Of course there are those whom you might think would know how to comport themselves in a customer service scenario, but don't. I have just handed a customer his purchase and told him the price. '8.00! That's sooo expensive!' said the man to his friend who sells fancy French products like the 8 CHF chocolate bars I buy from her on a somewhat regular basis. I have never once crinkled my nose to the employee and said, 'Ohhh, that's so expensive!' Why? Because to do so would be rude. She isn't, magically, the Queen of the Chocolate Bar that I buy, so it's really not up to her how much to charge, but rather it is at the discretion of the shop owner to decide what to charge. The shop worker says weakly, 'Well, the pie is worth the expense every now and then.' With that the man buys his pie, none too happily, and we're done, fortunately.
Even more excruciating for me is when owners and employees behave badly in front of customers as I like to think that we should know better. A customer I am serving is taking up quite a bit of time. He is undecided, wants to know the prices of things, and, after he's chosen his meal, wants me to pack up the lunch 'to-go' even though he's going to go sit on a bench not 15 feet away and eat 'for here'. He's a regular customer who works in the vicinity and I know how his behavior. He takes his time when ordering, but has never once told me that our product tastes 'like ass', so I don't have a problem. The manager of our shop, however, was of a different mind. As I was packing up the man's meal, my manager leans over and says to me IN FRONT OF said customer, 'You know he's a difficult person. Don't let him take up so much of your time when you have other people waiting. Don't put his lunch in a bag, just hand him the food and be done with it.' 'What did he say? What was that about being difficult?' said the man. 'Oh, it's nothing to do with you. Please, don't worry about it,' was all I could manage to say while putting his food in the bag that he had asked for. The incident seems largely forgotten as the customer has since returned to purchase lunch. I wonder if I'll forget.