Back in my day … the grass was greener, the summer was warmer …

and shops knew how to treat people.

Frozen Until I Can Get Good Customer ServiceI hate shoddy customer service! There is absolutely no excuse for it, and I hate to admit that it seems to be the way things are generally progressing.

I sound like someone’s granddad when I say things like “I remember when the person in the shop would …” and you can complete the sentence with so many things

… smile.
… remember their ps and qs
… pass me my change instead of throwing it on the counter
… not talk on their cell phone whilst making a minimum effort to serve me!

Garrhh !!!

I like the idea of voting with my feet and just not using these places any more … but it is becoming ubiquitous.

Online Customer ServiceAnd this is with real shops, the internet brings another level of indirection which in general just increases the likelihood of poor service… and the ones that outsource their customer service are even worse.

Recently others (RC and Helen (followed by crazy harrassment)) have used their blog to highlight particularly bad service.

However, today I experienced Exceptionally Good customer service, and I figured it would be worth mentioning.

A few weeks back I bought some new Headphones for Emily.

Fast-forward to yesterday, and one of the ear buds decided that it had had enough and so I was down to single ear listening. This is not that unusual, it certainly is not the first pair of ear buds that decided to do that. However, it is the first set that I had paid quite so much for (this was before we started cutting back).

In the past I have bough quite a number of things from amazon, and had very little problem. The biggest problem was finding a phone number to get hold of them on!

Well they seem to have sorted that since then, as rather than you call them, they have a link that gets them to call you … Instantly! Literally my phone rang within a couple of seconds.

I then explained my problem and how I felt a high end set of headphones should be more robust, half expecting to be told that it was my fault for “Excessive wear and tear” or some other such non-provable loophole, but the chap just fronted up and said it was no problem, he would send one out straight away.

I was blown away by their attitude. SO refreshing. I would seem they could not do enough for me … I had 30 days to return the original set, which means I could get by with my one ear set until the new set arrived. The parcel arrived this morning (I reported it at 2pm yesterday! That is quicker than when I originally ordered it), they have offered to refund the postage charges for sending the original set back via a recorded delivery. And they have apologised for any inconvenience that I might have suffered!

In an age of dying customer service, this is exceptional treatment. So to amazon … I take my hat off to you … BRAVO

[Note: I am under no delusion that this post will affect their bottom line, I just thought they deserved the recognition.
P.S. I will also point out that this was amazon.co.uk … and I have no idea if this behaviour is universal]

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8 Responses to Back in my day … the grass was greener, the summer was warmer …

  1. RC says:

    Overall, I’ve had great interactions with Amazon, with the exception of items being backordered, when I wanted them for gifts.

    I love highlighting good experiences, and might be doing that within the near future as a follow-up to my glasses experience from way-back-when. Let’s just say the Hubby and I both have had further problems from the eye place we went to, but we may have found a wonderful person who appears to be working to make it all right. I must see how it resolves before I post, though…

  2. Mr Geek says:

    I hope it works out for you. I know that I find that when you get that person that goes an extra mile and it can really make your day. I don’t get why more businesses don’t see that a happy customer makes for a thriving business.

    This has always been the approach I take with the photography, and it makes it far more rewarding from my point of view too.

  3. Interestingly, I get excellent customer service from online businesses. It’s the real live person businesses that seem to suffer in that department. My daughter is having a heck of a time finding someone who will provide excellent customer service in the photography studio she manages. It’s a dying art, but I raised my daughter *real good* it seems, so at least she provides it and insists upon it with her staff.

  4. Mr Geek says:

    Many online companies are very good if you can get to them, but that is often the problem.

    For example I was ordering photobooks from Blurb and MyPublisher … I needed information about time scales in order to produce a yearbook… but I could not get to speak to anyone in time to order it and have it delivered before the end of the school year, but had I been able to speak to someone there and the it would have been fine. End result was that we did not go ahead with the yearbooks 😦

    It is not the individuals that screwed it up, it is the fact that they have deliberately designed a buffer between themselves and their customer.

    Where as in the bricks an mortar world it is the Mom and Pop stores that I find it with now. They are being run by minimum wage teens with no real desire to be in the job, and nothing to motivate them to act professionally (Like the threat of a thick ear)

    OK Rant over … I told you I sound like somebodies granddad 😆

  5. mrsvierkant says:

    Hooray for good customer service!

  6. Nemma says:

    Customer Service is a HUGE issue with me. Im a real stickler for expecting to be treated properly by companys taking my money off of me.
    Im a nightmare in bars and restaraunts as I work as a supervisor on a bar and no how much easier and more pleasant good customer service is for both the customer AND the staff. But on another hand, Im the worst member of staff in the world for a customer to piss off for no apparent reason. Ive done alsorts in the past to people who have been downright rude, charged them for thier drinks, knowing damn well their is a tab running for the first drink, ordered taxis from miles away so they are more expensive, filling spirits and a mixer up to the top then charging them full whack even though they only want a splash of coke or somehting in it. etc etc.
    Its always nice to hear the good stories though. Ive had good responses with amazon in the past too. I’ve always been impressed!

  7. Nemma says:

    God that post makes me sound like a right bitch. lol.
    Ive also done some nice stuff for people who have been nice to me at work. Phoning taxis for them, staying on extra time for them to wait for them, even ringing round and arranging hotel rooms for someone who had had thier car stolen while they were in a wedding ceremony! One example is the local police cricket team. They used to train on a wednesday nigt at five, I have to open the building up on a wednesday and I dont get there till five. I used to get there about fifteen minutes earlier so I could let them in to get changed before practice, I also arranged to be in an hour earlier a few weeks ago when they had arranged a friendly match. As a thank you they bought me a big bunch of flowers for helping them out throughout the season. Its nice appreciative things like that that make you go the extra mile for your customers.

  8. Mr Geek says:

    Mrs V: It really does have the ability to make my day.

    Nemma: Methinks the lady doth protest too much. 🙂 I worked behind the bar at my rugby club from the age of 14. You would always work out which one was going to end up “drinking dregs” based on their attitude towards the bar staff. I later grew up to play against some of these arseholes and it still really amused me the pranks we pulled at their expense. I also take great care to be nice to the people behind the bar (it is hard to prank Diet-Coke though 🙂 ) I think it is simply just a matter of having common courtesy towards others, a concept more and more people seem to be having trouble with.

    Now your at it (making me sound like somebodies granddad 🙂 )

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