The Customer Is Not Always Right.

I’ve had so many of THOSE jobs, and so many of the customers were THOSE customers. I noticed there was a frequent common factor in the worst complaints shared by frustrated worker drones and wage-slaves. Can you guess what many of the most obnoxious customers say when their whims are denied?

It’s…well, let me start over with less profanity this time. Okay…it’s funny that jerk customers always remember the “customer is always right” when it’s convenient, but they never remember the other “rules”. Such as:

Tip at least 15%, even though 20% is now the standard. If you have an issue with service you’re receiving, talk to your server and let him / her attempt to correct the problem. Then talk to the manager if that fails. Don’t leave a penny (with or without a snarky, ungrammatical, obscenity-filled note) for your waitperson. You should especially not do this if there was nothing wrong with your service, but you’re cheap, stupid or mean-spirited and don’t feel like leaving a humane amount of money for a tip. Your server’s night will be ruined as s/he tries to figure out what s/he did wrong, or s/he will get depressed or surly and struggle to be civil to other people all night, or s/he will follow you out of the restaurant and hand it back to you, explaining you clearly need the penny far more than s/he does. The latter option is in lieu of throwing the penny at your eyes (or administering a beating), mind you. Take your crappy penny and never, NEVER, ever, EVER come back.

The customer is also not always right if the customer refused to read any posted signage about the business’ house rules.

The customer is not always right if the customer fails to take notice of the store hours and attempts to enter the store before the store opens or after the store is closed.

The customer is not always right if the customer damages things or attempts to steal things. The customer, in this case, could be right all they want while spending most of the night explaining why it was right to steal a $3 pair of underwear or a 49-cent candy ball to an un-amused security guard or cop.

The customer is not always right if the customer is on his/her cell phone and not paying attention.

The customer is not always right if they attempt to buy things that the store does not, and has not, and will never, actually have on hand to sell.

The customer is not always right if their concept of ‘right-ness’ involves abusing other customers, abusing their kids in public, abusing the employees, or abusing the management staff.

The customer is not always right if the customer or his / her spawn leave biological waste or residue anywhere other than down the pipes of a flushed toilet. No poo on the walls, no pee or used condoms in the dressing rooms, no used diapers hidden under a clothing rack, no hork in the middle of the dining room carpet, no used Tampax hidden in the potted plants, no mucus-smeared Kleenex abandoned on a shelf full of things other people might once have wanted to purchase…. All of these things are just beyond gross. And they are wrong. And lest you think I’m being scatological for the (dubious) fun of it, I have worked at places where all of these things have happened to a co-worker or myself.

The customer is not always right if they attempt to use a coupon or gimmick that is for another store or place of business. Your electronic discount card for Store X? Not going to work at Store Y. Ever.

The customer is not always right if they sexually harass the staff. These fries do not come with a boobie shake.

There are SOOOOO many more.

The bottom line: the customer is NEVER right if they resort to saying “the customer is always right” to ANYONE out loud. It’s, like, a rule. Once the customer says that, it’s all over, Customer has Lost Forever, and Employee has Won At Life (which is small consolation for having to interact with Customer in the first place, alas). Too bad that win-at-Life deal doesn’t come with a raise and a free backrub. Ever.

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