I came across today’s Daily Prompt and thought, “holy crap…I could write a book about this.”
Good customer service definitely does exist but the bad ones just seem to overwhelm that number by an astronomical amount.
Working in the customer service industry, I remind myself of the constant bad customer service I’ve received over the years. I try to offer the best of the best, catering to the customers needs in the most polite and efficient way possible. Of course there’s the need to vent after a phone call or after the customer leaves, but it’s the service that counts not what I think about it afterwards.
What do I believe is good service? Well the descriptions are endless but a few would be as follows:
1. Good manners.
2. Polite and bright attitude
3. Don’t cut me off.
4. Don’t talk down to me.
5. Take your time with me considering I’m someone purchasing or utilizing your service.
Granted the service industry is very frustrating at times based on the type of customer you receive, but it should be a norm when it comes to customer service that we approach customers with some sort of respect even if we get none. Service representatives work long hours on the phone or with face-to-face interactions, and their frustrations and angst is very much understood! I’m one of them! BUT if you think about it, it’s good service that sells. Of course the name or value of a product may sell itself, but good customer service is sometimes the breaking point of making a sale or creating a reoccurring customer. So now that I have that clarified, here’s my story.
Verizon. That is probably all I need to say but I will elaborate.
I recently ordered the FIOS double play for my house and chose to do a self-install as it seemed easy enough. My story begins from the moment I was considering ordering and talking to a sales rep. Granted, their job is to make the sale but would it hurt to hear me out first?
“The website says that the activation fee is waived and yet the total has the activation fee included. Is there some sort of error?” – my question
His reply – “Did you place the order yet? Please give me your order confirmation and we’ll be able to tell if there is an activation fee or not.”
“Please answer my question. Is the activation fee waived or is there some hidden fee I don’t know about?” – my second question.
His reply – “I can’t help you out if you haven’t placed the order.”
Really? You work as a sales rep and you can’t figure out if the activation fee is included or not? You can’t go and double check to see if such a thing can be waived? I need to place an order before I can be helped? Are you shitting me? Give me an answer that’s actually somewhat relevant to my question and maybe I wouldn’t be so frustrated. So basically, they’re going to make me buy the service first and then tell me that there will be this charge, that charge, and maybe that charge. Bullshit.
So I hang up and call back in hopes for another representative. Of course, the next one is even worse.
I didn’t even get a chance to ask my question because for some reason Verizon seemed to have the worst connection along with sound I’ve ever come across. I checked my phone to see if I was the problem but no, this one is on them. The call is constantly going in and out although they seem to be able to hear me since they’re taking down my information with no problem.
“Please give me your email address so that I can confirm your information” – she says.
I give her my information and there’s a bit of a long pause. I say “hello?” in order to make sure she’s still there.
“Please sir. You need to be patient. I cannot verify your information with you badgering me.” -she says.
Badger? Really? Since when has the word ‘hello’ become a form of badgering? She then tells me she’s putting me on hold.
Sure, why not? Go ahead. At least I’ll know I’m on hold. For 5 minutes I’m on hold listening to static and what they consider music. Then it goes dead. There’s a bit of silence. Then comes the busy signal. I’ve been hung up on.
Usually, the process is to call the customer back in the case of a disconnection but no it never came.
Of course, I called again. This time to get what seemed like a nice person. Information verified and all that junk in a matter of a few minutes. Great. I can finally move on and get my TV set up. I had a bit of a hard time understanding the guy since he had somewhat of an accent but everything seemed to be okay. Too good to be true? Obviously…
This guy starts talking down to me. How do I know? There’s that tone of voice people take when they feel like the person they’re speaking to knows absolutely nothing. Do I sound like an idiot to you? I’m just calling to find out about a price discrepancy, and yet you sit there telling me about the different specs of the set top box, the router and how no ordinary person can install it on their own. To make matters worse, he slows down his speech and starts to talk to me as if I were a five-year-old. The funniest thing he said was “sir, you’re going to need a cable, not a wire, but a cable to connect your TV to the set top box.”
Shit. I didn’t know there was a difference… “I’m just going to use an HDMI cord for the connection.” -I tell him.
“Oh! Good Job! I’m surprised you know that one! You can go ahead and use that too. But sir, it’s a cable not a cord.”- he says.
MOTHERFK…. I hung up. I gave up. I ordered it online and never called back. These people are assholes and hell I can do a better job describing this crap because they have no idea what the hell they’re talking about. Maybe they’re reading off a book or a script, but holy hell, I’ve never been so dumbfounded by the idiocy of a company before; well that’s a blatant lie…
So there. That is one of my worst experiences. There’s plenty more and I’m sure the rest of you can agree. It’s sell first and possibly care later.