4 Ways to Deal with People On Black Friday

Black Friday at Westfield San Francisco Centre...
Image by Steve Rhodes via Flickr

Tomorrow is Black Friday. It’s called this because it’s when retail stores take their profits from being in the red to in the black.

The stores have designed things to maximize profits. So they are trying to maximize customers. Tomorrow, you are sheep.

But you can be the black sheep. Here are a handful of tips to help reduce your stress and the stress of others.

Inform a line cutter where the back of the line is.

Lines will get mixed up and people will get confused. Someone might think they’re getting in line and actually be cutting. Many people behind them will grumble and make faces.

Reduce the stress of everyone, including yourself, by gently telling the cutter, “I’m not sure you saw it, but the line is back there.” They’ll happily move and be glad someone helped.

Other people will appreciate it, and the positivity in the room will increase.

NEW YORK - MAY 20:  In this photo illustration...
Image by Getty Images via @daylife

If someone’s credit card won’t go through, tell a story.

You’re likely to be behind someone whose credit card is causing problems. It could be the machine, the cashier or the card itself. Regardless, that customer’s anxiety is rising with each moment. And the others in line are grumbling.

Be the source of positivity and tell a story to the others in line. Tell about about a bank account or credit card experience you had or heard about. Here are three to can get you started:

Let the manager know the clerk is doing a good job.

Stress is high for everyone. Including managers and employees. After having a good experience, ask to speak to a manager. When she approaches, shake her hand and let tell her team is doing a good job:

“Things are stressful for everyone. I just wanted to let you know that Joe handled things very well. You have a great team here. I hope you have a happy holiday season!”

UPC code invented by George J. Laurer
Image via Wikipedia

If they need a price check, do it.

Consider the scenario: A lady is buying a garment. The tag with the UPC symbol is missing. The clerk requests assistance over the loudspeaker. And everyone waits.

What you can do: Ask the person behind you in line to hold your spot. Tell the clerk you’re going to run to get another garment exactly like it. Ask the customer where she got it.

Take off running to that part of the store (you have on comfortable shoes, right?). Find another garment with a UPC tag, and hightail it back to the front.

Not will this help the sales team, it will give you something to do during the wait. Also, it shows everyone in line how to take initiative this holiday season.


It’s going to get messy out there. Do what you can to keep your head and create a better holiday experience for everyone.

Do you have any tips? Have you done any of these things? Share your stories in the comments.

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