All teens should experience being a cashier

@stary1 (6622)
United States
September 19, 2011 2:20pm CST
I think all teens should learn what it means to have a long line waiting and peole complaining while you are trying to perform functions on a cah register. LOL I worked briefly for Weight Watchers and for the first time I undersootd how it feels to have a long line and peole complaining. Since that experience I have become very very patient with cashiers everywhere. I really think it is excellent experience to understand how it feels to be under pressure from the public.
7 people like this
31 responses
@agent807 (716)
• United States
20 Sep 11
I worked in grocery stores since I was a teenager, not as a cashier, but bagging groceries, and filling shelves were just as intense. You're right, you always know who has never worked that kind of job before because of how impatient they are. It wasn't a lot better for the floor people either. I worked at nights so there was always the evening rush crowd that would come in, and they were always in a frantic state. I do have a better understanding of what a cashier goes through, and when someone maybe new, but because one understands the art of cashiering, sometimes you think about why a person is taking so long for a simple order.
1 person likes this
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
Thank you I really never thought about bagging and certainly not stocking as stressful, so thanks for the info. I always thought stocking would be the best since you get a workout plus you don't have to deal with the public. I had a friend who took a part time job in the library putting away books. She loved doing it because in a few weeks she saw how she was working her arm muscles, while I lifted barbells She was paid for her workouts and loved it just for that reason..and she did indeed have great looking arms
@agent807 (716)
• United States
20 Sep 11
As a bagger, they are right there with the cashier taking in everything from the customers. Stockers, because they are on the floor constantly, they are being hammered with questions, complaints, or whatever else comes their way. It does give you a workout, and we have to deal with the public. The last store I worked at, we were always on the floor in what appeared to be constant rush hour. People come in on Fridays, saying 'Cheer up, it's Friday". In retail that means either nothing, or prepare for a busy weekend from everyone who has weekends off. In my case, because I was one of the stronger people there, it was good because I was able to do more without getting tired, and not need any help, but at the same time, it was bad because I was so strong that I was literally doing the heavy lifting. Whatever took more than two people to move would be left for me because I could do it by myself. I worked in a produce department, and in the fall, we would get these giant pumpkins for display. Before, it would take three people to move one of those pumpkins, then they were replaced by me and my muscles. I was finding myself doing more tasks that normally took a few people because I had the muscles. Especially when it came to handling the large displays or pallet bins. At first, I didn't mind, mostly because the more I move heavy stuff, the easier it became, but they also knew this and was trying to find my limits. I guess before me, they never had anyone with that kind of strength before. When I left, people joked that the job description should say must have muscles.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
23 Sep 11
Well they really took advantage of you didn't they? In some ways it benefited you by building your muscles and keeping them strong, but I think it would be easy to feel others were taking advanatage of you too.
• Canada
20 Sep 11
(Use to work at a grocery) Ha ha, I use to cashier a night shift, So I dodged all the hassle during day shift. When I get day shifts, I get the back room jobs. But from what I've seen in my area, cashiers are amazingly fast, and stores usually run all lines when they know its busy, quick hands some cashiers have very impressive.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
LOL you lucked out. Except not everyone can handle those hours. I would think the night shift would be so much easier as far as customers, except if it isn't busy maybe it gets boring? I wonder if those woking the night shift get sleepy out of boredom..or is management efficient and have work to be done in between customers..
• Canada
21 Sep 11
Yes it gets really boring, but I remember one time, a few drunk younger kids came in. One of them was a really big guy, who was really weird. There was only three of us employees and I planned on hiding in the back because I was too lazy and too tired to handle foolishness. Then I heard a bang, one of them tackled a pile of cans, and the big guy was in the corner literally staring into space, and I swore to myself, if any if these guys come at me, I'll go bazzerk. Usually in night shifts, we either just hang out by the cash registers or restock aisle. But it was definitely boring, time was really slow.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
23 Sep 11
I figured it would be boring..and your sleep patterns are screwed up. I hope you are paid extra for those hours. It seems to me someone said graveyard shifts do pay more...
