Welcome back to the week of Getting More Getting More Tale!
GETTING MORE TALE #498: Hang-Up Wars
When the employee Joe “Big Nose” began working at one our stores in the late 90’s, he quickly became known for his surly phone demeanor. Not towards customers mind you; just towards co-workers! Joe was not much for pleasantries: “How ya doin’,” or “Have a great day.” We have said it many times in these pages before: Joe Big Nose was a very unique person. And hilarious.
The first time I ever spoke to Joe on the phone, I was calling his store from mine, looking for a stock check. Somebody wanted to see if a particular CD was in stock at his location. Joe pleasantly got it for us, took down the customer’s info, and put it aside. “Hey thanks a lot eh!” I said to the new guy. He didn’t answer.
I stared at the phone. “Did that guy just hang up on me?” He had! Joe doesn’t wait on the phone long enough for thanks and goodbyes. In fact there were uncountable times I thought I was speaking to him, and he had already hung up!
“Don’t worry, that’s Joe,” said his boss. “He doesn’t mean anything by it. That’s just his way.” OK, then, fine and dandy!
As I befriended Joe over the years, we would get into some friendly competitions over who could hang up the phone fastest on the other person. This started as part of the normal course of a day. We’d call each other looking for stock, but when business was done, it was only a question of who could hang up on the other fastest. My strategy was delaying him by asking something like, “I just have one more thing for you to check,” and THEN hanging up.
This grew into a competition with a life its own. We began calling each other with no purpose other than just to hang up.
For example, “Hey, do you have a used copy of the new Metallica?” CLICK!
Or, “Mike, I have a customer who wants to know if the new Bon Jovi is any good?” CLICK!
Or my favourite, just at the start of the call: “Hey Mike.” CLICK!
We took this to its natural extreme, which was me phoning Joe and hanging up just as he answers. A hang up can’t get much faster than that! I won the hang-up wars! (The bosses didn’t approve, but since the owner started the store pranks in the first place by stealing my Mars bar, I think they had it coming!)