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burntpastryies

Anyone else work retail?

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Hello,

 

So I work at a retail store, a hardware one to be specific.

Today I had someone return some paint that was purchased in 2008. I know so because it was tinted and it had the original label on it. I don't know why it was returned , but it baffled me. I figured when I saw it was from 08 that it wouldn't have been good (ie frozen) but... it's perfectly fine.

I just don't understand why they took so long to return it.

What's the oldest or strangest thing you've seen returned? Have any interesting retail experiences to share?

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I worked at a Michaels until moving recently. We had a similar case with Christmas decorations someone was trying to return, where none of us from last December even recognized the item. Eventually, we determined that it had been in the store 2-3 years ago.

I'm amazed your store would Let someone return something from 2008, even if it's usable!

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I'm really surprised at the return being accepted, too! That sounds nuts to me, but is it an independent retailer rather than part of a chain? I guess you can make up your own policies about returns if you own the store, or have none at all!

I wonder what they'd do if someone came in with a 30 year old can of paint with the original label! :laugh:

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8 hours ago, kirschteins said:

I worked at a Michaels until moving recently. We had a similar case with Christmas decorations someone was trying to return, where none of us from last December even recognized the item. Eventually, we determined that it had been in the store 2-3 years ago.

I'm amazed your store would Let someone return something from 2008, even if it's usable!

That's crazy! 

And we return just about anything, since that's what our general office has told us to do. "Take care of the guest" is kind of one of our main mottos.

I kinda wonder if they had a receipt. Even if they didn't, since the item number is still in our system they would have been able to return it regardless since we still have that particular brand.

5 hours ago, jellysundae said:

I'm really surprised at the return being accepted, too! That sounds nuts to me, but is it an independent retailer rather than part of a chain? I guess you can make up your own policies about returns if you own the store, or have none at all!

I wonder what they'd do if someone came in with a 30 year old can of paint with the original label! :laugh:

It's a small midwest chain. We're told to return pretty much anything (with exceptions of course)

Funny you mention that.. I had someone come in and ask me to color match some house paint they bought back in like 1989, or something like that. And they got mad when I said that we didn't carry that paint anymore.

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2 hours ago, burntpastryies said:

Funny you mention that.. I had someone come in and ask me to color match some house paint they bought back in like 1989, or something like that. And they got mad when I said that we didn't carry that paint anymore.

Oh no, I wonder if they ended up having to *gasp* go for a new colour! :bigeyed: xD

That's like the women who get upset when the lipstick colour that they've been wearing for the last 25 years gets discontinued, lol.

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I worked at the BIG box store, that ends with "Mart" for a while.. and I would cover the customer service desk...

Shoes were returned covered in mud and torn up, pretty sure they were outside the return policy (for cash back, not another pair of shoes even). Just nasty worn stuff in general sometimes, but they kept the tags. But they scanned, so we took them back. After we switched to a super big box store - people would return food from the deli after they ate it all because it didn't taste "right".

People returning their layaway purchases so they could get the cash back - pretty common.

Once I had a customer yell at me because the system wouldn't let me cash their check, they had hit the max for that time period.

Not sure about the two (in different cities) that I worked at before this one, I only worked on the floor at those. :)

 

 

 

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15 hours ago, burntpastryies said:

That's crazy! 

And we return just about anything, since that's what our general office has told us to do. "Take care of the guest" is kind of one of our main mottos.

I kinda wonder if they had a receipt. Even if they didn't, since the item number is still in our system they would have been able to return it regardless since we still have that particular brand.

It's a small midwest chain. We're told to return pretty much anything (with exceptions of course)

Funny you mention that.. I had someone come in and ask me to color match some house paint they bought back in like 1989, or something like that. And they got mad when I said that we didn't carry that paint anymore.

A small mid-west chain? I'm going to guess Menards. They may be a small chain, but they have just about everything under the sun!

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21 hours ago, WhiteWolf said:

A small mid-west chain? I'm going to guess Menards. They may be a small chain, but they have just about everything under the sun!

You are correct in that guess. I say we are a "small" chain because we aren't quite across the US yet. We only have about 350ish stores lol. And you're correct about that. Even if we don't carry it in stock, we can probably get it.

 

On 9/23/2017 at 11:14 AM, jellysundae said:

Oh no, I wonder if they ended up having to *gasp* go for a new colour! :bigeyed: xD

That's like the women who get upset when the lipstick colour that they've been wearing for the last 25 years gets discontinued, lol.

I don't think they even got a new color. Think they just returned it for the heck of it haha. 

