And On A Lighter Note…

It’s been kind of a rough seven days, but things are on the upswing, I think. I can eat solid food, the Hubs is feeling a little better, and a policy I’ve been working on for several weeks seems to FINALLY be in the books. 🙂 I also need to warn you that a) this post is lengthy; and b) there is a mini-rant enclosed. That said….

The Hubs got all of zero additional information regarding his abdominal discomfort, even after the two procedures he had Friday and Monday (Friday was a contrast CT, and Monday’s was one that took a good day’s prep, and we will just leave it at that. 😉 )

Tuesday was the day I found about Jan, yesterday was just a ridiculously crazy day at work, and today? Ahhhhhh….today was our quarterly team building activity at the day job.

See it? It's in the A-Hole. ;)

See it? It’s in the A-Hole. 😉

Quarterly team building is one of the best activities EVER at the day job. I work with these really FUN women that are just wonderful (and can cook, too), and we’re all pretty diverse, yet somehow function really well as a team. So, after having a staff meeting at the end of 2013 and deciding we needed to implement a little fun? We decided that every quarter we will have a seasonal pot luck and play some games, which are really team building exercises in disguise.

We put the finishing touches on our lunch, and I was beside myself with a serious case of the hungries.

On the menu today was a selection of yummy things to eat, which is why I went super light on breakfast. Beef roast, ham, green beans, mashed potatoes, homemade mac and cheese, sweet potato casserole, potato salad, rolls, cake, cupcakes and we even got Easter baskets. Oh, and a strong, fresh pot of coffee to top it all off…

Our entertainment consisted of the “How Well Do You Know Me?” quiz, which gave us ten “this or that” type statements, to which we make our best guesses on everyone’s preferences. Wow. We were all a little rusty in that area, so I can see where communications exercises might be beneficial to us in the future.

The second “game” was “Who to Save” in which we are in a lifeboat, there are only eight spots left, yet 15 people left on the sinking ship. Which eight do we choose and why? These people are hypothetical and hold various titles in our facility. Much hilarity ensued. We picked our eight with only a little bit of back and forth, and the reality of who we are came into play, which is why some of our choices as a group surprised me, but not in a bad way. This team thinks on its feet, and cohesively. Always a good quality in a team that you trust.

During the 90 or so minutes that we had our lunch/meeting, we didn’t bother thinking about the phones. Usually, we simply hit the iDivert button on our phones and that sends calls to voicemail, but this time my quick-thinking receptionist forwarded the calls to two of our maintenance guys. Of course, she didn’t tell them about it first, but she did split up the time between the two; 45 minutes for one, and 45 for the other. Toward the end of our meeting we looked up and saw them standing outside our window with some pretty irritated expressions on their faces. Once our meeting was over, we took the calls back, and our two mechanics really were good sports about it, in they didn’t tell their boss, which means MY boss didn’t hear about it. Okay, and we did offer to feed them, and there WERE cupcakes involved, sooooo…All’s well that ends well, right? We did get an email from the electrical supervisor stating we might need to check our phones, however, because every time he called the main number, for some reason, Randy picked up. I hit “Reply to All,” and wrote, “Thanks for the head’s up, Dennis. We’ll see what’s going on with that.” Bahahahahahahahahahaha!  Did I mention we had a great time?

**shifting gears**

I saw a commercial for the new movie coming out, “The Neighbors” and literally LOL’d, because it reminded me in many ways of how things used to be next door. I found a trailer on YouTube, and wanted to share it with you guys, because it kinda made me laugh. Rob, are you paying attention, Buddy?

**shifting gears**

On Monday (after the Hubs came down off of whatever they give you to make you forget how you were, ummmm, violated, and after the income taxes were filed), we decided to roll up to our local WalMart to pick a few things up. Customer service has never been top notch at this particular store, but it’s about a half a mile from the house, so the convenience factor USUALLY makes up for what we refer to as the general asshattedness of our usual visits.

I altered the original image because I couldn't find anything else out there that fit.

I altered the original image because I couldn’t find anything else out there that fit.

Needless to say? This visit was bad. And I mean REALLY frigging bad. Like, bad enough that I was too pissed to even hit their corporate web site to email them a complaint that night, while the iron was hot (because believe me, I was hotter than any iron)…I have a bit of a temper, and my four-letter-word-vocabulary is extensive, but I also know that I will catch more flies with honey, than vinegar, and that I would be taken more seriously if I kept the swear words to a minimum, so I waited a day or two.

Here is the thing; when you are the only cashier working one of four registers in the garden center (which is on the far end of one side of the store), and the line is four or five carts deep after the customer that currently has her handful of items already on the counter, to place the “closed” sign among that patron’s items and simply walk away after mumbling “break”? Not acceptable, in my humble opinion.

After having waited several minutes for something, anything to happen, some random dude slowly ambled up to the cash register and it was clear that he was in no hurry. Was he an employee? Nobody knew; he had no badge on his person, anywhere, that we could see. Apparently he’d worked a cash register somewhere because he started ringing items up and the line started to move…very…slowly.

All of THESE have price collars on them. C'Mon, local WalMart. It's NOT that hard!

All of THESE have price collars on them. C’Mon, local WalMart. It’s NOT that hard!

