
‘Ol’ approaches me and says, ‘Excuse me, do you have any pork on that cart?’
Me: ‘No ma’am, it’s chicken.’
Ol: ‘Well where’s all the pork chops?’
Me: ‘Well we’re still getting bits and pieces but the hurricane affected our supplier, I’m not sure when we’ll be getting more in.’
Ol: ‘Well that’s a lie, because I came here a few days ago and the pork was full.’
Me: ‘Well we did get a shipment from a temporary supplier, but most of it is gone now.’
Ol: ‘You don’t have to give me that talk, I know some people are just lazy and don’t want to go back there and get it.’
Me: ‘I apologize ma’am, is there something particular you are looking for?’
Ol: ‘No not anymore, I’ll just go somewhere else to get it.’
Me: ‘Okay, sorry about that.’
Ol then walks off.”
“You’re Not Busy”
“So I work at a certain farm and feed store as the assistant manager, and I am working the opening shift with one cashier and one associate. I was doing normal managerial things when a customer walks up, looking very confused. He will be ‘CC’ and I will be me. The conversation goes like this:
Me: ‘Can I help you find anything sir?’
CC: ‘I’m just… looking.’
Me: ‘Alright, well let me know if you need help with anything!’
CC: mumbles and walks away
Cut to ten minutes later, and I have to use the restroom. So I walk in, begin to do restroom things, and I hear a knock on the stall door. It’s the same guy from before.
Me: ‘Sorry, it’s occupied.’
CC: ‘Yeah I know, I saw you walk in here. I just need to know if you have any more of generic cattle feed in the back room.’
Me: ‘Uh sir if you would like to go find another associate she can check for you.’
CC: ‘Yeah, but you’re not busy.’
Me: ‘I am kind of in the middle of something here.’
CC: ‘Oh fine. You freaking millennials are so darn lazy, always pushing the work onto somebody else. I’m calling corporate.’
I honestly hope he does, so I can explain exactly what I was doing where I couldn’t help him. What exactly possesses somebody to do that?”
“I Don’t Know How”
“When I was doing computer support at a local University, there was a faculty member who, while somewhat cyber-phobic, learned quickly. She was up to speed with Office and Windows 95. Then she ordered a new computer.
She was very concerned about losing files, so I made sure not only to back up her stuff but also to replicate the directory structure, the desktop, everything. To make sure that she would be comfortable with the new system, I even kept her old monitor, keyboard, and mouse on her desk, to prevent any ‘look and feel’ changes from throwing her.
Well, two days later, she calls, in tears, hysterically sobbing. She couldn’t use her new computer. I took a look, and everything was just as it should be. Windows 95 ran, Office was here in all its glory, her documents and presentations (and their shortcuts) were all in place — everything works.
Me: ‘So what’s the problem?’
Her: ‘I can’t use this computer.’
Me: ‘Why not? It has the same programs, the same operating system, the same documents, everything.’
Her: ‘Yes, thank you very much. But I can’t use this computer!’
Me: ‘Well what’s wrong?’
Her: ‘Nothing’s wrong. I just can’t use it. I don’t know how to use new computers.’
For some reason, since this was a new computer, she forgot everything she had ever learned about all the applications she used to be proficient with. She had to relearn everything.
There were no exclaims of recognition, either, like, ‘Oh, this is Word, just like before!’
She had to be taught how to use everything all over again. She even asked that all her documents be printed out, so she could retype them.
The irony is that she is a well regarded expert in the field of human memory systems.”
Stinky Starbucks Surprise!
“This happened just today actually. I work at Starbucks. I went to do my routine lobby and bathroom check, just to clean up during the craziness. Went into the men’s restroom, and there was poop smeared all over the walls, toilet seat, and mirror. Really, I had no other choice but to clean it up with my coworker. Definitely the most disgusting thing I’ve ever had to do in my life.
So I talked to my manager and she was in a sense of awe that we were willing to clean up such a mess. She even said she would never ever do that. We went over the policy and reviewed our resources in case this happens again. There gets a point where your mind is literally ‘go, go, go’ from the craziness of customers and orders, and the poop didn’t seem to phase me at all. I’m still baffled at who wipes poop on the walls at a Starbucks. I don’t think we upset anyone THAT bad! The good news is that my boss said she’s so thankful to have me and all that good stuff. But yes, we do have a number to contact in case someone decides to smear their feces everywhere. In the meantime, we are supposed to just lock the door and put a sign on the front.”