When, And Why, Did Customer Service Die?

skyhawk1

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You're absolutely right, skyhawk1.

I owned a little gun shop in the mountains of Colorado for 12 years. I never really bought into the old saying, "The customer is always right." Because they're not. BUT... They're still the customer and without them you don't have a business. Not a profitable one, anyway. I went out of my way to treat customers exactly how I wanted to be treated.

I noticed something when we were in the middle of selling one house and buying another recently. If someone called requesting information required to move the process along we dropped everything to get that information. But if we contacted the realtor (for the house we were buying) we were lucky to ever hear back from him. I got pretty fed up with him and told him if he didn't start communicating with us we'd find someone who would. He seemed to get the message.
Yes I know about the "customer is always right" except when they get out of line and start screaming at our people about why they can't get their script filled or something else. Then they get "fired". Most usually come back in a few days and apologize. Had one Monday night that threw the sack at our delivery driver screaming she didn't order it. It was an antibiotic the doc had called in and said she needed asap. She called this morning and wanted to know when she could get something else and the wife told her to go somewhere else and she asked why. Wife told her her attitude was not going to be tolerated any longer( she has been like this for months)
 

retrieverman

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Man I can't say I disagree with you...... Seems to be happening everywhere in every business. I guess it's the degradation of our society these days. Some blame it on the labor shortage, etc. etc. I blame it on the way some of these kids are raised nowadays........ No moral fiber at all. It really doesn't take much effort to just admit to a mistake and make the call! Or, answer the PM !
It’s not just “kids” that suck, because I‘ve dealt with assholes of all ages. I bought a used Ford F450 a few years ago from a local dealership, and the salesman (in his 70’s) goes to church with me. Long story short, he failed to tell me the truck had a rebuilt motor. I didn’t find out until 30,000 miles later when it needed another motor. Needless to say, I wasn’t nice about the situation. They wouldn’t admit any wrongdoing, but they did take the truck back and find me another one (which I still have).
 

Shinneryfarmer

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Usually when making a deal with any business on large ticket item I make my expectations known up front due to past experience. 1k and above is a large ticket item to me. I explain if we make a deal what I expect from them ( ie. Delivery date, notification before time
if gonna be late 30 minutes, etc. if time agreed upon. Blowing me off and not communicating results in stop payment of check and they can keep it.)
Made a deal on a backhoe last fall that a hyd. cylinder would be rebuilt or replaced and a delivery date. Delivery date they showed up and unloaded backhoe with leaking cylinder. Called sales person was told they forgot and would have someone come by tommorrow and fix. 7 days later called him back to inform him no one showed and to come get his backhoe. His response was "Don't you mean your backhoe" I said no it is yours because you didn't follow thru with the deal and when it showed up with leaking cylinder I put a hold on my check. I haven't paid for it so it's yours come get it.
 

DavidMcMillan

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The last ten years of my career, I was the general manager of a manufacturing plant, with the auto industry as our primary customers. One of our engineers coined the phrase, "The customer is always right, sometimes they are incredibly stupid, but the customer is always right". Ever since, that comment has come to mind several times. Sometimes it's from watching or hearing about someone's customers, and sometimes it from something I have done or said.
 

Cat City Slim

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I actually had a very good customer service experience with a tractor dealership recently, even though the ultimate outcome was not what I hoped. I had been looking for a used tractor for some time in the Tulsa area with no luck. I found a tractor I liked at a dealership in OKC. After everything was set with the sale, I was going to send a friend of mine to OKC to pick it up on a Saturday. The salesman called me on Friday afternoon to tell me that the tractor had stopped running, and they had not been able to determine the problem. They offered to pay for whatever repairs were needed and deliver it to my home east of Tulsa for free. I decided to cancel the sale, as I didn't want to buy potentially big problems. They were very understanding of the decision.
 

SoonerP226

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I've always gotten good service out of P&K, but I've only bought parts from them at their Norman and Purcell stores (well, I did pick up a part at their Pryor store once). The one in Ada was a Grissom's until a few years ago when P&K acquired them, and I've only driven past that one.

FWIW, my dad liked dealing with Gary over at Great Plains in Ada. He's a sales guy, but was always a straight shooter with us.
 

sedona

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You are right to be annoyed.My latest bad customer service was at Billingsley hyundai in Lawton.This is the 3rd time i have taken my car to get the oil changed.Each time i get my car back there is grease on the seats and doors.I get the service manager and he cleans it up.I am very particular with my car and have towels on the seats to keep the interior nice.I have done this with all my cars and trucks.They acted like it isn't a big deal, but if they don't take care of my Sonata when changing oil i won't be buying a more expensive vehicle for them to get grease on the interior.I worked on the weekend for years at an oil changing place and if i made a mess it was cleaned up even if the car was a beater.
 

Okiedog

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The last ten years of my career, I was the general manager of a manufacturing plant, with the auto industry as our primary customers. One of our engineers coined the phrase, "The customer is always right, sometimes they are incredibly stupid, but the customer is always right". Ever since, that comment has come to mind several times. Sometimes it's from watching or hearing about someone's customers, and sometimes it from something I have done or said.
Yep! They're not always right, but they are always the customer.
 

HFS

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I'm just as unimpressed with bad customer service as anybody else.
And in these times, it doesn't matter if the sales thief that "helps" you is young, old, male, female or whatever.

There is one factor that SOMETIMES comes into play**: I guess I move with the wrong crowd because I seem to hear relatives/acquaintances complaining about terrible customer service, etc. -- right after they were bragging about how they beat the seller down to a ridiculously low price.
Now that doesn't excuse lousy customer service, but you'd think after a few times around and around the same mulberry tree, the knot head customers would notice a trend or something.

**Notice I said that SOMETIMES comes into play. I'm sure none of the rest of you know anybody like the fellows I'm describing.
 

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