Once our turn, he started scanning our items and got to the lime juice. You know the containers I mean…The little plastic lime shaped ones? Apparently I did not pick out the one of seventy-five that actually DID have a price collar on it. Random Dude behind the register turned my bar code-less container over and over in his hands with the most puzzled look on his face. I mean, he seemed truly befuddled. He informed us that he couldn’t ring this item up. Then he stood there and stared at us. Did he use the intercom and call for a price check? No. Did he use the phone and ask for a price check? No. He just stood there, staringHe did blink, however, so I WIN! 😀

Now, I needed that lime juice for a chicken, avocado, LIME, and cilantro salad, and I did not feel like having to go to another store. The day had been long enough, already, we had that night’s supper in the bags, and we were hongry, dammit! Much to the dismay of the customers behind us, I stated (and loudly) that I guessed I would go try and find a lime juice in the produce section that actually had some kind of bar code on it. The guy behind the register just gave me another slack-jawed stare. Fine. Now, mind you, this Walmart is of the Super variety and takes up quite a bit of square footage. Produce is on the far end of the store, opposite the side we were trying to get checked out of. So off I went; through pet supplies, cosmetics, personal care, vitamins and meds, as seen on TV, men’s clothing, jewelry and accessories, women’s clothing, Junior clothing, and then finally to the far end of produce, where the box of lime juice containers were. After digging through many of the little green containers, I found one with a bar code in tact, and made the journey back to the other side of the store.

By the time I got back, my husband was standing to the side of the register. Apparently he paid for everything except the lime juice, and someone had the sense to get the people behind us through and gone, then he got back in line to pay for the stupid, frigging lime juice.

Fortunately, the salad was delish (and and have posted the recipe here), but the whole experience left kind of a bad taste in my mouth, as it were.

I know I work in healthcare, but our facility has this concept called the “Customer Service Initiative” (CSI) and part of our annual evaluation is based on how well we pull off customer service. Had I behaved in the way that either one of these employees did? I would have been written up and it would have affected my paycheck, so I see it like this: If you make the people you are there to serve or assist feel like they have really ruined your day, put a cramp in your style and have otherwise put you out in any way, shape or form? YOU’RE IN THE WRONG LINE OF WORK and maybe you need to go back to hermit school and find a new job under a rock somewhere, asshole! Just sayin’… I was also a lot kinder in the email I sent to the corporate office, but doubt I’ll hear anything back. I never have any other time I’ve had to address a situation at any one of their stores. Needless to say, it’ll probably be a very long time before I set foot in Walmart again. Also, let this blog show for the record that it’s true what they say; if you have great service you tell a handful of people. If you get crap service, you blog about it and tell anyone that will listen. 😀 It is also entirely possible you will cabbage a logo/image from the interwebz and edit it to suit your needs.

In other news, our grapevines are coming along nicely, and should we ever decide to actually make wine out of our grapes? We’ve thought about calling our wine “The Grapes of Wrath” because a) I love Steinbeck; and b) I think it’s quite fitting because…Did I mention I have a bit of a temper? 😉  Radishes are starting to come up in neat little rows, too, and we hope to get the rest of the veggies into the ground in the coming days, provided Old Man Winter will just let go of our little corner of the world.

So, please share with me your worst customer service experience and how you handled it.

Until Next Time…

About Julie the Workaholic

Mom of three (grown) sons and one (grown) step-daughter, wife of one, friend of many, and owned by seven 4-legged critters, writer, photographer, friend, huge fan of life, and most of all, lover of all things beautiful .….Getting healthy, and hoping to make a dent in the world in a most positive way! (And then there's my alter-ego, the Workaholic, who is me, just unfiltered.)
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49 Responses to And On A Lighter Note…

  1. janeybgood says:

    Hi Julie! I’ve just been catching up with your blog cause I’ve been away but I love reading your posts. I hope you’re doing well 🙂 I actually watched my mama take on a supermarket employee when I was staying with her, nobody messes with my mam! Like the guy you dealt with, she was just totally incompetent. I seriously wonder how some people can be hired!

  2. weight2lose2013 says:

    Tag- your it!

    By the way, the carrot seeds were shipped to me this week and I should have them very soon. i’ll email you as soon as they come in.
    Happy Easter!

  3. So many BAD experiences with customer service! GRRRR! So many people do not belong in jobs that deal with people…………..don’t even get me started! lol

  4. weight2lose2013 says:

    I like that! I’ve never hear of fucknuggets before, but that is now part of my permanent lexicon. Thank you, squirreling dervish! Julie, what grapes are you growing? I have several in my yard and find them easy to grow. For some reason the birds pay no attention to them, while I’m always challenged to harvest my cherries before the winged beasts pluck my trees. I hope hubby is on the mend!!!

  5. You have been busy. I love the tasks especially the first one it will be great for me to use with students, I’m always on the lookout for group building ideas.

    Thanks for sharing.

    • You’re so welcome! The original was floating around facebook, and I customized it. Things like “chocolate or vanilla,” “dogs or cats,” “swimming pool or ocean,” “books or movies,” “singing or dancing,” etc. It was a lot of fun, and very illuminating. 🙂

      • I like to do things like that especially after they’ve had a break they seem to forget each other as well as everything I taught them.

        It’s amazing how you can spend so much time with people and not really know much at all about them. It’s great for consolidating friendships and networks.

  6. Susan says:

    Sheesh, I only get to choose ONE worst customer service experience? How will I EVER choose between Time Warner, the Insurance Marketplace, Embarq Telephone, United Healthcare, the Wake County inspector who came to inspect our mobile home electricity in 1985, Storr Office Environments, and, and, and…..

  7. the fucknuggets installed my fence…..Crooked….Guess who is not getting paid

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