• United States
20 Sep 11
I think the way that people treat cashiers is terrible. Especially at fast food restaurants. They catch all of the anger if a person's order is wrong, and it is rarely ever their fault. People at supermarkets that argue with the cashiers about prices of items bother me too. There is a customer service desk for a reason ,and regardless, a person should not be rude with the cashier because the register rang up their item wrong, or didn't accept their coupon. I think people that run the cash register deserve a lot more respect from everyone
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
I agree and until I was a cashier I didn't understand fully.. LOL I will never forget one of my first experiences. It was very early in the morning..still dark outside and as I pulled up to work, I saw a looooooooooooooooong line. There was a Weight Watchers special going on and there were more people than I could believe waiting to join. I set everything up and the line was out the door and a little way down the block. I had a few problems working the machine since I was very very new ..Most were very patient but some gave me looks that could kill. I understood their frusatration because it's early, many don't eat breakfast because they want to weigh in before they eat. Anyway I never forgot that morning and it taught be to be very very very patient...
• Canada
12 Dec 11
I have a lot of respect for cashiers now too! On my first day of being trained the girl whow as training me was telling me what to do, what buttons to press, etc. The customer told her to shut up and said he didn't want to hear her talk. She argued with the customer for a while trying to explain that if she doesn't talk then I'm not going to know what to do. Meanwhile the line grew longer and some guy started yelling "this girl is so slow she should be fired, etc." Another guy yelled telling me to hurry the **** up, then he demanded we pull up a chair for him because he was getting tired of waiting.
@zoey7879 (3104)
• United States
20 Sep 11
I think that just as many adults could benefit from working in the various hospitality industry.... Cooking in fast food places, as well as being a cashier there and in the retail industry. I used to work in a rough a neighborhood at a Burger King store in Michigan. It was a busy store in a mid-sized city and often times, we had to run the store with just two employees. Regular customers would come to the store during sales and order as many as 50+ sandwiches at a time - NO JOKE - and then scream that they couldn't get their orders in less than five minutes. I rarely had problems with teens being rude and trashing the store, it was always adults that caused the problems. Everything from the customers ordering their food wrong and having it remade (4 different ways, 4 different times), customers throwing foods and drinks, and even threatening bodily harm because the food was hot and fresh... *Boggles*
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
Excellent point...how sad it that experience and sounds like it is dangerous as well.... I am glad you could get out of there and pity the ones who are stuck and can't leave. This reminds me of something in the news a while ago...a whacky person called 911 because her order was wrong..how nuts is that!!
• United States
20 Sep 11
I agree. My son and I were just at Wal-Mart and the cashier thanked us for being nice to her because a lot of people were "cranky", as she put it. My son looked surprised when she said that. I told him that any time you work with the general public, a certain percentage of them will be rude.
1 person likes this
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
The poor cashier..it's really sad when they have to thank customers for being nice. I wonder if she/he had just experienced grumpy customers and you were a 'breath of fresh air'..good for you for helping her through her day.
• United States
20 Sep 11
i dont mean to disagree with you but i just dont think every teen is cut out to be a cashier i was a cashier for eight months working at one of the busyiest stores in town and i was a darn good cashier this has made me even more impatient with other cashiers because i see what they are doing behind the register and i see that they are just fiddling around taking their dear sweet time to ring up the people in front of me because they just dont care how many people they have in their line or if the customers are complaining or not its sad how teens now a days just dont care
1 person likes this
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
Oh I totally agree with you that not everyone should be cashiers. Sorry if I didn't make my point clear. In my opinion cahiering is an entry level job..a first job in joining the working force. It is strictly for extra money and the life experiencs are really valuable. I think of waitressing and cashiering as student type jobs. LOL maybe it can inspire one to study hard so they don't have to cashier or do entry level jobs all their life.
@GardenGerty (90274)
• Marion, Kansas
20 Sep 11
Some teens will not accept a lesson if they are handed it. They would just get mad and rude. On the other hand, it would be good for many, I am sure. When I worked at Wal Mart on the floor one young person told me that it had changed her perspective a lot. She was straightening a huge display of clothes or wash cloths or something. She said that before she worked there that she would not care what kind of mess she made. After having to clean up things she had much more respect.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
Great point...I bet many customers think..oh well that's what they pay emplyees to do..and so they leave a mess. It does tell a lot about the habits and considerstion of people
@estherlou (5026)
• United States
19 Sep 11
That applies to so many things in our lives. I think that's where the old saying "until you walk a mile in the other mans shoes..." Until you experience what someone is going through you can't know what it is like. When we share experiences with others, we can show empathy and compassion.
