How do you ask for an employee's name?

I've been mystery shopping for a couple of months and fortunately most employees I've encountered either have a nametag or the report allows for a description. Last week, while shopping 2 stores in the same town, no one wore nametags. It is a very small town, maybe everyone knows everybody! Of course the instructions specified no name - no pay. Employees on the floor are a little easier to chat with and get a name but the cashier?
So, all of you experienced shoppers, what are some creative ways to ask for a name without looking crazy or stalkerish?

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Sometimes I just say "And what is your name?" Or, if that seems to abrupt, I say "I'm Rofl. What is your name? ...... Nice to meet you, Susie." Or "I really appreciate how much you've helped me. What is your name?" Or ..... she looks like my pastor's wife or my girlfriend's sorority sister. Or my next door neighbor told me her son works here or my brother said last time he came in someone named Jason helped him. There are lots of reasons why you would ask for a name even if you are not a stalker or a mystery shopper.
I usually introduce myself by my first name and stick out my hand, thanking them for great service. Most of them automatically respond with their name. If the service was awful and there is another employee, I might ask another employee for the desired one's name. Other ruses that I have used is to say that I like to thank people for their work and I ask for their first name ... once I pointed at them and said, "Kurt? Charlie? We met, right? and he told me his name (Darrell)."

I have also said, "Can I have your name for a positive Yelp review?"

I have to confess that in very suspicious places, like bad-neighborhood cellphone outlets, there are definitely employees who will not give you their names. Most companies for whom I have worked will understand if you give a good description and say the nametag was obscured or unavailable, so be sure you capture height, hairstyle, glasses or not, and eye color.

Doing my best, every day
I have had cashiers working on gas stations right off the interstate absolutely, categorically refuse to give their names. I just explain in the report. Yeah, well, I wouldn't want my name out if I worked a busy truck stop off a main highway, either, so I totally understand.

I look at the receipt, and it often has a name printed on it. Then I can say "Are you Penelope? That's what's on the receipt." Oh even just, "And what's your name?"

It just depends.
"What's your name?" I say. "X," X says. "Thank you so much, X, for helping me today," I say. Smile and be confident and be assertive, like you want to address people as people. Boom. Got the name.
If it is a cashier, mostly everyone will know the persons name. Just ask another employee what their name is and then say, "they were really nice. I think I will tell a manager or someone". Then you can just leave without telling the manager. easy

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 04/16/2019 08:44AM by MemphisJ86.
My husband often asks people their name. I listened to him a few times and just practiced asking. Thanks. What's your name? They usually tell me. I say Enjoy your day. Something like that.
I find I can't say they remind me of someone, or any of those tactics.
I always say, "Is your name Amanda?" They will always say, "No, it's xxxx!" I then say "Oh okay, you look just like my nephew's girlfriend" or someone obscure like that. It works every time.

Always take the high road.
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