Empathy Intervention- Kaylee O’Brien

This week I had a few moments that led to a time of reflection. One specific time was at work when a customer called three minutes before we close. It had been a crazy day, and we all wanted to go home when a woman called. She said that she was only seven minutes away and wanted us to stay open for her. It has always been something that bothers me when people come in at the last minute and have no respect for my time. This was one of those moments. I was pretty frustrated that she would ask this of us when she could come in the next day. When the woman asked if it was okay there didn’t seem to be a way out. I told her that we closed at six and she said she knew. She went on to say that if we stayed open it would make her life easier. That was when I stopped thinking of all the ways this was annoying and frustrating and tried to think of the situation she may be in. While coming to a store to grab some gift cards may not be the most important thing I figured there was a reason for the urgency. In the end, she came in fifteen minutes after we would normally close but I tried to empathize for her which helped me minimize my frustration. This intervention helped change my attitude in a simple way so that I could provide better customer service and be a kinder person. I think that empathy is a very powerful tool that should be practiced more often.

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