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View Full Version : Dear Fellow Customer Service Peons:



Pike
03-04-2012, 06:22 AM
How do you not go crazy dealing with terrible customers?

I'm starting to feel at the end of my rope here now that my hours have increased, which means the amount of time I spend dealing with crazies has also increased. :colbert:

Freya
03-04-2012, 06:34 AM
God working in a Video Game store, I feel like I'm talking a foreign language to some people. Then they still dont' understand it when I put it very simply so then they get mad at me and ugh. I have loads of stories to tell. A lot of times I get bitched out at by women for being "rude" after I have to give the little spiel they make us say. It's all scripted but then they think my tone is rude. Wtf?! Women. It's only women. Men don't give me much trouble but that's probably cause i'm a chick in a gaming store. Women :/

Peegee
03-04-2012, 06:44 AM
they matter, but not personally. does that make sense? Like when one yells at you, you do what is in your listed level of support and nothing else. When they leave dissatisfied you take a second to calm down and treat the next person as if the first didn't exist.

Parker
03-04-2012, 09:59 AM
my retail job has made me so miserable i'm losing patience with even the nice customers

my job has turned me into a massive asshole and im sick of it

Pike
03-04-2012, 02:56 PM
my retail job has made me so miserable i'm losing patience with even the nice customers

my job has turned me into a massive asshole and im sick of it

I know the feeling

You guys here all know me as Nice Pike (I presume anyway) but at work I'm just waiting until I get fired for being overly snarky to dickwad customers.

Sephex
03-04-2012, 06:28 PM
I guess this is a complaining about your job thread now?

Being Quality Assurance at a facility that manufactures conveyors from scratch has been absolute hell for me. Long story shot, the president (though he isn't the highest ranked boss) got mad because a specific unit was messing up in the field. It became absolutely clear that the problem stemmed from a design flaw that fell on the shoulders of the engineers. For whatever reason, the engineers can do no wrong in his eyes.

So he started screaming and pounding his desk (yes, there are bosses who actually do this in real life), turned a blind eye to the real issue, and said manufacturing was to blame. We now have to inspect certain parts for 100% inspection. Usually, we do a first piece check or a few checks per batch, which is normal procedure for just about any place that has a QA department. Now, we are expected to look at every single part per work order, tag each part with a sticker, and tie a hand written aluminum tag on each part as well. Then we have to log each recorded dimension on a spreadsheet (one for each part) that is stored on the server.

An order of 35 parts that aren't even that big will take two or three hours. We work 8 hours a day and aren't allowed overtime. If we were, even two or three hours of overtime wouldn't give us enough time. Orders are starting to back up already, and the president is already starting to complain that we aren't working fast enough. Oh, and some of these orders are for big parts that are over 100 pieces on the work order.

I'm in hell.

NorthernChaosGod
03-04-2012, 09:28 PM
I was pretty luck in that my two real retail jobs didn't actually have me working with customers very much.

Being a lifeguard sucks though since there are thousands of people coming through daily. :colbert: I pretty much content myself by imagining all of the people that don't listen to me or that talk back getting hurt in some fashion (away from me so I wouldn't have to help them).

sharkythesharkdogg
03-05-2012, 05:27 PM
I guess this is a complaining about your job thread now?

Being Quality Assurance at a facility that manufactures conveyors from scratch has been absolute hell for me. Long story shot, the president (though he isn't the highest ranked boss) got mad because a specific unit was messing up in the field. It became absolutely clear that the problem stemmed from a design flaw that fell on the shoulders of the engineers. For whatever reason, the engineers can do no wrong in his eyes.

So he started screaming and pounding his desk (yes, there are bosses who actually do this in real life), turned a blind eye to the real issue, and said manufacturing was to blame. We now have to inspect certain parts for 100% inspection. Usually, we do a first piece check or a few checks per batch, which is normal procedure for just about any place that has a QA department. Now, we are expected to look at every single part per work order, tag each part with a sticker, and tie a hand written aluminum tag on each part as well. Then we have to log each recorded dimension on a spreadsheet (one for each part) that is stored on the server.

