To be in customer service one has to be a patient person with nerves of steel. But sometimes even the most seasoned customer service workers snap on customers so mind numbingly rude or dumb. It happens to the best of us. But unfortunately people lose their jobs over these outbursts. Whether leaving a job like that behind is for better or worse, it sure makes for a great story such as the ones these from these fed up workers who went rogue for the right reasons.
This Guy Saw A Chance And He Took It
“Had a customer that, for at least a year, came into our store and was a master tactician in getting free goods by making up complaints against our staff. He would do all sorts of maneuvers like wanting products he knew we didn’t carry to making up complaints about our staff to even complaining that he had been charged incorrectly.
If this guy was in the store, good luck if you were another customer. He would suck up all the oxygen in the place and demand service from multiple people at the same time. He got reduced prices and free merchandise and tons of coupons for his efforts.
My boss would never challenge this guy or protect his own staff from being exposed to losing their job to a customer who would happily see a member of our crew fired so he could get $5 off his next purchase. My boss wasn’t entirely at fault since this was a giant corporation and he was merely towing the fabled ‘the customer is ALWAYS right’ mantra.
I was already planning on leaving for a better opportunity and was going to give notice of resignation one week when this customer started giving me an incredibly difficult time about an issue I had nothing to do with and couldn’t help him with. It was extremely busy and he was holding everyone up with his nonsense.
I made a quick value judgment, realized I was already out the door and the only thing I was still there to do was to honor my appropriate resignation notice. I had no designs of ever working for this horrible company or any company like it ever again. I found myself in a unique situation and wasn’t going to let the opportunity pass. This guy had made life difficult for all of us for a long time. Payback time.
I cut this guy off mid-sentence and just went off on him in front of a number of customers and part of our staff. I told him he was nothing more than a cheapskate grifter and told him I would no longer recognize him as a living, breathing, member of our species.
Then I told him to get lost. The look on his face was so freakin’ beautiful. The entire store fell into silence and I just stared him down. He asked to speak to my manager and I doubled down by talking over his head, inviting the customer behind him to elbow up to the counter. I apologized to the new customer about the bad behavior of the guy who, at this point, had steam coming out of his ears.
Eventually when he realized he was getting nowhere waiting on me, he stormed off to find a manager. I finished my shift. I came back in the following day, was intercepted by a corporate manager I had rarely seen, taken upstairs and was getting lectured. I interrupted the scolding, revealed my intentions to leave this place, and quit right there.
I got a lot of high fives from the other members of the staff on my way out the door.”
Out For Blood Over $4
“Oh man I been dying to tell this story for awhile now…although it doesn’t pertain to someone getting fired, it does have some justice.
A friend and I go to a store, let’s make it up and call it All-Mart. We’re in line at the registers when this middle-aged lady in front of us is trying to use some expired coupons. The cashier is telling her the coupons can’t be used. Mind you these coupons would save her $4… a fact that I realized after this entire ordeal.
Lady wasn’t having it and just starts insulting and yelling the cashier as if its their fault the coupons expired. And not smuggish insults like ‘no wonder you work here’ but some deep cutting stuff like ‘you should kill yourself if you can’t override and accept them’…like what the heck? This hag was out for blood for $4 flipping dollars.
That’s when my friend, who’s a former Marine, steps in and reams back into her. The exchange went something like…
Him: ‘Whoa whoa…how dare you disrespect this young cashier like that. The heck is wrong with you to say things like that to her? You’re a messed up person.’
Hag: ‘Mind your business and don’t raise your voice at me!’
Him: ‘Oh so now you know that raising your voice is disrespectful. Where was that consideration when you did it to her?’
Her: ‘Stop talking to me or I’ll get my husband here to handle you.’
Him: ‘What husband? You don’t even have a wedding ring on. That’s probably the problem there…you’re so bitter and lonely you take it out on other people. You’re messed up.’
They exchange more comments and it ended with her storming out of the store without her items and on the verge of tears. I guess we attracted too much attention because we were asked to leave by the manager but not before the cashier quietly thanked us.”
That’s How You Lose An Ear
“I used to cut hair. I was cutting a lady’s hair when the child of lady waiting started running around the shop. I told the child several times to go sit with her mother and asked her mother to please keep her child seated next to her.
