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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Returns desk problems: How you can get your money back (CBC Marketplace)

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( ♪♪ )

>> Erica: This week on


>> Hi there, how are you


>> Erica: The return desk.

>> We just have a return here,

>> Yeah.

>> Erica: It's where shops and

shoppers can collide.

>> So I can't have cash back?

>> Erica: Three Canadians

try to get their money back.

>> Erica: In a series of tests

that challenge the rules of


>> Erica: we reveal how to get

past the point of no returns.

( ♪♪ )

>> Erica: Every week, a million

shoppers jam the stores of

Toronto's Eaton Centre.

Three "Marketplace" viewers

are getting ready to join the

crowds but they won't be

spending, they will be taking

things back.

>> My name is Danielle Cloutier

and I'm from Windsor, Ontario.

>> My name is Ino Diville and

I'm from Milton, Ontario.

>> I'm Wolfgang van Rosean,

and I'm from Oakville.

>> Erica: We're sending these

three on a mission to test

those frustrating retail return

policies we've all struggled


>> You should be able to just

go right in, do an exchange

and it should be simple,

a simple process.

>> My personal experience with

the returns process, can be

very frustrating.

>> And I think a lot of people

are afraid to actually return

and complain.

( ♪♪ )

>> Erica: Stores in Canada

don't have to give you your

money back or an exchange or

even a credit.

That means a successful return

often comes down to a

shopper's individual ability.

And that's what we're testing.

>> Erica: You'll watch on

hidden camera as we give our

three testers challenges that

could handcuff the most

seasoned shopper.

But to help them out, we're

sending them to a special boot

camp first.

It's a crash course on how to

negotiate at the returns desk.

>> Erica: Hey, guys.


Leading the class is a guy

who's an expert in getting his


>> Hi, guys, nice to meet you.

( ♪♪ )

>> Erica: Bill Smalley is a

professional negotiator.

Who teaches others how to

do it, too.

>> Erica: All right.

Well, welcome to our

"Marketplace" boot camp where

it is all about the returns


Bill says the key is to get


>> The reason that negotiating

is uncomfortable has to do

with one thing, conflict.

>> Erica: Well, not everyone

here is uncomfortable.

Wolfgang is a bit of a ringer.

>> I return items on average

about twice a month, and my

conviction is that I gave you

money, my money is good, so

the product itself should also

be perfect.

>> Erica: Right away, our

experts got a tip.

Ask the clerk for help.

>> It's not you demanding

something, that's a

power-based approach.

It's not you trying to force

that person to comply with

your will because you feel


You're saying, let's work

towards what we both want


>> Erica: Danielle is fresh off

a difficult return.

When she got it home, her new

TV was damaged.

But Future Shop told her to

deal with the manufacturer, LG.

>> So I put the damaged TV

back in the box and I went to

the store the very next morning

to return it.

And I was told it was considered

concealed damage, therefore

it was LG's problem and not

Future Shop's.

Should have just done a

simple exchange.

>> Erica: Our experts got more

tips, stay calm and hang in


>> The toughest negotiators

have one advantage over most

of us.

They outlast us.

>> Erica: Time for our testers

to try out their new negotiating


I get to play a difficult sales

clerk as Ino tries to bring

back some earrings.

>> Hi, can I help you?

>> Yes, my wife doesn't like

them, doesn't fit her style.

>> Unfortunately, because they

are earrings, I can't return


We have a policy that it's not

hygienic to return these

things, so unfortunately I

have to give these back to


>> I don't know what to say.

At this point, I would just

cave in.


>> Because it's hygienic.

>> Erica: Okay.

So our testers need to review

the negotiating tip sheet.

Get comfortable with conflict.

Ask the clerk for help.

Stay calm.

And hang in there.

>> You up for it?

>> (together): Yes.

>> Okay.

Be on your way.

( ♪♪ )

>> Erica: Tomorrow, they'll

need those skills as they test

the art of negotiating for real.

( ♪♪ )

>> Erica: It's day two of our

"Marketplace" boot camp.

Welcome to return challenge


Are you ready?

>> (Together): Yes.

>> Erica: You certainly look


You're looking very professional

in your suit, Danielle.

Our testers have dressed for

return success.

And we accessorize with a few

hidden cameras.

Okay, guys, you ready for your

first challenge?

>> (Together): Yeah!

>> Erica: These guys don't

have a clue what products they

will be taking back or under

what conditions.

But they're about to find out.

Okay, you've got a printer ink

cartridge from Best Buy.

Ino, a pair of shoes from Aldo

and Danielle, you're returning

a doll to Disney.

All of these have their original

receipts, we paid cash.

Now I want you to take the

product out of the bags and

out of their packaging.

Then we up the stakes.

I want you to throw the

packaging away.

