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(Fark)   CSB Sunday Morning: Adventures in dealing with customer service   ( fark.com) divider line
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2954 clicks; posted to Main » on 15 Apr 2018 at 9:00 AM (13 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2018-04-14 10:12:12 PM  
So I walked to Walmart today to get some exercise and get a pie crust. The self checkout lanes were full, but the conventional checkout next to it had no line, and the person checking out had only a few things left. I decided to be retro and old school and so forth and actually interact with a human being.

I realized my mistake once I had set my items on the conveyor and got a look at the situation. I noticed that the cashier was wearing a "20 years" name tag, but she appeared to have taken the job after retiring from her primary career sometime in the Reagan administration. This was simply the slowest cashier I had ever seen. She really didn't seem to understand debit cards at all, much less the whole concept of cash back which the person in front of me was attempting to receive. But I wasn't in a hurry, so I decided to wait it out. I almost wish she had written a check instead.

Once the receipt had printed for the poor woman in front of me, the cashier took it and began to examine it. She took a highlighter and swiped it over a few items, then took her time explaining the survey on the back and the $1000 cash giveaway. As the customer pushed her cart away, the cashier stared after her as if she was thinking she had somehow gotten the bad end of the deal.

So it came to me. She swiped my pie crusts and began attempting to bag them, a process which I won't go into specific details about but rest assured there was saliva involved. (Note: although saliva can provide both lubrication and adhesion that can help to open a stubborn plastic bag,  when combined with Fix-o-Dent, its utility for this purpose is quite diminished). No problem, I thought, the pie crusts are in their own wrapper, and I should be able to repair the broken one once it thaws.

"Ya makin' a pie?" She asked.

"No ma'am, a quiche," I replied. My sister had visited recently and brought me lots of eggs from my niece's 4-H chickens.

"A what?" The cashier asked.

"A quiche," I spoke louder, thinking maybe she was a bit hard of hearing, or perhaps her hearing aid's battery had run down in all the time it took her to get the pie crust in the bag.

"What's that?" She asked. I stood for a second, mystified that someone who (based on the accent) had lived their life in the southern US, presumably through at least one World War (although two would not have been surprising) and had never heard of tossing your leftovers into a pie crust with beaten eggs and baking it.  It's an easy way to get another meal out of leftovers that might not feed everyone otherwise.

"A quiche. You know, when you take about 5 or 6 eggs, beat them, throw in some meat and vegetables and cheese, and toss it in a pie crust and bake it."

"Huh. So you do it with eggs? What's it called? A cheese?"

"A quiche. Q-U-I-C-H-E," I replied, thinking that perhaps this wasn't my day for human interaction at all. I decided to make one last stab at salvaging the conversation. "You know the restaurant Ruby Tuesday?"

"The what?"

"The restaurant, Ruby Tuesday."

"Are they around here?"

"Well, they have one in [local city about 40 minutes away]. They have quiche, several different kinds. It's pretty good."

"What's it called? Roomy what?"

"Ruby Tuesday. You know, like the Beatles song."

"The who?"

At this point I realized that in the interest of my own dignity I wasn't going to be interacting with any Walmart cashiers in the next few months because I heard myself saying, "No, The Who does the music for the CSI shows. The Beatles were a different band."
______________________________________​________

So we've all had to deal with some less-than-optimum customer service in our time. Sometimes, you get angry, sometimes you get disappointed, and sometimes you just go with it and have some fun. Regale us with your tales of your experience with those who should perhaps have chosen a position more in line with their skill set.
 
2018-04-14 10:19:01 PM  
I used to do CS for Boost Mobile. I'd get death threats over amounts as little as ten cents relatively often.
 
2018-04-14 10:22:54 PM  

ox45tallboy: So I walked to Walmart today to get some exercise and get a pie crust. The self checkout lanes were full, but the conventional checkout next to it had no line, and the person checking out had only a few things left. I decided to be retro and old school and so forth and actually interact with a human being.

I realized my mistake once I had set my items on the conveyor and got a look at the situation. I noticed that the cashier was wearing a "20 years" name tag, but she appeared to have taken the job after retiring from her primary career sometime in the Reagan administration. This was simply the slowest cashier I had ever seen. She really didn't seem to understand debit cards at all, much less the whole concept of cash back which the person in front of me was attempting to receive. But I wasn't in a hurry, so I decided to wait it out. I almost wish she had written a check instead.

Once the receipt had printed for the poor woman in front of me, the cashier took it and began to examine it. She took a highlighter and swiped it over a few items, then took her time explaining the survey on the back and the $1000 cash giveaway. As the customer pushed her cart away, the cashier stared after her as if she was thinking she had somehow gotten the bad end of the deal.

So it came to me. She swiped my pie crusts and began attempting to bag them, a process which I won't go into specific details about but rest assured there was saliva involved. (Note: although saliva can provide both lubrication and adhesion that can help to open a stubborn plastic bag,  when combined with Fix-o-Dent, its utility for this purpose is quite diminished). No problem, I thought, the pie crusts are in their own wrapper, and I should be able to repair the broken one once it thaws.

"Ya makin' a pie?" She asked.

"No ma'am, a quiche," I replied. My sister had visited recently and brought me lots of eggs from my niece's 4-H chickens.

"A what?" The cashier asked.

"A quiche," I spoke louder, thinking may ...


Dear lord, I thought a former co-worker of mine was dumb, but this cashier makes my co-worker a genius by comparison.
 
2018-04-14 10:29:31 PM  
I recall my first worst experience in retail dealing with a terrible customer.
My first job at 16 was K-Mart. My first summer there I was assigned to Layaway on Saturday mornings. One of the first things we did in the morning was run an overdue layaway report which showed us who hadn't paid beyond their deposit or whose layaways had been paid but were 30 days overdue; we had to return them to stock, put the returns in carts by department, and then cancel the layaways so that when people returned to pick them up we gave them refunds instead.

