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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The good, the bad and the ugly


A friendly smile, a polite nod, an "I don't care" attitude and then the really ugly, over the top height of rudeness. From the chatty petrol attendant, to the arrogant woman behind the pharmacy counter; these are people who either make your day, or break the cheery mood you left home with.

I've worked in customer service and I know how hard it is to put on a smile when you're really upset or in a bad mood, but you do it; that's the job and you get on with it. So why should I have to greet the Checker's cashier first, ask for a bag and say "thank you" with a smile, when I get none of that in return? On the other end of the scale, there's my favourite petrol station. It doesn't matter what time of day I go, I'm always greeted with a smile on arrival, and leave with a few cheerful words that often include; "Have a good day!" These petrol attendants are in the sweltering heat in the summer, and the freezing cold in the winter, but do you see them moaning, rolling their eyes or giving attitude? Never. It amazes me sometimes that we're still trying to get out of this recession and people are either struggling to find jobs or are getting retrenched, and yet you get attitude and rudeness from people who couldn't care less.

As someone who continously tries to give really good service, I expect nothing less than this when I go out. Most of the time I'm disappointed, but sometimes I'm pleasantly surprised at getting a bit of excellent service! I'd like to introduce you to one of my favourite websites, and one of the best sites I've ever come across. The next time you get lip from that cranky shop assistant, or great service from the bank manageress who has gone the extra mile; let your fingers do the talking here. The site I'm talking about is www.hellopeter.com. The best part about this site is that most of the suppliers or stores you choose to complain about come back to you, either with an apology and a promise to improve their services, or they offer a discount or free product as a way of making amends. I've used this website for complaints and compliments from time to time when someone has either really amazed, or really horrified me with their service, and I can without a doubt say that it's one of the best sites for consumers. That said, I'm ending off with a few personal "thank you's" from the past few weeks:

Thanks to:
The Assistant at ABSA Bank in Tygervalley who pulled me out of a long queue to deposit my cheque with her directly just after Christmas 2009.
The staff at Vines Pharmacy in Aurora, Durbanville who have successfully ensured that I will never set foot in their outlet again.
The waitors at Dros, who were on the ball but not overbaring that particular evening.
The attendants at Kenridge Petrol station who always have a smile and a friendly attitude.

Have you had any really good or bad experiences recently?

Kate Zabriskie puts things into perspective with this quote:

"Although your customers won’t love you if you give bad service, your competitors will."

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