You're challenge is we want you

to bring back all of these


You've got the receipts but you

don't have the original


And we want you to get cash back


No store credit, no exchange.

Challenge one, no original


Because that defeats a lot of

shoppers at the returns desk.

>> I've never in my life

returned for cash any item

without the packaging.

I think I might have to

escalate to a manager.

>> Well, I'm thinking it's

going to take some persistence

on my part because it clearly

states on the receipt that a

full refund will not be issued

without the original packaging.

>> Erica: We hook up our

testers with our "Marketplace"

team, also wearing hidden


Do you think you're ready?

>> (Together): Yeah!

>> Erica: Okay, off you go.

With products in hand, but no

packaging, our testers will be

using common reasons for their


Inside Aldo, Ino is off to a

good start.

>> Erica: The first clerk hands

him to a second.

And a third.

>> We can't do that without the


>> I know, I know that.

>> Erica: He tries one of the

tips he's learned, ask for help.

>> Erica: While she gets the


Danielle's at a Disney store,

with an everyday story about a

doll with no packaging.

>> Erica: Once again, the

manager's called over.

>> Erica: A credit isn't good

enough, though, for our


We asked our testers to get

our cash back.

>> Erica: Now it's Danielle's

turn to pull a line from our

expert's playbook.

She asks for help, too.

>> Erica: Over at Best Buy,

Wolfgang's also using his

training to take back an ink

cartridge with no box.

>> Erica: How will our testers


Success or epic fail?

( ♪♪ )

( ♪♪ )

>> Erica: We're at Toronto's

Eaton Centre taking on Canada's

return policies.

In this first challenge,

returning products without the

original packaging.

At Best Buy, our tester,

Wolfgang, has no trouble

returning an ink cartridge

with no box.

>> Erica: And he's pretty

pleased about it.

>> Oh, yeah!

>> Erica: Over at Disney, the

manager repeats the store's

policy about needing the

packaging but then --

>> Erica: Success number two.

>> Erica: Danielle signs the

receipt and heads out with

money in hand.

( ♪♪ )

>> Erica: At Aldo, things are

more difficult for Ino.

He's explaining again what

happened to the shoe box.

This time to the manager.

>> Erica: A lot of shoppers

might give up at this point,

but Ino hangs in there.

>> Erica: Will it help?

>> Erica: And we're three for


( ♪♪ )

>> Erica: Back at boot camp,

congrats all around.

Ah, Bill!


>> Well done, guys!

>> Erica: In all three cases,

stores bent their return rules

after our testers admitted the

packaging was an issue and

asked for help.

Good job, that's exactly what

you were taught.

>> When you do that, it makes

it easier for them, you

actually reduce the conflict.

>> Erica: Now, are you ready

for challenge number two?

>> Yes.

>> Bring it on.

>> Erica: Wolf, for you, a pair

of sunglasses.

For you Ino, a bottle of rum.

Danielle, a book.

For the second challenge,

things are about to get a

whole lot harder.

Okay, now, hand over the


Thank you very much.

Thank you.

And for this challenge, hand

over your personal I.D.

>> What?

>> Erica: If they ask for your

name, your number, your phone

number, don't give anything.

We want you to try for cash

but you can settle for a store

credit or an exchange.

Challenge two targets the fact

a lot of stores now ask people

to disclose personal info

during returns.

>> I'm thinking it's crazy,

when you don't have a receipt,

you don't provide any I.D.,

I would turn myself away.

>> I don't think the request

for a full refund is going to

work but maybe an exchange is


>> I am so very against

providing personal information

so I'm looking forward to the


>> Erica: Refusing to give

personal info got Ino banned

from a Shoppers Drug Mart when

a $7 return got heated.

>> At the end, the store

manager did give me a refund

but, at the same time, he gave

me a paper and the paper

stated that should I return to

the store, I can be charged

and arrested.

>> Erica: So how will Ino do

here if he's asked for I.D.?

We sent him to Ontario's

government-run liquor store

where the clerk tells Ino,

without a receipt, he can only

exchange that bottle of rum.

>> Erica: Time to talk to the


Meanwhile, over at Sunglass

Hut, Wolfgang psychs himself

up and takes the plunge.

>> Erica: Right away, wolf

offered an exchange, but he's

holding out for cash.

>> Do you think you'll get

your money back?

>> I'm gonna try my hardest.

>> Erica: Same with Danielle

inside Indigo.

No receipt but determined to

get cash back for her books.

>> Erica: Both Danielle and Wolf

try for sympathy.

>> Erica: But the answers they

get are the same, no cash


>> Erica: Danielle finally

decides to take the credit and


But then the second part of

the challenge kicks in.

