Service of Stupidity
February 16th, 2013
Categories: Customer Service, Newspapers, Stupidity
David Reich writes a blog “my 2 cents,” musings on marketing, media, public relations….and life. He founded Reich Communications, a NYC-based PR and marketing company years ago. I have been lucky to work on projects with him. He rarely complains.
When he asked to share this experience, I knew we’d want to read about it because his nose for news is perfect pitch [an apt reference as he also loves jazz].
I get The Wall Street Journal delivered to my office every day.
I, frankly, don’t remember how much I pay for the subscription or when it expires. I recall that when I ordered it, it was a good deal, maybe something like $9.95/mo. But it’s just not one of those things I normally give much thought to.
I had a call this morning from The Journal offering me “their best deal” of $29.95/mo and I’d get two months free. So that comes to about what I seem to recall I’ve been paying per month, although maybe not such a great deal after three months.
At that moment, I didn’t remember what I’ve been paying. So I asked the nice man on the phone how much I’m now paying. He said he didn’t have that information.
I then asked him when my subscription expires. He said he didn’t have that information.
He then asked to confirm my address, and he gave me the address that I moved away from two months ago. I gave him my new address and also told him I’ve been getting the paper here at the new place since we moved. He had no information on the new address.
I then asked him how he expected me to make a purchase decision without key information that he should have – like how much I’ve been paying and how much longer my subscription is paid. He started to tell me I could call the Journal’s subscription number – 1-800 something.
But we didn’t get that far, because I politely told the guy I didn’t have time to call to get information about my account that he should have when he called me. The call wasted about four minutes of my valuable time, and it also wasted the time of the person who’s getting paid at the Journal’s call center.
Customer service? No, more like service of stupidity.
You’ve got to scratch your head, but think of all the companies that plunk staffers on the phone who have no clue beyond the script they’re given and/or are not prepped with sufficient backup information to do their jobs properly. Can you share such instances?