My friend, Alan, made a post on his blog yesterday that hit a nerve for me. The gist of it is that an unnamed airline left a friend’s bag out in the pouring rain by accident, then when asked if they would replace the bag and its contents basically said, “It’s not our problem.”
Who is ultimately responsible for any customer interaction gone bad? I like this quote from the post:
The boss is responsible. The cashier who faces the customer is responsible. The person who sends the email is responsible. The interface point is what the customer (or employee) sees, not the organizational structure behind the activity.
There have been many times when I’ve gone through similar situations at local stores. Oh, I haven’t been told directly that “it’s not our problem,” but I’ve seen indications that the cashier or floor manager I’m speaking with doesn’t really care about me and probably wishes I would just go away.
True customer service seems to be a rare thing these days, and getting rarer all the time. There is a huge market out there for businesses that will treat their customers with honesty and integrity. It’s just not that common anymore.