1 person likes this
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
I have always been impressed with the saying..walk a mile in anothers shoes... I so agree that is a life lesson to be remembered. I remember the frustration of a long line, and customers whining about it...and when a cahier is having trouble now I always like to try to make them feel good by saying something like you surely showed a lot of patience with that last one..
@mialei23 (2386)
• Philippines
19 Sep 11
Hi stary1, I've worked as a Cashier also in Mcdonald's when I was 16 years old.. Before I don't have patient also in a long line from buying some food or groceries, most especially when there's a big sale in a mall. But when I worked and experienced being on their position as cashier, I realized a lot of things. First, when it comes in handling money you should double check the money when you received it and even check it when you give the change. A proper handling is a very important in being a cashier, you should be polite in greeting the customer and make them satisfy with your service. A very fast but accurate service is a need when you are in a customer service company, everything will work out fine when you know your job. A teens should experience how to manage their time when it comes in working while they were studying, so they will know the quality of money and how to give important the value of education also...
1 person likes this
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
Yes 16 is a great age to start. With automatic cash registers it is easier to count change..but can you believe..I used to run into kids in their 20's who can't count change. It was really really sad. All you say is very true. I think one of the hardest challenges is to stay calm when you have an obnoxious customer. You were lucky to learn all these lessons early
@savypat (20248)
• United States
19 Sep 11
Learning to deal with the public is a great and valuable lesson, all people should do it at one time in their lives. The younger the better.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
So very true...I think it should be one of the first jobs a kid takes.
@cloudflix (112)
• United States
19 Sep 11
My first job was as a cashier for McDonald's, so I can totally understand what you're saying. I'm 28 now and that was when I was 17, and it has definitely helped me be a better customer and be a better employee at other jobs. The other side of the coin though, is when you are standing in line somewhere and know that this cashier has all the experience that they need but they just don't care about their customers, which is extremely frustrating, because of how much you cared when you were behind a register.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
Good point...that is the other side of this coin....just the other day I was in a store at the cash register and the checker and bag person were chatting..the checker never once looked at me or talked to me throughout the entire transaction until he took my money. He just kept chatting with the bagger...I was amazed...those kids needed some customer service training.
1 person likes this
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
20 Sep 11
There are lots of experiences that children don´t have now in the name of freedom. I think that they should begin by learning how to make their beds and clean their rooms. And later, they should help out setting the table, washing part of the dishes and so on. I don´t know why, in some places, kids think that their home is a Hotel and their parents their personal slaves.
@buddha3 (1029)
• India
20 Sep 11
you are right. I am 24 now and when I see some kids and even some youth of my age, I can say what you are saying is right. They consider their parents as slaves and don't bother doing their own small works, let alone helping the parents in other ways. If the kids learn to do their own personal works themselves, it will of use both for themselves and their parents.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
marguicha You are so right...Parents need to teach their kids from a very young age. I have a friend with 2 girls. The first was babied and my friend did everything for her even picking up her room, making the bed etc. Then she had another girl 5 or 6 years later. With the second she taught her to take care of her things etc. Both girls are grown now and guess what..the first is a mess and hardly every takes care of her stuff mand even herself..the other is neat as a pin and is always very well groomed...what a difference.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
buddha The fault lies with the parents in my opinion. Kids need to be taught these things and parents need to insist they learn. Some parents, like my friend, are just too soft on their kids and it actually harms their children in the long run.
