January 28, 2018

The one thing I have learned over the years as a business owner and as a consumer is that, regardless of what product or service you sell, every business is in the business of customer service.

As a business owner, I have tried numerous online business services that turn to overseas customer service centers whose staff may be trying their best but their best just doesn’t get the job because of poor quality controls and they fail to bridge the cultural divide. This is exactly why “cultural diversity” is a failure, but that’s for another day.

Recently, I explored shifting my business to another company offering their services at a significantly lower price. Before fully committing I decided to give them a one month trial. The company initially refused to provide an actual human on the phone to help me set up my new dashboard to use their service. They only wanted to email me technical assistance. I then insisted on a human to help and that’s when they emailed me a contact number to their Philippines customer service center. Now the customer service lady who took my call was very nice but the phone line was horrible, she could not understand my English very well and she ultimately failed to help me. The only thing she succeeded at was wasted my time and frustrating me. I asked to speak with U.S. based tech support. But the company emailed me back and refused to provide any U.S. based help. They again referred me to a lady who was supposedly a supervisor at their Philippines tech support center and again she failed to resolve my simple issue. The problem is if an issue is outside of their talking sheet the customer service rep gets lost and confused.

All too often the leadership at companies like this fail to really listen to their customers’ needs and put cost savings over service. I have actually tried to reach out to business owners and CEO’s when their customer service failed miserably to let them know in hopes they would fix it, only to find out they don’t want to hear from their customers. When an internet based service provider forgets they are really selling customer service they’ve failed miserably. Way too many of these companies think they can skip customer service and they don’t have people available at all to answer questions and help resolve problems live on the phone.

Now compare that to our internet provider at our offices. who has local, well-trained people equipped and ready to provide service. does cost a little more, but I have been happy to pay the extra $25 per month for their superior service over Cox business cable’s horrendous customer service. Cox’s phone staff just sucked my time up with incompetence, nonsense, and delays. This article is not meant to be an ad for but I felt I should reward for their great service by mentioning them.

What’s truly great about the free market system is we, the customers, have the power to punish businesses with poor customer service and reward businesses that understand that the customer is ultimately why they are in business and without them they have nothing.

Rob Lauer

Political Reporter


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