right next to my house is a grocery store, brunos. i go there often, for groceries or just the place to pick up that late night milk and cookies.
when i do go in just before closing, 12:00, i am always made to feel like i am not welcome. in fact with 30 minutes before midnight i have been told MANY times that i have”10 minutes” to get what i need.
i didn’t give it much thought until i remembered the time that i was staying with a friend in nashville and i got sick at 5:00 in the morning. i needed some medicine so i got in my car and went looking for a store that was open.
i drove past a winn dixie that was not open yet but as i walked up tot the door the manager saw me, and opened the store a full hour early. (he went out of his way and broke the rules for a $10 box of claritin.
that is customer service.
my phone broke. after more than two great years. it was out of warranty. and worked other than the fact that it wouldn’t charge. so starting in the fall i went to verizon and tried to get a new phone. they told me something like “its all your fault, buy a new phone.”
so i tried the treo. didn’t like it. it didn’t work with my mac.
i tried the chocolate, and same story, different verse.
so then i set out on a quest to get a new version of my phone that works and does what i want it to. (they don’t sell it anymore, and now don’t offer a phone with the same features because they can charge more for the service than they can for the technology)
they didn’t want to help me in my quest.
last week after going into verizon once a month for a 9 months, they finally ordered me a new phone. they told me that they could have done that months ago and it was a big misunderstanding.
i have a new phone. it is my old phone. but new.
when i called apple, they told me that it would take 4-6 weeks to ship. frustrating, but they were replacing the battery for no charge and we proactively fixing the problem.
it took 20 hours. i woke up the next morning to the DHL delivery service leaving it on my doorstep.
that is fast.
my wife, rebekah, and i had some left over wedding present money because all of our friends and family are amazing. we decided we were going to buy a tv with the money. so we did. and we went with best buy, despite the better deal across town. buying from a big store made us feel better and more comfortable.
this is where it becomes a long story but hang on if you hate big companies, then you can join in with me on my dislike for best buy.
so tv 1 as was broken while loading it in my truck… not convientant but understandable. when they told me that they didn’t have any more at the store, i was frustrated but again i understood. at this point, i was offered $100 to drive 2 1/2 hours to birmingham suburbs to find the tv that i wanted. not an appropriate offer. they then let me take the display model off of the floor to entertain the party that i had already planned to come over. the new tv would arrive on tuesday of the next week. (it was friday)
so in my frustration with best buy, not delivering, not being able to take a tv from here to there without breaking it, and feeling like they got the better of me, i went to a local competitor. they sell the same tv for $200 less (GO TO REX FOR ALL ELECTRONICS) so i decided to take it all back to best buy and buy from Rex, located by the movie theatre.
i go last night to take it all back, walk away from the national chain, and go with a little guy down the road, and best buy tells me that they price match. they told me that it wouldn’t be a problem to return all the stuff that i didn’t like, the home theatre system that literally was brand new and didn’t work at all, and give me a matched price on the tv. sounds good.
at this point best buy went into rip off the customer mode.
they then proceeded to take the quote from the little guy out of my hands, and “call for me” to confirm the prices. they told me that i misunderstood what he told me and that his prices weren’t as good as they were the other day when we discussed them. they then tried to “beat” his prices but selling me a service plan that was $50 more than i payed for it the first time. they tried to upsell me when i had a reciept right in front of me. (he explained that the price that i got was a mistake and that he would honor it even though he shouldn’t.)
then i got passed from employee to employee for an hour and a half while i waited for the only guy who could process this return, we will call him “ben,” to get off the phone. managers were talking about me as if i weren’t even standing there. i never once talked to anyone that actually had the power to help. during this time best buy sold merchandise to 52 customers before they would help me. they kept telling them to skip me in line.
when “ben” finally processed the return, i went to get the tv put into my truck, safely this time. during which two employees asked me how much i payed for the tv. i told them the price that best buy finally agreed to match from the little guy. they then told me that they used to sell this tv for that price just three weeks ago, however, they sold three tv’s in one day so they moved the price back up to the original price that i payed for it. as a business school graduate, i think that i understand that typically you have an original price for a product, then you put it on sale when you it is becoming more and more mature, until you finally discount it so much that you sell out of them and then move on to a new product. you don’t raise the price back up because you sold too many. then you are just managing inventory. not treating customers with respect and honesty, on the pursuit to sell quality stuff at a fair price.
after waiting all this time. i had to wait longer while someone from the geek squad, not a cut this is what they call them, had to verify that the home theatre unit that literally never worked, was actually faulty. all the while listening to employees make “that’s what she said” jokes instead of helping me get out the door faster. (best buy… just a thought, you might want to tell you employees what is appropriate and what is inappropriate joking for the work place.
i have never been more upset at a store. i am a customer that used to do exclusive business with best buy. their rewards system used to mean something. after buying a complete home theatre system i was going to recieve a wopping $35 gift certificate in the mail. big freaking deal. i won’t do business with best buy now, even if an employee hands me $35 cash for me to just walk in the store.
after all this i went to chick-fil-a because i had missed dinner watining in best buy. they gave me a free milk shake for no reason. they didn’t mess anything up, they just wanted to have one more loyal customer. so i wanted to tell all of you that chick-fil-a has a new milkshake flavor out. it is Mint Chocolate Chip. and i will tell you, as someone who doesn’t really like mint chocolate, i liked it. good job chick-fil-a.
this week was my week to write on the grace campus website. you can check it out on the home page at www.gracecampus.net. thanks for reading.
well.. we are in houston, city of astros, and home of mega churches. we decided to leave the old gas gusler back home and now we have the new and improved black 4 door beauty that gets a marvelous 30 miles to the gallon… this blog is dumb.