 

On 9/23/2017 at 11:54 AM, sky_blue_eyes said:

I worked at the BIG box store, that ends with "Mart" for a while.. and I would cover the customer service desk...

Shoes were returned covered in mud and torn up, pretty sure they were outside the return policy (for cash back, not another pair of shoes even). Just nasty worn stuff in general sometimes, but they kept the tags. But they scanned, so we took them back. After we switched to a super big box store - people would return food from the deli after they ate it all because it didn't taste "right".

People returning their layaway purchases so they could get the cash back - pretty common.

Once I had a customer yell at me because the system wouldn't let me cash their check, they had hit the max for that time period.

Not sure about the two (in different cities) that I worked at before this one, I only worked on the floor at those. :)

 

 

 

Oh man. I've worked at the service desk too, was one of my favorite things, but most hated too.

I just don't understand why people return stuff like that (ie. shoes) Obviously you've used and abused it.. I shouldn't have to give you your money back. Luckily, I don't have to deal with cashing checks, but I can only imagine how frustrating that can be.

My favorite two memories from being in the cash office was an old gentleman yelling at me because I couldn't leave the registers to check a price for him. After politely telling him so he told me that I could. "Take these light bulbs and shove them up my bum" (in far less pleasant words of course)

And then there was the guy who got made that I couldn't do an even exchange on some socks her purchased because he didn't have his receipt. He literally threw them across the counter at me. Not my fault it wasn't the same price or product.

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I'd honestly never have the nerve to behave like these people do towards someone else, it's just so horrifyingly RUDE. D:<

Got to be eternally grateful that you're not related to these kind of people, or have to work with them...:bigeyed:

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I'm fascinated by return policies in the US, so much so that after hearing so many stories about people returning stuff I went ahead and did this here (in Brazil). I was aware that return policies aren't exactly the same here, but I thought that in some ways it was similar. But it's not, lol. One day I impulsively bought a backpack - I actually needed one, but I didn't stop to think if the one I bought really was a good option. I'm not typically an impulse buyer, but the backpack was SO pretty that I forgot about everything else. When I got home, I realised that it wasn't big enough and didn't have enough pockets, and just wasn't worth what I paid for in general. So I went back to the store the next day and said I wanted to return the backpack. They asked "is there something wrong with it?", and I said "no, I just decided that I don't want it" and they said "we only accept returns if there's something wrong with the product". Then I said "I have the right to change my mind about a product as long as the tag is still on and I return it within 7 days after the purchase. It's in the consumer code", so one of them phoned the manager and said "uhm, a lady wants to return a product, but there's nothing wrong with it. And she mentioned the consumer code". The manager immediately told them to give me a refund, so that's what they did. So everything worked out. Except that later on I decided to read the consumer code again, and realised that the return-within-7-days thing refers to online and phone purchases, not in-store purchases. So they had every right not to give me a refund, lol. I'm so sorry, store people! In my defence, I think they should actually learn the consumer code. Otherwise customers can scare them into doing whatever they want...

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My craft store was in a pretty well-off area. You always had parents buying little models or other premade "school project" type things, and I always wanted to scream at them to make their kids do [removed] for themselves. Here's a pretty typical interaction.

Put-upon father reluctantly removing his wallet to pay me NINETY DOLLARS for an assortment of scrapbooking items: "Do we really need all these stickers for your project, honey?"
Preteen girl in a Catholic school uniform: "Yeah, we do!"
Me, internally screaming: MAKE HER BUY IT WITH HER OWN ALLOWANCE. GOD KNOWS IT'S PROBABLY MORE THAN I MAKE HERE.

We're also big on coupons. There are mail & online coupons available almost all the time. I tell people about them pretty much any time they're relevant, because I would absolutely want someone do to the same for me! Most people are really happy about them (and more likely to come back to the store when they know they can save money).

But let me tell you, coupons make rich people EVIL.
Like I understand wanting to save as much as possible, but the people who bully cashiers over it are literally Never people that a few dollars would mean anything to.

I once had a full grown, well-dressed woman harass me for probably ten minutes because she didn't think she'd gotten enough off with all her coupons (she was already using the maximum number possible, and was angry that she couldn't use all of them on every single thing). I eventually asked my manager to come void the transaction, so I could do it over again and show the woman exactly what I was taking off of each thing, and my manager walked over, looked at the screen, and asked how much the difference was.
"Two dollars on this," I said.
"Actually, just a dollar." Said the nightmare customer.
My manager hit the button to complete the transaction, and then pulled out her own wallet and handed the customer a dollar.

