Customer service: A breed apart

So how do you select which company to support with your money? Usually it’s the one with the lowest price at our house. But what happens when all pricing is equal? What tips the scales and get the nod?

Such was my decision when purchasing new tennies. Reebok’s Easy Tone shoes promise a tighter derriere, thighs and calves. And, desperate people do desperate things. With visions of weight loss and toning simply by wearing shoes dancing in my head, I found myself scanning the Internet for the best price. When a good deal was not found online, I resorted to instant gratification and called a few local stores.

“Do you have Reebok’s new Easy Tone shoes?”
“What colors do you have?”
“How much are they?”

Simple. Straightforward. Any entry-level sales associate should have been able to answer this quickly.

Not so.

Store #1: After he mumbles the name of the store three times I had to just assume I had the right place. Yes, he thinks they have the shoes. Only one color, but might be able to order other colors. Same price as online.

Store #2: “DO WE HAVE EASY TONE SHOES?” she yells to another associate from the phone. And doesn’t bother to cover the handset.
“Yes, we do. What size?”
“I don’t know what size. I want to come in and try them on. What colors do you have?”
“A lot of different colors. What size do you need and I’ll check the colors.”
“I don’t know what size. I want to come in and try them on. How much are they?”
She puts me on hold “for a minute” and never comes back.

Store #3
I have no idea since they never answered their phone. In the middle of the day. On a Wednesday.

Customer service.  It’s a breed apart and a dying art. While there are stores that seem to really appreciate my business, increasingly I find many places act like they really couldn’t care less. The lack of good service in this country is alarming.

Whatever your job, do it with a positive attitude.
If you can’t, then do something else.

I’ve noticed that if a restaurant has fabulous food, but horrible servers, people will tolerate the poor service because of the food. But if a place has marginal food and crappy service, it’s out of business within a year or two.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a street cleaner or Fortune 500 CEO. When I’m fortunate enough to find a restaurant, store or company that has a quality product and stellar customer service, you can bet I’m going to return, frequently.


3 thoughts on “Customer service: A breed apart

  1. Looks like you ran into what Clark Howard (my favorite money guru) calls “Customer No Service.” Ugh. I know exactly what you mean. I am a loyal customer…to worthy businesses. If you’re not worthy? You don’t get my business.


  2. The positive about shopping online is that you don’t have to get face to face with people who just don’t care. Back in the day, if you didn’t smile and go out of your way to help a customer, you could lose your job. We no longer teach courtesy, consideration or caring. We have, in our tiny town, two restaurants. We never go to one anymore because rudeness prevailed the last time we were there.


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