Author Topic: Is This Weird? - Pleasantries in Phone Calls at Work  (Read 2261 times)


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It's usually a long one. It goes something like this:

-"See Steve in produce ? He's a creep. He hits on every woman. Do not be alone with him. If he does anything creepy, you go straight to management."
Oh, hell no!  If Steve is that much of a creep, he should be reported each and every time to management.  YOU (or any employee) should not be talking to another employee about a third employee!  That puts your ass on the line and it should!
-"If a customer asks for your last name, you don't tell them. 99% of the time it's a man asking. There's a LOT of men who act like him here and over at our sister stores across town."  Most women know this.  But, it's sexist of you to believe it only applies to women
-"They'll ask what town you live in, where you grew up, etc. You don't have to tell them. Be vague. It's okay to say 'uh huh, out that way' or even lie that you live in another town." See above
-"Men will ask you if Mary or Katie work here. Mary doesn't work here anymore. She got a a new job years ago. These men aren't her friends; I asked her. They're just customers who have latched onto her. That will happen to you, too. Never tell a customer what day Katie or I or the other girls will be in. Don't tell them what hours you will be working, either." Leave Mary and Katie and the backstory out of it.  No employee should ever give out information on other employees.  Ever.
-"There's this one sample guy who used to sexually harass us. The company quietly dropped him instead of directly firing him. Let me tell you what he did and what he looks like...He comes in a lot and asks why he hasn't gotten any hours lately. Just tell him you don't know why." Gossipy.
 Since there was no action taken this could also set you up for a complaint.  Refer all inquiries to management.

-"There's this other sample guy we directly got fired for sexual harassment...."Gossipy unless it's information available to employees if they ask.
-"If a guy hits on you or makes you uncomfortable, point to Bob [really tall, hulking manager] and say 'Would you like to tell that to our manager Bob ? I'm sure he'd like hear that.' It scares them off. Or you can lie and mention that your [imaginary] husband the cop / marine wouldn't like to hear that. You shouldn't lie about being married to a cop or military guy any other time, of course. If one of the county cops is shopping in here, just happen to call them over for a sample. That works, too!" 
-"Men will say creepy things to you right in front of their wives or girlfriends. These women will just laugh and say 'oh, you have to understand Paul's sense of humor. Paul, you're so funny, tee hee!' Not much you can do about those kind of couples, besides not laugh and make the guy feel like an idiot for shooting his mouth off."
-"I had a customer tell me he had a dream about me. He really wanted to share about it. Gross. He has a crush on me and I don't wanna know. With that kind of man, just keep redirecting the conversation back to whatever you're selling, until they give up sharing crap like that."
-"Customers will recognize you around town, even on your day off. It happens to me a lot. It's not so bad when it's old ladies saying 'I know you from Store X.' With men, though, it usually leads to lots of questions about you, getting hit on, etc. You don't have to share anything they ask you."
-"Let me tell you about the customer who grabbed his crotch on purpose one day. Oh my god..."

Some of this are conversations one might have with a coworker as they get to know each other as part of general conversation.  But I don't think any of it is appropriate as part of their training.  It's all terribly sexist and really condescending.  Most women know how to deal with these situations and will do so in their own way.
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