This particular Saturday was in June, and I had one layaway to return--the woman had put her minimum down and made no further payments, so I canceled it, and put everything into a cart [it was all kids clothing; summer stuff. And it all went clearance]. I called softlines to pick up the merchandise and went back to morning opening routines. Layaway was right next to the store manager's office, so you never knew when he'd just pop in. Had to look busy. A woman came up before we opened and she had a cart full of crap; she demanded I open and take care of her. I couldn't since we had no money in the register and since this was 1995 the computers were not fast.

She came back about ten minutes later, I asked what she needed; she wanted to pay off her current layaway and put a new one on. Of course, the layaway she wanted was the one I returned. I explained the situation, she demanded her refund, and I told her she didn't get a refund since the minimum deposit of $5 was the restocking fee. She began yelling and screaming, calling me names and then demanded I get everything she put on layaway. I told her I couldn't do that and the merchandise had gone out to the salesfloor. She demanded I go get the clothing--which was on clearance--and I refused. She once again screamed and at this point, the store manager opened the door to his office and heard her screaming and cursing and using racial slurs, and she demanded her $5, which I said she could not have. So, she started throwing objects at me, culminating in a blender missing my head by an inch and the box smashing against the wall. She was a large woman and started trying to climb over the counter; the loss prevention staff came up behind her and got her down, the store manager called the police, and the woman received a lifetime ban from K-Mart. I think the store manager tried to press assault charges on her.

Ultimately, working retail gave me an opportunity to have a thicker skin in dealing with the public--and really prepared me to work in prison administration.
 
2018-04-14 10:30:55 PM  
The early 90s weren't known for exceptional tech support. But, I had a Genie Screw Drive. It was a garage door opener. It was supposed to be the bees knees in harsh climates like Fort Drum. And, it was great for a couple of months until the real bad weather arrived. Then, it just stopped. Like, wouldn't do anything.

So, I call the tech support number figuring that I was going to have to take it all down and ship it to some far away place at my own expense and so on and so forth.

This thousand year old sleepy sounding lady answers the call. I explain that I need tech support. She explains that she's it.

Fine, whatever, I think. I started explaining what was going on. She asks if it got real cold.

"Yup."

"Yeah, do you have a ladder and a phillips head screwdriver? I can talk you through reseating the card that has come loose and we'll sacrifice one of the case screws to hold the card so that it doesn't come loose again. I'll send you the screw to replace the case screw after we get your opener working again."

Thousand year old lady knew exactly what was wrong and how to fix it.
 
2018-04-14 10:32:32 PM  
Years ago, I was in a Big Box Store, trying to make a simple purchase. I guess I didn't look at the sign for which line I was in. The person behind the counter said "I can't help you; this is customer service."

I can't help you. This is customer service.

As soon as those words were in the air, the clerk said "I mean, how can I help you."

We shared a moment there, we did.
 
2018-04-14 10:34:36 PM  
"I'll have a cheeseburger with no condiments."

"Are tomatoes a condiment?"
 
2018-04-14 10:35:06 PM  
I went to the high-end, gourmet, expensive grocery to get tournedos (beef tenderloin medallions) for a party I was catering.  None of the 5 people in the butcher shop knew what I was talking about.  I stood at the counter for 5 minutes saying the word slowly, explaining it, and finally coaching them through the process of cutting them.  I came this close to walking through the swinging door and grabbing the knife out of the guy's hand.
 
2018-04-14 10:46:23 PM  

Bathia_Mapes: ox45tallboy: So I walked to Walmart today to get some exercise and get a pie crust. The self checkout lanes were full, but the conventional checkout next to it had no line, and the person checking out had only a few things left. I decided to be retro and old school and so forth and actually interact with a human being.

I realized my mistake once I had set my items on the conveyor and got a look at the situation. I noticed that the cashier was wearing a "20 years" name tag, but she appeared to have taken the job after retiring from her primary career sometime in the Reagan administration. This was simply the slowest cashier I had ever seen. She really didn't seem to understand debit cards at all, much less the whole concept of cash back which the person in front of me was attempting to receive. But I wasn't in a hurry, so I decided to wait it out. I almost wish she had written a check instead.

Once the receipt had printed for the poor woman in front of me, the cashier took it and began to examine it. She took a highlighter and swiped it over a few items, then took her time explaining the survey on the back and the $1000 cash giveaway. As the customer pushed her cart away, the cashier stared after her as if she was thinking she had somehow gotten the bad end of the deal.

So it came to me. She swiped my pie crusts and began attempting to bag them, a process which I won't go into specific details about but rest assured there was saliva involved. (Note: although saliva can provide both lubrication and adhesion that can help to open a stubborn plastic bag,  when combined with Fix-o-Dent, its utility for this purpose is quite diminished). No problem, I thought, the pie crusts are in their own wrapper, and I should be able to repair the broken one once it thaws.

"Ya makin' a pie?" She asked.

"No ma'am, a quiche," I replied. My sister had visited recently and brought me lots of eggs from my niece's 4-H chickens.

"A what?" The cashier asked.

"A quiche," I spoke louder, thinking may ...

Dear lord, I thought a former co-worker of mine was dumb, but this cashier makes my co-worker a genius by comparison.


The Walmart I go to used to have a woman that yelled while using the intercom system. It was as if she didn't think that modern technology wasn't capable of broadcasting a voice clearly over long distances. Nearly everyone in the store stopped what they were doing and winced at the same time.
 
