ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Is Customer Service a Contradiction in Terms?

Updated on March 12, 2019
kenneth avery profile image

Kenneth is a natural-born southerner and grew up his entire life in the south where he has resided now for 63 years in Hamilton, Al.,

There is a small portion of people who DO serve their customers.
There is a small portion of people who DO serve their customers. | Source

There Was a Man Called

Sam Walton. He hailed from Bentonville, AR., He drove a beaten-up Chevy pick-up and he wore average work clothing to make a surprise visit to one of his many stores which you know his name. I could tell you some stories, but I won’t. Time and text will always betray what good thinking I might have.

I can tell you about a Personal Interaction with Walton, because my wife of 43 years worked for him at one of his stores in Hamilton, that is in Alabama, located strategically in Northwest Alabama and right off I-22, just in case you have an itch to visit us. My wife worked (not played around) for 27 years—doing what needed doing; doing what her five different managers told her to do and she came home in tears four out of five days in the week. Guess who was the recipient of her complaints?

Many times I picked up the phone to call my wife’s business number which started with 1-800, but she talked me out of it—she didn’t want to make waves, and with a ton of personal discipline, I put the phone down. But did not forget just how nasty and low her company treated her—and others who were treated equally. Some even worse. And I was supposed to just “turn the other cheek?” I would have been glad to except I had ran out of cheeks to turn. Besides, hard-working people should NOT be treated like livestock. I do not care what country you came from and if you are doing your best and working beyond your initiative, you shouldn’t have to endure such nasty and low life treatment.

Personally Speaking About

“this” company, not only did they try to make things appear that my wife was not doing an adequate job, but would take to dressing her down in front of other employees and customers to boot. These types of treatment are reminiscent of Nazi Germany because you were Jewish. I know you may be upset at this statement—so look it up. I promise. You will find plenty of information and data that will back me up on this awful facade.

As my Capsule Introduction states, ‘Personally Speaking,’ I can attest to the fact that in this same company where my wife worked, I met with this same time of mistreatment more than one time when I was taking on the role of a money-paying customer. And there was a time in our country when the word, “Customer,” stood for something. It meant that when “Customers” chose to darken the doors of American businesses, they stood for something more than valuable—how about “Needful” to keep the doors of our stores open? How about a term, “Cannot operate without the Customer?” If you stop and think about these terms in an honest light . . .you might start looking (like I did) from a new viewpoint and when you arrive at the same place where I once stood, you might feel the same as I did. Shameful. This is the only way that adequately-labels the way my wife’s company still operates. Please say that you read the previous statement!

Speaking Again

as the unfortunate times when I walked into this huge store and had the ignorance of the fact that Customer Support actually meant just that .. .Customer, meaning someone just like me who supports (a) company and Support, meaning (the) customers help to keep businesses afloat. Boy, was I a fool!

I would go on record as telling you the coup de gra was NOT the idea of Customer Support, but how customers were, and are supported. I can tell you from a personal basis that during these very sad times of when I was the (mildly) disgruntled customer, I found out something that I did not expect: the term, Customer Support has faded, for lack of a better word, in our Great land.

Maybe not faded as it were. How about Machine Like and Ritualistic? Tough terms for a tough time. Customer Service was once what helped a business thrive and if one customer was not happy because of (that) business, the Customer Service Technician would stay as long as it took to make the customer happy—it didn’t matter if the customer’s need of being a happy camper took past five o’clock, the Customer Service Tech did not mind. Try and get “that” type of service in (most) places in 2019!

Customer Service today means going-through-the-motions; looking up an answer for the unhappy customer in some manual written by the higher-up of the company, but no longer occupies that corner office. Try it sometime if you don’t believe me—I have had Customer Service rep’s put on that mannequin-style smile, look right through me and if they would not try to “do what was necessary” to help me in less than fifteen-minutes, so be it. So long, Mr. Customer. Nice knowing ya’!

Along With the Human Side

of this sensitive subject, the bigger companies have found out that real human beings with real feelings—compassion, care for the other person, need not apply for employment. It just don’t happen. At least from a human standpoint. But now if you look from the level of Phone-a-Customer . . .I hate it for you.

