Consumer Behavior, Lost in Translation

120828011347-consumer-confidence-monsterYou are sitting at your table trying to enjoy an evening out with your spouse or significant other; enjoying your time, sipping on some wine or a nice cold draft beer… and then it happens:  Some little kid runs past you, screaming and bumping your chair.  Their siblings bump your chair moments later, screaming as they chase the first perpetrator. The parents of these children are not paying attention to their little monsters, as they are just thankful for a moment to themselves. Yes this is today’s parent.

I have noticed a lot of people are clueless when it comes to how to act at a restaurant or out shopping. I am writing this not to condemn you, okay maybe 63% of this is to condemn you, but it is meant to be a teaching tool. Please read slowly and then re-read again, if you have any questions, then you should read it one more time.

Lesson One:

When you are shopping a specialty store, don’t act like you know the product better than the sales person.  It is their job to know the product.  We have all heard that customer who says, “Oh I know this is how it works,” as you hear the worker trying to explain, with little success, that no, that isn’t how the product works. Folks, 9.9 times out of 10, you are wrong and the worker is right.  Honestly, would you want someone coming in and telling you that you know nothing about the profession you are in? I think not. Also, if you are a regular customer, you should know what you get every time. You are a regular, they say hi to you using your first name; you have gotten the same thing for 8 months; how do you not know what you get?  Come on now!

Lesson Two:

While in line at a grocery store, or a box store, do not, I repeat, do not have the poor cashier check the price of every item you are purchasing. That is what price tags are for and simple math. The people standing behind you don’t appreciate it and that poor cashier doesn’t either.  You are slowing down the process and irritating everyone behind you.  Since we are on the subject of holding up the line and being the pain of everyone’s existence at that moment:  Do not argue over anything under five dollars in line.  It’s five dollars!  There is a customer service counter.  Take your gripe there.  You look petty and cheap. Again, it’s five dollars, get over it!

Lesson Three:

(This may be the most important and vital lesson I will be giving) Be kind to your server while out to eat. Have you ever seen the movie Waiting, well it is mostly truly what goes on in that movie. When you sit down look at the environment around you, is it busy or is it not? If it is busy then it may take your server a few extra seconds to get to you. Don’t hold this against them, now obviously sitting there for five to ten minutes with no service in not acceptable either. Your server is a human being also, they are someones child, someones spouse possibly, they are not your personal abuse toy. Most servers are either in college or graduated, they are not uneducated. Sometimes serving can bring them in more income then what they degree can, they are doing what they need to survive. While you are at one restaurant don’t say “well they do it for me at such and such.” That is that restaurant and you are at a different one. If you wanted whatever change you are asking for to make it like the other places, you should have gone to the other place then. Finally servers work hard for their tips, they usually make half of minimum wage which that gets eaten up in taxes, tipping 18 to 20 percent is the ideal amount. Waitress-Still3CR

Lesson Four:

When you visit the doctor’s office or have to be hospitalized do not undermine your caregivers. Nurses and doctors go to school to gain the knowledge of how to treat you. Just because you went to Web MD and put in some symptoms does not mean you or a family member has the Spanish Flu.  They are highly trained individuals that have seen your symptoms hundreds if not thousands of times, they are mostly likely right in their diagnoses.

These are just a few pointers on main interactions between consumer and worker. We can only get better as a people if we treat each other with mutual respect.  No one likes to be treated horribly, would you like the roles reversed in any of these lessons? I think not, so before you go to over react, think, then react. By Steve Kish


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