Maybe I’m just old school, but I actually remember the days when businesses set out to keep your business, not lose it. They valued their loyal customers and made it clear to you just how valued you are.
That doesn’t seem to be the normal anymore. Do you remember the day when banks wanted you to actually open a checking and savings with them? They offered you toasters and blankets and FREE checking and savings. The bank manager knew your name, the tellers greeted you with a smile and you weren’t treated like a criminal behind a bullet proof shield. Yesterday, after a discussion with Regions Bank, I was pretty much told that I had the option of going to another bank. The lady made no move to keep me as a customer, no apologies, absolutely nothing. No warm and fuzzies from Regions Bank, that’s for sure.
And then there is UPS. Their customer service aside from lacking any real concern, actually tried to hold me accountable for their delivery persons oversight. At first I couldn’t understand why, but after visiting their site and seeing that you can PAY for better service, I immediately knew that the lack of customer service provided by UPS is all designed to encourage you instead to join their program and THEN they will give you personal service. Ah, gotcha.
One place I do need to applaud for their service though is Applebee’s. Consistently since the restaurant opened in our town of New Port Richey, a manager visits your table and asks if everything is ok, and seems to actually mean it. I’ve had other restaurant manager’s breeze by the table and throw a glance and mumble our way to see if all was good, but the managers at our local Applebee’s engage in a conversation with you, a genuine interest.
Recently I learned of a new policy at the Dollar General Store also. If you purchase two items or less they won’t give you a bag. I personally have not had this happen, but my son in law got to stand behind a lady who had just checked out and was arguing for 10 minutes about this because the cashier wouldn’t give her a bag. Naturally, if it had been me, I would have reached over and got a bag for the lady and ended the brouhaha. First off, if its company policy or store policy I don’t know, but how silly of Dollar General to lose a customer over a .05 bag. More evidence of poor customer service.
My biggest complaint though has to be dealing with government workers at our local county and state offices. Overall, these people are just plain rude. One had the audacity to even tell me that she didn’t have to do anything because she works for the state. Seriously? My tax dollars at work.
So what’s happening in our world today? Why is customer service down so much? People are crying for jobs and yet treat the public terribly if they are working in a public setting. Businesses complain that their sales are down and yet do nothing to improve their customer service. When did it become acceptable to treat a customer like they aren’t a value to the business? This isn’t just a generation thing either; it’s all age classes, all genders.
This is why I shop online and eat at mom and pop restaurants. I don’t have to deal with sales people and check out people online and the mom and pop places are always so glad to have your business and show it. On that note, I do want to give a little shout out to Amazon, they have always had great customer service and treated me with respect when I had an issue with a product I’ve bought from their site. Way to go Amazon, maybe you need to give customer service lessons too.