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Customers Sexual Harassment Assertiveness Atmosphere

We have some customers who bother the waitresses. I don't know if it is harassment or not, but their comments are often off-color and offensive. We told our manager about this, and he said that the customers are just being friendly and we should be nice to them. Does this sound right?

This sounds right if your manager's priorities are to increase stress, dissatisfaction, and likelihood of getting sued. As waitresses, you should give your manager a tip: let him know that this type of treatment has to stop.

This is an era of increased emphasis on customer service. The old adage indicating that the customer is always right is ringing through the halls of many companies. The problem is that the customer is not always right. There are customers who engage in all sorts of unacceptable behaviors, including harassment, rage, theft, abuse, and bullying. There is no need for any employee to tolerate this type of nonsense, and employers are obligated to take action when advised of it.

Give your manager specific examples of the behaviors that are upsetting you, let him know that you want him to take action to stop it, and then indicate that you hope you will not have to go outside the company in order to seek resolution of this problem. If he still thinks the customer is always right, then it is time for you to exert some of your rights.

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