Sarah's Scribbles

The Year of Months

Help Me Understand: Customer Service

Oh Gosh! I just realized I have 30 minutes to write this, so please excuse me if it's a little unorganized.

So here's something I don't understand: Supposedly, we are in a recession and people aren't spending as much money as they used to, right? It stands to reason, then, that stores would want to do everything they possibly can to retain and draw in customers. I mean, I was only have an engineering degree, but I think even I can understand this basic business principle.

So my question is this: Where the heck is the customer service? Is it just me or has it gotten drastically worse? It could be me; maybe I'm just getting cranky in my old age. I kind of expect it in larger stores where people work for minimum wage just long enough to find something better. They have nothing invested in the business, so why should they care about providing good customer service? (except, of course, basic human decency... but that's another post entirely)

However, I've found this plague has spread to the smaller privately owned businesses. These people's livelihood depends on customers buying things and returning again to buy more things, but they can't pull themselves from their private phone conversations long enough to ring up your purchases.It just doesn't make sense to me.

Here's a little lesson from my days as a Kmart cashier, where I'm sure we gave better customer service than every store I walked by in the mall today: If a customer has to search the entire store twice to find you so they can ask where something is, pointing in the general direction of the store is not an appropriate reply. Also, I shouldn't ask three people the same question and get three completely different answers.Your customers shouldn't have to bear the weight of every employee's troubles and bad attitudes.

Dear Retailers: The customer does not need you, you need them. Now start acting like it.


Last time I tried to get help in Wal-Mart I was seeking something to kill hornets.

The employee didn't understand the terms hornets, wasps, insecticide, or bees.