Today as I was shopping in my local Sears outlet I found the exact purse I have been looking for over the past several weeks. It was proper leather, not overpriced pleather and it was on sale. YIPPEE is what I thought.
It continued to be my thought while I stood in line for over ten minutes at the first Customer Service counter closest to the accessories department.
It continued to be my main thought while I waited for another ten minutes at a second Customer Service counter that the ladies at the first counter sent me to when they realized that both their customers were going to be time consuming with bill paying, sorting out incorrect information on their bills and the like.
It began to dim slightly when the clerk at the second counter got tangled up with the woman who butted in ahead of me as she raced me there from where she had been standing behind me at counter number one. The clerk there had seen what happened and still took her ahead of me but o well, it happens. When counter clerk number two rang up the woman's purchases and told her the amount due, the woman nearly had a fit as she thought the items were on sale, but she was charged full price. As usual, Sears not being known EVER for being overstaffed at any time, the counter clerk had to leave the cash register to go tramp around the store with the buttinski woman so they could check the prices together. The items had come from the farthest point in the store away from the cash register, so counter clerk number two sent me on to Customer Service counter number three over in mens' wear.
By this time my YIPPEE had turned into more of a yippee??? Sigh. There was no clerk at the third counter, no clerk visible in the aisles anywhere near me. I waited nearly five minutes standing belly up to the counter, looking about, eventually taking change out of my wallet and dropping it onto the counter in hopes that the noise would attrack attention from some clerk, somewhere in the store. When that netted me nothing I tried the same thing with my key chain full of keys...guaranteed to wake the dead as there are so many on there and they make quite a racket when dropped on a hard surface from two feet up. Still no one came to the cash register. I waited for another minute then looked behind me and noticed a clerk folding shirts only a few feet away. It looked like she had been there for some time. She looked up and saw me, so I waved at her and she smiled and waved back. Then she turned back to the shirts she was folding and continued her task.
At that point all the YIPPEE and even the yippee? drained right out of me and I gave up. I tossed the purse onto Customer Service Counter number three and stalked out of the store.....never to return I'm afraid.
This sort of thing happens all the time to me at Sears....not usually to this extreme, but always the long lineups at the customer service desks where there are never enough staff available to separate the people with billing problems and returns from those of us who simply want to pay for something and leave within a few seconds.
I am furious about not buying that purse, but there is a principle here called CUSTOMER SERVICE and it has been violated in my direction one too many times at Sears both here in Regina and in Calgary over the past couple of years.
I don't blame the clerks as they are dealing with problem after problem and have enough stress from knowing they have insufficient assistance to deal with all the customers. I don't blame the management who need to make enough money to keep the chain from following other chain stores of long standing down the bankruptcy trail. It is just the way it is and it is getting to be that way in many retail stores these days.
Today I just didn't have the patience required to deal with it. That is my problem, not Sears' problem, but I think I am going to do my shopping elsewhere, in stores where I have not had such a history of having problems just trying to pay for a purchase.