- I called Nicor (our natural gas supplier) because our monthly payment plan bill more than doubled. The customer service representative said, "Gas is expensive. Everyone knows that." I spent a week calling Nicor and having them return my phone call. My favorite comment was when the person on the phone said, "It's not our fault you're not home when we call you." Eventually, I spoke with a very nice supervisor. She explained the entire bill and apologized for the rudeness of her fellow customer service reps. My entire conversation with her took about 15 minutes, and I was completely satisfied with her answer.
- We decided to purchase a piece of exercise equipment. By chance, a Sears Outlet insert in our local paper showed that same item on sale. I called to ask some preliminary questions before deciding to drive to the store. (I always do some homework before dragging our five-year-old twins to a store.) When we arrived, the equipment wasn't as described on the phone. I spoke with a manager who said, "You can look at what we have or you can leave." So, we left. It never occurred to him to say something as simple as "I'm sorry you received the wrong information, let's try to fix this."
- Today I called Walgreen's because a prescription ran out before it was supposed to. The label said one teaspoon twice a day for ten days. Today is only seven days. The pharmacist told me that we gave the wrong dose each time because we use a household teaspoon. He said we were only to dose the medicine using the syringe they provided, otherwise we were giving too much medicine each time. I explained that we didn't get a syringe and he told me I was supposed to ask for one. I called our doctor to ask what to do next. The nurse said, "I always tell patients to avoid that Walgreen's because they are rude." I laughed and agreed.
These are the things that stress out my day. I wasn't asking for special treatment in any of these situations, but in each case the customer service was terrible. Each of these things should have taken a few minutes, and each one became a production. The standard working, taking care of the girls, etc., is part of the deal. I can handle those things, even when they don't go as planned. It's the stuff that should take five minutes that ends up taking over my day or week that drives me crazy. I'm not sure what happened to basic kindness, but I want it back.