Customer profile: Burrito Bill


Before I tell you about the subject of today’s customer profile, I need to tell you about Jane.

Jane is a coworker of mine who has the early-morning shift in the kitchen. Her job is make the donuts, pastries, and breakfast sandwiches, and then move on to restocking the sandwiches and salads.

Jane’s shift is supposed to start at 4:30 or 5 AM, but she’d rather it didn’t, because she wants to get finished and clock out before noon. Because no part of her job requires her to “mind the store” between certain times a day, and management has no problem with production being done a bit early, she’s able to do this, coming in, on average, about two hours early.

This is where Bill comes in.

Bill is an early-morning semi-regular who likes breakfast burritos. And Bill’s version of “early morning” is, on average, about 4:30 or 4:45.

When Jane’s working this isn’t usually a problem for him, because she’s been there for hours and, if she doesn’t have any breakfast burritos ready yet, she’s far enough along that she can throw one together in a couple of minutes.

Jane doesn’t work seven days a week, though. On her days off, the kitchen is opened by Lucy, one of the better assistant managers. Lucy does well, and sometimes she comes in earlier than scheduled for the same reason Jane does… but not always, and hardly ever early enough to have Bill’s burritos ready.

Bill, who started coming here after Jane established her schedule, can’t tolerate this.

I almost just wrote that Bill doesn’t understand that Jane comes in early, but that’s probably not true because I’ve explained it to him, after he tried complaining to /me about Lucy being “late” and “not having shit done.” I patiently told him that Lucy had actually come in early that day but not early enough to have his thing ready… and I might as well not have bothered. All that mattered to Bill was that he couldn’t get his burrito at, if I remember correctly, 4:15.

To recap: on paper, Lucy wasn’t supposed to be in the building yet, and this… “man” was complaining that she wasn’t ahead of schedule on production.

He’s kept coming in and has managed to independently piss off every worker who’s ever interacted with him. When he isn’t acting like a middle-aged spoiled brat, he’s been overbearing or obnoxious or insulting, and he also occasionally tries to hit on Jane after being overbearing and obnoxious.

Bill is an extreme case – and he has other character defects I couldn’t help but mention, in addition to the flaw I’m trying to illustrate – but that just makes him a more loathsome example of entitlement.

If you’ve ever wondered why workers at a business you patronize don’t go very far out of their way for you, it might be because those workers went out of their way for another customer, who then assumed that was normal service and got offended (and probably tried to torpedo the “offender’s” job) when he or she didn’t always get extra care or special treatment.

 

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