If you’d like to hold…

by vernsanders on April 9, 2009

Well then…

I started this post because I had been on “hold” for a customer service problem, and I figured, OK…let’s be productive, and rail against the customer service corporate culture at the same time.

So…just as I got the headline typed, bingo! Guy comes on the line.  Now I’m fully expecting to have to “fight” with the rep, because my problem, while mostly my fault (I need a long digit number to transfer one computer program to another machine because the first one is dying, and, of course, I can’t find that number), is one that a rep might look at with some suspicion.

Backtrack for context…I seem to have hit a life patch where customer service is a regular occurance. My own company’s customer service person left to pursue other options, and we don’t have enough complaints/problems to hire anyone, so I’m doing it myself. That’s on the one hand. On the other, I’ve got a garbage disposal that just went out (of all the household appliances we have, guess which is the only receipt we can’t find?), AOL decided, without warning, to self-imolate about 500 emails, we participate in the current US medical system…well…you get the picture.

So I’m gearing up the old adrenaline, and the guy asks me 4 questions:

Got the disk? No–it was an online update

Got the confirming email? No–see AOL problem above

What’s your name? OK, I can answer that one.

Got a pencil? Yep–and he gives me the number…

Isn’t that how customer service is supposed to work? I’m not trying to “beat” anyone out of anything…I just want some help. I was prepared for battle because the on hold wait was longer than my 21st century tolerance level of acceptability, but, in retrospect, I’d rather wait longer than fight more.

Name of the company? Alpha5 Software. Good program, btw, but not the “most popular.”

Which reminds me…are you a PC? Whenever I see one of those commercials, I think “Microsoft.” Turns out I am, but I have, as John Mellencamp might say, a bit of an authority problem. So I have almost no MS programs on my machine, except the Works stuff that came loaded with it from the factory. I’m an anomoly, I know…I’m in the magazine business, which is creative, and which involves graphic design, but I use a PC…mainly because of the better “business” stuff handling abilities, especially database management. I use a lot of Adobe software, mostly stuff from the CS4 suite, and I am still learning a lot of the things it can do.

And, as everybody who reads Monday Morning Email now knows, I am spending more time on facebook now. Which leads me to the next big announcement…Sometime between now and the opening bell of MusiCalifornia, I expect to join the twittering crowd. When I do, I’ll let you know how to follow me here. I’m looking forward to tweeting from MusiCal, because there are so many interesting people who will be there.

Today’s list? I think I covered it in the software stuff above, but I also use WordPress for this blog, and, because I have an ipod, itunes. There’s more, of course, but I don’t think you care at this point…

Back to customer service for a minute…Does your church have an intentional policy/corporate culture about customer service? If you are a worship leader, or choir director, or children’s choir leader, do you look at your calling as including customer service? Particularly 360 degree customer service? Are the volunteers in your ministry “on hold” when they have a concern that you are the only one who is able to address? Do you consider your congregation to be customer service “clients”? Please leave a comment and let me know how you are addressing this issue, either personally or as a church.


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