Customers From Hell

Dec 23, 2002

By George Anderson

The holiday season is a stressful time for many trying to squeeze shopping, party planning, etc. into already demanding work and personal lives. Some find a release from their stress by unloading on associates working in stores.

Mr. Slugger, founder and editor, Customers Suck! (
told the San Francisco Business Times, “Customers at holiday season are out
to get what they want. There’s no holiday cheer. They get mad in line because
the person in front of them is going slow. And they end up taking it out on
the cashier. You’d think they’d understand it’s busy when the lines are 30 to
40 customers long.”

Brenda Moore, director of store recruiting, Macy’s West said, “We encourage making eye contact and acknowledging people are waiting. Often that will buy you an additional 15 minutes. Just knowing someone will get to you as soon as they can helps.”

Moderator’s Comment: Two Questions–

  1. Do you have any customer from hell stories?

  2. What can stores do to reduce the stress level for
    associates and customers alike?

Mr. Slugger suggests that the best way to avoid conflict
with customers is to hide from them. We’re sure that there are numerous associates
that agree with this sentiment but unfortunately for them, there is no place
to hide on the sales floor or at the checkout. [George
Anderson – Moderator

Please practice The RetailWire Golden Rule when submitting your comments.

Join the Discussion!

Be the First to Comment!