An Open Letter To The Shopper – From An Employee
Hey, there shopper. You've probably seen me bagging your groceries, or standing up at the front of the store, helping you on those fast lanes every now and then. Don't forget, that I am a team player at my job, and I work in a few different departments, so you've probably seen me stocking something on the shelves too.
As a start, I'd like to ask you as the customer, to not come after us for not following those arrows on the floor. Now, they may be there for a reason, and we do ask you to try and follow them to the best of your ability, but let's pause and talk about that. I, as the stocker, have a lot to get out of our backroom.
I can't be expected to follow that arrow for every aisle I work in or follow it every way to get to the backroom. Logistically, it's just not possible, and I really do mean that. I will try following the arrows when I can, but those arrows are for your comfort. My coworkers and I won't come after you for hoping to the other arrow just to avoid a bigger group of people. And I can't enforce that arrow for you or any other customer to use either. In reality, I have just as much authority in the store as you do, and that's practically nothing. If you feel comfortable going the "wrong way" to avoid the crowd, I invite you to do so.
Secondly, and we cannot stress this enough. DO NOT TOUCH US. While we do appreciate you coming in and shopping at our store, and there was a time a gentle touch on the shoulder or elbow would have been allowed, those times are sadly done. In fact, even before this, we would've appreciated not being touched. Imagine us coming up to you in your place of work and trying to touch you. It's not as comforting anymore to think about, is it?
We have a family to go home to at the end of the day, and the people we work with are our family. If you're sick or a carrier of some virus, you've possibly given it to us, and that will spread through our house and our coworkers.
Third, and this one I don't think you as the shopper realize, but my coworkers and I spend more time with each other than we do with our families. If we don't appear to be social distancing, don't complain about it. That would be like you standing next to your mother or significant other you live with at home. While social distancing does work, it only works if you aren't going to spend eight hours a day together. And sometimes, social distancing just isn't possible while being taught new things.
This last part of my letter is something that will go a long way for your benefit, which you're probably either trying to understand as the shopper from my point of view or you don't like what I am saying. Just be polite.
You'd be surprised as to what we as the employees will do for you if you approach us in a polite manner. We don't like to be snapped at when you need to be helped, whistled at, or waved at. We are people too. Believe it or not, we give out as much respect as you give out. I can't tell you how rude it is to do these things. Believe me, if you're at a self check out, we can see your machine has an issue. We aren't taking our time, and if we are helping someone else, we are coming to you as soon as we can after we are done with them.
Now, I don't work everywhere in the store, and am fairly new. These are just a few things I've seen and heard my coworkers complain about too. Remember, we all are in this together. We can't do better, unless we all try, together.