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Customer service and an impatient aging society - very understandable

by Andy Flagg, Publication Date: Monday, December 23, 2019
View Count: 208, Keywords: Customer Service, Aging Society, Impatience, Understanding, Hashtags: #CustomerService #AgingSociety #Impatience #Understanding



If you have ever had difficult customers who are very impatient, and their hearing and shortness in patience is evident -- that is understandable.
 
20-30 years ago, we did not have deal with multi-tasking, dotted reported to just about everyone, and customers coming at you 7 ways from Wednesday. We just had one customer at a time, and one issue at a time.
 
Well, that never really worked for me anyhow, and I know people in IT customer support and service who are truly single threaded and that just does not scale in today's working environment.
 
Banks don't treat you like they know you. A good friend of mine in a Bank of America the other day was just getting so frustrated and I knew what he wanted done, yet the Bank rep was clueless and would not help. The bank rep just kept saying I understand your frustration and would not even help. That's okay. I get it. I like BofA better than WF, but then again, if you don't use your lawyer and get them involved with your banking, then the banks won't do a thing for you when you are in a crunch or in a pinch. BofA is good to a point yet most of the decisions are made not at the branch level but at the central office and your local branch is powerless to fix anything, and you have to write a letter just to get anything done; I mean done done. That's terrible and unacceptable but hey, get used to it. I did. So should you. Even WF internal communications that they require you to use to communicate, what you send them you don't get a copy of and they won't give you back your message and correspondence you submitted and they admitted they won't let you review your messages sent. borderline illegal, yes. Can we do anything about it? no.
 
That is not how it was 40 years ago. My Mom or Dad would walk into US Bank and the tellers and bank officers would great you by first name. There was no appointments, there was no confusion about who you are and there was absolute trust through your word, not through your available ID with a picture on it. Bank officers were there and could do signature guarantees with ease and if there we bank to bank issues, those would be handled easily. Well, no more.
 
Even First Interstate treated me with respect and when WF took them over, well, it took about 15 years for things to break down and fail, and that was about 2002. So 17 years of bad banking customer service will stop soon, and I have noticed because of all the corporate betrayals to customers from banks - that will halt.
 
This is all about trust and customer service.  The future past is not going to return except a few banks and some customer service institutions are coming back to hand shakes, smiles, by name, and trust first and rely on word as your bond.

So what is the issue? I have had about 500 clients in the last year who are age 70+ and their impatience with how they are treated by everyone is most evident. I feel bad that even when I try to help them and work them into my schedule and mixture of priorities, that does not seem good enough - they pop off and get all disgruntled.
 
That's okay. I get it. I don't have that much patience either with myself; yet I have plenty of patience with with others to a point. Let me repeat; to a point.
 
If I ask you something or show you something 3 times and you still don't get it; well, not my issue. Unless there is a handicap or accommodation that I have to make outside the normal routine of support and work; then we all have to get along and help each other and that does not mean making one person the exception because they are stubborn, old, ignorant or just abusive and single minded and self centered.
 
The reason? I can't control you, them or others, and one better think twice if I could. I know its fun to help people who want to work with you. If they are just being difficult, well let me share the bad news, not here. Ain't going anywhere. The buck stops here. 99.9% of the time customer service and support can handle just about everything, and that 1%, well, that 1% needs to become 0% and those folks who love to be a pain to everyone needs to settle down.
 
Think about it. Even reporting structures have limits in how far one can put something on someone's plate and keep the priorities in order.
 
Well, its a happy day and we want to be the best for each and every customer, and if they want to be treated like they are the only person and customer in your queue, well, that's not going to work.
 
I balance my priorities and my marching orders with my clients and businesses as best as I can, and occasionally we run in to the person we can never please, and that is okay. I feel bad for them.
 
Alas, do your best and be as professional as possible. We are only mortal and email is not the way to communicate and those that love to unload in email is not professional. That is why I pick up the phone, and try and smooth out any misunderstandings and try to get things working for them, and me, and the best for all.
 
You can't please everyone, yet we can be sincere and clear on who and what we are trying to accomplish. There are limited resources and not everyone can get what they want.
 
Limited resources and prioritization is critical and we all know that at a professional level.
 
more to come...

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