I hate queuing, but this lunchtime I went to a post office to send two parcels.
It was gone 2pm, and there was probably 10 people in front of me. After 5 minutes of queuing, there was the same number of people on front of me.
As I was planning on taking a 30minute lunch break, this wasn’t going to work.
Google Maps on my iPhone found me another post office, and only 5minutes away. Off I went to Post Office #2.
It, and every store in the area where it was (except a 7-11) was closed.
Right – off to another post office.
Number #3 had a snaking queue almost out the door. If anything, worse than the first one.
And as I used this one to get my passport renewed, I know there is no chance of them clearing that before I ran out of time, because they’re insanely slow.
“Fuck it – I’ll do it tomorrow”, I thought to myself, and started back to work.
I passed a Post Office/chemist/convenience store, and had to check it out. This one has the door, and the Post Office counter at the front. The queue went from the front door (where it was blocking people from getting in), right to the back. There was one till window open, and one member of staff.
Next time the Post Office/Royal Mail is moaning about lack of money or everyone using couriers, here’s a tip:
Become more efficient.
Speed the fuck up.
In no other business would today’s scenario be deemed “normal”.
If you’re in the supermarket and there’s a queue, they pull staff from anywhere to get it cleared.
If you’re thinking having lots of different prices and having to weigh everything is an excuse, you’re wrong. It isn’t.
Go to a greengrocers. They’ve memorised the cost per weight of everything in there, and despite weighing everything, every one doesn’t have people queuing onto the street.
I was in a Post Office recently, with three tills open, a queue that snaked from the back where the counters are, to the front, around and back to the counters on the other side. There were people queuing on three sides of the place.
And STILL, the people working there were casually chatting to the customers at the front, about how they were, and whether they were looking forward to Christmas.
When I finally got to the front, they tried a bit of chat with me. Screw that! I don’t have time for this now. I’ve spent the last half hour when I did have time, standing in here, reading the birthday cards over and over, looking at cut-price jigsaw puzzles, and texting someone regarding how late I was now going to be.
I’ve worked a shit job in retail in the past. Yes it’s boring, yes some people can cheer up by chatting up/to their favourite customers, but when you’re busy, you have to speed up. Cut down/out the chat. It’s not a social club, regardless of what some pensioners might think.
No private company could get away with this sort of inefficiency. The Post Office shouldn’t, either. Maybe it’d be good thing if they sold them all off. I’d pay more for postage, to be able to actually post something.