Virtual Reality


“It ain’t what you do it’s the way that you do it”. – There’s a lot of truth in those lyrics to that old song, especially when it comes to customer service.

On Thursday we changed our landline phone and internet provider. With all the connecting and setting up I did with the new router and changing the prefered IP address on all of our devices, I forgot to fully check the landline phone. I checked for a dial tone and that was about it. Yesterday, we discovered that when you call our landline number, nothing happens.

We can make calls but can’t receive any. In the same week that Tim Peak was sending tweets from outer space, I can’t pick up my mobile and call my home number, even if I’m in the same room as the landline phone! Clearly, it’s not been connected up properly.

We called customer “care” on the mobile. After testing the line, the bloke on the other end of the phone told us there was nothing wrong with it, even though he was unable to call us! Next he blamed our equipment, which we explained had been working fine until we switched to them. Then he started running up our mobile bill by making us jump through all kinds of hoops in a desperate attempt to convince us that we were to blame. These hoops included making us undo the phone socket with a screwdriver and plug the phone in direct. Of course none of these things made any difference because THEY ARE THE ONES WHO DIDN’T CONNECT US UP PROPERLY IN THE FIRST PLACE! Next we were told an engineer would be sent out and warned that if he found out that it was us all along, we’d be charged £120!

I tweeted their ‘care’ department explaining that I didn’t like being blamed for something they hadn’t done properly. I got a patronising reply that said, “We’re sorry you feel we blamed you.” Hey, don’t make it about me again! Really, what I “feel”? You blamed our equipment which worked perfectly until we switched providers! What a weezily thing to say, once again blaming us, this time for having, in their view, an irrational feeling. You blamed me and are continuing to blame me! YOU’RE the ones who messed up here and aren’t providing us with the service we’re paying for!

Why can’t people just be real? How about when someone tells you they can’t receive incoming calls, you actually believe them? The bloke on the phone at customer care sounded like a robot. He had a checklist of things to go through. What’s the point of employing a human if you just get treated like you’re interacting with a computer? I know he’s looking at a screen and going through a checklist but why can’t humans be more, human?

Why don’t they employ someone normal, someone with some empathy who sounds like they care? It’s called “customer care” for a reason, at least SOUND like you care! How about saying something like, “Really, you can’t get incoming calls? That’s terrible, looks like something has gone wrong there when you were connected. OK, I’ll send an engineer out to fix it. Now I need to double check that it’s not your equipment otherwise you’ll be charged and I don’t want it to cost you £120. I know it’s a long shot that your equipment broke the same day as you got connected but let’s just check a few things before I book the engineer. That way you won’t be charged a thing”. It wouldn’t cost them any more time or money to just be nice instead of defensive and aggressive!

Maybe they should add a line to that old song, “It ain’t what you SAY, it’s the way that you SAY it… That’s what gets results”.

Craic on!

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