Well, in the middle of cutting around my client’s ear, the child ran into my work area, ran into me and almost caused me to cut my client. I looked at the child and firmly said ‘You need to go sit down with your mother now.’ Well her mom didn’t like that and came running back to me and yelled ‘Don’t tell my child what to do, I’m her parent.’ I responded with ‘Then act like it.’ She glared at me, grabbed her child and stormed out. Everyone in the shop was relieved the child had left.
A few days later the owner came and tried to fire me for it, but luckily there were enough other stylists and clients that came to my defense about the danger of the situation and I only got a write up.”
“Well You Heard The Lady”
“I was lucky I didn’t lose my job for this one. I worked at a furniture store as a sales associate. One day a husband and wife come in wanting to furnish their sons apartment that’s going to college. They find all of the furniture pieces they want and I go to check stock on multiple items.
Everything is in except the table top on the dining room set they wanted. I go back and tell the couple. The husband throws an absolute hissy fit saying that he can’t believe that we don’t keep our products stocked (keep in mind that we are a huge furniture store). I calmly explain to him that we can’t possibly keep all of our product in stock at all times and since the dining room table he wanted was a very popular set (due to the fact it was $199.99) it tended to go out of stock rather quickly.
So, we would have to wait for that vendor to send us the table top which was about two weeks. I even tried to show them another table top that was in stock that was very similar to the one they picked out and he would not have it. He started telling me that I was incompetent and how dare I insult him (insult him how? I have no idea). He starts increasing his volume and now he is full out screaming at me about 10 inches away from my face. My manager walks from around the corner and looks at me questioningly (like the ‘do you got this?’ face) I nodded at him that I had it, but he continued to stand within earshot. I then looked back to the customer and said in a nonchalant tone- ‘I’m not going to help you, in fact no one here is going to help you. Now please get out of my store.’ The customer looks at me bewildered and in full set rage and demands to speak with my manager. Since my manager is standing right around the corner- he had heard everything. He goes over to the customer and says, ‘Well you heard the lady.’
I miss working there.”
Imagine Getting Hit By A Car At Work And Then Getting Fired For It
“Many a year ago I worked at a home improvement store called Menards. I was a cart pusher, which was nice as I was outside all the time. Anyway we gather about 25-30 shopping carts together and push them up to the entrance where they are stored inside. Now to get them there we do have to cross the main drive of the parking lot in front of the store. We always stop and let customers drive by.
So as I push the carts up I stop because I see a guy in a pretty nice SUV. He is actually stopped in front of the entrance maybe he dropped someone off I do not know. So I’m waiting to see if he drives off and he then looks at me and waves me across, looks like he wanted to finish a call he had gotten or something. So I wave back and start pushing the carts across. I am on the other side when something clips me across the shoulder blades and it stung somewhat and pushed me forward.
At the same time I heard glass shatter, I turn around and the guy in the SUV clipped me with his sideview mirror. It had swung closed and shattered the window in the door, and I’m just standing there wide-eyed. Two seconds later the guy gets out of his car swearing up a storm at me and how I’m a low life piece of trash and how I’m going to pay for a new window and that I’m not going to get anywhere in life because I broke his window. Now I’m the type of person that if I was the reason I’ll take the blame and fix the problem.
But this guy hit me, I blew up on him for about five minutes before a manager finally had the guts to come over and pull me away. I didn’t have to pay for a new window as it was on video, but I lost my job because we are not supposed to yell and cuss at the customer.”
Fired For Knowing Fractions
“I used to work at pizza place in a small town when I was a teenager. One night I took a phone order from some idiot woman. It went like this:
Me: Thank you for calling Dominos, may I take your order?
IW: Yes, I’d like a large pizza. Half pepperoni, half sausage, and half black olives.
Me: Ok, did you want the toppings combined or separated?
IW: No, I want half pepperoni, half sausage, and half black olives.
Me: Ok so you want 1/3 pepperoni, 1/3 sausage, and 1/3 black olives?
IW: No! I want HALF PEPPERONI, HALF SAUSAGE, and HALF BLACK OLIVES!
Me: I understand the toppings that you want, but I’m not understanding how you want us to put the toppings on your pizza. Do you want them separated by thirds? Combined together? Or do you mean put half the amount that we usually put on?
IW: What’s so hard to understand?! I WANT…HALF…PEPPERONI…HALF…SAUSAGE…AND HALF…BLACK OLIVES!!!!!
