"Every customer service problem is an opportunity." In the early
days of my business someone told me that and he was very right. If
you quickly handle problems with honesty, finesse and empathy it
often makes a better impression on your customers than if you got
it right the first time.
I have 22 years of good customer service and I have a rather large
happy customer base for repair and custom. Fortunate as we used to
sell quite a bit of sterling for many years, but metal prices and the
economy has changed where on the list of necessities jewelry falls.
Repairs and custom keep up afloat.
Every once in a while, shit happens, and you are not going to turn
it around. Most of the time, but not always.
Young woman comes in two days ago, asks for her gold chain. It was a
$10 soft solder (costume jewelry). Taken in by my part time employee
and promised for one week. We are a couple days past one week, I
tell her I can have it in a few days. Part of the issue is...I am on
week two of daily intravenous antibiotic for drug resistant
bacterial infection, two to four more weeks. So I might not have been
in the best mood....when young little miss smart ass starts raising
her voice and yelling that I do not have good customer service, and
as she is bitching me out and making me aware that she is a law
student (?)....she said she had work done here before and she had
good service before (looked it up, last time in was 2007...) I
calmly told he she was a young punk, I would find her chain, and
finished or not, she would leave my store and I did not want her
coming back ever.
There was another person in the store who watched the whole thing.
After miss smart ass left, I mentioned to her that I have a wife and
she is the only person who I allow to talk to me like that. Somewhat
facetious, but then....again...shit happens.
After all this, she says, "I make jewelry but I don't sell it." From
there the matter was history and we just chatted as if nothing had
happened. I felt the other person understood that the customer was
using behavior that precluded her from getting anything resolved
anyone's favor, some people apparently think that confrontation and
hostility will get them what they need.
I have a POS system, I just type " bad customer" after the person's
name to make me aware if they come back.
And I will not allow customers to use fear to control the situation.
The use of fear might be the only way some people can try to control
the situation and gain power.
Richard Hart G.G.