Pet smart - maybe - but not much more

A few hours ago I stopped in to PetSmart to pick up a few pet items. The total came to $12.42; I pulled $15 out my wallet, counted out 42 cents, and handed the currency to the cashier - who in the transfer, dropped one penny onto the floor. She attempted to bend over to pick it up but didn't.

I turned away for about four seconds and she handed me $2.99 in change; the receipt noted that I gave her $15.41. I took the two dollar bills in my right hand as she dropped the 99 cents in my left; looking down at the change in my left hand, I told her in a somewhat halting way, "But - I - gave - you - $15.42 - and the total is $12.42 - I should receive three dollars change." I can only imagine what the expression on my face said.

She looked at me quizzically and I quickly added, "Did you forget about the penny you dropped on the floor?"

She called for the manager at which point I said something about calling the manager over one penny wasn't needed. I shook my head and left the store.

Sitting in my car right before I called Maureen (we seem to call each other after experiencing I-can't-believe-this-happened moments), I realized I missed an opportunity to make a positive impact on both this person and PetSmart. It was pure Maren Moment - given the opportunity to immediately offer feedback to someone it seems that most responding recruiters would opt to not offer any feedback.

It struck me then that the very behavior or bodily emanation that a recruiter wouldn't talk to a candidate about during the recruiting process for fear of litigation, I suspect the same recruiter would think nothing of telling the store manager that one of their employees smelled, acted "oddly" (for example, facial ticks), or was very pushy.

I don't know why the penny wasn't picked up nor do I know why the receipt said I had given the cashier $15.41 - minus the penny on the floor. What I do know is that a recruiter gave this person a thumbs up, as did the store manager. I don't know whether a math test is part of the interviewing process although I can't fathom there not being an analytical component.

What I do know is that some part of the machine experienced a failure and at some level, recruiting is to blame. What happens when the power goes down and some transactions need to be done manually? If these scenarios are discussed as part of business operations, don't recruiters assess whether these skills exist in the people hired? Shouldn't there be a connection between recruiting and the business?

Or are we simply too focused on the fluffy things?

[yes, I will be going back to talk to the store manager and the cashier]

Views: 21

Comment by Steve Levy on April 21, 2009 at 7:35am
See bloggers? This is what happens when you think blogging all the time. You initially write "$1.99" but also write about receiving $2.99 in change. This is why copywriters get paid the big bucks... ;)
Comment by Steve Levy on April 21, 2009 at 7:45am
Of course you can't be sued for informing the store manager that one of their employees made your experience at the store less than stellar (you can't make libelous claims but that's another issue). But you CAN tell the manager that an employee smells like an exploding garlic process factory and the stench is driving you away - what do you think the company policy will be on this one? Will the company simply let it go or will the manager have a talk with this employee about - hygiene?

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