2018-04-14 10:55:17 PM  
I do customer support for a living.
I am the guy I would want to get if I called for help.
I am the guy you would want to get if you called for help.
You get a pleasant greeting, and I verify your contact info just in case we get cut off or I need to call you or email you.
I listen, and look around in the data while I listen.
What you are telling me is what you perceive the problem to be, but you may not really know what it is. But I listen. I assess what you will accept as a resolution, as well as what will fix the issue in such a way that you understand how it happened and how to avoid that issue in the future.
I document how we fixed it, and you get a step by step, no matter what the issue, in your inbox before I hang up, just to verify you got it.
I go over the fix with you and you know it is taken care of.
I never talk down to you, or treat you like an idiot.
I know fully well that no matter what my expertise, I have been in your shoes.
When you get me the second time you call in, you are relieved to hear my voice. You know you are in good hands.
And the voice is that of a late night FM smooth jazz DJ.
I remember your name and how to pronounce it. I make you feel at ease.
Yea, though you walk through the valley of the shadow of uncertainty, you will fear no evil: for I am with you; my case notes and awesome, personal sign-off comfort you.

And you will fill out that survey and tell them I need a raise.

How hard is my job? No need to be a prick.
Be nice. Be a super hero.
Even a nerd in khakis can be a prince.
 
2018-04-14 10:56:15 PM  

eyeq360: Bathia_Mapes: ox45tallboy: So I walked to Walmart today to get some exercise and get a pie crust. The self checkout lanes were full, but the conventional checkout next to it had no line, and the person checking out had only a few things left. I decided to be retro and old school and so forth and actually interact with a human being.

I realized my mistake once I had set my items on the conveyor and got a look at the situation. I noticed that the cashier was wearing a "20 years" name tag, but she appeared to have taken the job after retiring from her primary career sometime in the Reagan administration. This was simply the slowest cashier I had ever seen. She really didn't seem to understand debit cards at all, much less the whole concept of cash back which the person in front of me was attempting to receive. But I wasn't in a hurry, so I decided to wait it out. I almost wish she had written a check instead.

Once the receipt had printed for the poor woman in front of me, the cashier took it and began to examine it. She took a highlighter and swiped it over a few items, then took her time explaining the survey on the back and the $1000 cash giveaway. As the customer pushed her cart away, the cashier stared after her as if she was thinking she had somehow gotten the bad end of the deal.

So it came to me. She swiped my pie crusts and began attempting to bag them, a process which I won't go into specific details about but rest assured there was saliva involved. (Note: although saliva can provide both lubrication and adhesion that can help to open a stubborn plastic bag,  when combined with Fix-o-Dent, its utility for this purpose is quite diminished). No problem, I thought, the pie crusts are in their own wrapper, and I should be able to repair the broken one once it thaws.

"Ya makin' a pie?" She asked.

"No ma'am, a quiche," I replied. My sister had visited recently and brought me lots of eggs from my niece's 4-H chickens.

"A what?" The cashier asked.

"A quiche," I ...


Heh!

Reminds me of an elderly neighbor from some years ago. I was at her apartment one day when she was making a long distance call and she was literally shouting at the top of her lungs.

When she got off the phone I asked her if she had a bad connection or something. She told me, "No, I was calling the east coast and since it's so far away I wanted to make sure they could hear me".

I just looked at her and didn't say anything because I didn't want to hurt her feelings, but I felt sorry for whomever was at the other end of the phone.
 
2018-04-14 11:03:22 PM  
Once had a guy come into a KB Toys to get a refund on a toy he insisted he bought from us.  Wanted his money back, in cash, because the toy was defective. He was told we couldn't do that because he didn't have a receipt, or the package with the bar code on it, and it wasn't an item we carried anyway. He wanted to talk to a manager, so I went and told him the same thing.  He didn't like that, so the store manager came to talk to him. None of the managers could remember ever seeing that particular toy- a noise making machine gun that was different from the one we DID carry- and we had all worked in that store for more than a year. Guy insists he bought it from us and that we damned well would give him his cash back. So I go in the office spend 20 minutes trying to look it up on the computer using any little scrap of information I can find on the toy. Did I mention this was on Black Friday? This was on Black Friday. I found exactly one item by that manufacturer in the system, and it wasn't a toy gun.  I come back out, tell the store manager, and she tells the guy she's sorry but there's nothing she can do, and hands him the toy back.  He shoves it back at her, says he's never shopping with us again, and storms out of the store. We toss the thing in the back room an carry on. A few hours later I get a break, and just for the hell of it put new batteries in the  toy...
Learned a valuable lesson: never take their word for it that it's broken.
 
2018-04-14 11:08:27 PM  
I was returning to NYC from Reno.  Some idiot (me) had me going from Reno to SF to Chicago to Newark.  The first flight was in the late afternoon, but of course, I had to check out in the morning, so I really had nothing to do all day.  I went to the airport early and talked to the ticket agent.  She put me on an earlier fight to SF (no charge), but said that all she could do.  So I got to SF hours early.  I wandered the gates at SF and saw an airline help center, so I got on the queue.  Chuckling to the clerk, I told my tale.  He keyed in my data, laughed at my stupid itinerary, hit a bunch of keys, and printed me a new boarding pass for a much sooner direct flight.
 
2018-04-14 11:15:35 PM  
I had an interesting experience just this afternoon.  I was out running errands and dropped by a Del Taco for a quick burrito.

I ordered and handed the cashier the money.  He puts the money in the till, turns around, and walks off without saying a word.  I was supposed to get some change, a cup and a receipt.  But the guy simply left.  Absolutely no idea why.

I stand there for about three minutes, figuring he might come back.  Nope.  The manager sees me standing there and asks if I need something.  'I didn't get my change, cup or receipt.  The cashier just walked off.'

She then gave me those things and acted like nothing had happened.  An explanation would have been nice.
 
