Today, we had to call an internet business regarding an issue with a product we purchased. The product ended up being the wrong size, wrong design, and because of the error we were not able to complete a job. We rang through to customer service and were pleasantly surprised to not have to go through an extensive series of prompts to connect with a staff person.
Furthermore, the staff person quickly identified themselves and asked how they could help. That is end of what we hoped was going to be a pleasant customer service experience. The representative immediately began talking and never stopped. Here is a synopsis of how the interaction went. Sadly, it is difficult to capture the speed and veracity at which the staff person spoke to us including the constant interruptions while we were speaking.
1. "Here is what we ordered, but here is what we received".
The staff person immediately tried to explain how to properly verify we had the wrong item, but in the process insulted our abilities and those of our staff. When we stated that our staff person has been in the industry for 25+ years, they talked right over us, as if we'd said nothing.
2. "By sending the wrong item, you've held up a job that we now cannot finished, which the customer has been waiting six (6) weeks to have finished."
This time the staff person ignored we'd said anything at all. They were still rambling on about measurements. We finally interrupted to what was being said, which seemed to put an end to the continued tirade that had been going on forever.
3. "The staff opened the box and we now do not have anyway to ship these back."
We guarantee the staff person was so busy trying to formulate a response, they did not hear what we said because they responded with, "So, do you want to ship them back" Let's get this straight you shipped the wrong product, the wrong style, and now you aren't going to do anything to accommodate your mistake? Yikes, this just went from bad to worse. At this point, we actually put the phone down until we heard the representative stop speaking. This took a solid 60 seconds.
4. What size should we have ordered?
This was our final attempt to create a resolution. We asked for assistance with their product. We didn't get any. We got more fast talking, blaming, and interruption. During the briefest of pauses, which we think was actually the one time the rep. stopped to breath, we said, "Thank you, we will call back."
Let's get this straight you shipped the wrong product, the wrong style,
We reached out to the management team regarding our issues. Sadly, there was zero compassion, understanding, or apologetic tone in the response from the CEO. The response was an overview of the products and how the entire process of receiving an unusable product was our fault.
Stop. Listen. Correct.
We quickly realized this staff member had no active listening skills. Here is a quick note about skills they could have used:
It does take work to become an active listener, but it can be done and is not terribly difficult. By developing active listening skills, you will leave otherwise jilted customers, happy, and eager to provide return business.
The Advocacy Journal is written by various staff persons to showcase advocacy experiencces across New England.
Board Of Health
Individuals With Disabilities Act
Peace Of Mind
Specific Learning Disability