Have you ever had the soul-crushing pleasure of Working in retail during the holidays? Needless to say, it's not all magic and fairy tales like you get to experience with your kids. Customer after customer comes in searching for their respective gifts, or the food for their family's holiday meal, and all the while, the associates have to stock, make sure the store looks presentable, utilize customer service, and deal with the unwarranted malice of angry customers. In other words, being an associate in a Retail Store, during the holiday season, sucks.

Angry customers

Every day you go to work, you will have to deal with an angry customer. But, come holiday time, you will always get the angriest people. People who have places to be, family to see, and they don't have a sliver of time to talk to you. You can be minding your own business, stocking your aisles, and just all in all trying to get your job done. Then, all of a sudden, a customer comes walking toward you, so you stop what you're doing for a moment and say, "Hi, can help you?" Simple question, short, sweet, and to the point. But, this customer will trample all over you, figuratively, with all of their woes and sorrows about how they can't be bothered. All in all, angry customers will make you feel about as big as a mouse in a herd of elephants.

God forbid, they go to your boss about you specifically.

Angry associates

If you think angry customers are bad news bears for your store's holiday, you've got another thing coming. Same scenario, working by yourself, just trying to get your job done for the day, and out of nowhere, another associate comes along, storming up to you.

"Why are you stocking this shelf?" Something that they might simply ask you in an angry way. You can respond with a simple and direct answer to that question, but it will never be good enough for what you are not doing. "Well, have you not heard us calling for help across the store?" Keep in mind, if you are a worker, working in a store, crowded with people from side to side, all of them shouting, or just even simply talking, then chances are no.

This associate will go on and on about how you just didn't want to help so you're lying about not hearing, or they will have the audacity, to tell you that what you are doing, which is your job, is not as important as what they need help with on the other side of the store.

Crowds of people

Imagine it's Black Friday, and you are out with your family, or friends, waiting to grab that hot item you want. Think of how crowded the line was to get in the store, or how full the parking lot was when you got there. You simply just have to walk through the crowd, which is a difficult task I know. But, put yourself in the associates' shoes. You come in, and the first thing out of your bosses mouth is, "No one goes home until their job is complete." Can you imagine trying to rush to get your own job done while people are asking you about the item on sale, associates asking for help, trying to make your way through a crowd of people with merchandise to stock?

It is war. It is the pure definition of insanity, because, no matter how hard you try, or how many times you try, you never get close enough.

As the Holidays grow to a close and you have to go out for some last minute preparations, just remember to think about your store associates. I'm not going to sit here and say that all associates are great because there are plenty of bad associates that deserve some "street justice," from a customer. But, remember the ones that greet you with a smile, go out of their own way to help you, and thank you for shopping at their store. It means the world to them, whether you know it, or even if they know it, or not.