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Stories » Real Life stories on Customer Service
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Real Life stories on Customer Service (III)

Gunjan who was working as a Master Coach, happened to witness this incident during one of his coaching sessions at the store of a reputed company. The store provided customer service solutions to the customers. A customer came to the store and complained about the excess charge that was added on to his bill. Sagar, the customer service representative at the store pacified the customer and checked the bill details on his system. He informed the customer that this problem was related to the billing department and he would get it corrected within two working days. Gunjan observed all the soft skills being used by Sagar while interacting with the customer. After the customer left, Gunjan shared his feedback with Sagar, both in terms of what he did well and the areas where he needs to improve.

Gunjan visited the store, for coaching, on next Monday and reached there at ten ‘o’ clock. Sagar was present in the store, and Gunjan asked him about the call that he had handled during his last visit. Sagar replied that he had tried to get it resolved in two days, but because of some technical problem he had received the bill with the corrected amount only yesterday. He said he would call and inform the customer about it. While they were discussing, the same customer entered the store. He was disgusted, as Gunjan read from his face. Sagar smiled and welcomed the customer. The customer asked him about the billing problem without acknowledging the welcome. He said that he was promised during his last visit that he would get a call in two days and it was already four days since he had last come to the store. Before Sagar could reply, the customer started telling about all the billing problems that he and his friends had faced in the last two years. While Sagar was listening to this customer, two other customers walked into the store.

Sagar wanted to tell the customer that his problem was resolved however; the customer would not give him a chance to do so. Suddenly, Sagar interrupted the customer and told him that he had found solution to his problem and the customer had to pay Rs. 1386/- instead of Rs. 2175/-. The customer said that he was happy that the problem was resolved. However, he mentioned that he had to make three visits to the store for the same. He further mentioned that he lives on the outskirts of the city and had spent Rs. 150/- on petrol for his visits to the store. Who would reimburse this amount? Sagar was losing his patience but he maintained his cool. He apologized to the customer for not calling as promised. The customer heard the apology accepted it, but at the end told him sarcastically, “What is the use of committing to call back, when you can’t return the call as promised”.

Let us examine this case and the difference it would have made had Sagar called the customer on the second day itself as promised and informed him about the reason for the delay in resolving the problem. The customer need not have made three visits and Sagar could also have informed the customer about the revised bill over the phone on the very day he had received it. The customer then would have been a delighted customer instead of just a satisfied one.

Excerpts from the book: 'Why My Horse Doesn't Smile - Learn to serve your customer

Vivek Mehrotra

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