A few years ago, Chris and I used to live near a Krispy Kreme. It was literally down the street. I can remember a specific week when we both had overlapping bouts of the flu. During my turn, all I wanted was pumpkin spice donuts and a Slurpee from 7 Eleven. Strange, right? For some reason it was the only thing that sounded good. A sugar coma to get me through the flu.
Yesterday we were visiting a furniture store near Krispy Kreme, and being that I am very pregnant, it is fall, and I want all things pumpkin I asked Chris to stop by Krispy Kreme for pumpkin spice donuts. We go through the drive thru – thinking it is a simple order. We tell her my order of 2 donuts and Chris’ order of 2 donuts. Two times she repeats it incorrectly and we correct her. She tells us to go to the window. We drive up, and since we did not have cash, we pay with a credit card.
Chris gives me the receipt and I look and we’ve been charged for 6 donuts. Ugh. Somehow we knew this would happen when she could not get the order right at the intercom. Our credit card had already been charged. We tell them it was not what we ordered, and we only wanted the four donuts. She stands there and does not know what to do. I am exhausted, need a snack, and am ready to go home. Normally, I would not make a big deal out of it, but I do not want 6 donuts (because I know Chris won’t be able to resist eating them).
She goes and gets someone to help her and a guy comes to the window. He says: “I do not know how to refund your order.” He then says, “Can I give you a latte instead?” I lose it. I already had a coffee and it is visible in my cup holder. I say, “No I do not want a latte, I want my four donuts and I want to pay for only four. How hard it is to put a refund through?” Chris then says, “How about you just give me the difference in cash?” The guys says: “Okay, that would be $1.60.”
Why, oh, why does the customer have to tell the cashier “how” to give a refund? I still am not convinced (not that I ultimately really care) that we actually got back what we should have back. The receipt said:
1 ASST 1/2 DZ
Then at the bottom says: Combo donuts – $1.15. No where does it say the cost of the actual donut. I think because they charged for 1/2 dozen there might have been a deal and the guy had no idea how to break it apart? Or, here is a thought. Refund the original order and ring it up as it should have been? Wow. No brainer right?
In the end, all could have been avoided if she just read the order to us prior to taking our card and swiping it.
It seems like every time I travel I come home and have some story about crazy passengers, annoying TSA agents, and just the overall experience of flying the [un]friendly skies. Yes, I am picky, but I also think we’ve lost the service out of customer service… which means the customer is left hanging. As companies fight for market share what many are finding is that service is actually what sets many companies apart. Think Zappos or Nordstroms.
I just came across this story back from May 2015 where Southwest Airlines elevated their service game. After reviewing a few articles about her story, here is a recap of what happened:
A woman is on a Southwest plane flying from Chicago to Columbus finds out her son is in a coma after an accident. The plane turns back to the gate and the flight attendant asks her to get off. At the gate they told her to call her husband. She finds out that her son, who lives in Denver, is in a coma after a head injury. This is what Southwest does:
_Offered her a private waiting area
_Rerouted her luggage
_Allowed her to board first
_Packed a lunch for when she got off the plane in Denver
_Her luggage was delivered to where she was staying in Denver
_She received a call from Southwest asking how her son was doing
Amazing right? Yet, should it be? I wish we did not think that was stellar service. I want that to be the normal type of service that we can expect. How often does this type of tragic thing happen to folks? Often. People travel to sick, hurt, and dying loved ones, but so often we do not know their story. The morale is — how can we raise the bar and make what Southwest did for this woman the norm?
I am not the best airplane traveler. Chris is a trooper to put up with me. I just get cranky. I think I would have been a good match for traveling in the ’60’s minus having to dress up — or maybe I would even opt for dressing up versus the cattle farm process it feels like now.
We just came back from visiting my niece. Security was horrid. They only had one body scanner open, with two lines feeding the one scanner. Approximately twenty TSA employees for the one scanner (with quite a few standing around). It took forever. It was the slowest security line I think I have been in. Not to mention they were pushing all personal belongings through so that all the people were backed up but you no longer could see your stuff. A TSA agent was picking stuff out of bins because the personal items were so backed up. Frustrating because things were not where you left them. By the time we got to our stuff we were completely frustrated. I mean how long do you want to stand barefoot on the nastiest of floors, hoping you do not get the rub down from TSA?
