An alternative title for this post is “How to Act Like a Human Instead of an Entitled Pain in the Ass.”
Having worked for a business where very wealthy people flock to get groomed — and that is very often the most important thing going on in their lives — I am going to present you with these tips on how not to irritate the person scheduling your appointment.
Before we get started, I need to make a few things clear. If it is crucial for you to have everyone in the building know that you are the most important person in the room, you might be beyond help, but keep reading because I’m hoping you’re not a lost cause (but I’m not holding my breath.) Also, as much as I have dealt with many self-important personalities, I was also lucky enough to have encountered an even higher number of lovely individuals who made my job delightful. Thank you to those of you who make the world a nice place to be.
1. Please have at least a vague idea of what you want done (if applicable) and a rough time frame of when you want it done. (e.g. Do you need to come back in six weeks? Are you only available on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons? Because having that information means I’ll stop offering mornings or anything at all on Monday, Wednesday, or Friday.) The ability to keep my blood pressure under control decreases with each “ummmmm…” especially (if you’re standing in front of me) when the phone is ringing, there are people behind you trying to check out, and there are more people entering who need me to check them in. If we’re doing this over the phone, I’m going to have to put you on hold after three extended “ummmmmm’s” – possibly fewer depending on how many people are standing in front of me. There’s another noise people make to alert you that they’re thinking. It’s a kind of repetitive “tsk, tsk, tsk” that’s made with a slight sucking of the tongue on the roof of the mouth, while making duck lips, and squinting (because of all the deep thoughts going on) and is always accompanied by tapping a forefinger on the bottom lip (like a female version of stroking a goatee.) Don’t do this. Ever.
2. Do NOT attempt to make an appointment while you are talking to someone else on your cell phone. If your call is that important, you should leave and call later or come back to make your appointment. If I need to explain why this is wrong, please see the above paragraph beginning with “Before we get started…”
3. Unless you personally know the person booking your appointment, it’s unnecessary to explain why you’re not available at a certain time. There’s no need for “Let’s see, I have Ashtanga Yoga until 10:00 and then I’m picking up Preston from his equestrian lesson at Pine Hill Riding Academy, and then I’m meeting Montgomery for lunch at Le Bilboquet, so that day won’t work…” The more adjectives and information you provide, the more pretentious you are, and it’s obnoxious. Telling the person booking your appointment that you cahn’t come anytime between June 30th and July 16th because you’ll be at your waterfront home on the Vineyard for the 4th and staying for your niece’s wedding in Edgartown the following weekend, while thumbing through your daily planner (YES! People still carry these! You have the most expensive phone available, learn how to use the calendar!) doesn’t matter to the person sitting on the other side of the desk who’s working part time for close to minimum wage and can’t afford a long weekend on the Vineyard so you’re just bragging. Knock it off.
In summary, it is understandable that because you’ve never worked a day in your life (and, no, taking your purebred Yorkie Poo, Portia, to the groomer twice in one week isn’t work “They just never trim the fur on her paws correctly! And they put this ghastly bow on her – she was so unhappy!”) means you lack the compassion to act appropriately to people who are earning a paycheck. However, it is not an excuse. Now go back and apologize to those poor groomers.