I haven’t worked on a Saturday in a couple weeks. I forgot how insane the store gets. Guests were everywhere. I enjoy helping guests find what they need (unless they are rude), but I’m incredibly frustrated by what is left after the guests walk through the aisles.

Note: I’m going to be writing in all generality. Not all guests are inconsiderate. However, there are enough inconsiderate guests out there to rile me up enough to write a post about how they annoy me.

First, guests leave stray merchandise all over the store. The guests want a clean, good looking store in which to shop, and yet they don’t hesitate to leave hot dogs in the laundry detergent aisle or baby clothes in the pet food aisle.

I understand that it’s too far to walk the 20 seconds back to the aisle where they picked up the merchandise originally, but they don’t have to leave random items everywhere. The nice thing to do (besides putting the items back) is to take the items to a nearby Target team member and say you had second thoughts. Simple. It makes our job a lot easier and much less frustrating.

Second, guests leave their trash everywhere. Sometimes they hide it in the back of a shelf behind our products, and sometimes the trash is in plain view for all to see. Either way, it’s unsightly and unsanitary. I’ve mentioned this before, but I’ve found a used diaper on a shelf before.

I just don’t understand how people can treat our store (which is shared by hundreds of people every day) with such disrespect. Why would they treat a place of business worse than their homes? I spend more time throwing other people’s trash away than helping guests. It takes very little effort to throw trash away. We have clearly marked price scanners located throughout the store. Next to each price scanner is a trash can. It’s really not that complicated.

The one thing guests do that irritate me the most is open packages. Guests open the boxes to see what’s inside but (more often than not) are unable to close the boxes properly. Almost every small appliance (toasters, blenders, coffee makers, etc.) we sell has an open box.

I once caught a guest taking a bathroom scale out of its box. She kept asking me why it wasn’t working. She insisted it had a battery in it (not noticing the little plastic tab you have to take out for the battery to connect). When I explained that it’s Target policy not to open packages, she responded saying that she didn’t want to buy it and take it home and realize it doesn’t work. Well, if it’s brand new (i.e., no guest opens the box), it should work 99% of the time. For the 1% it doesn’t, we have a return policy. After I showed her the display model of the scale and explained the plastic tab under the battery, she tried shoving the scale back in the box. Of course, she couldn’t get it right, so she asked me to do it instead (as if I didn’t have any other work to do). In the end, she didn’t buy the scale.

I just don’t understand the logic at all. Guests want new, unopened products on the shelves, yet they will open the packages anyway and leave them lying around unabashedly. Opened packages are also more work for me, since I have to try and put things back in their packages properly.

Guests expect that I know every detail about Target. As a Target team member, I’m supposed to be an expert on every product we sell. When I’m, the guest often is disrespectful and rude. I try as hard as I can to help, but how am I supposed to know everything?

The worst thing is that I can’t do anything to change the situation. People will always leave trash wherever they want. Posting signs telling guests that they can’t open packages is seen as unfriendly. But how friendly are the guests if they don’t respect our store or its team members?


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