An order of 35 parts that aren't even that big will take two or three hours. We work 8 hours a day and aren't allowed overtime. If we were, even two or three hours of overtime wouldn't give us enough time. Orders are starting to back up already, and the president is already starting to complain that we aren't working fast enough. Oh, and some of these orders are for big parts that are over 100 pieces on the work order.

I'm in hell.

Your best hope is that when the parts continue to fail in the field even with 100% inspection and parameter verification he'll be forced to conclude it's not a QA/Manufacturing issue, but indeed a design flaw. You can check those parts all you want, but if the original design is flawed then basically all he's paying you to do right now is verify that every single one of them is a turd.

Hopefully this 100% inspection policy will result in him seeing the real issue here soon.

Sephex
03-05-2012, 05:37 PM
I guess this is a complaining about your job thread now?

Being Quality Assurance at a facility that manufactures conveyors from scratch has been absolute hell for me. Long story shot, the president (though he isn't the highest ranked boss) got mad because a specific unit was messing up in the field. It became absolutely clear that the problem stemmed from a design flaw that fell on the shoulders of the engineers. For whatever reason, the engineers can do no wrong in his eyes.

So he started screaming and pounding his desk (yes, there are bosses who actually do this in real life), turned a blind eye to the real issue, and said manufacturing was to blame. We now have to inspect certain parts for 100% inspection. Usually, we do a first piece check or a few checks per batch, which is normal procedure for just about any place that has a QA department. Now, we are expected to look at every single part per work order, tag each part with a sticker, and tie a hand written aluminum tag on each part as well. Then we have to log each recorded dimension on a spreadsheet (one for each part) that is stored on the server.

An order of 35 parts that aren't even that big will take two or three hours. We work 8 hours a day and aren't allowed overtime. If we were, even two or three hours of overtime wouldn't give us enough time. Orders are starting to back up already, and the president is already starting to complain that we aren't working fast enough. Oh, and some of these orders are for big parts that are over 100 pieces on the work order.

I'm in hell.

Your best hope is that when the parts continue to fail in the field even with 100% inspection and parameter verification he'll be forced to conclude it's not a QA/Manufacturing issue, but indeed a design flaw. You can check those parts all you want, but if the original design is flawed then basically all he's paying you to do right now is verify that every single one of them is a turd.

Hopefully this 100% inspection policy will result in him seeing the real issue here soon.

I hope so, man. I am already doing exactly as told and documenting it, so they can't throw me under the bus when their bad ideas don't pan out. There are tons of other things wrong with the company, but this issue is beyond ridiculous even for my workplace.

Jinx
03-05-2012, 07:06 PM
As a waitress, I seriously know what you mean. You constantly deal with rude customers. The best thing to do is keep a smile on your face and bitch as soon as you get back to the kitchen. I'm mostly bubbly and cheery, but every once in awhile I get rude. Sorry, I have a name. Yelling, "Hey, girl!" across the store is not going to elicit a positive response from me.

Araciel
03-05-2012, 07:23 PM
Luckily I deal with sane Canadians when on actual calls, and they're business clients so it's not quite the same... Also I consider my paycheck.

Peegee
03-05-2012, 09:41 PM
I've been trying to convince Piku to move to canada but that's about as unrealistic as asking her to be asian.

Everybody here knows about
Funny & Stupid Customer Stories – Not Always Right (http://notalwaysright.com/)
and
Clients From Hell (http://clientsfromhell.net/)

right?

Pike
03-05-2012, 10:03 PM
Pffft PG when I lived just south of the Canadian border for a year the Canadians threw some of the biggest fits. Maybe that was just Vancouver though

Peegee
03-05-2012, 10:26 PM
Pffft PG when I lived just south of the Canadian border for a year the Canadians threw some of the biggest fits. Maybe that was just Vancouver though

....they threw a fit BECAUSE you lived just south of the border?

I'm not sure what the correlation is D:

Dignified Pauper
03-06-2012, 12:47 AM
i love working with a major cellular company in their tech support. nothing has beaten these people's level of entitlement.

Peegee
03-06-2012, 05:48 PM
i love working with a major cellular company in their tech support. nothing has beaten these people's level of entitlement.

gimme a refund

~*~Celes~*~
03-06-2012, 11:33 PM
All I have to say is, you would be surprised how angry people can get over mac n cheese, potato wedges, rotisserie chickens, or fried chicken. So, so surprised. -_-; Or not.