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9 hours ago, deboratibi said:

So everything worked out. Except that later on I decided to read the consumer code again, and realised that the return-within-7-days thing refers to online and phone purchases, not in-store purchases. So they had every right not to give me a refund, lol. I'm so sorry, store people! In my defence, I think they should actually learn the consumer code. 

Haha, I think you probably did do them a favour there, because hopefully they DID read it after dealing with you. But thankfully for you they hadn't read it before. xD

6 hours ago, kirschteins said:

But let me tell you, coupons make rich people EVIL.
Like I understand wanting to save as much as possible, but the people who bully cashiers over it are literally Never people that a few dollars would mean anything to.

Yeah, some people are just obnoxious, and there does unfortunately seem to be a correlation between some people's wealth and obnoxicity (I just made that word up) levels. Maybe they're just trying (and failing) to buy happiness...

Some companies are still really good about returns policies though, this is one from Boden, a UK clothing company, I love all aspects of this :laughingsmiley: you'll see why I'm laughing -

Quote

What’s your return policy?

We operate a no quibble returns policy and if you return an item within 3 months of receipt, we'll give you back the amount you paid for the item (see postage and packing cost terms) or offer an exchange, whichever you prefer, no questions asked.

After this period, until the first anniversary of your order arriving, you can still return anything that does not meet your naturally high quality expectations (things like wear and tear are included, though garments that have been mauled by pets, drawn on by nephews, worn while decorating and so forth, don't qualify).

So if you're not happy, we will give you account credit for the amount you paid for that item. Almost all of you are lovely people and will see this as us being helpful and confident about how well made our clothes are, but there will be a few rotten apples who might look on this as an opportunity to refresh their wardrobe for free each season (you know who you are).

Anyone repeatedly trying to do this will get spotted, and a dim view will be taken, probably resulting in us parting company. When returning goods which you bought using a discount or offer, we will adjust the refund accordingly if you fall below the discount/offer threshold, as that discount or offer will no longer apply. Should anything spring a fault in the first 6 months, we will, of course, give you your money back.

If you are a pathological chancer and simply can't help yourself, we recommend trying it on with our competitors instead.

We offer free UK returns, excluding Sale and Clearance orders

 

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Elderly individuals can be just as obnoxious as those who are well to do.

I used to work retail and I haven't had any strange returns but I've almost had it out with a customer one night. I worked in a grocery store and I was a cashier in the evening. We were fairly busy and this older lady comes in bickering over the price of canned peaches. There was a pricing error apparently and I offered to go take a look. She declined and didn't want the peaches. A couple of nights later she comes in again and to my luck, through my till. This time it was over juice and she had me go check and she was really rude to me. Saying something that since it's not coming up proper it should be free. I called one of the other ladies over who was supervising the front end and I went over to the shelf and the price there is exactly what it was coming up as and I told her as much. I was so frustrated!

I was 6 months pregnant at the time, been on my feet for 9 hours and downright exhausted. So to have this bitter old lady pick on an obvious pregnant lady and not even apologize for her mistake was awful.

I absolutely hate working in retail and I will NEVER go back unless absolutely necessary or they pay me very well for my troubles. People are just so mean and I'd like to see some of them last a month working retail, then they can see what it's like to be treated that way.

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Costco has a very liberal return policy.  Some of the things they take back though, OMG!!!  This woman I know, she bought her kids the Little Tikes turtle sandbox.  Used it for 3 yrs and returned it.  Just because they were finished with it.  It had sat outside for 3 yrs, in the snow, rain, heat and sun.  She said she does that with everything she buys there.  Uses it, and when she is finished, returns it.  I do NOT agree with that at all.  Now, I do buy a lot of things there, and pay a little extra, just because of the return policy.  For instance, a lot of you know that with X box games, if you bump the console a little too hard, you get that "ring of death" on the disc and the game is junk.  Video game stores know EXACTLY what that is and will not accept the return.  I bought my son a new game at Costco, he did that to it, the game was only a week old.  I brought it back and they didn't ask any questions, and gave me a new game.  I bought a laptop from them.  I was doing online schooling.  The computer was outside of the return/exchange period but they would send it out for repair.  I cried to them and said that I was doing online schooling and didn't have that kind of time.  Assignments were due and couldn't wait.  They said, "You are a great customer, so we will make an exception for you and allow you to exchange the computer."  I was like, "that is all I want to do."  Any big purchase that I can buy there, I do, because of their return/exchange policy.

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