The Root of all Evil

sexuality, sex blogs, sex , erotica female, eroticaNow, I know that the next few minutes of discussion will not resemble anything politically correct (not unusual right?) or mentally sound in the rational way that should be on topic, but I am noticing a growing trend that alarms me.  In many ways, I walk completely outside of society and their uptight rules.  Yes, hippy rebellion as it may sound…let people live and think without hurting each other.  Not so crazy, after all, I think that it could be argued that the Bible says something like that in several places. 

However, not to get too far off point, I am very obsessive about paying bills on time.  I own a business and nothing pisses me off more than to have to remind someone to pay their invoice.  So, in turn, I don’t want people having to remind me to pay my bills.  Fair is fair right?

In return, I do expect a certain amount of customer service.  Let’s be completely honest, I represent that ideal that customer service is essential and I seem to be the only one.  I have noticed a sliding trend of customer service in the past few months that makes me want to reach out to companies and say, “You know, I will pay more for good service.  Really!”  They really need the proverbial V8 slap to the back of the head.

Here are some of my mental money meanderings over the past month:

  • Language Barriers:  PLEASE don’t make me press one again to speak to someone in English.  If you can detect my name and address using caller ID, cant we please set my language preferences?  I would much rather tell you my name than have to listen to that damn 30 second introduction for the next 50 years of my life.
  • Language Barriers, part 2:  After I press one to speak to someone in English, transferring me to someone with an accent that is so thick I can not understand them DOES NOT count as speaking to someone in English.  It is very frustrating to continually say, “I am sorry, I can’t understand you.  Did you just ask me if I had had sex this week?”  *grin*  Ok, so maybe it is not THAT bad, but you get the point!
  • Don’t call me:  What is up with companies that do not have a telephone number on their website or put it in an obscure place where you have to search all over the world wide webiverse?  (My word “webiverse”—I love it because it describes all of us who have a universe on the web!).  Enough already…give me a break and let me call you with my question.  We will all be happier when I finally find it.
  • At the beep:   Even better, large companies that keep bankers hours on staffing their phone systems.  I swear, I called AT&T the other day (switched to Vonage because it will save me about $150 a month—I will let all know how that goes) to pay my last bill.  I received an automated voice that said they only staff the phones during 8-6, M-F.  Logically, that is when all phone issues occur right?  The phone company does not have people staffing the phone.  Yes…in my mind…that is right up there with a Catholics priests not being married but giving marriage advice!  Enuf said.
  • Charges to Pay:  Now, to make a payment online (which I used to love because it was fast and convenient!), you have to pay 3 days ahead of time.  Good enough, when I understand that the rules have changed, I can play the game.  But, I called to make a phone payment today to keep from being late and was told that there would be $15.95 phone payment charge.  Huh?  I could not believe.  Fast and easy is apparently gone the way of cost effective.  Never mind the fact that I don’t consider a 3 day lead way an acceptable time frame for an electronic payment, but now it costs extra if I want to pay them on time.
  • Check Please:  I find it incredibly irritating when I make an electronic payment that requires me to void a check.  I don’t consider it unreasonable.  Electronic payment is supposed to keep me from needing the check.  Do they know how much checks cost these days?  And, the security risk of tearing it up (we shred—but anyways)….throwing it away is just a huge waste of my money.
  • ATMs hold ups:  When my ATM is down (and the next ATM is about 25 miles away), I have to use another bank.  For this, I get charged an incredible fee, as much as 25% of the ATM transaction between both banks, because their equipment did not work.  Interesting version of customer service.  We charge you for our failure.  Its good to be the bank!
  • Resellers:  After noticing an amazing charge on my cell bill this month (I just got a new Blackberry), I called the company to discuss it.  I was told by their customer service that the store that I bought the product in only housed retailers.  They were sales people on commission.  If I wanted services turned off or on, then I needed to call the customer service branch of the company because the sales people were only there to make sales.  Now, I am not naïve by a long shot.  But, it seems to me that if you put a large sign on the building, all of the guys in the place have your logo on them, and they tot business cards with your name, then you carry some liability for what they say.  I was advised to go to the store and discuss it with the Manager.  Uh huh… right after he had just told me not to trust their representatives that were in there.  When did businesses STOP backing up what their employees say?  More over, when is it ok to be ok with saying….”You should never trust one of our representatives.”  Guess I those guys selling cell phones on street corner with a side of crack really do have the right idea…they are training to work for my cell phone company!
  • Special Honors Note:  Here is a little tidbit that I found out by calling the bank after putting a meal on my debit card and noticing it exceeded the ticket amount by a large margin (so much I noticed it!).  The bank informed me that merchants are allowed to charge up to 30% of your sale OVER the amount of the sale (yes…in addition to your sales price) and hold it until your sale clears the bank.  The ticket is electronically submitted to the bank and the bank refunds the money back into your account. 