Jinx
03-06-2012, 11:50 PM
All I have to say is, you would be surprised how angry people can get over mac n cheese, potato wedges, rotisserie chickens, or fried chicken. So, so surprised. -_-; Or not.


WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU'RE OUT OF CABBAGE? WHAT DO YOU MEAN I'LL HAVE TO WAIT 20 MINUTES WHILE YOU COOK MY FOOD FRESH FROM SCRATCH?

~*~Celes~*~
03-06-2012, 11:55 PM
-_-; it really is terrible, isn't it.

NeoCracker
03-07-2012, 03:03 AM
I've worked fast food registars and have done telephone surveys, and I've adopted one mentality while on the job that helps immensly. Just tell yourself these people dont' know any better. Perhaps their parents didn't teach them proper manners, maybe they never went to school, or maybe they really are retarded. Regardless, it's not really their fault, so it's hard to get mad at them.

True, off the clock I fully realize this isn't the case, but a good amount of self delusion goes a long way. :p

Jinx
03-07-2012, 03:09 AM
^See, to me that's worse. I don't think ignorance is an excuse. Why DON'T people teach their children manners?

Side note: when I am at work and a child screams at me or demands I get something to them, I will ignore them until the parent asks politely for their child. I will not be bossed around by a 5-year-old, tip or no tip.

fire_of_avalon
03-07-2012, 04:27 AM
Today I was trying to verify a customer so I could speak to her about her accounts. When I was almost done she said, snarkily, "Will there be anything else?"

I responded that I had one last verification for her. Please describe how many accounts you hold with us and what type they are.

She had over 20 accounts. That was my revenge for the day.

Also had a woman "How can I get out of verifying my joint account holder to you."

Me: "...you can't. If you want to add him you either need to file an application by hand or I have to be able to speak with him."

her "When he gets home he's gonna be mad at you!"

Pike
03-07-2012, 05:32 AM
Is it terrible that I have absolutely no sympathy for the people who are like "I LIVE OUT OF TOWN I HAD TO DRIVE EIGHT WHOLE MILES IN ORDER TO GET THIS REFUND IT'S ABSOLUTELY AWFUL"?

Come cry to me when you had a commute that was 54 miles roundtrip, five days a week, like I did for most of last year. Then I'll commiserate.

Parker
03-07-2012, 08:16 AM
I'm just kinda tired of the whole thing. It's very forced and false. No one ever has anything interesting to say, and you hear the same jokes all the time.

Hi Sir, would you like a hand packing?
No, that's what the wife is for! ha ha ha

Hi ma'am, would you like any cashback?
Is it free today? Ho ho ho


It is extremely difficult and tiring to assume the false smile, incredibly-pleased-to-serve-you attitude day in, day out. Even if you're good with people and can converse easily, it tends to be the same old topics and conversations over and over again.

Steve
03-07-2012, 09:12 AM
It's funny but being I'm a senior assistant now it means I get to deal with even more issues because I get to deal with the customer complaints and issues too. Essentially when a colleague can't resolve something they come get me when the customer is already pissed off. Yeah just what I wanted/needed.

I also used to wait tables and know how that feels. The best thing to do with young children making demands is to respond to them but respond with the line "I will be more than happy to help you, if you speak to me politely. Ask me nicely and you can have." 99% of the time parents won't disagree with you and the child will learn to ask nicely. Gotta remember teaching kids manners isn't just something parents do and if you act rude towards a kid ignoring that kid then they're gonna learn people are rude and it's ok.

