Friday, 27 February 2009

Tact, thy true meaning is lost....

So,the usual excuse about photography (except the right side of this CJ is very clear - how did I do that?)...but more obviously, I seem to have lost the ability to crop effectively too!

After chores that dull the mind and a skilful avoidance of the salesman on the knock this morning, I went to a couple of craft shops, one on my doorstep, one not so, but both kind enough to let me muscle in and conduct the odd workshop. I therefore had a reason to be there, although obviously the ulterior motive is always a little shopping! At the first store, shopkeeper gal was very busy. A delivery had arrived, from which she had plucked pre-orders and called up customers to come and collect. I wasn't included in this, my timing just happened to match; when I got there, there were at least 5 other crafters in the shop, ostensibly collecting their orders. Actually though, they were enjoying a cup of coffee and a chat, raking through the boxes that had yet to be unpacked properly, and chasing bored children around a bit too. I don't know if she was anticipating it or not, and I doubt very much if shopkeeper gal actually minds this too much..it may be a bit tiresome and untidy and difficult to keep stock inventory, but ultimately, I would imagine that it increases the pre-ordered spendage a little. What struck me most was the completely tactless conversations - loud and without acknowledgement of their surroundings; there was a long discussion about their purchases from a show in Farnborough. Lots of "I spent over 200 quid" as they handed over a tenner to shopkeeper gal, then proceeded to tell anyone who would listen what they'd bought. And I swear to you, and not for effect, most of the stuff that had been brought was available from the very shop they were standing in.
Then there was a huge (and sometimes not very positive) discussion about QVC, in particular the afternoon that Tim Holtz appeared. (For the record, I think he's great, but I'm not about to start calling him 'Sir Tim'...it's silly.) The QVC discussion ranged on about who'd managed to buy what and the TSV and blah blah blah. A couple of times I heard that the visitor wasn't going to buy anything because she'd spent so much on QVC this week. Is it me? Am I horribly oversensitive or is this INCREDIBLY tactless. No bricks and mortar shopkeeper is naive enough to think that their customers aren't shopping on the internet and TV but most would like to hear that it's not at the expense of buying her stock as well.
You may remember an earlier post about Customer Observations, and I'm amazed to be returning to it as a subject, but this isn't poking gentle fun, it's troubled me all afternoon. Particularly as the news at the second shop I visited isn't good; shopkeeper there has thrown in the towel and will close very soon. She is bitter about lack of loyalty and support. Of course, there is a huge amount more to it than that, but loyalty, even if it's only on the basis of good old fashioned tactfulness would be a good thing, huh.
So....go in, browse - you don't have to buy anything, but please don't tell the person trying to make a living by staying open during your leisure hours that you've just spent two hundred or twenty quid, or even two quid, on the same thing somewhere else. It's just bloody tactless. And if you do, don't be surprised when the shopkeeper shows little interest in your purchases, and even gets a bit defensive when you ask her to show you how to use your latest gadget. Oh, and wash your coffee cup up before you leave - or at least offer to.

Now I've got that off my chest...have a lovely weekend!

11 comments:

Sandie Grisé said...

Amen to that! I hear you on that point and I can not agree more! I see this very thing going on here be it in the scrapbook shop or the quilt shop (I'm known in both circles). The bottom line is...Support your local shop or they might not be in business for too much longer!

allyf said...

Its lack of manners, plain and simple.
:-)

Anonymous said...

Hand on heart i would like to say i am TOTALLY loyal to my local craft shop. I do not go to the shows or buy off the telly etc.
Where would i be with out my chats,advice or great craft supplies if she was not there!!
DONT LOOSE HOPE THERE ARE SOME LOYAL CUSTOMERS OUT THERE !!

my5bratz said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
my5bratz said...

here, here TOTALLY agree... they'll be the first to have a b*tch if there wasn't a local store!

Angie said...

I totally agree that those ladies were totally tactless and as a shop assistant or owner, I would have been more than annoyed!!but not everyone can shop at their 'local' shops ( in reply to Annonymous) I do not drive and my arts and crafts shop is 30mins away at a cost of £6 but the closest proper scrapping shop takes 90mins on a good day, each way at a cost of nearly £12 so yes I use the internet and QVC as the items are cheaper too. I do save up for a special day out with a good spend and chat once or twice a year.

ja said...

Ha Ha I totally agree with you, I am shocked at how tactless some people can be but I must say I love going in and having a spree, especially when certain customers are there. Ja, we just have to pull together, the loyal ones,and am sure it will give the shop owner a little pleasure. On some, one can rely on others just let them pass us by. 

Love to Doodle! said...

Yep - I agree....very tactless....it's very hard for all of us to keep going and make it worthwhile...

....and there's so much keeping up with the Jones's I've discovered too...eg, I must have that cos it's made/designed by BLEEP, even though its not very good....but everyone else has it....hee....well, you get my drift...not being bitter - just an observation....and I probably am guilty of buying something as its the 'current trend' too..

A funny old world....but loyal is something I try to be with most things...and I do think about where I put my money before I replenish and add to my stock....Wish I had a local craft shop - I'd be there in a flash...and would probably leave at closing time - after washing my cup of course....lol xx

Caryn said...

and...relax!

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