@sid556 (31018)
• United States
23 Sep 11
Hi Stary, I agree with you but I think that it's not only teens but EVERYONE should have that experience. I've done cashiering for years and I love working in the public...most of the time. All it takes though is one very rude person to just make it all more challenging than it need be. I work alone in a very busy store and so I do get lines. Normally they move along at a good pace though and most people are very pleasant. I will say that we have a very slow system for the credit cards and it does slow up the line considerably if everyone is paying with a card...nothing I can do about that. And of course you get the customers that have to stand there pondering which scratch tickets to buy or have to hold up the line searching for exact change. The line moving slow is not always the fault of the cashier. Sometimes there is a new cashier or one that is just naturally slow but adding pressure to them tends to only cause them to get flustered and make mistakes which ultimately slows things down even more. And I will say that more of the rudeness I have experienced has come from adults that should know better. I really don't have much trouble with the teens.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
23 Sep 11
You are right..and I was in my thrities when I briefly worked for Weight Watchers and that was the first time I fully understood service people challenges. I totally understand it is not the cashiers fault but I don't think everyone understands that. Congrats for surviving and having such a good attitude.
1 person likes this
@sid556 (31018)
• United States
24 Sep 11
Well, sometimes it's the cashiers fault but not always and you are right, people really don't understand unless they've been in this line of work. I usually do have a good attitude but it so funny to come home and see this. I just put in a horrible night tonight and while I held my attitude in check, it really wasn't so good on the inside. I'm just glad to be home at last.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
8 Oct 11
The best way for me was to challenge myself and practice self control..it was a good exercise There are times though especially if the entire day was hard and toward the end one gets really tired and fed up...
• United States
19 Sep 11
Cashiering and or even flipping the burgers would be good exposure. Anything where they can first hand see what is it like when people/customers get inpatient with service. That might cause them to realize about their own type of behavior. On the other hand it can also make them worse, lol They could potentially get aggravated and bite back. But really it is a good way to have them feel what it is like out in the working world.
• United States
19 Sep 11
I worked at BK, and then after nothing but sales, jobs,. yes you do get alot of the base and core skill that most employers are looking for starting out in cashier.
• United States
19 Sep 11
Funny you should mention as I first started out in a fast food then burger king and down the path was all financial work for me. Hello jmanhype, welcome to myLot!
1 person likes this
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
hardworkinggurl Yikes I never though of getting even...but I think that would be few and far between..at least I hope that is true. I know my whole outlook changed after I experienced the long line and grumpy faces.
@suspenseful (40326)
• Canada
20 Sep 11
I di not mind the cashiers and when I went to business school we were taught how to count the change back to the customer, but then there were cashier schools. What I am upset about is the customers, the people behind me especially who make you feel that you have to rush and throw the things on the counter rather then put the on it nicely. For instance, I have had people who want to push through when I am packing the items in my cart and one time one pushed through, made me move aside and another woman came along from the other direction and pushed me aside again. She felt because that woman had pushed through that she and her daughter had the right to do it as well. So most of the time it is the customers and not the cashier's fault.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
20 Sep 11
This is true, good point ...there are way more rude customers than cashiers. The cashiers would not last because customers complain and the store has to somewhat cater to their clients.
1 person likes this
@suspenseful (40326)
• Canada
21 Sep 11
The cashiers have a hard a job as it is. I could not stand on my feet all day and besides I would get confused, not being able to remember all the sales and what is now off. Then the customers come around and hold up the line with their shopping carts while going to get something they forget. Then there are the ones who look in their purse for pennies.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
23 Sep 11
LOL so true..so many opportunities to pratice patience. It's one thingk to stand in line and put up with some of the nonsense, it's another to be a csahier and see it all day long. I think they have 4 hours shifts..and that can feel longer.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
8 Oct 11
I agree, being a cashier is one of the difficult jobs out there. I'm a customer service representative so I experience pretty much the same thing. There are times when the calls just keep coming like a long line of customers. Along that long line, you have no idea how many customers are irate, another downside of answering calls. Not to mention going to work 3 in the morning. This obviously ruins your social life and your body clock, in turn ruining your mood.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
8 Oct 11
Yikes going to work at 3 in the morning would be the toughest part for me..I have always said a person can handle almost anything IF they get enough sleep. Working odd hours does interfere with your normal interior clock...
• Philippines
9 Oct 11
Yeah, it really does ruin your internal clock. Although once you get used to it, you'll never have a problem. It takes time, though.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
16 Oct 11
I am surprised to hear you can actually get used to it? I wonder how long that takes..years ??
