Events and Life Mindsets Travel and places

Those crazy, early months as a learner Israeli

Bibi Canes is another learner Israeli who arrived in Israel with her family just 3 months ago. She wrote a post about some of her experiences and, reading them, they remind me of much of what we went through a short time ago (and still do, to a degree).

It’s all about that Thyme

I wrote a comment on the post and thought I’d share the comment here too.

It definitely takes a bit of getting used to. I still think of the weekends as being 2 days. Friday feels like my old Saturday although there is usually a lot more cleaning involved before or after we schlep to do the weekend shopping. In a way it is great that the kids are at school on Friday mornings because it means we have a couple hours to do what we need to do, uninterrupted. Sometimes we even get to spend some time together!

We don’t have a car so Saturdays are forced downtime with the family. It’s usually a good break even though there is often a lot of stuff the kids want help with. Still, that part is pretty much the same as back in South Africa except we wound up driving all over when we could have relaxed at home more.

I definitely miss Woolies meat but my genius wife has managed to figure out which local meat is pretty good. My brother-in-law even found relatively cheap meat that tasted great, albeit after cooking for 3 hours. It isn’t the same but I am ok with what we exchanged Woolies meat for – a very different life. We work harder here, usually for less of the material stuff but, on balance, it’s a fair trade for what we gained living here.

You can also follow Bibi on Facebook:


Business and work Entertainment

The sensual woman chooses @Woolworths_SA blouses

I saw this tweet, clicked on the link and the following awesomely mind-blowing clothing item name almost make me wet myself (I’ve been drinking a lot of water today):

Wow, someone really needs to pay more attention to clothing names. Either that or Woolworths is really pushing the envelope when it comes to using sex to sell blouses.

Thanks to Nadia and Angel for the tweets:

Update: Woolworths tweeted an apology. The name will probably be corrected on the page by the time you read this but it was a funny oops!

Business and work Mindsets

I'm your customer, don't ignore me

One thing that bugs me when I walk into a retail store is when the people purportedly assisting me with my purchase or query don’t actually engage with me. By “engage” I mean talk to me when there is a problem of some description or respond to my queries by answering me. Instead store staff seem to have developed a tendency to discuss issues with each other and only communicate with me when its time to pay.

With all the attention on giving customers better and more personal feedback on social media, retailers shouldn’t forget that the in person engagements happening daily in their stores are perhaps more important and receive less attention. As customers we don’t necessarily need to be treated like royalty (although retailers that do treat their customers well differentiate themselves), store staff should begin with talking to customers, looking them in the eye and actually engaging with them.

I had an experience this morning at Woolworths in Design Quarter which is another good example. The cashier rang up my latte purchase. The price is R23 and she charged my card 23c, leaving a balance of R22,77. I only realized there was a problem when I looked up from my phone and saw a balance due on the till’s display. The cashier hadn’t said anything to me and was discussing the issue with a colleague. I asked if she had charged the wrong amount and the colleague confirmed this. The cashier then added another R23 to the total and wanted to charge me the balance and give me cash back to cover the extra amount charged. I told her she should get a supervisor to authorize the excess R23’s removal and charge me the balance due so she went off to find someone. She didn’t let me know there was an issue and left it up to me to figure it out and wait patiently for her to figure something out. When the supervisor arrived he didn’t bother engaging with me either so I just left some cash and walked out the store with my purchase.

A far more effective approach would have been to let me know she had made a mistake when she made it and let me know what she was doing to fix it. When she couldn’t the supervisor should have done that. Its not difficult, just courteous and decent customer service.