Me: Lady, there’s only two halves to a pizza!
IW: I WANT TO SPEAK TO YOUR MANAGER!!!
I got fired on the spot. It was easier for the manager to just hire another person than it was to lose a customer in a small town.
Oh, and the lady wanted the toppings divided into thirds. She told the manager the same thing and he just went with her math. The moron also got it for free.”
Take This Job And Shove It
“I used to work for a popular pub chain here in the UK, called Witherspoons.
I had been there three years, I had been promoted to Team Leader… I wasn’t really too bothered about the job as a future, because it was only money to keep my through university, but money’s money.
Anyway, one day we get a customer in, an American, who has just stepped off the plane. And all his preconceptions are off.
Anyway, he comes in, has a seat and waits for a waiter, who obviously doesn’t come (keep in mind it’s not unusual for people to come in and sit and wait for friends and what not). He comes storming up to the bar, claiming he’s been waiting for ‘a dang half hour’. One of the bar staff, very confused, asks him ‘what have you been waiting for?’ with 100% sincerity… The man seemed to think the bar staff was being sarcastic and rude. He started shouting. As TL, I stepped in, did the diplomatic ‘What’s going on? Oh I’m very sorry sir, here let me take your order blah blah blah’…
He orders a steak, I can’t remember what kind, but it was a steak. Now, remember earlier where I said it wasn’t gourmet food? Well that extends to the steak. They offer 5 levels of cooking, but really it’s basically rare, medium or burnt. He wanted his blue, which they don’t do for unknown reasons. It comes out medium. He is not happy. He brings his plate up to the bar and slams it down onto the counter, red faced and furious. I’m paraphrasing a bit here, as it was a few years ago now, but the general gist of it went like this:
Me: ‘Excuse me sir, can I help you?’
Him: ‘You better hope you can, because I’m about to call your manager in buddy!’
Me: ‘Well, hopefully I can, what is it I can help you with?’
H: ‘This… This ‘steak’ is burned.’
M: ‘I’m very sorry, I’ll order a replacement and give you a full refund sir.’ (standard reply when dealing with food complaints of quality).
H: ‘Not good enough! I don’t want another piece of garbage like that, you hear me. Give me my godforsaken money!’
M: ‘Excuse me sir, there is no need to be rude. I’ve offered you a refund, I’m happy to do that for you, but you will not swear at me, sir’.
H: ‘I’ll swear all I want, kid. That trash you served up is not a steak, and I want a full refund plus gratuity, or you can kiss your job goodbye’
M: ‘That is a steak presented sir, I’m sorry if it’s not to your liking, but I have offered the resolution, allow me to go get your money’.
H: ‘Hurry up about it! And that was no dang steak!’
M: ‘Then do you mind if I ask what you think it was, then, because it definitely wasn’t a chicken’ (I was ticked off at this point and the guy was a moron).
H: ‘GIVE ME MY DANG MONEY AND GET YOUR LOUSY MANAGER YOU LITTLE PRICK! NOW! NOW!’
At this point he’s reaching across the bar and pointing at me. I don’t like people shouting at me. I hate people pointing at me.
M: ‘Actually, no. I won’t get my manager. And I don’t have to offer a refund (which is actually true, he can go to HQ and get it directly but it’s a myth to say staff have to give it there and then). I was happy to give you one, but you’ve ticked me off now. So take your coat, and get the heck out.’
H: ‘You little prick, I’ll call the cops.’
M: ‘Do it. Then they can take you out for me.’
This goes back and forth for a while, gathering quite a bit of attention from the other clientele.
Manager walks up, man shouts at him, manager calms him down. Man demands I be fired. I get pulled into disciplinary, manager breaks the rule (and not an unwritten one, a legitimate, company mandated rule) that says managers take our side. He says he has to let me go.
I was fired, appealed, and owned him and that idiot so hard in the tribunal. Got payment for the 4 months I had been without a job, plus a little extra for the hassle, my record of being ‘sacked’ struck off my record and offered my job back.
Which I rejected.
It’s primarily a drinking establishment, most people don’t go there to eat, and most of the venues don’t have dedicated food only areas.
The ‘customer is always right’ ethos does not exist there. They’ll be polite, to a point, but if you act like a child, you won’t get good service, or any at all. I’ve rejected more people than I can remember.
