Customer service

I never envied customer service people’s jobs. You know when people call customer service? When they want to whine or yell.

Now, not saying they don’t usually have a valid reason for doing either, but the fact is, someone else screwed up — not the person you’re going to end up talking to about it. (Well, usually.)

I mention this fact because I always make a point of trying not to yell at customer service. The only time I’ll get…riled up, shall we say, is when the people who are supposed to be providing me with a service fail at that. (
Boy, do I…)

And now that a large part of my job is customer service-based, I’m especially sensitive to people who do a crappy job of it.

Case in point:

I decided to create our thank-you notes on Snapfish, which is essentially Duane Reade’s online photo-sharing and printing site. (Duane Reade is like Walgreens, for my non-East Coast readers…I had never heard of it prior to moving here.) The cards were simple: a four-by-six, matte print of a wedding picture I had Photoshopped to have the words “thank you” on it. (Some of you will be receiving these in the next week.)

I wanted them printed on stationery paper so we could write notes on the back. I ordered 120, just so we’d have plenty.

They sent me 120 glossy pictures on photo paper. Twice. I couldn’t write on them because they were on photo paper, and “Snapfish” and the date was printed all over the backs. I was livid. The second time I actually started yelling.

After conferring with customer service person through both email and online chat and still not getting what I wanted, I brought out the big guns and picked up the phone.

I did not want to yell. I repeat: I did not want to yell.

But after the rep bumbled around for 20 minutes, only to tell me that the type of card I ordered couldn’t be printed on stationery paper, I lost it a little.

He was the third person I had talked to about my order. He was the first to mention this little tidbit.

Spoiler alert: I got 120 replacement cards free. They’re not really what I wanted, but at this point I think it’s more important to just get them out. So just know I tried to make them cooler. If I did it all over, I’d just print my own at Kinkos. Le sigh.

The irony is that lately I’ve been having great customer service experiences. On, I accidentally ordered two gift certificates for the same place (it wasn’t letting me check out, and I think I hit the button more than once…oops), but customer service replied to my email within minutes and let me exchange one for a general voucher that I can use at any of their restaurants.

And after a salon I purchased two Groupons from lost my appointment, kept me waiting 20 minutes, and then told me, “Whoops, guess you’ll just have to make another one later, but not right now because the girl isn’t here. Call tomorrow, kbai!”, I sent one email and received a full refund.

Now that, my friends, is service.