Yesterday, October 26th, at 5:44 pm, I called Tassimo about the missing replacement machine. It was at that time that I was assured I would definitely receive a call back from Tassimo in the next 48 hours.
I was skeptical, and inquired about what I should do when I didn’t get the call back, and was again assured I would in fact get that call.
The first 24 hours has passed, and apparently, Tassimo has not figured out what happened to the missing replacement machine that was processed on October 8th, after my call on September 22nd….
Should I be surprised? Probably not, but I am an incurable optimist. They might really follow through on something. They just don’t do it very quickly. After all, I have still retained that “Yankee” tendency towards expecting quick results after my years spent “up North.” On the other hand, my other half, who spent most of his life in Cleveland, Ohio, claims that I am merely impatient.
I don’t think I’ve been particularly impatient in this case. Time and observation has indicated that Tassimo falls very short on customer service, and follow-through is nearly non-existent. My skepticism that I will receive a phone call before 6 pm tomorrow is based on that.
My aggravation is continuing because until this is resolved, I am forced to give up precious space in our cramped quarters to a machine that does not work, yet remains within my line of sight every moment that I am using this computer. Also within my line-of-sight is the unopened packages of coffee and lattes that I cannot use because that machine does not work. It’s well seasoned by repeated calls to Tassimo customer service since August, when it was believed the problem was the missing cleaning disk and I originally attempted to order one from Tassimo, and ended up with SIX charges for nearly $30 each time for that cleaning disk and some coffee…and the ordeal began.
I realize that I am allowing this situation to get to my inner self, and its also disrupting my tranquility, making my higher self sink ever lower. I know I should be above being aggravated by something as minor as crappy customer service and defective small appliances. But when I try to meditate to raise my vibrational level, its almost as though I can feel malignant waves of negativity coming from that machine that I once loved so much across the room. Why have I let this situation become so unbearable? Why don’t I just throw the machine away and sell the coffees on Ebay to the highest bidder? Wouldn’t I be better off?
Part of me must be a terrier, its become a bone I can’t let go. I want this company to become responsible for its really exceptionally crappy customer service. I want it to do what it said it would do.
I really despise crappy customer service. I regard it as the ultimate let down, a sin beyond rude even. As consumers, we can’t let these corporations continue to serve up this half hearted, outsourced offshore, cheap & ineffective customer service!
Hasn’t anyone else noticed that the WORST customer service comes from companies that move their customer service call centers off shore? I can only think of one company that I would put in the same category as the level of bad I have received from Tassimo, and that’s Microsoft.
Microsoft sent their call center off shore, and if you have ever had a billing problem with them, you know exactly what I mean. Those guys are NEVER wrong, but they also never handle a problem, choosing instead to merely hang up if they cannot respond to your complaint. I tried for a month to find out what I was being charged for each week, and the end result was that I canceled the card they were billing, challenged the charges, and I will never pay them with anything but a pre-paid debit card (like the Money Card from Walmart) again. Of all the companies to ever possible put fraudulent or unjustified charges on a card, I never dreamed it would be one of the largest corporations in America. It’s also the first (and only) company that I ever challenged the charges on in my entire life. I’ve been billed before by companies in those horrible “club” situations that seem to take forever to get out of, but at least I got a product and could get the billing stopped. Not with Microsoft. I’d get ridiculous responses like “send us a screen shot.” A screen shot of what???? I’d ask for an invoice…and get hung up on, forcing me to run the gauntlet of automation once again. I never did get an invoice either. I finally, on the bank’s advice, called the number that was appearing on my credit card statement. It wasn’t for the department that was billing me, but rather it was for the MSN internet service, and they were actually based in the USA. That kind representative sighed as he informed me that he could not help me nor see what I was being billed for, had no idea what department to send me to, and suggested that I cancel the card to stop future billing. At that point, I had already racked up about $200 in charges for some unknown service, which I wasn’t using since I didn’t know what it was for (I had canceled a monthly service, but was getting billed each week afterwards.) It was this experience last spring that sent me on a mission of seeking out good customer service.
So where do I find good customer service?
With Amazon, I have always had excellent customer service, but rarely have needed to use the phone. Their automated programs actually work. I’ve had excellent service with questions almost every single time from Overstock.com too. I had a horrible experience once, which the company was very responsive about afterwards. I’m also very comfortable ordering from Tiger Direct–they’ve been very good at answering my technical questions and every product I have ever ordered has arrived promptly and done the job it was supposed to do. The single time I did have an issue about delivery was in New Orleans in the aftermath of Katrina, and lord only knows where the product actually ended up. They refunded my purchase price promptly, and life was good again…even if I didn’t dare try to get anything else delivered in that chaos. Pendery’s also has good customer service (they sell spices) and handles problems promptly. My sole complaint with them was their use of DSL for delivery–they have always been a problem for me, no matter what state I lived in. I’ve also had great customer service from Emergency Essentials and Sportsman’s Guide.
Usually, your best customer service comes from a small, local company. The people who work there live in the community, and so do the owners. The owners are usually frequently in the store/shop/business. They realize that they are selling customer service as much as they are selling a product or service–they can’t compete, price wise, with the “big boys” and their bulk purchases. They CARE about the way people perceive their business, and smart businessmen and women know that a negative impression will last far longer and be spread far wider via the word-of-mouth express than a positive one will.
But no one, and I repeat, NO ONE, should EVER accept crappy customer service. Period. It is inexcusable.
By not expecting more, you are allowing corporations to continue treating you, the consumer, in that way. You are endorsing their crappy customer service as permissible. Why are you allowing this?
You are paying for a product or service, and if it is not working correctly, not being done in a timely manner, or there is a technical issue, you should, as a matter of course, have the problem rectified to your satisfaction. That doesn’t mean being ridiculously picky, or expecting companies to bend over backwards over petty complaints. It also does not mean that you should be spending over a month waiting on a replacement machine that expired during the warranty period. Or paying $200 for unknown and unreceived services. It means reasonable expectations. I don’t expect the same level of service at a wholesale club as I do at a boutique, just like when I’m camping in a primitive campground, I don’t expect to plug into a power supply at the campsite. The restrooms at a grocery store aren’t going to be as nice as they are at a fancy restaurant either. If I’m staying at a $29.95 motel, I don’t expect the rooms to be as nice as when I’m staying at a $99.99 motel. There are differences, and we pay for them, and we should expect them to be there. But…a warrantied product is a warrantied product.
Face it, I expect far different levels of service from the company that produced my coffeemaker that I bought for $9.95 from Walmart than I do for the one that Amazon sells for $179.99. If my Tassimo coffeemaker had cost $9.99 and it died, no…I’d not expect a replacement, if it had even been 30 days. I’d just shrug, and put it in the dumpster or send it for recycling. I’d replace it with a new coffeemaker, hoping for a better performance.
That’s the difference. Tassimo claims to produce a superior product, but don’t back up the price tag they have put on it. They claim its the BMW of the coffee maker world and price it accordingly, but it has performed like a Ford Pinto, while the customer service has been like I bought the thing in some 3rd world country.