Wednesday, September 9, 2009

(75) Retail Hell by Freeman Hall

Before I write my review, let me just disclose now that I work in retail. In fact, my career is Retail Management.

Now, having said that, I just want to say that this book should have been titled, "Retail Hell: or a Bitter Purse Salesman Bitches About His Job."

I was really hoping that this book would be more like Waiter Rant. Where the author imparts wisdom he learned from dealing with all walks of life. Instead we get a bitter man who bitches about everything. His company, his co-workers, his bosses, and of course his customers.

You know, I get it. I work retail. I know that there are difficult customers. Anyone who has worked retail for more than five minutes has War stories to tell. I know that non-customers abuse return policies. I know that there are "Nasty Ass Thieves" out there that will rob us blind. For every cranky customer there are ten more that make it all worth it. The ones that send YOU "thank you" notes for doing your job. Or the ones that bring you a hot dinner because you got stuck working the holiday shift at the video store. Or the customer that comes up to you two companies & three stores later to say that they are glad to know that they "found you". They are the ones who make the job worth it.

But what I want to know is this, if he hated the job so much, WHY stay in it for fifteen years. According to the blurb on B&N his "career" was divided between Nordstrom's & Macy's. I can't imagine either company would be thrilled to hear their customers referred to as "Nasty Ass Thieves", "Little Piggy" or "Picky Bitch." This man forgot one minor detail about his customers. They are also human. No matter what kind of perceived "hell" they have put you through, the insulting names are not necessary.

All I have to say is that I am glad that I did not pay for this book, (one of the perks at MY retail job) because if I had, I would be asking for my money back.


Anonymous said...

Oh my! I worked retail for five years, dividing my time between a craft store and bookstore, and you're right -- for every really nasty customer, there are several more right behind them who are so grateful for your help and expertise in whatever field you're working in! While he was probably trying to be funny with all the rude names, that's definitely insulting. We've all had terrible days working retail (terrible, terrible days!) but there's joy to be found in every journey... too bad Mr. Hall didn't see it that way.

Thanks for the warning! :)

Kim said...

Whohoo! Sassy review and completely honest - love it! Who wants to read a whole book of bitching anyway? Yikes! Thanks for the review, I'm not adding it to my TBR :-)

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