Archive for the ‘building strong customer service’ Category

3 Times A Charm! Think not…… A “Picture” of dissatisfaction!

Team sports are to be an enjoyable part of a student’s life during school. Giving a 100% of participation, full efforts, strength and most of all team work is a common factor for enjoying the sport itself, regardless of what it is.

Watching the games & taking your individual photos to share on Facebook or send via email is a great way to show others you enjoy your little sports member and their amazing abilities to be involved; however getting their team photos is another big step of success in my mind anyways.

You get pumped up, excited about it especially when you receive them! You get a little teary eyed due to the realization that your little one isn’t little anymore but growing up to succeed in a sport he truly enjoys and excels at.  Take the golden flag and run with it as you truly deserve a pat on the back for being a positive image to your child as a parent and pushing them to be excellent at what they do and deserve.

That is not always the case however! For the past 6 years I have dealt with many photographers ranging from School, Sports, Family photos & much more and have always received my photos in a timely fashion with no issues. Maybe this was my time, maybe not.

My son had taken on the participation of joining the football team with a widely known program called Pop Warner through YMCA. AMAZING PROGRAM!  We have no problem with paying the cost for the membership, fuel to travel to other schools & additional safety items to ensure no injuries. I was able to meet some amazing new friends along with catching up with good old friends too. There is no argument with the program that was offered as we had taken up with no blink of an eye.  We simply enjoyed every bit of it.

As a business woman I am a Customer Service Director that range from low profile customers to very high profile customers each and every day. Providing the best of the best customer satisfaction is my goal to keep my clients happy regardless of the situation of my overlook even if it is theirs, I will still accept it as my own & will do anything and everything to make it right. Customer retention is what keeps business’s intact for future success and the longevity of excellence in satisfaction.

Never, ever take your personal intake and email a customer your personal opinion on completing business over $4.00. But first let me get in to details on what happened, what could have happened & what should never happen to a customer resulting from an experience a business could have avoided.

August 20th – Pictures were taken for the team by a well-known photographer. Unfortunately I was unable to be there during that time as I was involved with getting my department set up. My husband was able to participate within the picture process for our son. No worries. He is an awesome man and wants to make sure that our son gets his pictures taken.

Pictures were handed out a couple weeks later. Mine were not there. Oh well maybe they just got mixed up. I wasn’t sure.  A friend informed me to message her on Facebook as she has a fan page. Any way I can communicate with the business I will and had taken advantage of.

September 23rd – Messaged the business informing the missing photos.

Business Response:  “Oh no… I do show that I took his photo, #9, but did not get an order for him. Do you remember when or who you gave your order too?”

My response: “The check was cashed…. See the attached image (I provided the cashed check) It was you whoever was at the place taking the photos”

Business Response: “That would be me. I’m sorry. Do you remember what you ordered” I can put your order in? Get it to you?

My response: “It was the package that had the team photo and others. Did you have a package for $18.50. (the amount of the check that was written)

Business Response: “Wait! I have your order! I had his in with the midgets…. Who I photograph this Friday (1) Wallet (1) 5×7 Player (1) 8×10 (1) 5×7 Team. I’m sorry!!! I’ll get that order in!

October 16th – I had to respond again as I had not received the photos. “Hi there. Just wanted to follow up in reference to the photos I had ordered. I haven’t received them yet and was curious on the status.

Business Response: I figured out what I did…on your order form there wasn’t a coaches name, but your sons #9. I took your photos to coach Crossly today and apparently I had the wrong #9, there is a young man with the name of XXXX who is #9. Is your address XXXXXX? I will have the new set sent to you. Just confirm that address. I’ll add an extra set of wallets for my mistake. Sorry.

So I wait & low and behold I get the pictures. Unfortunately I didn’t want to look at them because of the worrisome of realizing there may be an issue. I held off on opening them for the entire day. Again it seemed like I started with square one again, it was the right photo of my son however not the right amount of what I ordered.

The team photo was missing & then just realized that the 5×7 player photo was missing.  I messaged her again.

October 24th: “I am very confused now. I got the pictures, thank you however the team picture is missing… I don’t really know what to think right now as I never had to struggle to get photos. Can you please advise?

Nothing……. I myself like fast, quick responses letting me know my message had either been received or acknowledged. I don’t like to be a sitting duck waiting. Maybe that is just me I don’t know. So I went ahead and went to their business page wall on Facebook and noticed the business owner was responding to other photo comments etc……?

FB Business Page Post: tried messaging you on FB with no response yesterday but see you responding to other post afterward. As I mentioned in the message after the hassle of getting the correct photos of my sons football pictures after 3 times of failed attempts (which the 3rd time I got them) but unfortunately missing the team picture. I have never had issues with receiving photos from my orders but am dissatisfied with the lack of communication and correction of my order. I may have to ask “are you unable to keep up with your services you offer?”

Business Response: Do you have my phone number? I would be happy to return the $4.00

Let’s stop right there……. I DON’T WANT THE $4.00 back….. I just want my team photo!

Here is a screen shot below of the conversation. As you noticed others had commented on there also, which yes this is Facebook when you post to a business all of your friends that you associate with see your post to that business page. That is most likely way they went on there and seen I was dissatisfied and provided their input.

