Saturday, April 27, 2013

The Almighty Survey

Have you ever given any thought to customer service and how it has turned us all into supreme buttholes?

I'm sure that when it started everyone was all, "This will be great!  We'll know what we need to do to improve and be the best possible versions of ourselves!"  And for a while it probably was like that.  People probably only wrote or called or asked to speak with the manager when something was really seriously wrong and needed fixing.

These days, the words "customer service" are a loaded gun.  People expect you to bend over backwards twice for them while they are being obnoxious rear ends.  And they dare you not to smile when you're putting up with their crap!

In the other direction, employees are catching it from the higher ups because of some nit picky complaint that shouldn't amount to a hill of beans because some idiot with a pen was feeling vengeful.  Companies rely on stupid surveys (here's looking at you J.D. Power) to gauge their employees worth while they are chasing that dollar.

We have gone overboard with this. 

As a person who formerly worked with the public (every job I've ever had), I have experienced the best and the worst of the way it works.  I've been on the receiving end of stupid surveys and their scores and the nice thank you notes that give you the strength to come back and work another day.

I believe in order to receive good customer service you need to first be a good customer.  I try to always be friendly and look the person in the eye because there's nothing worse than being made to feel like you've not human.  Unless something goes really terribly wrong, I feel like it went right.  I try to be appreciative and always thank the person helping me.

When I was in the hospital last month having my baby, I was determined to be the best patient EVER.  And I think I was.  (I was already afraid they'd kill me, no reason to add to it.)   I think they appreciated it too because everyone was sooooo incredibly nice to us.  After we got home we spent three weeks crafting the perfect thank you letters to send to their supervisors and every hospital survey I've received I've given highest marks with nice comments.

I haven't always been this way.

In my former life I was an idiot and every time my high school boyfriend and I would go out to eat somewhere that had comment cards, I would look for something, anything!, to complain about and fill them out in a fit of pure ecstasy.

Then I got my first job.  In fast food.  Yeah.  Payback.

My second job was retail.  Yeah.

Shortly after getting serious in the funeral business I came to my senses and realized the error of my former ways.  Since then, I've been in support of doing away with stupid surveys and trying to make up for other people's bad reviews with my good ones.

(Did I really just write an entire post on customer service?  I must have gotten too much sun on my walk today, yeesh!)

Anyway, don't be a turd unless you have too.

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