Customer Service Informative - Just My Observation...
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- This may be a bit more lengthy than some may prefer..I apologize in advance. I'd just like to share a thought regarding customer service complaints in general.
I've only been on this planet for 20 years, but ever since I was of legal age to work in my state, I have held many customer-service oriented positions. This ranges from fast food worker, to front desk receptionist, to service representative, and currently I'm a sales associate. I am also independently contracted with several mystery shopping agencies to conduct audits on quality control standards within many places of business. At my sales associate job, I thoroughly educate each customer of our products, making sure they leave with the product best suited for their needs, and give them my company e-mail address to get a hold of me should any questions arise. In a nut shell, I wouldn't dare call myself an expert on customer service practices at my age of 20 years young, but I do think I have enough knowledge to comment on the subject.
I think the complaint of "Poor Customer Service" is widely abused. What do I mean? Companies deploy many policies to its employees, training them on the proper solution to many different case scenarios. The problem is often that the customer is self-absorbed to the point that anything offered differing from their demands is considered unsatisfactory. Here's an example.
A customer walks into Target, let's say, and purchases merchandise. The customer returns home, and ends up being dissatisfied with what they purchased, for whatever reason. They return to the store, to find out that the policy is "Store credit only". No..that's not good enough for the customer. The customer wants a cash refund. The employee states that store credit is the only option available. The store manager is summoned, who reiterates what the employee said. The customer leaves the store irate, returns home, finds a public forum such as this, and blasts Target, complaining of "Horrible Customer Service."
If you can imagine yourself being the customer in the above scenario, please...do me a favor. Turn off the music. Eliminate any distractions around you. Just sit quietly and absorb the world around you. Visit your local news website and view the negativity and chaos engulfing our world today. We do not live in a world of unicorns and rainbows...we live in a world of scoundrels, scammers, overcrowding prisons, and simply people who will do anything to make a quick buck besides making an honest living. The woman who sued McDonalds when coffee spilled in her lap knew just as much as the next half-brained person that that coffee had the potential of causing third-degree burns. But since she wasn't formally warned of that, she exploited the situation and capitalized substantially.
My point? While certainly everything in customer service is circumstantial, policies are there for a reason. A policy exists because the company has experienced loss in some way against whatever that policy is against. Shoplifters, shady employees, scammers, etc. often cause these companies to enforce these policies with which many customers become irate.
And no, i've never worked for Target, and i've never been an employee in that particular situation. It was used as an example only. :)
An employee had a nasty attitude with you? Complain to the manager..absolutely. You don't believe there are enough clerks at the local supermarket to handle the rush? Certainly..voice your opinion (to those who can do something about it, I mean). You honestly felt deceived during a business deal? Let the big dogs know what's up. The company isn't willing to do exactly what you demand of them? No..they're not out to get you...just look at the behavior of your fellow mankind.
And certainly, with a troubled economy, customer retention should be stepped up a bit. But look at it from the business perspective as well. Succumbing to ALL customer demands leads to company financial loss, which will create a fate similar to that of Circuit City, which means there will NOT BE any more customers to retain. Going back to that whole circumstantial thing.
Anyway that's just my 3 cents! I hope my trail of thought didn't run errant too many times. Take care!