Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Smile More.....

Sat in my seminar (which I did arrive slightly late for due to the weather.....yes I admit it was only rain........) the discussion was about 'Personal Introspection' - Impressive sounding isn't it ?! That's what I thought - it wasn't a term I was comfortable with until I gave it an extra bit of thought.....

Stood in Primark, surrounded by screaming children (and mothers), looking at the unhappy and unmotivated staff it made me look at the item in my hands (an umbrella for £3 - because of the rain...obviously) and ponder : did I really need this ?! The feeling I got whilst in the store looking at the haphazard shelves and untidy jewellery stands made me question my purchase but at £3 you can't go wrong.... The boy on the checkout did little to put this uneasiness to rest by sending a woman to go and get another one because that one didn't have a tag.....he then turned to his colleague next to him and said:

'I hate it when they bring ones that don't have tags....'

I simply couldn't believe it - surely if they had been doing their job properly ALL of the items would have tags on.......but I couldn't be bothered to say I just wanted to get my umbrella and get out......

I have wanted to leave a shop before - however this wasn't a £3 umbrella I was buying - it was my Louis Vuitton handbag - I made a special trip to Leeds after saving up the money I needed (I won't discuss prices....as I believe in 'price per wear....the more you wear/use it = the cheaper it was haha) despite having the money for the bag I wanted, the snooty shop assistant made me feel like I shouldn't have been there - shimming over to me on the ridiculously shiny floor, with her perfectly manicured hands and highlighted hair and asking me in their posh accent: 'May I help you?' - I would be surprised if that woman could see me over her nose....she was looking down it so far. I felt embarrassed and that I didn't belong - I wasn't their stereotypical customer - the great feeling came however when I plonked down the money for the bag in £20 notes - should have seen her face then !!!!

So......these were my experiences in a high end shop - and a cheap shop - they were both bad in some way....

I feel slightly biased with this next paragraph - as those who know me know how much I love Topshop anyway....but it's the one shop that I believe have got the perfect mix for me - they play trendy, up to-date, edgy music, there is a nice layout with the clothes and accessories merchandised nicely with the mannequins wearing new outfits every time I go in (and that's regularly.....) my favourite section has to be the 'Buy it now or regret it later' its organised as a little treasure trove like in a vintage shop - you have to hunt for the item that's been waiting for you. The staff are always really friendly and make genuine conversation about what you are buying, wearing or your hair - this makes me want to go back.....sadly enough they are almost my friends.... :-)

These are all examples of personal introspection - what MY opinions are, MY experiences, MY thoughts and MY feelings - yes there are influences on them e.g. marketing strategy (how people are attempting to get me to buy their product) such as Topshops' buy it now section - they are telling me that I will regret it if I don't buy it - a feeling that I don't want to have- yes I know that the girls in there aren't always interested in what I am buying....they probably think its hideous...but at least they pretend to be (and are good at it...)

Shopping is done in peoples leisure time - so should be enjoyable - so for all you shop assistants remember:

A smile costs nothing.

And it will make all the difference.

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