Most of my job is spent calming pissed off customers down or explaining why legally you are not entitled to the refund/exchange you are demanding so rudely from my colleagues. Not that the colleague could do it if they wanted to, refunds go through me. If a customer is ever rude to me during a request for a refund I literally say "Calm down, take a breath be polite. Remember you are asking me to give you a refund something I have explained is not company policy in this case. However it is within my discretion to make it happen but if you're rude, if you don't treat me with the respect a fellow human being deserves what are the odds I will make that happen?" Customers often learn to stfu and start being polite with me. I've had one or two customers go "I want to speak with your manager!" when I do that and I say "fine" *goes gets manager, explains customer is rude I advised them to calm down because it is my discretion here what matters to manager on way back* "this is my manager" *manager introduces self looks at the receipt for all of 10 seconds, speaks to customer, speaks to me* "Well I'm afraid, my colleague is entirely right in this, there is only discretion at stake here for you to get a refund/exchange. Therefore my colleague is well within his rights to refuse it if you are rude to him." *customer implodes*

Jinx
03-07-2012, 12:38 PM
I'm just kinda tired of the whole thing. It's very forced and false. No one ever has anything interesting to say, and you hear the same jokes all the time.

Hi Sir, would you like a hand packing?
No, that's what the wife is for! ha ha ha

Hi ma'am, would you like any cashback?
Is it free today? Ho ho ho


It is extremely difficult and tiring to assume the false smile, incredibly-pleased-to-serve-you attitude day in, day out. Even if you're good with people and can converse easily, it tends to be the same old topics and conversations over and over again.


Me: "Were you ready for you check?"
Customer: "What, you mean my meal isn't free today?"
Me: "GUFFAW LAUGH GIGGLE. So funny. Now leave me a good tip."

Bubba
03-07-2012, 12:56 PM
You have my sympathies, Iceglow. That used to irritate the hell out of me when customers demand to "speak to your manager". I used to work customer service for a bank years ago. Whenever someone wasn't happy with what I was telling them they would demand to speak to a supervisor. I found quite often, just putting another person on the phone (manager or not) and reiterating the same thing was enough to get rid of them.

I agree with FT. There is no excuse whatsoever for bad manners.

I hated it in the bank. It was so hard to make people understand about their money... especially when they couldn't grasp even the simplest premise. I once had a guy who had one account with zero balance. He then tried to pay a 50 cheque into that account... with a cheque from the same account!

After explaining clearly to him (four times) the exact reason why this wasn't possible... he repeated the same question. "So when will it clear?"

I still have nightmares thinking about it.

Jinx
03-07-2012, 01:49 PM
I understand that, Iceglow, but as their server, I don't really have the place to step in and say that. Most people would get pissed off, and it's not worth it.

And I honestly think it IS the parents' job, not mine. When I'm out in public, I'm not rude to anyone. I smile, talk, please/thank you. I set an example. I shouldn't have to step in and say, "Hey, you can't talk to me like that, kid," while the parent sits idly by. And honestly, if my child ever talked to me like that, after a reprimanding, I'd ignore them. Why? Because it says that that behaviour isn't going to ellicit a response from me, and when the sit down and be quiet and polite (like I've already told them to) then we can talk about whatever it is they wanted. It works on my little cousins and the multiple children I've babysat over the years.


But now I'm de-railing the thread. :)

DMKA
03-07-2012, 01:49 PM
Ah yes. I worked for T-Mobile customer service for like a year. It was awful. People who don't pay their cellphone bills are the biggest jerks on the planet. I would have nightmares about my job and dread waking up every morning knowing that I'd have to return to that place. Eventually I stopped giving a crap and began intentionally doing everything I could to get myself fired. My boss, unfortunately, was a chicken and wouldn't do it. So after a week of me releasing calls and telling rude customers to go smurf themselves, a person higher up than her finally came and fired me. I was delighted.

Now I help manage a retail business (a florist). It's almost as bad, but fortunately I have a boss who lets me do as I please, for all practical purposes, so I can tell rude customers who go too far to go smurf themselves and never come back, and there's no repercussions aside of a customer I don't want never coming back. :D

On Valentine's Day an absolutely insane black woman came in, literally threw the flowers her boyfriend had had us delivered to her at us because she hates pink roses, and he boyfriend bought her pink roses, and that ruined her Valentine's Day (which was some how our fault), breaking one of our point of sales systems in the process, then proceeded to cuss us all out, call us faggots and crackers, and tell us that she was going to have her police officer boyfriend beat us up. Then she called him on the phone in the middle of the store and proceeded to scream and him and cuss him out when he wouldn't come down and do as she demanded, then tell him that he wasn't getting any that night and telling him he needed to come down and assert his authority to us or they were through. In the end she cussed us all out one more time, then got in her escalade and drove over the sidewalk almost hitting people entering our store and left. All the while she was doing this, we had a store full of customers on our busiest day of the year.