Low and behold my phone dings at me this morning as it does throughout the night notifying me of an email coming through. As my bad habit that I have I wake up and scroll through them and noticed a personal email from the business owner.  I am half awake and reading this email and cannot believe a business owner would go out that far to make a point. She had acknowledged the order from the previous messages, acknowledged which child it was (due to the mix up of the #9) and sent me a copy of the order form. Well she should have reviewed the order form first before sending it out as that is when I realize that I am missing more photos. After the image take a gander at the email…

Business email received:

Good morning Jennifer,

Last week you wrote on my facebook business page about how unsatisfied you were with my services. After your first post, I contacted you and apologized. I followed up by having your order sent directly to your home, with double the amount of wallets and emailed you a digital copy of your sons photo for your personal printing. Last night again you wrote an angry paragraph on my wall and had two friends add comments. This was because I didn’t add the team photo in your order. At this point I will refund your $4.00 and ask you to stop the inappropriate comments. So now I would like to respond.

Why was there issues with your order? Please see attached order form, note where I wrote your sons #. You did not fill in a coaches name, a players name, nor a players #. I photographed over 90 players that evening. I do not know the players by name and rely on my forms to be filled out. Your last name and your sons last name are different so again I had no way to sort this out until someone asked about their photos. One other issue was the fact that there are 2 #9 players in Pop Warner this year. When I narrowed your sons # to 9 the first set I printed were the other player who has the #9. These were all factors in your sons photo process. It would have worked much smoother if you could have put time into the order form. At the least, wrote your sons name in.

Above and beyond the Pop Warner football business, I pride myself on what I do for Kingsley’s football program as a volunteer to Pop Warner, Middle School and High School, providing my photo services for free to help raise money and build a better program.

I will be sending your $4.00 refund in the mail next week and consider my business with you completed.

Yes I acknowledge there was information that was missing however corrected through the messages sent back and forth with her acknowledging that the right player, order, coach etc.  Why in the world would a business owner even send this to a customer?

She did also have me confused with another customer that wrote a dissatisfaction message on her wall so as always I got the brunt of it. No worries, I now understand the confusion and overwhelming responsibilities on her end so I will shrug it off and bite my tongue as I just want my pictures. I don’t want no returned $, no hasty email, nothing I JUST WANT MY PICTURES.

Now in a business sense, if a customer provides lack of information, which I do deal with from clients on a daily basis, I never call them out on it; I call them and ask them for the information that is missing. You would be surprised on the positive response received when working with clients in a helpful and most important, professional manner.  I would never in my right mind call a client out on their lack of information.  Taking it into a personal email and placing your personal feelings is the highest lack of professionalism I have ever seen or heard of.

Bad business practices can hurt a business more than it can help it. As the rule of thumb goes for 1 unhappy customer trickles out to 10 other customers and then it branches off.  A bad reputation can create a dent in reality for taking on the next level of more customers. Can you step up to take on more customers or can you not? Do you have the patience to make it right or lose more with your wrong?

I do hope; however am doubtful this is going to be corrected as it seems a personal issue has overtaken a business profession.

What are your thoughts? What would you do if you received an email from a business owner in this manner?

All opinions are solely based upon the author only: Jennifer Schrader


As always I am a huge fan of superior customer service and expectations from support received for anything I purchase, contract through etc. If I am a customer, receiving excellent customer service is what I expect.

That may not be the case, unfortunately. Customer service tends to get too comfortable within their position to the point they start to assume what the consumer wants or needs. On the consumers end this can create a make or break in a client-vendor relationship. How do they know what the consumer needs when they haven’t taken the time to listen to what the issue or request is?

Working within customer service I have seen the most insulting tactics ever. Co-workers kicking calls, entering invalid notes from the conversation, transferring them to tech support when they could have corrected the needed issue, lack of follow up, promising things & never going through with it, etc……  It hurts to see that happen as I have experienced both sides, vendor & client, and having this be seen in live action gets under my skin.

Clients that pay, expect to receive exceptional & excellent customer service. Why neglect & abuse the hand that feeds you? The sales staff works hard to get deals in, close contracts and building relationships but they don’t sell to clients knowing them to be treated with a harsh customer service department. Having an a strong customer service department gives a cushion for the sales staff for selling product knowing their clients are going to be taken care of. This helps sales staff to get referrals, B2B business & up selling.

Strong customer service = Longer client relation = Higher retention rate

Once clients go into customer service / customer support, this is part of a relationship that can help clients stay with your business for a life time, if you stop & think like the client themselves.

What helps customer service department be strong in what they do?

Creating a strong customer service department is not easy as 1, 2, 3….! It takes a lot of work & time to perfect a department that is strong with communication skills, knowing needs, creativity,  assisting with not just tech support however a variety of skills to be combined into one & most important of all LISTEN!

Selling cars & being on the actual front line of what dealers do along with experiencing dealership operations helped me understand first hand their needs, wants, demands and so forth. Not having that experience would have prevented me from knowing the actual workings of a dealership. I had taken on every training option that was available at the dealership to help me better understand the workings. Getting your customer service team to experience a dealership operation will only help them.

Ask one of your clients if you can bring your team to their dealership for a day to experience the dealer’s life. It won’t hurt as it will only help. Dealers that know the means behind this tactic will encourage more to teach your team to be a strong successful department.

Building a team for a customer service department is a large task but will surely pay off in the long run. Have they sold
cars, worked within the office of the dealership, title clerk, finance, sales manager, internet department, business development, worked with the service department, customers, you name it. Knowing that your potential employee has worked within those departments can help you & your support team consists of a strong team.

What do you expect from customer service?

All opinions are solely based upon the author only. Jennifer Schrader