I understand that customer service is a huge deal for people who work in retail establishments, but there are times where I would rather not be serviced. I just want to buy some stuff without being accosted with questions that are obviously deigned to start a conversation. Asking me about Loyalty cards, credit cards, phone numbers, paper or plastic, if I found everything OK, do I need help finding anything, etc… is not only tiresome, but my brain seems to twist these conversations into their ultimate consequence. Namely uncomfortable one-way conversations, white lies, endless credit debt, spam, robo-calls, and a pocket full of loyalty cards.
The problem is that these people are not being rude. They don’t know me and don’t remember my answers last time I was in their store. They also don’t know whether or not I have already been accosted by other employees numerous times already. It is not their fault that I don’t want to be bothered with questions. There has to be a way to make my shopping experience more pleasant while at the same time not affecting the moral of sales people who only wish to be helpful.
How about a T-shirt? Here is my vision of a T-shirt to help sales people decide who to accost with questions, and who may wish to be left alone.
On the back it would say:
“Thanks, but if I want help finding anything I will ask”
On the front it will say:
“Yes, I found everything OK”
“No, I don’t have nor do I want your rewards card”
“No, I don’t want to use your credit card that I don’t have. And no, do not want to apply for your credit card to save X% on this purchase.”
“If I don’t hand you a cloth bag that means plastic is just fine”
“No, I do not give out my personal information; you can’t have my phone number, email address, or zip code”
“No, I do not need help carrying out my groceries; I am healthy enough to find this insulting”
“Thank you for not wasting our time”
Of course if the company wishes to be really proactive they could have these available at the front of the store in the form of a vest that you could borrow during your time in the store. These vests should be bright yellow so you could be easily identified. To make it really obvious, the vest could simply state on the front and back “No, thank you.” As this would be the standard answer to most questions.
I believe that these would become so popular that over time that the company would turn this strategy around and have the sales people only offer up information when asked. They would redesign the vests and make them available for people who are totally lost and may request lots of hand holding. The “No, thank you” could simply be replaced with a giant question mark.