If you clicked on this article chances are you're either a current, past or aspiring Ardene employee. While working at Ardene is absolutely awesome (loving that employee discount) it can also be a struggle and a half. You gotta be a trooper to keep up with that sales associate lifestyle.
For those who haven't worked at Ardene or a clothing store before, please read this article very carefully and promise to never make any sales associate's life harder than it already is. We all just came here to have a good time.
Having to consciously remember to pronounce the store name correctly.
Like "Arden" not "Ardeen." Definitely being horrified when I realized I've been pronouncing it wrong my whole life. I think this is an issue amongst the non-Quebec/French-speaking Ardène employees.
Evil takes a physical form in the process of colour-blocking.
On Ardene employee lanyards, we carry around a tiny, little, laminated devil with colors on it. If you look around the store, you will notice that everything is carefully colour-coordinated in a way that is aesthetically pleasing to the shopper's soul. (Kind of like the Narcity Instagram pages.) Color-coordination is critical in Ardene stores. Each area of merchandise was carefully put together by an Ardene employee, like yourself. However, when the seasons change, we have to basically reverse the colour of the entire store and undo all the hard work you've been doing for the past 4 months. *unimpressed emoji*
Being assigned to your least favourite zone.
Ardene-lingo: Ardene splits their floor up into selective areas in which each employee manages. (Jewelry/Cash, Fits (Fitting Rooms), Greeter (Front area), Shoes, etc.) These areas are called "zones."
Why?! I don't deserve this! I'm a good person!
When we must recover the table we just folded because a customer decided to tear it apart looking for a size.
Ardene-lingo: Recovering is basically to clean up, re-block, and re-fold a table/zone.
Yes, we just love refolding tables because you couldn't look at the tags. Which, not to mention, are so conveniently placed so you don't have to rip apart a whole table.
Arguing the return policy with every customer as if they weren't told it when they made the purchase.
You have 14 days. Tags attached, with your receipt for exchange or in-store credit only. Ardene stresses that you mention the return policy at the time of purchase. The cashier is required to circle and initial the policy on the receipt to confirm that it was said. So, tell me why you are trying to return boots from last season, that have clearly been worn multiple times without your tag or your receipt? Next, please!
Realizing that you are not going anywhere during any holiday ever.
As a sales associate, there are specific times of the year where you are not allowed to take time off. These times include: "Back to School" season, Black Friday, Christmas, Boxing Day, New Years' (basically November through January). I get time and a half for Remembrance Day, right?
Customers who think it's adorable to leave the clothes they tried on inside out, upside down, on the floor and off the hangers in the change room.
How could you? You smiled at me when I let you in this change room. I feel so personally attacked right now.
"We're getting more stock shipments today."
NO GOD! PLEASE NO!! NO! NO! NOOOOO!!
Dealing with the angry "I wanna talk to a manager." / "You just lost a customer!" customers.
Sure! Why not? Let's waste more time and get my manager to tell you exactly what I just told you. Also, how will we live without the customer that yells at us over policies we cannot change?
The "jokester" at checkout that we all know too well.
Customer: "There's no tag on this! Guess it's free then! *laughs*
You: *rolls eyes so hard they fall out*
Constantly questioning the music taste of the person who makes the store playlists.
The only thing worse than our daily playlists are the Christmas playlists.
When customers come in 5-minutes before close and ruin your perfectly recovered store.
When you're opening and customers expect you to let them in the store before you even have your name tag on.
We open at 10, I am not going to let you in at 9:45.
Being cashier during any sale ever is a nightmare.
I can only scan so fast, people!
Making the mistake of wearing slightly heeled shoes of any sort during an 8-hour shift.
Have you ever had your feet literally scream at you?
Walking around the entire store for 20 minutes because you don't know where an item goes.
And the customers are looking at you like, "Do you even work here?" YES. We are just constantly moving things around...
Two words. Changing. Signage.
Ardene is all about deals. 3/$15, 4/$10, BOGO, etc... It feels like you're changing the signs every week.
Always having to check the deals in the system when a customer asks a price because they are constantly changing.
I know that the sign says the 39J's are Buy One, Get One $5, but that may have just been the price before noon.
The hell that is processing jewelry/shoes.
Ardene-lingo: Processing is taking a product out of its many layers of plastic wrap and hanging them up in colour order. (basically stocking)
Processing is terrible, but processing shoes and jewelry are a special hell.
Switching from plastic hangers to metal hangers and vice versa.
Which one of the Ardene higher-ups decided this was a task that needs to be completed regularly?
When kids think it's cute to push/play under the tables with mannequins on them.
Where are your parents? Timothy, I will not be held responsible if this mannequin falls on you and gives you a concussion.