Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Customer Exasperation Pt. 1 - "Subway #1"

Liz's recent post cemented my thoughts about sharing my own very recent customer service issues. I don't claim that there's a racial element in each of them. In most cases, it's nothing TOO deep, but they happened so close together and are so out-there that I had to share more of my surreality with you.

I'll post them one at a time, in no particular order.

Subway #1
I decided to get a Subway sandwich for lunch. For convenience, I ordered it over the phone, then drove there to pick it up. When I arrived, there was a customer at the register and one at the area where you place your order. I walked straight to the register then assured the other customer that I wasn't just jumping in front of her - I'd already ordered.

I guess the cashier didn't see me after she finished ringing up her customer because she turned around and began putting on her "sandwich artist" gloves. When she saw me, I said, "Hi. I've already ordered. Is this where I need to be ..."

She motioned for me to join her at the other end of the counter, where they accept orders. I walked down there and asked why I needed to be in the ordering section when I've already ordered. She asked, "You ordered? Where's your sandwich?"

I replied with a smile, "Why are you asking me? I just got here."

I went on to say, "I ordered by phone and I just..."

"Oh," she interrupted. "You ordered by phone. See, I didn't hear you say that."

She didn't hear me reply, "If I said I ordered, already, what does it matter whether it was by-phone or not?" She'd already walked away by then, but my point stands.

Maybe I should've mentioned that I ordered by-phone, but I did say that I'd already ordered, so why the heck did she send me to "Place your order" section? Anyway, she probably wasn't listening very well. When I told her I'd already ordered, she assumed I was asking where to order, then began walking away.

She asked someone if they took a phone order, found my food, took my money, gave me a dirty look, and that was that.



Anonymous said...

"Hi. I've already ordered. Is this where I need to be ..."

Sandwich Artist: Well, it is IF you've already ordered.

Wes: Yes, I ordered prior to this moment-

Sandwich Artist: Where's your sandwich, your food, proof of your order?

Wes: Uhh, I'm waiting to receive my order, and just need to know where to stand.

Sandwich Artist: Right. But if you've ordered, where is your FOOD?...

Wes (channeling Kim): [Smacks Sandwich Artist on the forehead.]

Liz Dwyer said...

I think there should be a taser that customers can use...

The thing is, if someone (management) didn't set the expectation that that kind of behavior is acceptable, then the employees wouldn't do it.

Anonymous said...

Well, it was kinda confusing......

Jameil said...


West said...

Thanks for the comments, B. Good & Jameil, but I must admit that I'm not sure what you're referring to, exactly.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

It sounds as if there were issues at work here, either independently or in conjunction with the racial element, which seems less clearcut than in Liz' horrendous story.

1. Rudeness
2. Inattention to detail/stupidity
3. Making the customer wrong
4. General ineptitude
5. Their food is not worth the hassle.

It would be nice if there were a better place to buy lunch near your work.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

The whole thing sounds a bit like "Who's on first?"

West said...

heart: Yeah. I need to do MUCH better about bringing my own lunch.

Between the service and the health concerns, it's definitely in my best interests. Sadly, convenience and a growling belly sometimes trump my better judgement.

Hehe. You're right about the "Who's on first" thing.

Anonymous said...

Reading your dialogue, I could see where there was much room for misinterpretation. She probably coulda had a better "attitude" about it, but......yeah.

West said...

You're certainly entitled to your opinion, but when I say I ordered, already, I have to wonder why she'd send me to the part of the line where you... place your order.