Apple Employees Are Laughing at You Behind Your Back

apple storeHave you enjoyed the experiences you've had at the Apple store? I'm on the fence. On one hand, I always find the staff very knowledgeable and the store super clean; on the other, I find the line at the Genius Bar almost intolerable. Even if I've made an appointment, I've always waited at least 15 minutes. Now I know why: They book at least three Genius Bar appointments at a time.

A new report published in the Wall Street Journal reveals what goes on behind the scenes at America's nerdiest store. Let's just say there are more rules to follow than at a tour of the Vatican. You're allowed to bare your shoulders here, though.


In addition to the infuriating "triple booking" rule, some other highlights are:

  • Employees who are six minutes late three times in six months may be fired.
  • Employees are forbidden from correcting customer mispronunciations, because it would make them feel "patronized."
  • Employees at the Genius Bar are asked to say "as it turns out" instead of "unfortunately," for a more positive spin on their bad news.

Guess there's whole science to this Steve Jobs nonsense. Who knew?

I have to say, I kind of like the "get fired if you're six minutes late" rule. In the service and retail worlds, when employees are late, it has a trickle down effect. Other employees start getting pissed, and the customer winds up suffering. I've actually had a particularly cranky cashier at Sephora say to me, "You know, I'm not even supposed to be ringing you up right now. I should have left four minutes ago." That doesn't make me feel bad for you. And that doesn't make me want to go back to that Sephora. I say lighting a fire under employees' asses to get them to work on time is a good thing.

In regards to the other two rules, well, I'm not wild about them. Because they make me feel dumb. Ever since I read that customers are not supposed to be corrected, I've been mentally flipping through any Apple jargon I may have dropped at the store, wondering if I said it wrong -- and if the employees were internally laughing. And as for using "as it turns out," don't patronize me, Apple. And now that the world knows that that's code for "unfortunately," you're going to have to come up with something else. I vote for "so, check it out ..."

What do you think of the Apple store rules?


Image via Steve Parker/Flickr

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