That was the one moment that I thought this just might be worse than working for T-Mobile customer service.

Jessweeee♪
03-07-2012, 02:27 PM
I'm a secretary. I don't like it. It could be worse, soooo much worse, but I don't want to be a secretary forever. And this is the best I can do with what I've got to offer right now anyway. The most frustrating part is bad communication. Everyone at the office has a different native language. My supervisor is just as fluent in English as she is in Spanish, so I never have trouble understanding her thank goodness, but my boss speaks Hebrew with kind of okay English and The Prez speaks Thai and not much English at all.

I get emails from my boss that say "bob does not do the sky" and I'm like wtf and spend twenty minutes figuring out that he actually meant "Bob doesn't know how to use Skype."


I don't envy anyone who works in customer service. I've been thinking about taking some classes and going into computer repair, because I feel like that's something my brain is wired to learn, but customer service ugh I dunno.

Loony BoB
03-07-2012, 02:32 PM
I find dealing with awkward customers to be easy because it's part of the job. I never take it personally until they make it personal, and when they do, I tell my boss and let them deal with it and move onto something else. It's not about having thick skin, it's about being professional when required and not caring about those who are rude to you. I don't deal with customers as often as I used to, but I still get along with them whenever I do.

I have always found it very easy to seperate work from life, though. I rarely get stressed and never think about work when I'm not at work. I do treat my clients pretty good, though, especially those that aren't rude. Won the annual High Performer award for customer services, too, in a company of 10,000 people. :D Not bad, even if the award can't be won by management.

I imagine it would be trickier in an environment where a boss would take the customer's side all the time, though. If that happens. In which case, I'd get a new job.

Pike
03-07-2012, 02:55 PM
I'm just kinda tired of the whole thing. It's very forced and false. No one ever has anything interesting to say, and you hear the same jokes all the time.

Hi Sir, would you like a hand packing?
No, that's what the wife is for! ha ha ha

Hi ma'am, would you like any cashback?
Is it free today? Ho ho ho


It is extremely difficult and tiring to assume the false smile, incredibly-pleased-to-serve-you attitude day in, day out. Even if you're good with people and can converse easily, it tends to be the same old topics and conversations over and over again.

"Would you like a bag?"
"My wife IS the bag!"

ahahahahahahahahaha of course I haven't heard that a million times before!

DMKA
03-07-2012, 04:17 PM
"Would you like a bag?"
"My wife IS the bag!"
Priceless.

Pike
03-07-2012, 05:24 PM
"Would you like a bag?"
"My wife IS the bag!"
Priceless.

I'll admit I laughed the first time I heard it

Yeargdribble
03-07-2012, 07:53 PM
I literally could not do any of this. I would be flipping tables left and right out of anger and frustration. I try to deal with as few people as possible and, luckily, most of those I do deal with are peers who aren't idiots.

The bassist for my band does most of the talking and booking (though the sax player technically books the most gigs). I'm glad he's smooth with the handful of ignorant people we have to deal with for things like weddings. Worst case scenario is that they make half a dozen special requests for the reception 1 week before the gig when they've had us booked for several months or they request things that are incredibly inappropriate and he has to explain it to them. But this is hardly rage inducing compared to customer service stories I see.

Most of my solo gigging has me working with people who are at least somewhat competent.

As a result of my rage, I deeply empathize with people who work these jobs. I'm exceptionally kind and patient with anyone who works in a service job. I give them the benefit of the doubt as much as possible and if they look like they are in a foul mood I usually assume it's because they dealt with an asshat recently or that they are at the tail end of a ridiculously long shift of dealing with the wretches of this planet.

If they are doing a good job I'll go out of my way to compliment them as much as possible (or tip generously for waitstaff). I always hope that getting at least some positive feedback will help them trudge through their day.

Peegee
03-07-2012, 08:01 PM
I've had the very weirdest sages in my life. This one comes from a 17-18 year old girl who was my friend in high school:

Everybody should work service industry. Then you'd know how hard it can be. And always overtip your waiter if you get good service - they need the money.