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When a client makes assumptions... - Stephan [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]

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When a client makes assumptions... [Aug. 26th, 2008|01:17 pm]
I’ve posted on DHLawrence’s LJ about an arrogant client that I took a phone call from recently (http://dhlawrence.livejournal.com/238800.html).

This here however is a much more amusing episode, about a client approaching a problem from the wrong angle. It happened a few months ago, and I’ve just remembered it now.

The client phoned to say that she’d noticed an error in some of the items on her invoices. I replied that I would check it out and call her back. As I went to the filing cabinet to retrieve all the invoices I thought “Why is she telephoning me? The invoices are prepared by the Billing Department and then signed off by my boss. I’m not involved in them at any stage. She should be discussing this with my boss.”

I investigated and after much detective work involving different departments in Sydney and Melbourne found that there had indeed been an error; some of the items had been miss classified and a marginally higher rate charged. Nothing that couldn’t be fixed by placing a credit on the next invoice.

I telephoned the client back, explained the source of the error, and informed her that we were making amends.

Her reply: “I’m afraid I’m going to have to take this up with your boss.”

I politely answered with “Please do” while in my mind I thought “Like… DUH!!”

[User Picture]From: alaskawolf
2008-08-26 11:27 am (UTC)
fun times at work for you :P
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[User Picture]From: ccdesan
2008-08-27 01:21 am (UTC)
"Certainly, Ma'am, we'll be pleased to rectify this error."
"Unacceptable! We are Borg!"
"The mistake is being fixed... You'll receive a credit on your next invoice"
"Oh! You people are so incompetent!"

Sounds like she was just looking for an excuse to be rude to someone on the other end of the line, rather than a solution to her problem...
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[User Picture]From: thefoxaroo
2008-08-27 02:00 am (UTC)
Thankfully she was polite on that occasion (unlike the incident I posted on DHLawrence's forum where the Deputy Company Secretary was downright rude).

I was just highly amused at her closing remark. It was almost a cliche, and a remnant from infants school or junior high school when little children say "I'm going to dob you in to the teacher" and when they try to do so they're told by the teacher to accept the blame themselves.
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[User Picture]From: thefoxaroo
2008-08-27 02:07 am (UTC)
I had another case just now of a client not paying attention.

I took a call for an absent Manager and the person who phoned said "We've received an account number and we don't know what to do with it."

Somewhat dumbfounded I asked "I'm afraid you'll have to give me more information than that. What company is this in relation to?"

He began to explain in a little more detail, and halfway through I realised which support staff member he needed to be talking to. I explained that I would need to transfer him to this person.

However he kept on talking, and talking and talking. His tone was entirely polite and patient, but he wasn't paying the least attention to my efforts to explain that I needed to transfer him to the appropriate staff member. Finally I had to be a little bit impolite myself and cut him off mid-sentence to explain "Before you continue sir, I really need to transfer you to [Relevant staff member] because this is not a client I work with and I don't have your information. Please hold while I transfer you."

It was like a thought cloud had just burst above his head; he FINALLY realised what I'd been trying to tell him and then he was quite embarrased. I put him through to the other staff member and the problem was resolved in less than 60 seconds.

Wouldn't it be common sense when you make a call to ensure you're talking to the RIGHT person before you ask for assistance? :lol:
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