Monday, June 9, 2008

The Customer Is NOT Always Right

There's an old saying that has been said in the business world for a long time: "The customer is always right." And for many years, it was irrefutable. Now, being in a service industry as I am, I can tell you one thing.

The customer is not always right.

Part of this can be chalked up to the attitude many customers bring to the table before they make the first contact with a company providing a product or service. Sometime within the past 20 or 30 years, consumers became self-absorbed and started demanding above and beyond what they really deserve for even a simple transaction. Why? Because they wanted it.

What they don't realize is that wanting something isn't always a good justification. Take someone addicted to drugs. They want drugs in spite of the fact what they want winds up hurting them, even to the point of death. Same thing with thieves. They want to steal money, jewelry, anything they can get their hands on and sell quickly. What separates the good wants with the bad wants is the motivation.

Yet, I can't completely blame the customers. Companies have lost the fine art of customer service and caring about their customers. With anything you buy from a major company, you're subjected to front-line reps either trying to hustle you away or turn you off from the actual experience so you'll never come back. Put an overly demanding customer against an apathetic and surly customer service representative and you see the vendor-vendee relationship at its most base and foul.

Yet, it's easily fixed. When you're the customer, go into the exchange asking for only what you absolutely need to resolve the problem and show appreciation for whatever can be given to you. When you're the service provider, put yourself in the customer's position and show some compassion. Granted, it's easier said than done, but it can be done.

And for the sake of my sanity and what's left of my hair, it needs to be done.

1 comment:

Dennise said...

Thomas, I, like you have no problem with gay marriage. To me it is a legal issue of benefits and nothing I will take part in.

The problem related to it is this: There is no longer a Man & Woman on any CA marriage license. Now it is Person A & Person B.

It is outrageous to me, that the same is happening to Birth Certificates. No longer is there Mother & Father. There is Person A & Person B.

I do not believe anyone should have the right to tell me I am not my child's MOTHER. GOD himself gave me the right to be called Mother of my child.

It seems the gays have the power in America to override GOD. And yes, I have a problem with that.

(gays in MA filed a lawsuit to remove Mother & Father from Birth Certificates because it descriminates against them by being different from theirs which read Parent A & Parent B. Thus the start of the removal of Mom & Dad, Husband & Wife, Man & Woman)