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What Ever Happened to Customer Service

I recently came across a Facebook post about a woman and her daughter ordered off a plane in the US. The woman was arrested eventually, and locked up for 12 hours. All because she refused to sit with her daughter on a seat with vomit. Not hers or her daughter’s vomit. They boarded the plane and were assigned a seat with puke on it. Can you imagine that? When she complained about this to the flight attendant, she was told there was nothing she (the flight attendant) could do about it as it was not her job to clean the seats. So whose job is it? Should the lady clean the vomit off the seat she paid hundreds of dollars to get on? What happened to customer service? Has everyone gone mad?

 

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American Customer Service

I have visited many countries and some of the worst service I have ever received happened while visiting America. We visited New York last year and the service we received from the hotel we stayed in and the restaurants we ate in were very bad. The staff members are usually very disgruntled. You can tell by just looking at them, that they do not want to be there. The service improved when we left New York. We had a road trip from New York to Maryland and as soon as we got to New Jersey, I noticed people looked more relaxed and happy. Some of the staff we came across in a fast food joint even had a smile on their face while attending to customers.

I won’t say customer service is non-existent in the US, but it feels like that in many places. Sometimes, it feels like all they care about is their tip and they don’t bother to go above and beyond for their customers. Which is why I wasn’t too surprised when I read this woman’s story. I also watched the video and saw how this woman was treated by the airline. It was horrible and I now know not to ever fly with that airline. All the flight attendant should have done was to move their seat and or get the seats cleaned properly asap, with plenty apologies. Instead, she came back to her customer with an attitude and got her and her daughter off the plane.

The customer in question got arrested because she refused to get off the plane, which is well within her right. She had every right to refuse to sit on a seat with vomit. I would have done the exact same thing.

 

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What Ever Happened to Customer Service

In this situation, there was no customer service. This is not the way you treat a paying customer. That flight attendant would not have a job if the planes were not filled with customers. The airline needs to get that flight attendant sacked and they also need to train the rest of their staff on how to treat their customers. I think companies need to ensure all their staff members get up to date training on customer service.

I know sometimes customers can be impossible. Customer service is not the easiest job to do with difficult customers. I know all about that because I worked in customer service for many years, and I have dealt with my own fair share of horrible customers. Having said that, providing excellent customer service is always required no matter how terrible a customer is.

 

Have you had your fair share of horrible customer service? How did you handle it? Please sound off in the comments section below. Let’s chat.

Thanks for stopping by.

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Why I Left My Customer Service Job

Before I became self-employed, I did various customer service jobs. It was over the phone, so it was ok for me at that time, as I prefer dealing with customer over the phone than  face to face confrontation customer service. I was a customer service agent for well over 4 years, and it was hard. But it paid my bills and kept me busy, so it was all good.

Back then, I always knew I wanted more. The customer service job  was not mentally stimulating enough. It became a chore. The pay wasn’t great and the hours were very long. I even hard to work on some weekends, which I didn’t like much. Plus, I hated it when I had difficult customers or cases to deal with, and that was on a daily basis, making my life even harder.

I have been on both sides of the fence; as a customer service agent and customer. So I know the frustrations of working in a noisy call centre, with complicated systems and absent supervisors. Which is why I try to be extra patient and tolerant when dealing with customer service agents.

I recently came across an infographic done by the guys at CCSN which I found quite interesting. Here is the infographic below.

 

Customer service image

 

I agree with all the information on this infographic. For me, excellent customer service means –

 

I am not kept waiting

I called my phone company the other day and I was on the queue waiting to be answered for almost an hour. That to me is just madness. I like it when my call is answered immediately or within a few minutes. That is my definition of excellent customer service. Keeping customers waiting for hours is totally unacceptable.

 

There are other contact options

I like handling my business online so calling a call centre is usually my last resort. I rather send an email or do what I have to do online. Good customer service would provide other contact options for their customers to make use of. As a full-time blogger, I spend majority of my waking hours online, so I rather so out my utilities and anything else that needs sorting online too.

 

My query is dealt with quickly

The whole small talk thingy confuses me. Why would I want to talk about the weather when dealing with a dodgy broadband service?

I hated small talk as a customer service agent and I hate it as a customer too. It makes no sense to me. I just don’t have the time or the desire to engaged in meaningless chitchat when I call a company. Excellent customer service to me means my query is dealt with quickly and properly.

 

I am not passed around

Being passed from department to department pisses me off. Most times I end up ending the call in frustration. This usually happens when I am unlucky enough to speak with clueless customer service agents.

 

To be frank, good customer service isn’t rocket service. It simply means putting the customer first in all decisions. If companies put their customers first, they will have happy customers and employees.

 

What is your definition of excellent customer service? Please sound off in the comments section.

 

*Collaborative post

 

StressFreePrint – Blogger Business Cards

So I have been nursing the idea of having business cards for my blog and freelance writing career for months now, but never really got around to sorting it out until the guys at StressFreePrint got in touch. I was offered an opportunity to try out their business cards in return for an honest review. My experience with this company was a Stress Free Experience all the way.

Business Card

The entire process was so simple and every step was explained to me in detail. The company website is very user-friendly and easy to navigate. I dealt with extremely helpful staff, they went over and beyond every time. It was a pleasant experience.

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The Process

  • I went through the various business card paper designs offered by Stress Free Print and I decided on the Standard Semi Gloss Finish/Silk Art Paper. This was also recommended by the very helpful Customer Experience Manager.
  •  I sent across my blog header and the necessary information – blog name, url, Twitter name, Instagram name, Facebook name and all the other important stuff.
  •  A proof was sent to me to go through the next day. After I confirmed the final proof, my business cards were approved and sent for printing.
  • My business cards were despatched within two working days.
  •  I received my business cards the next day.

I received 500 well packaged business cards in little sturdy plastic boxes. I the design, the quality of the business cards speak for themselves and I can’t wait to start handing them out. I am so impressed with the level of service I received from this company, the attention to detail and customer service is like no other. Thank you StressFreePrint.

Have you tried StressFreePrint? Do you have business cards? Sound off in the comment section.

Thanks for reading.

*StressFreePrint sent me the business cards in return for an honest review. Opinions are 100% mine.

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