No giving personal


>> Erica: A second clerk gets

involved but Danielle stands


>> Erica: The clerk gives up,

and Danielle emerges with a

store credit and her privacy


>> Erica: Back at Sunglass

Hut, the clerk is on the phone

to the manager.

>> Erica: But sticks to store


>> Erica: Over at the liquor

store, the manager's hearing

that Ino only wants cash.

>> Erica: The manager says

something to the cashier.

It seems Ino might just get

his way.

But then, uh oh, a request for

his personal information.

>> Erica: This kind of thing

got Ino banned from one store,

how about at the liquor store?

>> Erica: He's told there's no

help to be had.

So what's the deal with I.D.?

Stephen O'Keefe speaks for


He's with the Retail Council

of Canada.

Should people have to give

their home phone number, their

E-mail, sign something with

their signature for a refund?

>> You put those conditions

hopefully not to affect the

honest customer, but to act

some kind of a deterrent

affect to the customers who

take advantage.

>> Erica: He says customers

who take advantage cost stores

more than a billion dollars a


>> The effects on the

profitability of the store is

so detrimental that you really

have to pay attention to it.

>> Erica: It's a balancing act.

Stores want happy customers

but can't take everything back.

So now we're really going to

find out where's the point of

no return.

We're about to start challenge

number three.

And it is out there.

This next challenge is based

on extreme returns that happen

more often than you think.

( ♪♪ )

>> Erica: Wolf.

>> Oh, Oh.

>> Erica: $10.

>> M'hm.

>> Erica: Your assignment is

to take that money, go into

McDonald's, order a meal --

>> Yes.

>> Erica: -- eat half of it.

>> Yes.

>> Erica: -- change your mind

and ask for a refund.

>> Wow.

That's crazy.

>> Erica: And Ino, here is

your assignment.

Can of paint, this is a custom

order that you have requested

a can of Lovely Lady, and now

you've changed your mind and

you want a refund.

>> Okay.

>> Erica: Danielle, for your

challenge --

Megan, could you step in


This dress has been worn

to a party and we're going

to ask you to return it.

Challenge three, extreme

returns that test how far

stores will go to keep a


>> There's no way that I can

return this.

It's next to impossible to

return it but never say never.

>> In this challenge I could

put myself in their shoes and

completely see how I should be

turned away.

>> I thought it was doable.

I still had the receipt and

the tags were still attached

to the dress.

>> Erica: Okay, guys, no easy


We're going to bring in the

reinforcements again, our

"Marketplace" staffers,

are you all ready?

>> Yes.

>> Erica: Okay.

Well, head on out.

Let's see what happens.

Our testers sure have their

work cut out for them with

this challenge.

With no returns or exchanges

allowed on tinted paint, Ino's

return seems the toughest one

of all.

>> Erica: Will he get a lovely


We'll find out.

( ♪♪ )

( ♪♪ )

>> Erica: Our three testers have

spread out in and around

Toronto's Eaton Centre.

They're trying to get a refund

or credit to see how far

stores will bend their return

policies to keep customers


Danielle's trying something

people do all the time.

Returning clothing after it's

been worn.

In the industry, it's a worry

called wardrobing.

>> Erica: Wolfgang's not

working nearly as hard at the

golden arches.

Danielle decides to politely


>> Erica: And it pays off.

>> Erica: The store may take

it back, but Stephen O'Keefe

with the Retail Council of

Canada says most

previously-enjoyed clothing

can't be resold.

>> So that is a hit to the

retailer because they are not

sending it back to the


If they're importing it so

they're taking a hundred

percent loss on that item.

>> Erica: How does it affect

us as a consumer?

>> It will affect us in higher

prices, a continuation of

higher prices in order to

offset that cost.

>> Erica: So you know, we

offered to pay back the

retailers we visited or donate

the money to charity.

At Canadian tire, all of Ino's

boot camp skills are focused

on that can of paint.

>> Erica: 20 seconds tick by.

>> Erica: Finally...

>> Erica: Ino outlasts the

manager, no cash, but a huge

result with the refund card.

>> Erica: Meantime, Wolf

prepares to return half a


>> Erica: Wow, he gets all his

money back.

Just goes to show how far a

company will go to keep a

customer satisfied.

>> Erica: Back at boot camp...

So it's been a long day.

I'm curious to find out what

the big messages were for you?

>> Trying to work with the


>> Remaining calm and

collective and confident.

>> The approach that engages

the other person.

>> As opposed to telling them

it is my right, you got to

fulfill it.

>> Erica: You guys were

terrific sports.

Thanks so much for taking place

in our "Marketplace" boot camp.

Use your force for good.

The lesson learned here?

Knowing how to negotiate can

bring many happy returns.

Good students.

>> They did very well.

( ♪♪ )

The Description of Returns desk problems: How you can get your money back (CBC Marketplace)