I Like To Move It

I Like To Move It
Confessions of a GameStop Employee - Part Three

Scott Jones | 12 Oct 2010 12:36
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Not more than an hour later - I honestly could not believe my eyes - her mini-van pulled up out front. She came back into the store.

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Soccer Mom: "My kids didn't like this game at all and I'd like to return it." She placed her copy of Modern Warfare, now without shrink wrap, down on the counter.

Me: "You want to return the game?"

Soccer Mom [visibly agitated]: "Yes, I want my money back."

Me: "But I explained to you a little over an hour ago that once you open a new game, you can't simply return it. I offered you a used copy of the game that you could have returned. But you refused it. I can't give you your money back."

Soccer Mom [loudly, so everyone in the store could hear her]: "Ugh! I spend HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS here. I'M NEVER SHOPPING HERE AGAIN."

At this point her face turned a furious shade of red. She stormed out of the store and - I could not believe my eyes yet again - dramatically spiked the game into the sidewalk. Then she picked up the game, got into her mini-van and drove away, her tires squealing.

An hour later the phone rang. It's Soccer Mom. She's still angry. She asked for my District Manager's phone number. "And I want your name, too," she said snippily.

I was glad to give it to her. After all, I was merely doing my job. "Let me spell it out for you," I said. "B. E. N...."

The next day I got a call from the District Manager. I told him the whole story, even the part about the game-spiking.

"I understand that's the company's policy," he said. "But you still should have taken the game and refunded her money."

I was dumbfounded.

"Soccer Mom said she felt like you had scolded her in front of the whole store," he said. "She left feeling embarrassed." This, I would learn, is what happens whenever a customer calls a District Manager with a complaint. District Managers never deal directly with people like Soccer Mom, so they always bend over backwards to appease the customer whenever someone complains.

What the District Manager allowed Soccer Mom to do was this: He allowed her to return the now-opened Modern Warfare for a full cash refund, but she insisted that she be allowed to return it to a different GameStop because she didn't feel like she could "deal" with me anymore.

I hung up the phone beside myself with anger. I stepped outside the store, trying to cool off. I spotted the ding on the sidewalk where Soccer Mom had spiked Modern Warfare. The District Manager had thrown me under the bus in the name of appeasing a crazy person.

Maybe working in the Post Office in a remote part of Queens wasn't so bad after all.

Ben's story continues with part four of a four-part series next week in issue 276 of The Escapist Magazine.
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Scott Jones is the co-host of G4/Tech TV's Reviews on the Run. You can read more of his writing at The Jones Report. He currently lives and works in Vancouver, British Columbia with his two cats and a healthy amount of self-doubt.

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