2018-04-14 11:18:34 PM  
I recently moved and had to switch phone carriers.  I went to Wal-Mart to buy a cheap phone.
Purchased said phone-- it was defective.  People thought I was talking underwater and would yell at me and hang up in disgust.
I returned it and wanted the money I'd paid for service transferred to the new phone. No dice.
The troglodyte who sold me the phone told me it was my fault--I'd chosen the wrong service.
The electronics manager, when I mentioned I was involved in a civil case and needed to speak to my lawyer said, "I'm instructed to hang-up if a customer mentions the words lawyer or attorney"--and did.
I kept going up the ladder and finally found someone who had some sense.
They doubled my refund but why did it have to be so annoying and time-consuming?

It's like most of the Wal-Martians are on Soma.
 
2018-04-14 11:19:42 PM  
I called Fedex because they charged me a 'residential' fee for delivering a package for a business. The first line guy wanted to argue with me because it said their system said the address was residential. I said was stupid for three bucks and gave up.
 
2018-04-14 11:27:01 PM  
 
2018-04-14 11:56:28 PM  

DoctorCal: "I'll have a cheeseburger with no condiments."

"Are tomatoes a condiment?"


Back when McDonald's was offering "Babe" Happy Meals I went in and asked if I could get one with a bacon burger. The clerk either had no sense of irony or he'd already heard that joke a thousand times because he just stared at me.

/the bonus was the one I did get came with a little stuffed cow

img.fark.netView Full Size
 
2018-04-15 12:08:26 AM  
I am customer service.

I will be getting a kick out of this thread when I get home from work tomorrow.
 
2018-04-15 12:12:43 AM  
Moved from Central Florida to Charlottesville VA in 2004. Rented a U-haul truck and a car trailer to tow a car. Picked up the truck and trailer around on Saturday, loaded the truck and left that afternoon. Spent the night in Savannah and arrived in Charlottesville around 10 p,m. on Sunday.

Called U-haul first thing the next morning and they came and picked up the trailer. Got the truck unloaded and took it back. We had the truck around 50 hours, drove around 750 miles in approximately 18 driving hours (so much fun driving that slow on I-95). The truck had a Canadian tag (Ontario) and the odometer measured kilometers.

When we dropped the truck off, my husband went in and paid, then we went home to start unpacking. That night he gave me the receipt and I realized they had overcharged us, it was over twice the amount I expected. I went there the next morning to talk to them and the bookkeeper pulled the paperwork and they had calculated the charges based on 1,200 miles, not 750.

I realized immediately what happened, they mixed up kilometers with miles. I explained what had happened and she said that was impossible that no U-haul truck odometers measured in kilometers. I had all the receipts for gas and the hotel with me and I showed her where we were on the trip at specific times and explained we could not have covered 1,200 miles AND that 750 miles = 1,200 km. After arguing with her for almost an hour, and after she said the truck was not on site, she had a worker go out to check the odometer, I"m sure to shut me up. She was not happy when he came back in and said I was right, the odometer was measuring kilometers not miles.

Their computer system did not have a way to recalculate the charges, it only took miles, so it took about a week for them correct the credit card charge. I went by there several times to check (she would not call me, nor return a call) and she would get up and go into the back of the office when I came in and make someone else talk to me. The manager called me when it was finally fixed and kind of apologized for the issue.
 
2018-04-15 12:17:05 AM  
A couple of decades ago I started working 2nd shift phone support at a local (about to be bought out by a national..sigh) bank.  During training I was warned again and again about Joan.  Joan had mental problems to put it mildly.  Joan also had inherited millions of dollars so according to the bank she could do no wrong & we had to do 'everything' she asked for when she called in.... which she did on average 5 times/night.  Usually just to check her balance (which hadn't changed all day & wouldn't until the processing was done overnight), but sometimes to find out really weird things (the price of peaches that day in Washington/Seattle, the number of barrels of olive oil Greece exported in 1980, etc - mind you this was before Google was a thing, actually the whole internet thing was pretty new back then).  She would also write down who she talked to & the question that she asked.  We regularly had to send someone on the day shift up to the library to try & figure out some of the answers.... amazing thinking back upon it.

Anyway, going through training we were all warned again & again about this absolute (rich) nut.  So 'the' very first call I ever took on my own was... Joan.  She was so happy to hear that there was someone new to talk to that she had me copy down a cookie recipe....

She was usually fairly nice but if you didn't get her an answer within a few days, man would she raise hell if you happened to answer one of her calls.

/one of my more lasting lessons on just how much shiat you can get away with if you have enough money
 
2018-04-15 12:30:28 AM  

ox45tallboy: "Ruby Tuesday. You know, like the Beatles song."

"The who?"


The band on stage

Who.

The name of the band.

Who.

The name of the band on stage!!

WHO!

img.fark.netView Full Size
 
2018-04-15 12:36:57 AM  

FrancoFile: expensive grocery to get tournedos (beef tenderloin medallions) for a party I was catering.


?

4.bp.blogspot.comView Full Size
 
2018-04-15 12:40:44 AM  
I, of course, am posting funny memes because that's how I deal with the PTSD from being in customer service when I was younger.

:-(

/and this is why I hate people, btw
 
2018-04-15 12:45:13 AM  
I posted my bad CS story above, here is my good CS story.

I live in Florida, but was in Atlanta in a company wide meeting when I got a call around 2 p.m. that my Dad was in the hospital in Oxford, MS in a coma ( he was battling cancer ) and that I needed to get there ASAP. I had a flight back to Orlando at about 6 that evening and a rental car -- one of my co-workers told me to head to the airport and that she would get my flights changed. (the company paid for all the fees associated, would not let me reimburse them)

Got to the rental car place and told a manager I had a flight in about 45 minutes and why I didn't have much time. He told me to get back in the car, then drove me to the terminal. I tried to check my bag and Delta said I didn't have enough time for it to make the flight, i would have to carry it on. Threw out several liquid items in the security line that were too big to take on, but missed my deodorant. Explained to the TSA agent that I wasn't trying to sneak something thru, but that I wasn't planning on carrying on a bag, that I just needed to get to the B terminal in 15 minutes and why (sure he could tell I had been crying). He was so nice, said not to worry i should be able to make the flight, but he took the deodorant.

