jump to navigation

All I ever needed to know about life, I learned from working at Starbucks, Part VI August 22, 2008

Posted by Michelle, with dignity in starbucks.
Tags: ,

In the past week, I have had the pleasure of serving one particular man who obviously has a deep superiority complex – twice.

Last week this man, who ordered a sort of complicated crapfrappucino, was completely rude to my barista at the register.  Ridiculously rude.  I don’t remember the details of that, but I remember distinctly what happened next.  

We had been ridiculously busy for the whole week prior, and because of that we had run out of the flat lids that fit on the venti cold cups.  We had just been using the dome lids, and no one seemed to mind really.  Well, this man asked for no whipped cream on his drink, and so we would usually place a flat lid on top.  But, alas, I was instigating the end of the world, I shit you not, for this jerk.  I placed the dome lid on top, and began to hand off the drink for him.  He flat told me that he would not HAVE a dome lid, because they’re just dangerous and he didn’t feel like wearing the frappucino.  I apologized to him, but his tone was so condescending that I really wasn’t sorry and I frankly didn’t care if he wore his frap anyway.  I explained the outage of lids and he started to talk about the incompetence of the staff and that he would like a refund.  I then had to stop everything to refund his money, and he was incredibly ungrateful.  Ugh.

So yesterday morning the same jerk comes in and he orders the same drink and bless it, we had the flat lids!  He asked for his drink to be double blended, so I added the ingredients, and pressed the “2” button on the blender, you know, to double blend it.  He had already thrown his receipt back at my chick at the register, who promptly put the receipt in with his change and handed it back to him (score!), so I was a little peeved with him.  When I went to pour up the frap this time, I noticed there were some ice chunks in it, so I blended it a little bit more.  I gave him his cup, told him to have a nice day, and promptly received a lecture on why he likes his drinks double blended, because the ice chunks get stuck in his teeth and hurt him.  But he is so condescending, so rude and demeaning and I just want him out of my face.  I say “Oh, ok sir”.  Then he said “Last time you couldn’t be bothered to take the time to double blend it.” I tell him that we have a 2 button that doubles it for us, and he steps toward me sort of behind my bar, raises his voice and tells me that no, that’s infact NOT double blending it blah blah blah.  I cut him off by saying “Oh, ok sir.  Have a good day”.  

When I left work yesterday I was over the rudeness of people.  It was mostly him, but several other people.  I am over the state of the service industry in the states right now.  It’s this weird complex that people have that servers and those of us in the service industry are personal servants.  We are not servants, we are service providers.  Providers, not slaves.  

I enjoy smiling at people, asking them how they are, saying “sir”, “ma’am”, and “thank you”, and hoping that I helped make someones day a little better, a little brighter.  I like that part of my job.  I like knowing that I can do my job well, and can make someone smile while doing it.  But it is people with entitlement issues like that one jerky man that ruin a whole day for me.  Does he realize that he can ruin a whole day for another person?  I was over him this morning, and from the start I was prepared to let that man know how I felt if he happened to cross my path today.  If he was condescending or rude to me, I was simply going to let him know that I thought his attitude was out of line, and that we didn’t deserve that type of treatment.  I was going be even more assertive if he was verbally abusive to one of my baristas today.  

But, lucky for him, he didn’t walk in today. 

So, what have I learned.  That life is too short to let people walk all over me, even if my job tells me that I have to “just say yes” and should let people walk all over me.  I think I’m going to stop letting customers (and coworkers or anyone else for that matter) just walk all over me for sake of me “being nice”.  I would want to know when I was being a bitch.  Do unto others.



1. Holly - August 23, 2008

omg…today a jerk customer gave me his order after reaching over the glass to grab the grande cup that he wanted his drink in. then proceeded to THROW 2 chocolate medallions on the counter and says “add those to it.” so i give him his total and of course he throws the money, 2 one dollar bills, 1 five dollar bill, and 4 different coins on the counter one by one!!! I had to catch the coins before they slid of the counter, so i said “you really like to throw stuff” and he mumbled something under his breath….then he want over to get his drink and knocked about 30 sleeves out of the plexi. i seriously hate him. if i see him again i’m going to tell him that too! i’m shocked it isn’t a full moon…people are ruthless this week!

2. Erica - August 24, 2008

People that treated customer service providers like that are just misreable in their own life. They feel that everyone needs feel just as bad as they do. Unfortunately, you store is located around of bunch of people that feel entitled due to the bank account. They thought money could make them happy. They realized they were wrong and think that they should punish anyone who is happy with their low paying fun job. Trying working in Philly. There are no nice people there.

3. Michael - September 10, 2008

I worked in the food service industry years ago.

We too had to agree with the customer. I could not do it after a while. I suggested to complaining customers that we were the lowest priced sit down around. If they were not satisfied perhaps they should upscale there choice of eating establishments.

Not that polite generally, but I was usually not rude either.

I was not a good customer service person…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: