Ikea Complaint - Life, death, and Ikea
My husband and I are huge Ikea fans. We've lived in three countries, two continents, five different houses, and everything we own is Ikea. We met as students, married, had two kids, changed jobs, moved around. Every milestone was celebrated by a trip (OK, make that three or four) to the local Ikea.
We loved the store because it was green before everyone else, or so it seemed; because we felt we had a hand in building our home (there's nothing like assembling a crib just before a baby is born, and then putting him to sleep in it); and because we're orderly people who like good, intuitive design.
Last month we moved to a new house, the first we own. At the same time I found out I had a disease of the incurable kind. Things were chaotic; but we made our trip to Ikea, as planned, and bought what the children would need to last them through high school (they're 6 and 7). It was happy, and very sad. We got good furniture, including a Karlstad sofa and chair. Because we wanted to pay by debit card, we used two of them and got two receipts.
We put the sofa together. It looks great; but the chair, we realized, would be be too big, and wouldn't fit. We looked for the receipt: we had the one for the sofa, but not the one for the chair. We scoured the house. It had to be somewhere. Eventually we came to the conclusion that we'd left it at the store.
I called. Did they find the receipt? No. Would they take the chair back (it's unopened and untouched) and give us store credit? Nope. Absolutely not.
I spent the day today in our Ikea house, feeling a tad bit bitter and betrayed. The relationship we had with the store was more important to me than I realized. The store was a place we relied on, cherished, and, yes, advertised to friends and family. But they're a corporation and we're a wallet. That we spent $50,000 (at least) there and never lost a receipt until this one means little to them.
I hope somebody from Ikea will read this and understand that people have a real relationship with their store. That when you're handling about a hundred items with braces on both arms, no help from anyone (because you're using automated registers) and no bags, pieces of paper can get misplaced. That I'm sad that when I called, the two people I spoke too were reading from scripts. (No return without a receipt - no return without a receipt - no return without a receipt.) My husband had taken the day off to return the chair tomorrow. We were planning on getting new stuff.
This is not about furniture, and it's not only about money. It's about being faithful to what your company claims as its founding principle: respect for people, for their time, for life.