Today’s Customer Service

What a Smile will do
What a Smile will do

Today, I am to write an op-ed column, of local interest, for one of my communication classes. I could not think of a better topic than Customer Service. Being involved in customer service for over 19 years, I know how quality can impact customer satisfaction and can make or break a company. I started at K-Mart at the age of fifteen, with a work permit. What I learned during my 6 years at K-Mart, I have applied to every job since. I learned at an early age, that customer satisfaction was and always will be the key to success.
My issue, with all of this, is that customer service today is lacking in every aspect. Not too long ago, I was in CVS Pharmacy and paid by check. Not noticing the pen standing erect and off to the side, I asked for a pen. I got the worse look and an attitude to go along with it. Instead of walking out, I called her out for her behavior and finished my transaction. And, I will never forget getting my cable installed. It was on scheduled for a Tuesday morning install and it was not until that afternoon, that Comcast called and informed me that there was a schedule change and it would not be installed until Thursday afternoon. I was furious with Comcast but, with all the monopolizing of service companies, I had no choice but to suffer with poor customer service! These companies have no idea that they are destroying their own reputation in the process.
This is coming from someone who literally watched one of the largest manufacturing companies fall to the ground. When I began working for this company, it was known as Ford Electronics & Refrigeration and Quality was number one priority. Every part left this shop looking its best. It was like this for years and I was proud to work for Ford. It wasn’t until the company changed hands and the plant acquired a new plant manager.
It was then, that numbers became the first priority. To make a long story short, it got to the point where employees were refusing to put parts into their shipping containers simply because of the appearance. Radiators and condensers, being packaged for installation in various vehicles, could be seen through. Regardless whether the part tested good, they looked unacceptable. I know all of this, because I was one of these employees.
When I started at Ford in 1993, I was so proud. I would have never guessed that by 2005, I would be ashamed and unemployed. There is obviously a need for proper Customer Service education. The need does not stop there, we also need those that lack the proper skills to refrain from taking on the responsibility in the first place.


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