"Does Anyone Really Care?"
By Capt. Fred Davis
Published: Friday, April 4, 2014

Does anyone really care? I’m referring to you, the readers, and I’m sure you will say, “Yes.”

What I want to know is: Do you care about how you are treated? When you’re shopping, at a restaurant, driving down the road or just making a phone call?

I have an aversion to doing business with someone who acts like they just don’t care about my needs. I think cashiers should offer a pleasant demeanor but some act like they hate their jobs. I was in a super store and had a shopping cart with several items I had spent a good deal of time selecting. I waited in line for my turn and as I placed my purchases on the track I noted the cashier was chatting with a friend. Overhearing their conversation, I learned they had been out together the night before and were laughing together about what took place. I waited a few minutes and then said, “Excuse me.” I got a nasty look, as though I was troubling the person who was supposed to be helping me. After the comment: “Did you want something,” I said no with a smile as I pushed the empty cart aside and left. The people behind me had to put up with the fallout, and I was sorry about that. But I had reached the end of my patience.

I think if a person can’t respect the people they are paid to help they should not be waiting on them. They should seek other employment.

I shopped in a market the other day that I frequent often although I live within walking distance from their competitor.

I have to drive 10 miles round trip to visit the store, but they offer a gas credit bonus on purchases, which I think is a big advantage. The cashier could not verify my bonus card and offered to go to the customer service desk, but I said no I would do that. There was a long line behind me and only two cashiers were working at the time.

At the customer service desk, I asked the person to please verify my card number. I was asked, “Why?” I explained that I wanted my gas credits added on.

The person said, “Can’t you read” and pointed at a sign which I had read, and understood. I said, “Yes I can” and left the store. The person was wrong about what they thought the sign said, but I was not about to go into it with them. The store is not nearly as busy as their competitor even though they offer the gas bonus incentive. I think I know why: They employ people who treat customers like their business is not appreciated.

At the same store, different location, I encountered a young man at the meat department. I wanted to make a large purchase of ground beef. He pointed out if I purchased an entire tenderloin it would be $2 a pound less expensive. He also said, with a big smile, he would be happy to cut and wrap it in any way I desired. So there are happy employees out there who offer great service and care about customers. This store was very busy and had all they could do to keep up with the lines of people making purchases.

At a pharmacy we shop at, my wife was puzzling about a couple of over-the-counter items and stepped to the counter with them. The pharmacist asked if he could help and she said yes. He said just a moment while he finished up with an item and soon came around the counter. They went to the aisle where she had picked up the products and discussed her needs. He chose one and said, “I think this is just what you are looking for” with a sincere smile. My wife thought he had really gone above and beyond to help her out.

Another good example is the bank I use while in the southland. I have had an account at the same location for about 20 years and tellers come and go, but they all are so pleasant. They call me by name, smile and when I’m ready to leave say, “Have a nice day.” Maybe it’s because they work with something that makes people happy — money!

I could go on and on with the bad and the good experiences. I just can’t understand the attitude of people today who are lucky enough to have a job and don’t want to make the best of it by caring about the people they encounter.

If someone reads this column who does not like their job, why not look for another one? I think a lot of pleasant people, with smiles on their faces are waiting in line for yours.

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