11 of the most irritatingly useless things you can say to a supermarket employee

Working in a supermarket is no mean feat.

Apart from completing their tasks, employees need to support their management team, work crazy hours and put up with difficult if not plain rude customers.

It's also a job that requires good communication skills, as employees need to help customers, or, as in this case, answer endless questions.  Sometimes it can be fun, whilst other times you can find yourself in front of the Customer from Hell and have to keep your cool whilst they have a complete meltdown!

So in honor of everyone who patiently puts up with our needy ways, here are 11 comments and questions that supermarket employees have to put up with on a daily basis...

1. "I can't see the price, so it must be free."

Yes, supermarket employees are only human and whoever's responsible for pricing may have missed a product.  We all make mistakes - no one's perfect!

2. "Why do you keep moving products?  It's like a maze in here!"

Trust us, employees don't move products around or change displays for fun.  The do it because the store's management has asked them to rearrange the stock.  It's not their fault if your favorite products are moved to a different aisle! 

3. "It must be prayer time!"

No need to be sarcastic - in order to fit a wide range of products into a small amount of space, retailers are obliged to have very low bottom shelves.  So, yes, sometimes customers will need to kneel or bend down to pick up a product.

4. "There's a 'buy one get one free' offer, so can I just take the free one, please?"

The keyword here is 'buy', so there's no point in trying to negotiate a freebie. It's not for an employee to decide - they're not part of the marketing team... If you really want to insist, then take your question to the management, but be prepared for the same response!

5. "The prices here are outrageous! It's daylight robbery!"

Employees don't decide the price of goods, so again there's no point in biting their heads off. Even if you think a product is too expensive, there's absolutely nothing they can do! Prices are chosen before the stock hits the shelves.

6."Do you really have to stack the shelves now?  You're getting in my way - why can't you do it when the store's closed?"

The answer's easy - stock is replenished throughout the day to replace sold items. All stores stock up outside of opening hours, but if they didn't bring new items out during the day, some shelves could be left empty, which isn't fair on customers who need to buy stuff later on in the day.

7. "It's alright for you - you work here so must get all your groceries for free!"

If that were the case then bank tellers would be able to help themselves to cash and gas station employees would get their cars filled up for free... No, supermarket personnel don't get free groceries.  They may get a discount as part of their contract, but trust us,  anyone stacking shelves is not in the Fortune 500 and has to watch their wallet as much as the rest of us!

8. "Listen, I've been coming here for years - I know that you sell this product."

Sometimes manufacturers don't produce enough stock or the supermarket decides to change supplier or drop the product.  Don't waste your time insisting - if the item you want isn't in stock, there's no way an employee can suddenly magic it up for you!

9."You don't want to stay in such a dead-end job do you?  Who wants a job where they need permission to go to the toilet or only have a few minutes for a coffee break..."

Some supermarket employees are doing the job to pay for their education or to supplement their income. Others are on internal training schemes that could lead them to management positions.  There's nothing lowly about stacking shelves; these employees receive regular paychecks and pay their taxes, so in many ways they're doing better than lots of their customers.

10. "Are you open on Christmas Day / Thanksgiving / Easter?"

Stores have their opening hours on display... And if they're closed on a public holiday it's because the team also needs time off to be with their family and friends!

11. "You must meet loads of people!"

Yes employees will talk to customers throughout the day, but they're far too busy to socialize even if a celebrity wanders into the store - although if that's the case, then yes, a selfie is obligatory!

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