This I Believe

Polly - Rootstown, Ohio
Entered on May 24, 2006
Age Group: 30 - 50

I was once again standing in a long line at my local self proclaimed “deep discount have everything” store – not really in a hurry, resigned to the waiting – so I was just watching everything around me: bored, rude employees; dirty floors; a rather unsightly display of products; sad and irritated customers with carts piled high of groceries, drug store items, kitchen items – you name it since this store is a virtual smorgasbord. Then it hit me – why does this store treat its “valued customers” so badly? There were only 2 lines open and each had 10 customers in line. The cashiers were moving very slowly, caring only about their next break; employees complaining to each other about their awful work hours or the manager on duty; and I overheard the Customer Service counter employee repeatedly tell customers “No this” or “No that” or “Sorry, that’s the way it is” about who knows what issues were brought her way. Why did I once again put myself through this at this store? Why did any of us? Then I realized that I, and I’m sure many of us, am treated shabbily by organizations all over all the time! I’m a good person and why is this happening to me and good people all over the place?! It’s as though businesses and employers have totally lost track of what’s important – people and relationships – their customers, their employees who keep the businesses and organizations open!

All I want is to be treated fairly and with respect – whether I’m shopping, dining out or I’m at work. One day a few months ago the VP where I was working informed me that I, along with all employees, wake up every day and make a choice whether or not to come in to work. If we don’t like how things are at work we can choose not to keep our jobs. Now THAT was positive and a real morale booster! Damn my mortgage, my kids’ college education, the gas bill, groceries – if I’m unhappy I should just quit! It’s that same attitude I frequently encounter whether I’m grocery shopping, running into the neighborhood convenience store, dry cleaners, – you name it. The businesses seem to not care about their employees or customers and this translates into the terrible customer service I see. Sure, I try to be pleasant back and keep a positive attitude (that I can control!) – hoping to make the counter person smile. Often I make this my personal fight for the day. After all, they want to be treated with respect too!

So, I’ll continue to do my part and fight my battle because I believe people are intrinsically good. They want to do well at their jobs, take care of their families and they do care about others. I hope soon I can say “Hey, you like me; you really like me!” about my employer and businesses as a result of the respect an