Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Shop with MrsSmith - a lesson at LD

I was out in Burnaby today and decided to do a quick shop at LD - totally off the fly, with no preparation in advance. This was easy to do because I've read my flyers, and I knew what coupons I had. For all you newbie Extreme Shoppers, I promise that working out deals will get easier with time, the more you extreme shop, the easier it becomes. Plus, this deal was easy because I was not pricematching, I was just buying items advertised in the LD flyer.

I decided to work this deal:
- 2 free VH sauces
- 1 free Kelloggs cereal
- 6 free Knorr soups

Since these are food items, I knew there would be no tax, so I knew I would end up paying nothing after coupons.

So off I went with my items up to the customer service counter. I handed over my coupons and waited patiently to get my receipt.

I was surprised when the cs rep handed me back 3 of my coupons, each worth $1, and told me,"I can't take these, Ma'am, you'll have to use them next time."

I asked her why, as I had worked my deals and coupons so that they could all be used to get my balance to zero.

She said,"I can't let you have these for free."

I asked,"why not? I have coupons to go with these items to get them all free."

She then said again,"you can't get things for free. That's not how we deal with coupons here."

I calmly told her she was wrong and that their policy allowed the deals I was getting. She started to argue, and so I asked for the manager. All calmly, because I knew the policy, and I knew getting upset would not help.

She called for the manager, almost tapping her foot as she waited for an answer. When he came on the phone, she proceeded to tell him about the situation, almost as if she was reporting me. I watched her as she listened to what he said, and there was almost a 100% change in her facial expression. That was then I said a silent "thank you, Mr.Manager."

She got off the phone and rang in my coupons. I thanked her for checking and her attitude took a complete turnaround. She said she had to check to avoid getting into trouble. But I knew she had decided not to use my coupons because somewhere in her training she had been told,"the customer cannot NOT pay anything - they have to pay the tax." This is true especially in cases of overage where the coupons would cover the tax, which is not supposed to happen according to LD corporate coupon policy. But in my case, the items were food, and there was no tax. So she took it upon herself to not use some of my coupons so I would in effect have something to pay. But the problem with that is, where did one draw the line? I could have asked her,"why didn't you stop at $1, why did you stop at $3?" So obviously her method was flawed.

The point of all this rambling is that if you know your store's policy, you will always be ok. Treat the cashier/rep kindly because getting upset doesn't do anything. Having the store policy in writing in your purse will go a long way. Don't bother arguing - just take out the policy and refer to it. There is some chatter on the MrsSmith FB wall where there is currently some confusion happening at checkout so I thought today's post would be timely. I will say it over and over and over in class, but just in case you didn't hear it in class, I'll say it here again: "know your policy and treat the cashier kindly."

Just in case you are wondering how to get any store's policies - just contact them, and ask for the policy in writing (ie via email).

I ended up doing a second transaction at the same store with the same cashier, who rang me through with a pleasant and helpful attitude the 2nd time around. :)

Getting off my soapbox now.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, thanks for the heads up and the timely reminder! I agree, always good to know your policy!