When I go in the terminal, I noticed a Delta stewardess about 5 yards ahead of me, running like I was. We get to the gate about the same time, just as the gate agents were closing the door. She asked and they said it was to late, the plane door had been shut. She told she would get the next flight, she was going home and was standby anyway. I told her that I was just trying to get to Memphis so I could see my Dad before he died. She went up to the gate agents and told them I was a code "____" (can't remember what she said). They had pulled the gangway back, but the plane had not started moving yet. They pushed the gangway back, opened the door to the plane and let us on.

Got all kinds of stink eye looks as we made our way to the back of the plane. The other stewardesses knew what had happened. They brought me water and a box of tissues and were so nice. The other stewardess sat next to me on the hour flight. Ended up she had actually been covering a flight for a girl from my hometown who was a Delta stewardess. When we got to Memphis she asked me which hospital my Dad was in -- she was going to drive me there. I think she would have driven me to Oxford (an hour and a half away) if I had let her. I got there before Daddy passed away.
 
2018-04-15 12:50:30 AM  

xanadian: ox45tallboy: "Ruby Tuesday. You know, like the Beatles song."

"The who?"

The band on stage

Who.

The name of the band.

Who.

The name of the band on stage!!

WHO!

[img.fark.net image 480x360]


I DON'T KNOW

/third base
 
2018-04-15 01:49:11 AM  
I loved answering the phone when a douchebag called.

"Can I talk to your manager?"

"Yeah."

"Can I talk to him?"

"Yeah."

"Can you put him on the line?"

"Dave's right here man.  What's up?"

"No, I need to talk to your manager."

"Neat.  I'm here."

The Dead Milkmen: Bitchin' Camaro
Youtube 1v3CzvQ9e_w
 
2018-04-15 02:27:15 AM  
At work we all hate calling the help desk for support, because they never listen to you. Yes we have already done all the trouble shooting steps you asked us to do, because we know what a pain in the ass it is every time we call you. Then they ask you to do things you don't have the time/skills for, no I don't have an hour or 2 to try and figure out which port this computer is plugged into because the wire disappears behind walls. This is why we have a contract with a Tech company. Let them come out and do the work since we are trying to run a store.
 
2018-04-15 06:02:54 AM  
I've got a handful of Wal-Mart anecdotes I could share, but here's my favorite:

My dude and I were checking out two or three things at the Express Lane. The time we saved taking it was eaten up by the checkout person's loud, convoluted tale about a "Jap" who'd used the lane earlier that day. Apparently, the Asian customer had made the mistake of smiling and laughing about something. Not to fear, though, the clerk assured us that she'd put said Jap in his place by asking him: "You think you know everything? Well, WHO WON THE WAR?"

I cracked, "Wow, that's a great story." The clerk just beamed.

/Oh. and Ruby Tuesday is a Stones song.
 
2018-04-15 06:49:02 AM  

Pazuzu Smith-Jones: /Oh. and Ruby Tuesday is a Stones song.


That was before I was born, and if either of us should have known, it should have been her. I'm guessing her kids were at Woodstock.
 
2018-04-15 08:03:33 AM  

vudukungfu: I do customer support for a living.
I am the guy I would want to get if I called for help.
I am the guy you would want to get if you called for help.
You get a pleasant greeting, and I verify your contact info just in case we get cut off or I need to call you or email you.
I listen, and look around in the data while I listen.
What you are telling me is what you perceive the problem to be, but you may not really know what it is. But I listen. I assess what you will accept as a resolution, as well as what will fix the issue in such a way that you understand how it happened and how to avoid that issue in the future.
I document how we fixed it, and you get a step by step, no matter what the issue, in your inbox before I hang up, just to verify you got it.
I go over the fix with you and you know it is taken care of.
I never talk down to you, or treat you like an idiot.


Problem is, I've seen your posts on fark, and while I believe that you believe what you're saying, I'm not convinced that the people on the other side of the line perceive things the way you do.
 
2018-04-15 08:48:08 AM  
I was customer service for more than 20 years and loved taking care of thousands of people every week.

I was the one you *wanted* to call, though, not the one you "had" to. I worked at a weekly newspaper and discovered early on that I have this strange knack with being able to memorize and recall tens of thousands of phone numbers. Maybe if you walked into my office every week it would take me years to learn your face and name, but the instant you spouted your phone number at me (or told me over the phone - no caller I.D. back then) I knew everything about you, your wants, your needs, your account, your family AND your pets.

I'd do anything for my customers and their (not my) neighborhood. Lost a pet? Give me your ad, and if someone calls in having found it before the paper got printed for the week I'd pass them your phone number, cancel your ad and give you back your few bucks. Lost your paper or just too lazy to walk across the room to pick it up, but your phone was handy? Sure, I'll give you the numbers of plumbers or cleaners or movers, whatever you needed. Your paper got wet? Heck, I'll bring you one when I grab some lunch. Want to know what the turkeys are going to be on sale for before the paper comes out? Tough luck, lady, we gotta protect all our advertisers, and that's a big no-no. You have to wait for the paper to come out, just like the rest.

But the greatest customer service representative I ever laid eyes on was Mary.

I walked into the cable place lo those many years ago and stood in a long line of...not-all-that-happy people. I sighed, accepted my fate to wait, and began to watch the woman behind the glass, and became absolutely fascinated with her mannerisms: she had none.