Food is known for being ‘cheap and cheerful’, most of it is microwaved, bar the things that cannot be cooked in a microwave (like steak, for example)… It’s not high quality gourmet dining and they don’t pretend it is.
They don’t do table service. You have to order food at the bar, and pay before you get it. They’ll bring it to the table and clear it away afterwards, but that’s about it.”
“You Earn That 0% Tip”
“Didn’t get fired for this one and it was glorious.
Used to work in this little Thai place in town and we had these teenagers who came in every Sunday who were rude, demanding and always tipped 0%
One day they’re exceptionally awful to a new waitress, reducing her to tears, and so my boss calls me over.
‘Next time they come, you take them, and you earn that 0% tip.’
I do a bit of a double take… She can’t possibly mean what I think she means.
‘You mean?’ She nods and gives me this smile that is equal parts devious and smug.
A week later they come in 5 minutes into my shift. She seats them in my section, smiles at me and tells me to do my worst. Here is a fairly detailed account of the wonderful 45 minutes that followed. I wait a good five minutes before going to greet them and bring waters. They’re ready to order. I don’t have a pen. I’ll be right back. I promise. I loudly tell my manager I’m going out for a smoke and then go power smoke a cig (takes me about 90 seconds).
They’re my only table and I’m not handling food yet, so I don’t wash my hands. I reek of smoke. I take her order, pad thai no bean sprouts like always. As he opens his mouth to tell me he’ll have the same I give him the ‘just a minute’ finger and pull out my phone. I text my fiancé and ask if he wants to get dinner from my place or his tonight.
I take his order. I somehow misunderstand and write down extra bean sprouts. Their food comes up while I’m telling my boss and the other waitress a story about my cat. I finish telling the story before I get their food. I bring it out and walk away as they’re starting to complain about the sprouts. About five minutes after they get the food I get a second table. One is a customer from a former job of mine and we spend a few minutes catching up when I go to greet them. The 0%’s try to signal me as I leave the table, but I stare straight ahead. I come back for my new table’s order and see that their glasses are missing roughly four sips of water. This simply won’t do! I hang their ticket and come back to fill their glasses.
I look at 0%’s empty glasses, look the guy straight in the eye, smile, and walk away. He stops me as I’m walking over with apps for my new table and asks for boxes. I tell him I’ll grab them right after I drop off this food. I play a game of 2048 all the way up to 1024 before bringing them one small box. They ask for two bigger boxes and the check. I promise I’ll be right back, and then ask my boss to keep an eye on the table I like while I go smoke again. (Obviously I don’t usually take this many smoke breaks, especially not this early into a shift.) I come back and my boss tells me they came to her for boxes and to pay and told her they’re never coming back. She voids their check, gives me the $20 some dollars, and tells me I earned it.”
Let Go Of My Legos!
“I didn’t get fired, but I was written up and yelled at management. It was the reason I quit a week later.
I am in my early forties. For fun, I took a part-time job at a Legoland Discovery Center. I love Lego and love kids. It was a blast most of the time.
However, at Legoland, employees build their name tags out of Lego bricks and attach mini-figs. Kids who visit can trade mini-figs with employees. The rule is that we have to trade because it’s fun for the kids.
Great! The only problem is that the center I worked at didn’t supply any good mini-figs. We just built our own from the “build a fig” buckets. I worked in the photo and entertainment departments, and noticed that lots of our guests would bring in their extra mini-figs looking to trade, but were disappointed by the selection. So I began to buy tons of the mystery mini-figs and had a large collection of my own at home. Each weekend, I put a bunch in my pockets and put them on my name-tag throughout the day so that I could trade. I liked having Ninjago or Simpsons or whatever. I wanted kids to leave happy about their trade and feeling like they got something special. Most weeks I spent $75 or more on mini-figs for trading.
On May the 4th, I pulled out all my personal Star Wars mini-figs because I knew we would be getting a lot of Star Wars fans that day. I had Vader and many Stormtroopers etc. This woman came in with a three-year-old girl and insisted that I give her my Stormtrooper. She didn’t have anything to trade, but I smiled and gave it to her. Then the mom went and took a mini-figs piece from the build tables and made her daughter trade with me for my Vader. I traded but was irritated because I only trade one of my personal ones per kid. There were lots of employees to trade with. The mom just wanted her kid to have my nice ones.
