On several occasions over the last couple weeks, I’ve had some great examples of bad service, I just needed a little time to calm down. (Okay, that’s not true, I just needed to clear my plate a bit.) Exhibit A, I call into Comcast to ask why my service seems to be dragging. The female on the other other end had a very abrasive tone, and I could envision her wagging a finger at me in the air saying, “You DIDN’T just ask me that, did you?” It was horrible. I asked her about it and she replied, “That’s the way I talk, I don’t know what to tell you.” Click. It’s a call center for crying out loud, I’ll call back and get someone else a little more pleasant, and I did.
The other occasion was a local walk up restaurant counter; as Spicoli would say, “It was the full crowd scene.” Two lines were formed, but were really long. The counter person handling one of the lines – let’s just say if she reached under the counter and pulled out a gun, I would not have been surprised in the least. She had the biggest scowl I’ve ever seen on the face of a person working. I left, thinking I might have just spared my own life, and no sandwich is worth that.
Hope my business clients are taking notes here: the mirror test is simply not enough. If you have a need to fill, pay careful attention to where that candidate can and cannot fit. If you have person with a naturally awful voice that sounds condescending and bitchy (I’m short on adjectives at the moment), please, put them away from dealing with your customers. If you have a person at the counter that is scowling, they are driving more customers away than you know. Relegate them to “non” customer contact. Honestly, I would hire neither of these people in the first place, they’d be too hard to work around.