If good customer service is good for business and bad customer service isn’t, have you ever wondered why so many companies offer such b-a-a-d customer service?
Hi, it’s me again. Buzz. I told you I’d keep posting if I had at least one reader, and I do. Thanks, Mom.
Today I want to share with you my latest thoughts about a type of business dysfunction that leads to the kind of customer service that drives us all crazy.
What the phone company can teach us about customer service.
Recently, as a longtime customer, I called the phone company about getting TV and Internet for my new apartment. The “customer service representative” began to rattle off a stupefying array of offers and prices.
After almost two hours of it, I couldn’t take anymore and agreed to an offer and an install date. I had no clue what I was agreeing to, but was somewhat relieved when the sales rep said she’d email me “the paperwork.”
Fast-forward to the scheduled install day. I hadn’t received the promised paperwork or a confirmation call.
So, I sucked it up and called the phone company again. After pushing a bunch of buttons and screaming at the voice prompts, I was put into the queue to “wait for the next customer representative” while being subjected to ear-shattering saxophones interrupted by pronouncements about the company’s great service. At long last, I was connected to someone who informed me there was no record of my order.
She and I then spent over an hour creating another contract. The original pricing was no longer available, so, of course, my service would now cost more.
Since she was technically with the phone company, not the TV company, she couldn’t tell me what channels were included in my TV package. She was “very sorry” and put me through to their TV division, where I was told the information I needed was on the website.
Thanks for your help.
When the installer arrived and I found out that not a single sports channel was included in my package, I lost it. The poor guy looked like the proverbial deer in the headlights. Though he hadn’t sold me the package, less than a 10 from me on the satisfaction survey would jeopardize his job.
Out of pity, I gave him the 10. After all, my TV service was on. What could go wrong? But the next day my service went off and I had to spend another hour on the phone getting it back.
By now, you’re probably thinking been there, done that.
Isn’t this really customer no-service?
A friend who works for the phone company said the problem is that the company is a merger of a lot of other companies with their own products and people. Nobody knows squat about anybody else’s stuff.
Contrast that to real customer service.
My mom bought a vacuum cleaner from Amazon, used it for two months and decided she didn’t like it. Amazon took it back, no questions asked, and gave her a refund. Standard operating procedure.
That’s why everybody loves Amazon and hates the phone company and why Jeff Bezos is the second richest person on the planet, on his way to being the first human being to reach trillionnaire status.
His company is a complex global behemoth, operating in 12 markets plus the U.S., with retail partners in another 29 international markets. How does he do it?
Amazon employees, retail partners, departments and divisions are all aligned behind one simple principle – the customer is king.
Why don’t more companies treat their customers like kings?
Like the phone company and the cable TV company, they’re not aligned to do it. They’re not synced.
And why are they not synced?
Because getting synced is hard – even in small companies – if you don’t how to do it. But get your business synced and you’ll be king. Or queen.
Luckily, there’s a methodology that will align your people, products and services so seamlessly that everyone in the company will more easily and quickly make the right decisions. And you as a brand-building trend-setting sales and marketing hero have the key.
Lest you think I’m exaggerating, check out BizSynced®.
I’m a junior account executive with an MBA from a school you may have actually heard of. I plan to continue sharing my views on what works and what doesn’t in the world of branding and marketing as long as I have even one reader. I welcome all comments. If you have a particular topic you’d like me to expound on, email me at BuzzTalksBiz@gmail.com.
One thought on “What Causes Bad Customer Service? A Tale of Two Companies”
Fantastic article. Thanks so much for this!