Mary was the calmest, most composed person I've ever seen in my life who wasn't drugged into a near-coma. She kept her calm, collected, pleasant personality, smile firmly affixed to her face, while handling some of the most irate customers I've ever seen. And it worked - one by one, she sent them away calm and accepting, even if they'd lost whatever argument they were making with her.

I vowed then and there to become more like Mary in every way - and have failed every day of my life.

A toast to Mary!
 
2018-04-15 08:55:13 AM  
The State of Kansas doesn't have customer service. It's a customer disservice line.
I'm helping someone get a letter from the state of Kansas saying that he's not enrolled in KanCare.
I call the KanCare number and I get a long series of automated prompts. So I finally type them in and the call gets cut off.
I do it all again. Get cut off again.
Third time, I finally get a real person after a half-hour wait. I explain what I need and the "customer service" person says "We don't do that."
I ask to speak a high-level person. I get a different person and she gives the same answer, and adds that if they did, she wouldn't know how to do it. Then she ends the call with a brisk, "Hope this was helpful, have a good day."
I go online to see if I can find out what to do. Their websites are not helpful. It's like they want to hide contact information or any other useful information.
I find an email address and send an email to the Ombudsman for the Health Department, the people who run KanCare
Three days later, I get a response. It basically boils down to "Press these series of buttons, do nothing for a long time, then press more buttons to get a competent person. Oh, and send a letter to this address to get what you want after filling out these forms."
I sent the letter last year. They haven't responded yet.
I got what I needed from Social Security. I just went over to the local office, waited for teninutes, explained the situation, and got a letter. They even faxed it for me.
 
2018-04-15 08:58:48 AM  

eyeq360: I got what I needed from Social Security. I just went over to the local office, waited for teninutes*, explained the situation, and got a letter. They even faxed it for me.


*ten minutes
 
2018-04-15 09:00:57 AM  

ox45tallboy: Pazuzu Smith-Jones: /Oh. and Ruby Tuesday is a Stones song.

That was before I was born, and if either of us should have known, it should have been her. I'm guessing her kids were at Woodstock.


"There's no time to lose", I heard her say.
Catch your dreams before they slip away.
Dying all the time,
Lose your dreams and you will lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind? ;-)
 
2018-04-15 09:11:53 AM  
I've had to call comcast three different times because of internet problems. Two of those times I had the same guy, and he remembered me the second time I talked to him. The other guy sounded like Billy Dee Williams trying to seduce me. Not his actual words, just the way he talked. Strangely, kudos to comcast in these situations. Two of the problems turned out to be my fault, but all three times everything was completely taken care of before the call was over.
 
2018-04-15 09:13:12 AM  

ox45tallboy: "Ruby Tuesday. You know, like the Beatles song."...


I think you meant Rolling Stones.
 
2018-04-15 09:18:55 AM  
My last customer service job was the Patient Advicate for an entire university healthcare system. The hospital, clinics, campus facilities, etc, etc.  Every complaint relating to an interaction in the system  was received by me, including the billing errors or just cost call complaints. There's too many stories  to tell and it would be too depressing to revisit it all on a pleasant Sunday morning.

Two things I did learn was that, allegedly, everyone has a lawyer on retainer. Ready to leap into the fray at a moments notice to wreak havoc on myself and the system for a twice billed $10 copay or not being able to obtain a copy of their ex-spouses's medical records 'just because.' The other thing I learned was that if I had a nickel for every time I was called 'you people' I would be a rich man.

"I want my medical record amended! I told that doctor that I fell and that (random household item) went up my butt but you people refuse to do anything about it! You'll be hearing from my lawyer soon!"

Customer service is one of the worst jobs one can have. The details of correcting errors is really the "other duties as not specified" in the job description. The primary responsibility is to be a punching bag or straw dog for the business.
 
2018-04-15 09:24:19 AM  

leevis: I've had to call comcast three different times because of internet problems. Two of those times I had the same guy, and he remembered me the second time I talked to him. The other guy sounded like Billy Dee Williams trying to seduce me. Not his actual words, just the way he talked. Strangely, kudos to comcast in these situations. Two of the problems turned out to be my fault, but all three times everything was completely taken care of before the call was over.


The last few times I've called my cable company ("TWC is now Spectrum"), they've absolutely refused to hang up until everything was rebooted and working properly.

Obviously these people don't know that "customer service" long ago changed from "(good) customer service" to "quell the complainers or just outwait 'em 'til they give up."
 
2018-04-15 09:24:32 AM  
As someone who works in customer service *inbound loss mitagtion for a mortgage service compnay* I love being treated like crap by people who I'm trying to help keep their house.
Most are nice,and simply liike that they are not being treated badly for making a mistake. We will move heaven and earth to keep your house on the books..
But some, oh dear god some of them. No, sir/mamm,there is nothing I can do about the foreclosure sale that is going to hapen in 5 min.  No, I can not bend federal law "just this once". No, I cannot do anything about the fact that the reinstatement amount is more than the house,perhaps you shouls have made some payments bewteen 2008 and now (NY forclosure laws make these conversions possible)

Piece of advise, when you call in, you are dealing with people, so give a little respect you you willget better help.
 
2018-04-15 09:25:02 AM  
I work retail part time.
Thankfully, at a small bike shop - we sell fun, and mostly our customer interactions are good.

Im in RI.  James Woods lives here part time and is an avid mountain biker.  He's a customer.  (yes, he's a bit of a douche, but in person he's usually quite affable and friendly.  I've yet to have a bad face to face experience with him).

One afternoon a few years ago he's in the store looking for new cycling shoes.  He's sitting in his stocking feet chatting with me about bunions and foot problems when other customers come in looking for a mountain bike.  He pops up and dashes across the store and starts talking bikes with the two guys.  I thought they were friends of his he was expecting.

