One of my colleagues was raving about the sourdough and pies that he bought from Arthur's Bavarian Bakehouse so I was very eager to visit the store to try their goodies for myself. The shop had artisan breads alongside the wall, pretzels dangling from the ceiling and an array of Northern European baked goods on tables.
I bought some pies, a pumpkin and fetta sourdough, vanilla kipferls, macarons (yea I know they're French and not Bavarian but they're in fashion right now in Sydney and most bakers are cashing in on the macaron wave).
As the greyish, blond haired lady tallied up my purchases, I was holding a $10 note in one hand and about to get the rest when she finalised the total. Instead she turns around and says in a cranky rude tone, "That's not going to pay for it!"
Well duh. I work with numbers all day for a living so I should know better than most folks how numbers work. The total was around $31 and I had $10 in my hand thus far. I was clutching $10 because originally I was going to buy only two pies and got slightly carried away. Her tone and manner was abrupt and rude. We had driven there specifically for the bakery and to be subjected to rude service made me want to put everything back on the shelf and leave.
Although this is the most challenging retail season because shoppers are predominantly tired, cranky and harrassed doesn't mean you should be rude to the ones who are polite just because you're in a foul mood. I've worked in retail before when I was a student and I have always tried to be polite, helpful and kind to all customers despite how challenging some of them are occasionally.
Christmas is drawing near and yes, I know the car parks at shopping centres are full, there's bad traffic jams and dazed fatigued shoppers stumbling around everywhere. Is this any excuse for poor service?
Rudeness isn't going to buy you any customers and ongoing sales. The pies had tasty fillings but the dough pastry was still slightly uncooked. I would rather spend my money at my local bakery where the staff are always friendly, kind, helpful.
This must be the silly season for poor service. Sigh.