The other day I went to Office Depot to print off some flyers, and as I was working with this kind woman, a customer strolls through the main doors with all sorts of presence. I immediately focus in on her hoping she wasn’t coming my way, but of course, she walks right up to the counter demanding her order. When she rudely interrupted the woman working with me, I let the situation unfold a little more out of curiosity.
She blurts out, “I’m so and so here for a 5 o’clock pick up.” There was nothing positive about the way she walked through the door or even spoke, so my curiosity was sparked to observe as she went about her ways. She gave no signs of respect or happiness, only signs of anger, limited time, and negativity.
The woman working checks the order and wasn’t able to get to it, explaining there was no confirmation call to the lady which would have signified that her order was ready. At this point the customer snaps, demanding she does it now. The working lady gives me one of those looks and says she will get to it after helping me. The customer proceeds to freak out, never acknowledging the fact she interrupted me and the employee’s prior engagement. The worker gives in to her request, and I nod to her the “ok” as I further examined this spectacle.
Finally the worker has enough of the attitude and responds with, “you’re right, I’m not doing anything back here am I,” hinting at her trying to help me at that moment. Customer responds with, “You’re right, I agree 100% with you there,” obviously a low blow at the worker for not getting her order done. Bickering starts between the two, and she then demands the manger’s ear. The lady proceeds to be rude to the worker and the manger all the way till she walks out of the door.
At this point I’m trying to dissect the whole situation, trying to justify the customer’s point of view, saying to myself, maybe it’s for an event tonight? Nope, the flyer she had printed out was for a pool party on March 14th with address, time, phone number, etc. (Mind all the information on the flyer for potential retaliation on this lady for her rudeness.) Of course I asked her, “big party tonight?” trying to get a response that would let me dig deeper into her psyche, but she responds with a direct no, clearly signaling me to shut up.
I look deeper and just feel sorry for her. The only way a lady could be this mean to someone else is to be completely unhappy with her life, taking all her frustrations with her life out on any one she sees as inferior, which just so happened to be everyone, but her.
What I wanted to do was just ask to hug this lady and say everything is ok. I didn’t, for fear of being pepper sprayed, tased, or shot, that’s the energy that this lady gave off. I concluded that this lady was helpless in her current state, so I focused on the worker.
I thought the employee handled herself well, holding strong with good remarks to the rude lady, while standing up for herself as a human being. She didn’t take any of the customer’s insults personally, and we ended our time with a smile on our faces!
Point being, it takes a lot of energy to be that negative of a person. If you’re going to expend all that energy anyway, why not use it positively to make your life and others’ lives better? The customer could have been rich or famous, but I wouldn’t have given one second of my life to experience any amount of her life based on how she acted at that moment.
It’s not who you are at work, at home, or anywhere else, it’s who you are all the time? It’s about who you are at every moment of every second. Be the person you want to be all the time, it shouldn’t change based on your environment or certain circumstances.