To All Consumers Dealing With Customer Service Informative - How To Deal With Customer Service

Review by thensider on 2007-12-03
How to Deal: confessions of a Customer Service Rep

1. Always be respectful to the representative. They have unseen powers. Many will go out of their way to help you if you are understanding and polite. Angry or hurtful words will make them less likely to help you in a friendly and expedious manner. They may think to themselves, “Well, I was going to exchange the product, but this person is being a jerk, so I am going to make them wait on ….”

2. Be diligent and persistent. Keep track of when you call and who you talk to. Gather any reference numbers available. Keep them all in one place and have them handy any time you call. Keep track of what the agents say will happen and when. Always follow up right away. If they say something will happen in two days, call on the third day if it doesn’t happen. I have heard of people who call in November saying they sent their product back in July and never heard anything back.

3. Copy EVERYTHING. If you are told to send your product somewhere, keep a record of where you sent it and when. If possible, get a tracking number. If there is a receiving issue, you have PROOF it was received at its destination. NEVER send your original receipt with your product unless it is specifically required. If you are required to send the original, keep a copy with your records. Also write down the model and serial number, if it is available for your product.

4. Be efficient. If you need to leave a message or write a letter, make sure you get to the point and explain the problem as briefly as possible. Once a voicemail reaches 45 seconds, they are probably done listening. State your name and phone number at the beginning and end of your message. If you have a reference number, leave that as well. Most reps will try to research your situation in hopes of having a resolution for you BEFORE they call you back.

5. Never call the day before a holiday and expect results the next day. Telling me you HAVE to have your TV for thanksgiving football isn’t going to give them the ability to make Fed Ex deliver your TV tomorrow.

6. They don’t need to know that your grandma died, your aunt is in the hospital and you run your own business, as with voicemails, when consumers get into unnecessary, ‘I’m just trying to make you feel bad for me so you’ll help me”, they stop listening. They might even interrupt you, just so you will get to the point. It’s not that they don’t care. It’s simply that you’re the only person they trying to help. Get to the point so they can help you and move on to the next person. If your standing in line at the grocery store and the lady in front of you spends 15 minutes writing a check because she is too busy telling the clerk about the her dogs, you would get annoyed too, right?

7. Do not expect them to know who you are because you talked to them three weeks ago. If you are calling a Support Center, those agents handle at least 25 people a day. 5 days a week for three weeks=375 people they have spoken with since they last spoke with you. Give them a break.

8. Do not threaten with lawyers unless you actually have one. Most of the time agents are no longer aloud to SPEAK to you if there is a lawsuit of some kind in the works.

9. do not threaten to write letters to the BBB or AG when you don’t get what you want, unless the company is clearly not following the warranty. If the warranty says you may receive a refurbished unit as a replacement, contacting the BBB or AG will not change that. The job of the BBB and AG is to make sure businesses are following their own policies as well as any federal or state laws. Just because you don’t like it, doesn’t mean it’s not legal.

10. Do not send a barrage of emails to a corporate email address on a holiday weekend and expect to get a response. I assure you that everyone in the office will have a good laugh at your expense.
Comments:8 Replies - Latest reply on 2007-12-04
Posted by S on 2007-12-03:
Some good tips... always a good reminder to remain polite and respectful. I believe that is the number one way to get any where with a customer service rep...
Posted by thensider on 2007-12-03:
I am a customer service rep. have been my entire adult life. I will ALWAYS be nicer and have a wider range of options for the nice person. I had a family that sent me a very polite email, begging for help on a service issue. they included a very funny representation of there entertainment center with " a gapping hole of sadness where their TV used to be". I was on the phone with them in minuetes. It was so refreshing! I still have that picture!
Posted by S on 2007-12-03:
It is good to hear (confirm) that common courtesies go a long way. I believe that the way you treat others (including strangers) is a direct reflection on how others will treat you.
Posted by thensider on 2007-12-03:
I hope others feel the same. holidays are hard for CS agents. I recomend that everyone remember that CS agents dont design or build products nor do they make the rules. However, never settle for rude service!! if you are being nice and they are being jerks, talk to someone else!!
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-12-03:
Also, to add to your list, if you receive exceptional service, let their supervisior know about it (in writing). Their surpervisor hears about the complaints but precious few of the compliments.
Posted by thensider on 2007-12-03:
i absolutly agree. It makes for a better day, if even one person recognizes that you are trying hard to work in their best intrests!
Posted by Principissa on 2007-12-03:
I do have a question, I am always polite and respectful to anyone I call, especially the CSR's. But what of the ones who are just rude and have an attitude the second they say hello? I know that everyone is entitled to a bad day, but I also know that I am not being provided the service I would be getting from someone like you. What do I do in that situation?
Posted by thensider on 2007-12-04:
Ask to speak to someone else. I would say, be as polite as you can, (i know its hard when the other person is being rude) and ask to speak to a supervisor. sometimes when you get to a supervisor, they act like YOU are the problem. Its sad, but not all CSR's take their jobs seriously, and at that point, I wither cut my loses or talk to someone else. Its time consuming, but you de deserve a certain level of service, if your doing your part. Every single person there cant be having a bad day at once!

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