New Seasons: We are NOT BFFs


Nice people are SO lame.

I, too, dig that Arbor Lodge guy. He's more washed-out hippie, though than Santa Claus. Too skinny for Santa. Downside: he's VERY slow checking people through.
YAY! So THIS! I went to the New Seasons in Sellwood and the uppity cheery mood actually turned me off to the point I haven't returned. Good moods ARE great, but screaming joyfully throughout making sandwiches is not something I want to listen to every time I visit your store.

On another note the employees at Freddy's and Hillsdale Food Front seem so morbidly sad that I cringe when some of the employees are running checkout.
Translation: "I blame customer service staffers who are good at their jobs for my personality disorder and fear of human interaction."

Some people are cheery and genuinely interested in communicating with other people. Sometimes fate links these people up with jobs in which they interact with people. This is called "specialization" and makes it so you don't deal with a complete asshole who could not care any less how your shopping experience goes.

Me? I'll take the checker that asks about my weekend, because chances are s/he is also interested in whether I found the shit I was looking for, whether there are other items i'd like to see in stock and whether I'm aware of the details on products with which I'm unfamiliar.

Go shop at WalMart, you antisocial, self-centered imbecile.
New Seasons is "the friendliest store in town." I'll bet the management requires employees to make that kind of chit-chat.
#3: Anyone who calls grocery clerks "customer service staffers" is a corporate stooge.
Hahaha, #5. Yes, I'm such a corporate stooge for appreciating people who aren't complete jerks to customers. Grocery clerks serve customers. You know what that makes them?

Anyone who calls someone a "corporate stooge" is living in an early-90s alternate reality where Reagan never left office and Joy Division is, like, the most visionary band ever, man.
You should do all of your grocery shopping at Plaid Pantry instead of New Seasons from now on.
Oregometry, if you're attributing this all to cashiers' real personalities and genuine interest in what a stranger is doing this weekend, you've probably never worked a customer-service job where you were pressured by higher-ups to make nice with customers as if you were actual friends. I had a similar job once, where I was basically forced to ask things such as if a customer "had any special plans for the weekend" even though it was clear neither the customer nor I were interested in having that conversation. It was awkward for everyone involved, and I didn't stay long at that job. Some customers like that kind of thing; those who aren't outgoing or tend to recognize BS probably do not.
#3, 6: Thanks for correcting me. Clearly I should have said "condescending halfwit."
The people at the Arbor Lodge store are some of the nicest folks ever. If they're playing pretend, they're doing a very good job at it. I figure that's part of the reason I'm paying a little bit more for my broccoli rabe?
I should be clear that a lot of people who do this are genuinely nice and outgoing and aren't forcing it much. Talent for this and apparent willingness to do it are likely significant factors in hiring decisions for cashier positions. I still think it's BS though, or at the very least a type of performance that many customers are not interested in.
Thank you, Anon. This is spot on.
the new seasons employees make my fucking flesh crawl (not all of them) i wish they would hire hot sex bots that just rang you up and didn't ask you if you're "enjoying the sun?" just shut up and put my whey protein in my lame cloth bag that says i'm a honky yuppie so i can escape this "pleasant" zombie hell hole.
New Seasons doesn't tell their people to do that. Rather, they hire people who aren't jaded assholes who don't give a shit about anyone but themselves... Weird, huh?
Anon, I love your comment. I have felt that way many, many times. I am also of the opinion that grocery store cashiers (New Seasons and Trader Joe's most notably) sometimes try to make friendly conversation because they're bored out of their friggin' minds. Think about it: you're standing there hour after hour scanning barcodes and typing in PLUs. It's basically the same transaction over and over (and over) again, all day long. I've done it, and that shit gets old. Talking to people makes the job more interesting, but I agree that forced and/or fake friendliness is the absolute worst. A simple "hello" would suffice, especially when it's apparent that the customer does not want to be engaged. I look forward to the day when more grocery stores install self-checkout machines. It's nice to have that option.
Never ever had an issue with the customer service at New Seasons, but I can relate. My f#cking bank forces the tellers to "be friendly" to the customers, and some of them are good at it and manage to make small talk without being total Nosy Parkers or violating anybody's boundaries. But there is one chick who is so awful and awkward at it that I want to scream every time I see her. It's fine with me to be asked, "how's your day going?' but I feel stabby when a stranger asks me what my plans are for the evening or if I'm doing anything special after work, etc. I want to bellow, "What the fuck do you care?"
Maybe they are just happy that they're not working for a place that's replacing them with robots.

I've always liked my interactions with clerks, personally-- at New Seasons and elsewhere. They're just people, and chances are you will see them more than once in this lifetime, especially at grocery stores.

The only problem that self-checkout machines circumvent is being stuck behind people who are buying two hundred items who then act like they're figuring out how to write a check for the first time. Now you just get stuck behind people who act like they're learning how to use a self-checkout for the first time.
Geyser, I've worked a lot of customer service, hence my "condescending halfwitdom." And you know what? I wasn't a total dick, and it was better for my career and got me promoted and got me great references from everyone for whom I've ever worked.

This thread is kind of amazing to me that A) People obviously hate polite chit-chat, B) No one here has apparently ever appreciated someone taking a small interest in how their day is going (speaking from experience, many do appreciate this very much from customer serv--er, clerks, right?) and C) I would bet everyone on here is under 30 and can't be bothered to look up from sexting or the angry birds for five seconds to say hello to someone providing you a service.

Okay, Grandpa's got to take his meds now.
b@ #2: I wouldn't call the employees at Hillsdale Food Front "sad," I'd call them "hostile." I specifically don't go there anymore, despite the fact that it's the only place in town where you can get Batdorf and Bronson coffee in bulk. Fuck those superiority complex fucks.
When did you move to Portland, OP? I don't think this is the place for you, really.
The first time an Arbor Lodge New Seasons checker asked if I had plans for later, I think I answered something like, "Nothing special." Then she proceeded to tell me (without being asked) that it was her last day of work before leaving for a trip out of the country. I thought she was a bit pathetic for wanting to bother a stranger/customer with idle chitchat like that. Next time I was in a different female clerk asked me about plans for the weekend. That's when it occurred to me that New Seasons surely must have hired a customer service consultant that advised them to implement that TGI Friday's style bs. It's intrusive and contrived and I find it hard to believe that more than one commenter here enjoys it.
I happen to be a checker at New Seasons and can say from experience that most people seem to enjoy a little banter while completing their transaction. I have formed many friendships over the years with customers and have had them invite me to parties, dinners, etc. I doubt that they would have done so if I hadn't engaged in a little "inane" banter on our first meeting. Trust me, it's a lot more awkward for the customer and the employee during a five minute transaction if you can't find something to talk about. New Seasons has never instructed me on what to say to a customer. Instead, they hire friendly, outgoing people who need no prompting on how to interact with others. If you truly have a problem with a little human interaction, I suggest that you do what all of my customers who don't want to talk do: call someone up on your cell and blather on loudly about your problems. That's not at all annoying, and it gives my vocal cords a much needed rest.