christmas

Spread joy and happiness during a stressful season

Nov 29 • Harlee Boehm, Opinion • 143

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If there is anything I have learned from working in retail for the past four years, it is that the holidays are certainly not the most wonderful time of the year.
Sure, the Christmas lights strung all throughout the town and the cheerful music on the radio can be nice. Don’t get me wrong, I love the atmosphere the holidays bring around each year.
The one thing that really puts a damper on it all is the types of customers that come through the stores.
I am not here to say that working in retail over the holiday season is the worst. We all basically know that already.
I just wish people would take a moment to understand how both the employee and customer can turn the harsh moments around and not ruin each other’s days.
It is easy to forget that the people working to help you inside each store are real human beings with families, especially when you just want to get in and out of a store without any issues.
Retail workers and sales people are truly just doing their jobs when they greet you at the door and offer to show you products.
I understand that you have probably already visited a handful of stores and really do not want to be greeted by another too cheerful voice, but we are paid to do these things.
Another issue I would like to point out is how customers try to rush a sale because they are in a hurry. As a sales person, I know that it is hard to sell anything to someone who clearly just wants to get out of the store as quickly as possible. I am being paid to sell products, so when people refuse to listen to what I have to say, it can be extremely frustrating.
On the other hand, retail workers need to consider how the customers are feeling.
The holidays are a stressful time. People are running from store to store trying to get presents for their loved ones. They are spending a lot of money in a short period of time. That can be pretty nerve-wracking.
As an employee, I will admit that I forget about how busy some customers can be this time of year.
Maybe this is one of their few days off so they really do not have the time to listen to me talk to them about every product. Maybe they are not trying to shrug me off. They are just too busy to make the typical customer to employee experience.
During the holidays, it is important to consider the feelings of others. This season is supposed to be joyful and merry. Take some time to think about how you can react to others in a way that will not ruin their mood and practice patience with the people you encounter.

HARLEE BOEHM
boehm003@knights.gannon.edu

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