The lady goes on to another area and in comes a group of likely Star Wars fans. One of the girls had a Ninjago mini-fig in her hand that she had brought from home. She was looking for someone to trade with and was headed over to my section. I put Admiral Akbar (a fairly rare one you can only get from the X Wing fighter build set) on my tag along with Leia, excited thinking that I’m going to make their day. In swoops the lady who demand that I trade all of my figures to her kid who has three mini-fig pieces. I politely refuse and suggest that she ask the employee a couple feet away since we had previously traded twice already. She got very angry and began screaming at me because she had gone around the center and no one else had anything good. My manager came over and made me give her all of my mini-figs, even the ones I still had in my pockets. I was written up for refusing to trade and not caring about the guest experience.
I was so upset because I cared very much about the guest experience. Not the pushy parent experience, but the experience of the kid who just loves Lego and that’s why I spent so much of my own money to make sure they left with something cool in their pockets.”
What A Lousy Reason To Get Fired Over
“I was a stockroom assistant at a well known fashion chain in the UK & US. Didn’t go off on a customer but I bloody well wish I did now.
Happened to be behind tills changing hangers boxes when a customer explodes at the trainee cashier demanding to know where her order was. She’s screaming her head off at how it’s ‘unacceptable I paid extra’ and how she ‘made a specific detour’ to collect her package.
She had ordered a jacket in another branch and had paid for next day delivery to the store I worked in. Customers aren’t supposed to come collect their orders until they get an email saying their order is ready to collect.
The poor cashier started last week and is basically cowering for dear life. I take over and ask to see her email which she explains she ‘doesn’t need’ because she paid extra so her package must be here.
After 10 minutes of me trying to explain why her package isn’t ready to collect and her trying to challenge Krakatoa, she storms off shouting that she’ll be having words with the guy who owns our company. I hand back to the cashier and carry on with my day.
The next day I’m prepping our delivery and I get called for a meeting with the store manager. I’m told I’m being let go for gross misconduct specifically ‘being unhelpful and challenging’ to customers.
Turns out the customer was a ‘journalist’ for the DailyMail and she called our head of company who she did indeed know personally and got me fired specifically.”
FINALLY, A Good Manager
“No one was fired over this, but as a person in the service industry I thought I’d share this with my fellow industry folk as I still think it’s one of my favorite things I’ve ever seen happen behind a bar.
I was once working at a bar in Sarasota, Florida. We were having a Dogfish Head total tap takeover and the place was at capacity. I mean we’re three deep around the entire bar, four guys behind this tiny bar, including the owner, all trying to pour as many drinks as we can to cut through the line. At some point, a guy who I’d made eye contact with a number of times, who should have known he was coming up next, yells: ‘What does a person have to do to get a drink around here?!’
I watched our owner, a New Yorker through and through, turn around and literally yell, ‘EVERYONE SHUT THE HECK UP!’ The place goes dead quiet… and he stares at this guy. ‘What can I get for YOU sir?’
The guy was caught so off guard he just stared up at our tap list and mumbled… ‘uhhhhhh.’
Our owner knowing he didn’t even have an order ready looked him dead in the eye and said, ‘YOU! GET LOST! Next?!’ and started serving the person next to him.
I wanted to hug him so much for that.”
“Threatening Violence On Someone Probably Wasn’t The Best Idea”
“I worked as a server at an upscale country club and had these two gentlemen come in for lunch. One ordered and the other said, ‘I’ll have exactly the same thing.’ So I confirmed that’s what he wanted and he replied, ‘That’s what I said right?’
I bring out their lunch and the second guy complains and starts getting rude with me because his lunch has onions on it, so I say, ‘Sir, you said you wanted the exact same thing but I can have the chef make you another one’. So he says, ‘Listen to me you little prick, I know what I said and I never said I wanted onions’. So I reply, ‘If you ever speak to me like that again you and I are going to step outside and work this out.’
He complains and moans to see the manager, who unbeknownst to me is sitting at the table right behind these guys having a meeting with another member. She turns around and tells the guy, ‘After the way you talked to my employee, I should let him. How about you both apologize and move on’.
I didn’t get fired but in hindsight she probably should have fired me because threatening violence on someone probably wasn’t the best idea. Oh well, when you’re 19 you think you’re invincible.”