Fast forward about 20 min.  The two guys have the info they need and are cashing out their small purchases.  James Woods is still in his socks chatting and generally being a friendly happy guy.  After their transaction one of the guys looks at me and shrugs over toward James... "...is that????...."  I reply "James Woods, yep, he's a regular".  Two guys have a laugh and head on out.  Apparently they weren't friends of his - he just was excited they were interested in the bike he had and talked their ear off.

He calls himself Jimmy when he calls, but none of us can quite bring ourselves to call him that.  He drives an incredibly old Jeep Grand Cherokee that he just keeps rebuilding and repairing.  We do regularly bust his ass for driving such a junker.
 
2018-04-15 09:25:49 AM  
In the late '90's, I was working at a large department store. One night I was in some remote department, at a register that rarely got any traffic, and was stocked with merchandise that sold poorly.

After a generally uneventful shift on a slow day, it was coming up on closing time. I was looking forward to going home, so I was just about to start to close out my register. The announcement comes over the PA that the store will be closing in a few minutes, and that now is the time for any final purchases.

Only seconds before I key in the code to shut down the register, a man walks up, with his wife and two kids in tow behind him. He's got a big armful of merchandise he wants to buy. Okay, I'm here to do my job and check you out: so I scan all his stuff, bag it, and am ready to finish this when I ask how he will be paying for it.

He says it will be by a check. Okay, he writes a check for the entire sum (~$500), and quickly hands it to me, and is about to just take the bag and run off before I can complete the transaction. However, I have to tell him:

"One moment sir, I have to enter the check into the register first".

You see, we couldn't just accept checks outright, in fact, we don't even make the say on it. We have to first enter the ID number they used to identify themselves for buying with a check, so I key in his Driver's License number first. The registers also have this little scanner that reads the MICR numbers on the check and verifies whether or not to accept the check. I guess it's some kind of credit verification or looking for bad checks on the same account or some other red flags.

Well, our little check verification system refuses to accept his check. It says I have to take another form of payment. He gets irate and says to run it through again. I take this moment to look at the check. . .

It's drawn on a two-party check, drawn on an out-of-state bank (and he's from this state, so he's paying with a check from a bank that's out of state to him), with a home address listed on the check that didn't match the Driver's License, and wasn't even from the same state as the bank, much less his ID. It's like a textbook case of a check not to accept. I try to politely tell him that I can't accept the check, and I can still accept cash, store gift cards, or credit & debit cards.

He gets irate, and says I'm insulting him by saying his checks are no good, and that I'm being a very bad sales clerk for treating a customer this way. He's getting very dramatic on me, acting like he's putting on a show or something. He's demanding to see my manager (who clocked out about 5 minutes ago, my manager was always first out the door, only one manager would stay until final closing), demanding I give him some store credit to make up for this insult, demanding I accept the check or he's never shopping here again, demanding my full name (instead of the first name on my name tag) so he can call and complain about me to my boss.  Then says he owns lots of stock in the company and will make sure I'm fired if I don't comply (I happened to know the store was privately held by one family, with only 5 or 6 stockholders, and he wasn't one of them).

I notice that his wife is blushing bright red, averting her eyes, and looks utterly mortified. The younger of his kids pipes up and says:

"Daddy, you do this every time we go shopping!" To which he snaps his head over with a vengeful glare and shushes her and returns to me to continue trying to browbeat me into accepting the obviously bad check.

By this point, other sales associates are walking by, taking their final register take for the night to the office upstairs and clocking out, and some of the lights are being turned off. I know that if I don't shut down soon, the store manager or security will be along in a few minutes. I was betting that security was already watching this entire spectacle on the security cameras.

I make my stand and tell him that in no uncertain terms: I'm not allowed to accept a check from him on that account, I cannot override it, I tell him that I would be fired if I just accepted it and gave him the merchandise, and that the store is closing, so please pay with another form of payment or please leave the premises.

He gets an outright angry grimace on his face and says that he's never been so insulted in his life and my manager, my manager's manager, and my manager's manager's manager will hear about my bad attitude the next day, that he will go to the media with the story of how insulting they are to their customers, and that I will regret the day I ever crossed him. His family in tow, they leave and from a quick glance out the door, they got into an argument out in the parking lot.

I cancel the entire transaction, leave the bag to be reshelved the next day, quickly close out my register, and am taking the bag up just as the manager supervising the close was coming out to ask what happened. I told him I had somebody trying to pull a check scam as the store was closing, and was hoping to use the urgency of closing the store to get me to accept a check that our computers said was bogus. He nods and takes my money pouch, as I clock out and end that day.
 
2018-04-15 09:28:34 AM  

ox45tallboy: (Note: although saliva can provide both lubrication and adhesion that can help to open a stubborn plastic bag,  when combined with Fix-o-Dent, its utility for this purpose is quite diminished).


False. Also, Fixodent doesn't come out of your mouth. It lives between the denture and the palate. You're just being an ass.
 
2018-04-15 09:28:37 AM  
I have a couple good ones from when I worked in a video store Movie Gallery. (remember those???).

It was Christmas Day 2004, and we were open. This was evening, about 8 or so. Guy comes in claiming he had a defective copy of Halo 2. I tested it, and what do you know, it really is a bad disk. That taken care of, I go to punch things up in the system. Our policy was no returns on new items after 30 days. This was December 25th. He had purchased it on November 24th. The guy is already fusterated because his kid is pissed he can't play his new game. After trying every back door I knew with my level of access, I called the ASM over to see if she could override it. Wasn't going to happen. Only person who could do so was the store manager, and she would be in at 10 am the next morning. When we told the customer this, he absolutely flipped out, and it was a string of expletives that would make a truck driver wash his mouth out with soap. He got to the ASM so bad, that she needed three cigarettes to calm down.

