“You don’t have toilet paper!??? How can a store of your size NOT have toilet paper?? This is %&$#@ retarded!” yelled one mother pushing a cart full of canned goods.
“Are you hiding the Clorox wipes? Seriously!!” a burly man tried to sound threatening.
“I can only buy one rice!! This is America!! You can’t tell me what I can and can’t buy.”
“The craziest thing is when they threaten to take their business elsewhere,” laughed a tired Costco employee.
This was the scenario a week ago. Then an unexpected change occurred. Interactions shifted.
“People have started thanking us for being here,” the same employee mused. “They say things like, ‘You’re doing a great job.’ Or ‘Thanks for having product.’ People seem grateful.”
I’m guessing social media has a lot to do with this attitude adjustment.
On March 14 Dan Rather tweeted:
“You know who are also heroes? Those working the checkout counters and stocking shelves at supermarkets and pharmacies. Their work, at some risk to their own health, is vital to the health and safety of our country.”
Social media, irresponsibly used, has devastating effects.
Social media can and does change social perception. In this case the change was nice. Workers become human beings with feelings when Facebook users read. “Be good to everyone in retail. They are exposing themselves. They are the people most at risk.”
“When this is over, let’s remember that it wasn’t the CEOs & billionaires who saved us. It was the janitors, nurses, grocery, and food workers.”
A Costco employee posted a picture of an exhausted worker sitting on a pallet. He hasn’t gone home because another truck is coming.
“This picture is worth a thousand words. Everyone in retail is fighting to keep shelves stocked for everyone. But in the end, we are only one person so try and understand. We are breaking our backs to help you and others. Don’t give us attitudes when we don’t know ourselves when the next shipment of goods is coming in. We are doing our job the best we can and exposing ourselves more than anyone. Stay positive we will get through this together.”
Regardless of how you create your family, through adoption, or a more traditional means, teach those children to recognize others and have empathy–especially during trying times.