@KrauseHome (33259)
• United States
21 Sep 11
Personally all people should be required to be either a Cashier, or work the Drive thru in a Fast Food restaurant. Too many people are impatient and do not understand the Stress that these people go thru especially when there is a long line or backup. Too many people are expecting things that are often beyond the other persons control and it would make them a better person if they were made to do this at least for one day just to make them appreciate these type of people more for sure.
@sid556 (31018)
• United States
23 Sep 11
Yes, and they'd get an upfront veiwing of all the irritating things that customers do that they unwittingly add to the stress and often hold up lines. They would be more patient and also more aware of what NOT to do. I did a discussion on this once and made a list of things that I would not do as a customer only because I have been on the other side of the counter. They don't do it on purpose, I'm sure. The only way to know and understand is to do that job. I have never worked in Fast Foods but my daughter has and I hear her stories.
1 person likes this
@KrauseHome (33259)
• United States
23 Sep 11
Well, there are many stories that can be told if people could only experience it from their side. Now with working in Customer Service dispatching Cabs to people there are many misunderstanding people even in Hotels and Big businesses that I would Love to trade places with for one day and let them see how Cruel they sometimes are to us. Many times things happen beyond a person's control. Do they ever not Stop to realize that?
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
23 Sep 11
KrauseHome & sid556 Exactly my sentiments..everyone should have the experience of dealing with obnoxious people so they see what others put up with day in and day out.
@ily12011 (108)
• United States
22 Sep 11
I completely agree with you. it outs u under pressure when you have 6 or how ever many in line and you can't do nothing but go one by one till everyone is gone.. someone who hasn't ever been a cashier wouldn't know how it feels and that's when they become very rude. but some people understand how it is
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
23 Sep 11
I am now very patient and just smile because I will NEVER forget that dark morning with a line out the door and people not very happy
@ily12011 (108)
• United States
24 Sep 11
Yes I Totally Understand where your coming from. i worked at flying j restaurant i was the cashier and ill tell ya what there were a lot of people in and out of there everyday. especially in the morning i worked 7-3 . all the Amish family's and stuff would come and all pay separate. So yeah it took a few minutes to get threw of of them. plus it always seems like everyone wants to leave at the same time. so you got all these family's just standing there waiting in line.. kinda feel bad. but im not going to rush and mess my cash up. so i just took my time but as quickly as i could if that makes any sense? lol
• United States
15 Oct 11
I agree with your general concept, but I'd like to see all people, regardless of their age, work in customer service for a minimum of three work shifts. I worked customer service for years so I could build up the business I had and, admittedly, eventually not have to work it any longer. Those were the years I learned that the customer is wrong 99% of the time, they feel they are entitled to treat you like human garbage, and God help you if your register breaks down or a coupon is expired, because all of it is your fault. The following is not a blanket judgment, but it is from my experience: middle aged people, in general, tended to be the rudest and most entitled group I'd ever had to work with. I'm not sure if it was because I was younger, therefore giving them the false impression they were more important, or otherwise; however, because of my experiences with this particular group of people, I'd like to see them have to get the experience most. Most teenagers who have work experience get it in customer service, but by the time people grow into middle age, perhaps they simply forget that employees at businesses are people with feelings, or maybe they've never worked in a person-to-person situation. I've always told my husband that I was fourteen when I learned that most people would rather be cruel to a person until they nearly break just to convenience themselves than to actually treat others well--because that was the age I first started working in customer service.
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
16 Oct 11
You have a good point. I had not thought about Middle age as a time when some need lessons in how to treat others properly, especially younger kids. I always feel treating others badly is a sign of insecurity and perhaps middle age brings it out as they see time slipping away?
@zhawee (875)
• Philippines
21 Sep 11
being cashier it not easy job..all patient and trust of your employer in the way in money.. all the eyes its looking to you.. im experience that.. aways charge, i feel im working to pay my all charges. so I stop my job and I pay my charges, sometime you can notice you pay charge in you know you do right your work, but where I get mistake..
@stary1 (6622)
• United States
23 Sep 11
I found it to be very difficult..it is not something I could do for years and years..