READY8 “Life is short, but there is always time for courtesy." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
AIM8 Several of our readers responded with enthusiasm regarding last week’s message about cashiers acknowledging your presence in the check-out line. It goes without saying that our observations apply to anyone in a position who deals with the public on a face-to-face basis. Interestingly enough, it was brought to my attention that we must be aware of the other side of the coin. In other words, it’s possible that the cashier, or service employee, may feel invisible if the customer is not attentive.
Surely, when you approach the check-out line in a store, you have your items ready, your payment method is easily accessible and you are giving your full attention to the cashier. In a perfect world, you would have light conversation, all your items would ring up accurately (because you are paying attention) and both the cashier and you would part ways with a joyful farewell. However, it’s not a perfect world, and more often than not, the customer is the cause for a less-than-satisfactory experience. Why, you ask? Two words: cell phones! Oh yes, you know the ones, they insist on talking on their phones while the cashiers or fast food attendants are attempting to repeat orders or give important instructions for payment. Heaven forbid they ask the other party to hold on during their transaction, or better yet, call the other party back after they leave the store. Seriously, is there anything THAT important that it can’t wait an additional 2-5 minutes until you are finished with your business? Even if your phone rings while you are in the middle of a transaction, the person on the other line can leave a message or you can call him back when your business is completed. If there is an emergency situation, the caller will continue to reach you; guaranteed. Choosing to talk on your cell phone sends a loud and clear message to the cashier that you do not care about her enough to give her your full attention for the next few minutes, and now, she is more likely to become irritated and perhaps even, make mistakes. Hmmmm, sounds like an easy decision to make to me. When you are dealing with public employees in any venue, be polite. Use common courtesy and leave your cell phone in your pocket or your purse until you leave the store. All parties involved will be happy with your decision.
FIRE!8 The next time you are at dinner with your family or friends, leave your cell phone in your purse or pocket. Give the important people in your life your full, undivided attention. Resist the urge to text or talk during your visit. Your connection will be so much more meaningful as a result of your courteous choice.