Have you ever simply wanted to get some good in-person customer service when making a product decision? Yesterday my son and I were in search of just that at our cellphone provider. Our contracts were up for renewal and with Fall routines beginning in mere days, we decided to go update our plans. Nobody wanted to deal with us in person as we were told to call for the promotions. Both of our phones were broken and we wanted to transfer my son's plan over to his name. We urgently needed to replace his phone. "You have to do it by telephone," came the refrain from two separate service outlets of this well-known provider. We had two frustrating visits to downtown outlets. At the main Montreal service outlet, after taking a number and waiting for an hour, the female sales rep told me that all the phones were the same, to just choose one as she waved her hand magically over the display of shiny rectangles. She was looking ahead to the next customer in a long line. But I wanted to be sold a phone! If I could just choose one, I would be online and doing the transaction over the telephone. Sometimes we need the tactile experience of the product before buying it, and the in-person sale is the chance to educate the customer.
Now, why I am complaining? I facilitate a college course called The Customer Approach, that's why! And these people need to learn how to help customers! Why can we not get personalized and enthusiastic service any more? Why is it that I have to club the sales rep into awareness? Why did I have to work so hard as a client to get my needs heard and met? And that is what burned me yesterday. Here were two loyal customers, in need of phones and willing to sign 2-year agreements, and the best these first sales reps could do was tell us to call, that they did not want or have the creativity to deal with us in person.
Today as we have our plans and phones in place, Mathieu is our hero. And his boss who was standing right there knows it! Thank you, Mathieu at Fido in Ville LaSalle!