There are few topics as hotly contested in society as the expectations of employees in the service industry.
Customer demands gave rise to the term Karen, one forever seeking validation from the manager over perceived slights committed by entry-level workers granted no authority for conflict resolution, which seemed to present the case that the relationship between employee and consumer was not symbiotic, but combative.
So, when a video of customers growing hostile at what appears to be a Cold Stone Creamery went viral after they were refused service, the debate over who was in the right raged across social media.
In the video, there is a dispute over whether the customers entered at closing or one minute prior. That point alone was enough to fuel both sides of the argument.
He recording like we was gone be on his side I just bust out laughing https://t.co/7ypX8X3sqh
— HOOD VOGUE is tired of poverty (@keyon) June 10, 2022
Like the initial post says, “As customers.. don’t walk into a place 1 minute before closing .. just dont.”
This is the perspective of many low-level service industry workers, particularly in food service where equipment needs to be cleaned before shifts can officially end.
You don’t come in 1 min before a store close. As someone that worked in fast food night shift breaks everything down a little bit before close so it can be cleaned. If we supposed to get off @ a certain time we’re gonna make that time.
— Nas (@FoolishxPridex) June 10, 2022
People who agree w/ him have never worked retail/fast food & it shows. You have to clean the store, count the till which usually cant be done until the doors are locked & we would get in trouble if we didnt clock out on time. Late customers drag that shxt out. Like just dont.
— ayo, jaynee… (@ayojaynee) June 10, 2022
they’re not trying to get out early, they’re trying to get out on time. you clearly haven’t spent any meaningful time working in food service
— Austin Robertson-Buccowich (@austinrobu) June 10, 2022
And even the user who reposted the video captioned it by stating, “He recording like we was gone be on his side I just bust out laughing.” He went on to add, “Now you look silly over some icecream you could’ve got throughout the day.”
While the employees lament how “We want to go home,” in the video, the irate customer was even willing to concede that he may have walked in at the closing time of 8:30 p.m. and not one minute prior at 8:29 p.m. For some, that “one f*cking minute” as he put it, shouldn’t make any difference on whether he received service since he was ale to enter the retail location.
Anyone who disagrees has never held a position higher than employee. Your business will fail if you think it’s wrong he walks in 1-2 minutes before closing. “Unwritten rule” or not the employees are in the wrong.
— Drew (@D_Kidd) June 10, 2022
Are u open at 9:59 yes or no yes then its your job to serve I get people wanna go home so it’s annoying for the worker …..plus it’s fucking ice cream this rule is more for a restaurant that takes actuall time to make their food
— paperrrr (@pap3rr) June 10, 2022
If you left the door open… do your job
— Speedy2ReaL (@RockStarCruzz) June 10, 2022
Exactly. Buddy was a little extra but I’m definitely on his side.
— Acquired Taste (@AmbitiousGurl_1) June 10, 2022
What fewer observers of the viral exchange seemed to acknowledge was the fact that both parties had the capacity of being wrong. There was at least one who recognized that a line had been crossed by the customer when he passed the point of civilly disagreeing with the employees over whether or not he should be served and he proceeded “threaten a kid” as one can be heard saying in the video.
Two things –
If he walked in at 8:29, and they didn’t serve him, they can be upset.
That said, once he raises his voice like that, he’s getting thrown out and the cops called.
— Adrian (@aztec9887) June 10, 2022
Maybe…but they're well within their rights as paying customers. The store closes at 8:30, not 8:29.
Regardless, the overreaching point is that the way they acted is unacceptable. I wouldn't have served them at noon with that sort of shit.
— Adrian (@aztec9887) June 10, 2022
The bigger miss in all of the back and forth was that this is the battlefield upon which the Fight for $15 is waging. Both customers and the employees believe that they are entitled to something they haven’t earned. It is unclear if management defended their staff after this altercation was made known or if disciplinary action was taken for their failure to satisfy their customers.
What is known is what famed economist Thomas Sowell made clear in his book, “Basic Economics: A Citizen’s Guide to the Economy.” In that work, Sowell laid out his premise on the reality of the minimum wage that applies to situations like this, “Unfortunately, the real minimum wage is always zero, regardless of the laws, and that is the wage that many workers receive in the wake of the creation or escalation of a government-mandated minimum wage…Making it illegal to pay less than a given amount does not make a worker’s productivity worth that amount–and, if it is not, that worker is unlikely to be employed.”
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