              

*At this point, I said….”what if the money is not recredited to my account or the ticket is not submitted as I signed it?  You have allowed them to take money from my account without my consent.”

**Answer:  “That does not happen.” 

Let me give you a little background.  In Tampa in January of this year, I took a few people to lunch.  The restaurant is a national chain that will remain nameless (but it does have a big pepper on the sign!) and I was charged three separate times for the same meal.  The bank had let all three transactions clear.  I caught it and reported it.  It happens and your bank is NOT there to protect you.  Protect yourself.

Ranting over…I have been meaning to go down this road for several weeks because it has been collecting in my brain.  I don’t feel like I am asking TOO MUCH….I mean, I pay my bills on time and I consider myself a logical human being.  I guess that might be the problem.  Logical human beings don’t get very far in the universe….so, I took it my “webiverse.” 

Money, as the Bible says, is NOT the root of all evil.  Bad customer service and terrible business practices are.

What aggravates you most lately with customer service or businesses??  Come on…YOU know you want to share! ~~Dee

14 thoughts on “The Root of all Evil

  1. The automated answering systems that are VOICE only.. that pisses me off. I just start mashing the “0” button until it gives up and transfers me to a human being. I don’t want to have a “conversation” with a f’ing machine! auuuuuggghhhh!!!

  2. Slightly off topic – the insidious scams. I just got a letter today – that’s snail mail – telling me that I should pay 69.95 to re-register my business domain name or else it would expire in another week. It all looked very official, but there was no name of the company, and the address was simply a mailing center.

    Since I’ve always handled it myself – with a credit card – I knew it was a scam, but I marveled at the audacity and ingenuity of this. Any non-tech savvy person would have sent in a check.

    Bastards.

  3. Tom–I have stared at exactly the same letter. What I always wonder is when I call to discuss my account, I have to absolutely give blood to talk about what is there. How do they find it all SO easily. I get the same thing from spoof email all the time! 😦 ~~Dee

  4. BTW, as much as Dell Computers has ticked me off in other areas, I did opt in to use their IM version of tech support. Yes, I was IMing a guy in India, but via text there was no “accent barrier” and the transaction proceeded very smoothly. I’ve since seen other companies using it – smart idea.

  5. Tom–Great…except when I have to wait 15 minutes in the que only to be disconnected by a timed out server or a IM Customer Service guy that is helping 10 people at once. Even more fun is the many times that I have to type in my information (security issues). ~~Dee

  6. HOLY CRAP!! You can say that again. I am so with you on this point. I also own my own biz and if I ran my biz the way my vendors do I would be out of biz so fast!! Ugh! Why is it so hard to ask for the same service I expect? On the other hand, if another one of my customers asks me, “Can you just make this exception once for me” again I am going to scream. No idea how many times I hear that in ONE DAY. So I suppose it goes both ways. lol

  7. Heidi–It totally goes both ways! Whenever I have to send ANOTHER invoice, I always think…you know, the bank would not tell me “Oh dont worry about your mortgage. We can make an exception this time.” Hell no…they would be all in my face about their money. ~~Dee

  8. oh dear, it’s probably more than I can say on a comment so i’ll keep it brief. I work for a small business and have been there almost 8 years in an admin/accounting position. i hear you. if you don’t pay close attention you will get seriously gouged. ouch!

  9. I used to work for a call center – the most common thing I heard was “I’m SO happy to speak with someone from the US!” Beware, however – many companies will hire call centers and will tell their reps to say that they are from a specific place when they’re not. For isntance, one company we did business for was based in FL. I’m in VT. I had to say that I’m in FL – which got tricky when someone asked exactly where the business was – what it was near – and what the weather was! Yikes!

    But yeah, the IM works much better, even though its longer. I love when you get transferred to “level 3 tech support”, and get someone from the US! Hooray!

  10. Randi–Yes, I usually remember that Call Centers and Waitressing are two jobs I never want. Both suck. BUt really….just one person who knows what is going on and can explain it to me in English. Just one please! 🙂 ~~Dee

  11. I hate the language thing. But what I hate more is when you are obviously talking to someone in India and they pretend they have a Texas accent and are actually in the US. PUUHHLLEEEASEEE!

  12. Giggy–Or when someone tells you that their name is Tom Smith with a thick accent. It makes me giggle because my last name is Cajun, yet I am American. Theirs sounds American, yet they are not. ~~Dee

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