By the time we got our luggage I could not NOT say something. I did and the guy said: “here our supervisor is right here.” I said something to the effect of: “how can you do this every day and night and still have such a backed up process? Folks are missing their flights because they had to wait so long, and you should never force passengers to be separated from their luggage.” His response was “you could stay with your luggage.” I said: “How? They are pushing us through and you would then never make it through security.” As I rolled my eyes and walked away.
It baffles me. Airport security is not rocket science. It is a fairly repetitive process that should be able to work like clockwork. There were a lot of better choices they could have made. All those TSA folks standing around? Open another line. Have TSA actually provide good customer service for those traveling. We do not have any other choice. Save us all some pain, and ensure that folks make their flight. Seems simple to me.
Last week we had dinner with good friends. Somehow during the conversation Comcast came up. Who has not had a problem with Comcast at some point in their television or internet days? They have a monopoly in most local areas. I know we have had no luck in our area. We either have Frontier (an offshoot of Verizon Fios) and Comcast. Frontier was not any better than Comcast in terms of customer service. If you do not use Frontier or Comcast, you have to go with a television service (like DirectTV) and a different company for high-speed internet.
In any case, my friend shared this hilarious story, about a Comcast customer who received their bill and the name on the bill read: “Asshole Brown.” Crazy! Take a peek at the link for an image of the bill. It makes me laugh because it is what I have wanted to say back to Comcast. While we do online bill pay, I wish I could make the payment to Comcast say: “Asshole Comcast.” We have called every month over the past year because every month our bill is not correct.
If you do an online search for “Comcast customer service issues” you will find over 3 million results. Such as this one where a customer recorded the phone calls he had with Comcast. I wish we would have done the same thing!
At the moment Comcast is trying to purchase Time Warner Cable, which would make the worst cable provider (customer service wise) have that much more control. Hopefully, if the deal goes through, Time Warner has some sort of interest in the customer. In an era where the customer comes first, Comcast has a lot to learn.
Hopefully Comcast figures out how to stop calling their customers assholes. It will not help their already pissed off customers. A few items to note, Comcast, you: 1) need better customer service 2) should not call customer’s assholes 3) should fix their bills, and follow through with what you say you will do. Not too tall of an ask, right?
I heard someone say this yesterday: “I got swagger.” I thought to myself: “I got swagger, maybe not today, but I got swagger.” Yesterday was a strange day. I felt an array of emotions, from anger, frustration, to laughter, sass, and yes swagger.
How do we keep our swagger? I think of all the people who I have looked up to in my life. Those that have inspired me, made my jaw drop, or just had me often say: Wow. They are the people who make us think differently. A professor in college had swagger. She had a way of making you enamored with her. You wanted her opinion, craved her attention, and missed her when she was not around. She had swagger.
My niece has swagger. I have been watching kids on and off since I was nine. From all the kids I have taken care of, to the 6 week old and up children I took care of at a day care during college, to my friend’s kids, my niece has got it. Of course I am biased, how can I not be, but that kid lights up a room, makes you laugh, and has something very special about her. I mean look at this photo. (She is the blond at the back of the circle of girls that all want to dote on her.) Swagger.
My husband has swagger. I cannot handle frustrating customer service situations. I have lived in that world too long, that when I have a shitty experience I go volatile and cannot handle the fact that I get sub-par service. He handles it with poise, firmness, and patience. That man has swagger.
A friend is going through a hard time in her marriage. She is working it through in her way. She is so selfless at work and with her child. She makes us all laugh, keeps it real, and tells it like it is. She has swagger.
I tell it like it is almost always (I do have a tiny filter when really needed). I suck the life out of my day. I love people, helping them, listening, and doing what I can to be there for them. I am a bit sassy. I got swagger.