I’m a few months short of being 20, but I’ve worked in a variety of places, whether it be a paid job or for volunteer work. I currently work at two fast food places as well as a sports arena. So I’m sure you can imagine the kind of stories that can come from the different customers who’ll pop in. So I’ve decided to make this a segment to my blog known as Customer Story of the Day in which I will discuss the “wonderful” customers who show up at my workplace.
One of the fast food places I work at is 24 hours, so I tend to work there overnight since it is the easiest availability that will get me hours. I usually do overnights throughout the span of the weekend, so I’m sure you’ll understand when I say that a lot of the customers that drive through or walk in aren’t always in the right state of mind. *cue the vodka*
As of recent, I noticed that there has been a shortage of intoxicated customers recently, probably because it’s colder and people tend to go out less. The location is in a smaller city so there isn’t much nearby to even have a reason to drive by the restaurant anyhow.
But last night was an interesting story.
During overnights, I run both the drive-thru and window orders. Sometimes when it gets busy, my manager will help by taking orders while I process the money, pack the food, etc.
It all started with the customer who had driven up to our drive thru. He had the lovely pleasure of speaking with my manager, who to start, he seemed polite, but as he went on, it seemed like he was giving her a hard time. He was in a car with a group of people, so an order of one simple burger had quickly escalated to an order of 15 items, all of which were to be custom made. We deal with these customers a lot so it’s not unusual that we have to add a few onions to a burger that usually doesn’t have that, but only having one kitchen staff member per overnight, it’s not necessarily that easy to get 15 burgers done within seconds.
The customer had then driven to the pay window in which they were polite, greeted me with “Hi Miss” and said “Thank you” every time I would take something from them or give them something. Once their food was prepared, I had proceeded to giving it to them, keep in mind that we time all our serves from the moment they take the order up until the customer leaves, and at the moment in which I had given them their food, it had been under 3 minutes and 30 seconds.
But right when I had tried to given to them, I got a conversation that went like this:
Customer: That took very long.
Me: Sorry for the wait, sir.
I looked past his impatience and continued to hand him his food.. then he asked this:
Customer: So I have a question for you, I paid with my business card so I was just wondering, will I get my HST (service tax) back for this?
Please tell me, how am I supposed to know that? I do not work for the company of his card nor do I know the kind of benefits that he gets from using his card.. and it wasn’t like he generally asked about reimbursements, he went down to specifically just the taxes.
Me: I’m sorry that’s not something I can answer. I don’t know anything about how your business runs.
Customer: My business runs good. So tell me is this a yes or no?
Me: Sir, this isn’t something I can answer for you. I don’t know the benefits of your card, your card’s business is not something I deal with. I don’t know how it works.
Customer: My business is working fine. But I want to know, is that a yes or no?
We continued going back and forth like this for a good 2 minutes, he was clearly unable to understand that I had no knowledge of the benefits of his card and continued to argue that I should still know the answer of if he’s going to get his $3 of HST back. Eventually he had moved on and started to ask me this:
Customer: Okay fine. So because you made me wait 40 minutes, I would like to get 3 pies.
At this point, there is a long line of cars behind him, and looking at our timer, in which I never cleared him off for since he hadn’t left, it wasn’t anywhere near 5 minutes, so I stood my ground.
Me: Sir, you did not wait 40 minutes. I can’t place the order for you right now, we have a line of cars behind you that are waiting for their food.
Customer: I didn’t wait 40 minutes? Then how long?
Me: It’s only been about 4 minutes.
Customer: 4 minutes? Exactly how long?
Me: 4 minutes.
Customer: Exactly how long is 4 minutes?
Me: 240 seconds.
Customer: Okay, I don’t care about any of the cars behind me, I would like to get 3 pies since you made me wait for a half hour.
Me: Sir, it hasn’t even been 6 minutes yet, you didn’t wait for a half hour.
Customer: How do you know, I waited for a half hour.
Me: We have timers sir, it hasn’t even reached 6 minutes yet.
And he just went on for a while about how he’s been waiting for longer than we all know he’s waited.
Me: If you want sir, you can drive thru again and place the order, but as for right now I cannot place it because we have a long line of cars waiting.
Which is the truth, there were cars almost going out of the drive thru, I can’t place the order after he’s been there for almost 10 minutes just arguing with me, there are other customers who are waiting. I thought I was going to be in the clear until he said this:
Customer: Okay, I have nothing against you Miss. I know you’re just here to earn your minimum wage, but this is ridiculous. I waited here for almost an hour and I would like to get my pies.
Me: No sir, I cannot place the order at this time.
At this point, my manager was already behind me, and we were about ready to close the window. He noticed her behind me and called out to her saying, “Hi, is there something I can help you with, Miss?” in which she replied with “Are you done here, sir?” and he said “Yes, have fun earning your $10 an hour” and as he drove off my manager replied with “Thanks for paying me!”
Now I know what you’re thinking. As I stood my ground, I probably got a little more feisty than I should have. But I don’t think it would have been fair for me to have been nice to him with the way he was talking to me. I feel like sometimes customers forget that the people who serve them are human just like them. And that we should treat everyone with the same kind of respect they deserve. That man had bothered me the entire night. He had a question that I didn’t know the answer to, but it’s not like I had replied with only an “I don’t know” I had let him that it’s not something I can answer for him, yet he still tried to argue with me and then tried to justify that while spending the time arguing with me, his order took too long so it’d be okay for him to get more food while he’s already held up a line and tried to argue with false accusations. The only thing ridiculous about this whole thing was him. And there were other people in the car too, who had tried to tell him to forget it and he would just yell at them to stop talking. I don’t know how they deal with him.