Today’s Customer Service rep does not really hear what you, the customer, person who is spending money each month to keep a telephone, any telephone, electricity or water, and you run into a problem that takes you making contact with someone who works in Customer Service, good luck. I know of a huge telephone company who does NOT have a Customer Service number—no “800” number where we, the Disgruntled Customer, can vent to a caring human who would take our valid complaints to the business owners and get the problem solved, I said to someone at this Giant Telephone Company, so I am just wasting my time with you and they quickly agreed.

The Customer Service, in some businesses, those who are brave enough to hang out their shingles to “Help and Serve,” (sounds like the police, huh?), and have a rep that you have to discern their intricate maze of Telephone Prompts where you are either going to Hit 1, Say 10, Knock Three Times if You Want in, and in about half-hour, you get the same annoying male computer voice that states: “Your average call will be answered in 38 minute,” and like me, I was a sucker with (that) stupidity.

The time that I did follow the Prompts, jump through the asinine hoops only to meet with some unnecessary wait time . . .it was always More than the time said to me . . .38 minutes ended up being an hour or so and then when finally a human being got on the line, I made sure that the rep was a real human being before I unloaded on some faulty product or service that I had been lured into buying, that Customer Service rep told me that the problem wasn’t their fault, but mine!

So, I said to this sharp-talking Customer Service rep, although the problem is with YOUR company, (I am left) to try and fix this problem although I an well-within the Warranty that YOU sent me? “Yes! What else can I do for you”

I would have answered that last question, but I had too much self-respect to prostitute myself any further to get my telephone to work properly.

March 12, 2019______________________________________


"May I help you?"
"May I help you?" | Source

P.S.

If you are working in a Customer Service area of your company or business and doing your very best to take care of the needs of your customer . . . then this hub is NOT to you, but if this piece has affected you in some way, I am sure that YOU did not initiate a non-caring attitude toward your customers. I am the first to admit that sometimes (a) customer comes along that no matter how much or how long you or your managers work to solve the customer's problem . . .and still, it doesn't work and the angry customer leaves, do not worry. You did your best. That is all any of us can do.

Sincerely,

Kenneth

© 2019 Kenneth Avery

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • profile image

      Ken Avery 

      13 days ago

      Hi, Dianna/teaches12345 . . .I have to agree with you. Somehow in the USA, those bigger companies SAY that customer service is NO. 1, forgot to correctly-train their Service Desk employees.

      Example: I walked up to a service desk several years ago and I asked if someone would help me and the guy had the gall to say, maybe.

      I left the broken product, called the main number and even they acted so arrogant that I just stopped patronizing their companies.

      Thank you for the intelligent comment.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      2 weeks ago

      I don't even want to think about customer service assistance these days. I have come across a few good companies that really go the extra mile but most fall short.

    • profile image

      Ken Avery 

      4 weeks ago

      Elijah -- yes, you are right. You made a great point. Thank you

      so much for stopping by and leaving me a bit of valuable

      knowledge.

      Peace.

    • The0NatureBoy profile image

      Elijah A Alexander Jr 

      4 weeks ago from Washington DC

      I do agree with you, Ken, I have not used Customer Service as far as I can remember but I've heard man stories about them, some training them and others condemning them, so without first hand experience I can not make a truthful call. Again, thanks for sharing it.

    • profile image

      Ken Avery 

      5 weeks ago

      Elijah --- so good of you to comment on this hub. I appreciate your friendship,candor, and down-right honesty.

      The service rep's are a funny gang that needs to be trained the Old School Way (e.g. if you do not want to work, don;t.)

      Peace.

    • profile image

      Ken Avery 

      5 weeks ago

      Dear Liz --- you are not wrong about my wife crying each night that she arrived home, but until the day that she retired, she stood her ground and did not let the Bullies see her cry. Can I get an Amen?

      And thanks, Liz, not only for being a good friend, but also a wonderful hubber. Write when you like.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      6 weeks ago from UK

      I think we can all relate to this from the customer's perspective. But I am very sorry to hear about your wife. That sounds like work place bullying. As a customer I accept that from time to time things can go wrong. What makes the difference is how they are handled afterwards.

    • The0NatureBoy profile image

      Elijah A Alexander Jr 

      6 weeks ago from Washington DC

      I do know about those kinds of Customer Service reps, you didn't lie because I've experienced some such reps. A truth that is both humorous and sad at the same time. Thanks for sharing it.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)