As for excellent customer service, Blipshift.com comes to mind. Over the summer, I had one order that hadn't show up after two weeks (shipping from New York City to Concord, NH). They immediately sent out another duplicate order. A couple more weeks go by. The ORIGINAL order shows up. Call up BS again and they say "keep it. Give them away. Your choice. Enjoy the shirts."
 
2018-04-15 09:28:46 AM  

wademh: vudukungfu: I do customer support for a living.
I am the guy I would want to get if I called for help.
I am the guy you would want to get if you called for help.
You get a pleasant greeting, and I verify your contact info just in case we get cut off or I need to call you or email you.
I listen, and look around in the data while I listen.
What you are telling me is what you perceive the problem to be, but you may not really know what it is. But I listen. I assess what you will accept as a resolution, as well as what will fix the issue in such a way that you understand how it happened and how to avoid that issue in the future.
I document how we fixed it, and you get a step by step, no matter what the issue, in your inbox before I hang up, just to verify you got it.
I go over the fix with you and you know it is taken care of.
I never talk down to you, or treat you like an idiot.

Problem is, I've seen your posts on fark, and while I believe that you believe what you're saying, I'm not convinced that the people on the other side of the line perceive things the way you do.


Well, now, asshole, there's your problem right there.
I'm off the clock here.
STFU.
Here's your sign.
Welcome to fark.
 
2018-04-15 09:29:48 AM  

ox45tallboy: "Ya makin' a pie?" She asked.


This right here is why I got the disposition I have now.  I would've just said 'yup', and if asked what kind, 'round.'  If pressed further, the answers start to get weirder.  "When are you making the pie?"  "When my dad dies, which should be soon."  "Is he sick?"  "No, but that bomb should go off while I'm in this store."  I've done this to cashiers who know me, they stop asking after the first odd answer.  So yeah, I've met many cashiers like her, they range in common sense, but still don't understand that most people just want polite, quick service.

The English Major: She was a large woman and started trying to climb over the counter


I was working at a Little Caesars as a driver when I had the shift manager try to go over the counter at a customer.  The customer was a jerk, placed an order over the phone, after being told the price, added crazy bread, then told new total.  He showed up, expecting the full order for the first price.  They argued for several minutes, before a fellow driver had to grab the shift manager, half way over the counter.  SM went out back for a couple hours while I ran the place.  They shouldn't have made the guy a SM to begin with, he was 19, and an alcoholic.  They fired him after the second no-show from a hangover.  His parents tried to beg us to take him back, by saying he needed the job to pay for beer.  Not kidding, they were supporting the 19 yro married young man, with one child in their home, but needed him to pay for his own beer.  Even admitted they brought him beer while he was at work, and wondered why we wouldn't hire him back.

I get why the customer was being an idiot, he used to pull that in the past, and got away with it.  What seems like good customer service one day, turns into a scam later on.
 
2018-04-15 09:30:16 AM  
I was working at a call center, in the section that answered customer letters. . .

Back in Fall of '09 when Glenn Beck was losing sponsors left and right, our company was one of the companies that refused to sponsor him. We got some hate mail for that. I don't know how much, we didn't track it, but we'd get letters that were filled with angry tirades calling our company "socialist" or "communist" or "traitor" for refusing to sponsor him (a Fortune 500 company is communist?), and we were illegally robbing him of his 1st Amendment rights by not sponsoring his show, while saying that they are not a customer and never will be because of this, and always had lots of misspellings and extra exclamation marks. 

Our superiors never knew about these letters, and the corporate higher-ups certainly didn't. You see, if we got a letter from a non-customer, our standard procedure given to us from corporate was to basically ignore it unless it was an actual legal paper (in which case we send it to legal). Somebody who is not a customer and says the never will be? Yeah, we just trashed them, but we got credit for it. We have to work 2.5 letters per hour (to account for ones where some research might be needed for a customer's issue or complaint). A few thousand (wild-ass guess) complaint letters was nothing but a bonanza of easy letters for us all to fill up our quotas for most of the week and be able to take it easy for a few days since they are all "unidentifiable" since they don't tie to a customer account. I mentioned to our supervisor we had got a lot of mail about this issue, my supervisor said it didn't matter, our guidance from corporate was to ignore all mail from non-customers other than legal filings, and to forward legal filings to Legal department.

Congrats, if you wrote to Sprint to protest them pulling sponsorship of Glenn Beck, you wasted your time and money, your letter was promptly disposed of with only a token glance by a bottom-tier customer service guy (who was happy for you helping him pad his stats by stamping your letter "Unidentifiable" and moving on) and nobody above first-line management even knew letters were arriving, and even he didn't care one bit.
 
2018-04-15 09:31:09 AM  
We had a waitress that was fired in the middle of taking our order.  There were six of us, and in her defense it was a busy restaurant, and I don't think there was more than one other waiter.  However, you would say "I'd like two eggs scrambled with toast" and she would begin writing.....and writing, and writing.  90 seconds later she would look at the next person and ask for their order.  I can only guess that she had been doing this all morning and before everyone at our table had a chance to order, the manager flagged her down and the next thing we know we see her with her purse and coat headed out the door.
 
2018-04-15 09:31:50 AM  

DoctorCal: "I'll have a cheeseburger with no condiments."

"Are tomatoes a condiment?"


In the defense of this particular customer service wageslave, if you ask a dozen fast food customers to define "condiments", there are probably at least one or two who would assume that you're a moron if you don't realize that "no condiments" means "No lettuce, extra tomatoes, just a dab (and under NO CIRCUMSTANCES should it be MORE than JUST a dab) of mustard, no onions (because NOBODY likes onions, duh!) and extra cheese."
 
2018-04-15 09:32:07 AM  
Back when I worked retail, I was accused of being racist against white people for speaking Spanish.
Long story short, I'm white.
 
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