Workers Roast Their Most Clueless And Frustrating Customers

An older man standing in front of trees
twitter | @LTSQUARED_

Many of us, at one time or another, find ourselves working in a job where we're dealing with customers. It might be in a call center, it might be in retail, it might be in food service, but there's one constant: customers can be absolutely oblivious at times.

If there's any silver lining to dealing with clueless customers day after day, it's the fact that these jobs provide us with a steady stream of ridiculous stories.

This tweet sparked quite the conversation.

Tweet complaining about clueless customers
twitter | @westernunion2k

There isn't much to this tweet, as it simply pokes fun at customers who don't seem to know how to deal with debit/credit machines. It's a fair point, though: tons of people don't seem to understand how these machines work, or how they're supposed to operate them.

But the simple tweet brought in scores of customer-facing workers with their own stories to share.

Tapping is supposed to be easy.

Remember when we swiped cards and half the time, the machine wouldn't register? Then we moved on to inserting the cards, which worked better but was still somewhat of a hassle. You'd think a simple tap would be easy after these inconveniences, but apparently not.

This is how Karens are born.

There's an art to asking an employee to check the back room. You have to have it on reasonably good authority that there's more stuff back there. Also, you should only do this in stores that actually have a back room.

They think they're playing chess but they're really playing checkers.

This is dumb — not quite as dumb as people who think that the pre-tax total is the taxable total, but still pretty dumb. If the cashier tells you a price, they're generally not lying about it.

Math can be tough.

A great many people struggle with basic math, myself included. Technology can help us get our heads around math, but some people just don't want to trust the tools they're given to help (like, y'know, cash registers).

No, I just work here for fun.

This one ranks pretty low on the list of customer annoyances, but it's still on that list. I mean, if you're wearing a nametag and a store shirt and doing store duties, there's an excellent chance that you do, in fact, work there.

Don't panic!

Even when they're working as intended, point of sale terminals don't work instantaneously. They need to communicate with the system before they give you a total. What's this mean? It means customers ought to chill out a little before they start getting stressed about stuff not working.

How hard can it be?

These terminals are literally engineered to be as foolproof as possible. There are three ways to input your card: tap (usually somewhere on the top), insert (usually somewhere on the bottom), or swipe (usually on the right side). You'd think people would understand this by now.

Let's hear it for the food service workers.

This kind of reminds me of when I go to a restaurant and ask what beer they have on tap, only to find that it's one of those places that has a million types of beer on tap. The server goes into a long spiel and I feel embarrassed for asking in the first place.

Computers are our friends, sort of.

We need to put more trust in computers. I know, I know: they can be volatile and do weird things for weird reasons. But they're still more helpful than harmful. Once A.I. really gets going, then it'll be reasonable to fear computers again.

What a maroon.

I love the colorful description here, of maroons doing their best Ouija board impression as they try to pay. I wonder if society will ever adapt to the intricacies of idiot-proof sales terminals. Somehow, I kind of doubt it.

Maintain eye contact.

Those awkward moments when you're both waiting for the card reader to work again are the perfect opportunity not to make eye contact with the cashier. Stare at your feet for awhile. It'll all be over with soon enough.

"No, I was just kidding."

It's the 21st century. It's incredibly easy to look up specific phone numbers for specific businesses. At this point, we shouldn't even feel the need to confirm that we called the right business. Usually it's fairly self-evident.

Always have a backup.

Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay and all the rest are super convenient, and for many of us, they account for a large percentage of our transactions. That said, carry a bank card around. You never know when it'll be the only way to pay for your stuff.

At least they tried.

Here's an example of a forgetful man and a diligent employee working together to make sure the right pizza was sent to the right person. But it isn't a heartwarming story, it was an abject failure. I'm still not sure how, but apparently it was.

Dad joke activated.

This is one of those groan-inducing jokes that's been around so long that it either isn't annoying anymore, or it's come full circle and is super annoying once again. In any event, I can tolerate this, so long as it is legitimately a joke and not someone trying to get a discount.

Just ignore them.

There's nothing worse than doing your duties before the store opens or after it closes and looking outside to see a horde of zombie-looking customers who want to come in. It's awkward, it's distracting, and it's more than a little bit unnerving.

Survey says...

When it comes to employee surveys, I have two rules: assuming I remember to fill one out, which I usually don't, I just say nice things about the employee. Secondly, if the employee wasn't great, I generally won't even fill one out.

It's a bold strategy.

I kind of feel for this customer because we've all found ourselves in a situation where our brain short-circuits. They were trying to be helpful and proactive, even if it meant they were trying to settle up for a transaction that hadn't happened yet.

Can you not?

When an employee gives you a detailed answer that indicates they know the exact status of what you're looking for, it's generally good practice not to ask any more questions. They know what they're talking about, so just shut up and listen.