Challenge 25 is giving me so much anxiety - retail work

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Anonymous #1
#1
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#1
Hi guys,

I currently work at a supermarket and we use the challenge/think 25 policy, but it is giving me so much anxiety as I struggle to know if someone looks under 25. I have panic attacks when I get home after every shift, thinking I've done something wrong and I might be prosecuted, which would be hell for me as I want to work with children for my career after retail.

I like my job enough but its things like this and the threat of prosecution that makes me want to hand in my notice. Please give me any advice on what to do. Thanks.
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Cancelled Alice
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#2
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#2
If in doubt at all challenge. That’s the best advice I can give you. There are consequences to everything you do in life, supermarkets stand to loose a lot if they get caught selling alcohol to under 18s so they are making you hyper aware of this risk.
Trust yourself.
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Anonymous #1
#3
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Thanks for your reply. However, I'm thinking more of features. The only features I can think of is 'baby faces', no wrinkles, behaviour like buying only alcohol rather than a week's shop, being in a group, wearing fashionable clothing that is trendy amongst teenagers - is this enough? Tbh I get a little bit frustrated with the 'if in doubt' rhetoric as what it means is I end up IDing someone in their 30s who I think looks young enough to be 24 and when they explain they don't have ID because they are 30, I tell them to wait a minute while I get my colleague. Then my colleague (who has worked there far longer than I have) says 'no they are fine', and moves on, but then the customer is annoyed at us both for taking so long. I just wish there was more protocol and guidance for new workers like me, as I don't want to be wasting anybody's time, which is how the customers make me feel, but I also don't want this hanging over my head.
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Zarek
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#4
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#4
Share your dilemma with your manager or an experienced colleague and get some further mentoring. You’ll not get in to trouble if you can show you’ve acted within your training. It can never be an exact science and I guess erring on the safe side is usually ok. Most people over 25 would probably view it as a compliment to be IDed. You could also get some advice about the anxiety from your GP
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Anonymous #2
#5
Report 1 month ago
#5
Just ID everyone who you think needs it, if they say they are 30, compliment them on looking young or something and move on. Trust me, they will have forgotten about it by the end of the day - its like, an extra minute at most.
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Smeraldettoi
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#6
Report 1 month ago
#6
(Original post by Anonymous)
Thanks for your reply. However, I'm thinking more of features. The only features I can think of is 'baby faces', no wrinkles, behaviour like buying only alcohol rather than a week's shop, being in a group, wearing fashionable clothing that is trendy amongst teenagers - is this enough? Tbh I get a little bit frustrated with the 'if in doubt' rhetoric as what it means is I end up IDing someone in their 30s who I think looks young enough to be 24 and when they explain they don't have ID because they are 30, I tell them to wait a minute while I get my colleague. Then my colleague (who has worked there far longer than I have) says 'no they are fine', and moves on, but then the customer is annoyed at us both for taking so long. I just wish there was more protocol and guidance for new workers like me, as I don't want to be wasting anybody's time, which is how the customers make me feel, but I also don't want this hanging over my head.
I’m 27 and still get ID’d buying red bull for some reason. If the person has half a brain they’ll take it as a compliment so don’t worry
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Joinedup
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#7
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#7
(Original post by Anonymous)
Thanks for your reply. However, I'm thinking more of features. The only features I can think of is 'baby faces', no wrinkles, behaviour like buying only alcohol rather than a week's shop, being in a group, wearing fashionable clothing that is trendy amongst teenagers - is this enough? Tbh I get a little bit frustrated with the 'if in doubt' rhetoric as what it means is I end up IDing someone in their 30s who I think looks young enough to be 24 and when they explain they don't have ID because they are 30, I tell them to wait a minute while I get my colleague. Then my colleague (who has worked there far longer than I have) says 'no they are fine', and moves on, but then the customer is annoyed at us both for taking so long. I just wish there was more protocol and guidance for new workers like me, as I don't want to be wasting anybody's time, which is how the customers make me feel, but I also don't want this hanging over my head.
The customers might tut and tsk... but it's only a minor inconvenience to them, they feel stupid for not bringing ID to buy alcohol and try to make you feel bad about it.

The guidelines you're working with put the onus on till operators which IMO isn't fair
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Anonymous #1
#8
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#8
Thank you for all your replies. You guys have really helped my anxiety. I'll speak to my manager/experienced colleague about my concerns although I do agree with JoinedUp that the guidelines seem slightly unfair for operators.
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martin7
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#9
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#9
(Original post by Anonymous)
I currently work at a supermarket and we use the challenge/think 25 policy, but it is giving me so much anxiety as I struggle to know if someone looks under 25. I have panic attacks when I get home after every shift, thinking I've done something wrong and I might be prosecuted, which would be hell for me as I want to work with children for my career after retail.

I like my job enough but its things like this and the threat of prosecution that makes me want to hand in my notice. Please give me any advice on what to do. Thanks.
Challenge 25 is a company policy. Not complying with it could ultimately end up with you losing your job, but you won't be prosecuted. The reason for it being 25, I imagine, is that it gives 7 years of leeway. An 18-year-old might look like they're 21, for example, but probably won't look they're 25.

The issue where you could be prosecuted is for selling to someone who's under 18.

(Original post by Anonymous)
Thank you for all your replies. You guys have really helped my anxiety. I'll speak to my manager/experienced colleague about my concerns although I do agree with JoinedUp that the guidelines seem slightly unfair for operators.
The guidelines are to protect you as a checkout operator, as well as your employers. The employee can be prosecuted and fined up to £5000 (and lose their job); the employer can be prosecuted too, and possibly lose their licence to sell alcohol.
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SarcAndSpark
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#10
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#10
(Original post by Anonymous)
Thanks for your reply. However, I'm thinking more of features. The only features I can think of is 'baby faces', no wrinkles, behaviour like buying only alcohol rather than a week's shop, being in a group, wearing fashionable clothing that is trendy amongst teenagers - is this enough? Tbh I get a little bit frustrated with the 'if in doubt' rhetoric as what it means is I end up IDing someone in their 30s who I think looks young enough to be 24 and when they explain they don't have ID because they are 30, I tell them to wait a minute while I get my colleague. Then my colleague (who has worked there far longer than I have) says 'no they are fine', and moves on, but then the customer is annoyed at us both for taking so long. I just wish there was more protocol and guidance for new workers like me, as I don't want to be wasting anybody's time, which is how the customers make me feel, but I also don't want this hanging over my head.
Honestly, I find this pretty weird from the customer- most people carry some form of ID, especially if they know they are buying alcohol. It's really normal to be asked for ID in your late 20s/early 30s, especially if you are only buying alcohol.

It's their problem, not yours.
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Beastlyhusla
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#11
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#11
I always ask. As you'll be held responsible. Tell them you need to see ID, if they have facemask, tell them to remove it and check both ID and person. Then jokingly say, sorry you look younger than I thought. Usually get yourself and customer to laugh it off. If they dont have an ID, either refuse them or ask one of the checkout leaders to help you.
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