Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Bad or Unfriendly Service?

In the last month I have experienced incredibly bad service in so many places I actually wonder if I'm on Candid Camera.  But lately I've been beating myself up for allowing bad service for close to 20 years in our business relationship with our insurance provider.  I wondered whether it was because of preferred pricing that we, my wife and I, disregarded our own professional standards of providing outstanding service, always.  Did we sell out to save a buck?

When Family Gets Screwed...
It was the poor treatment that my youngest son received that has us looking for a new broker.  Simply put, you can treat me like dirt all you want, but when I refer a client, a client who is my son, and you treat him poorly....well, it's game over.  Dear broker, you embarrassed me.

But it was a CBC Radio interview with a Nova Scotian woman that got me thinking.  She was describing a situation of bad service.  I wondered how it could happen; weren't all Nova Scotians naturally polite and friendly?  And then it hit me - she hadn't received unfriendly service, she'd received bad service.  So often we lump the two into one.

It is possible to get incredibly friendly service, but it be bad all the same.  Picture a forgetful and disorganized waitress with a friendly, outgoing personality.  You may be able to forgive bad service in that case.  Our insurance broker has been somewhat unfriendly over the years, but pretty damned efficient most of the time, I have to admit.  Good service, unfriendly encounters but never, I am confident in saying, was she ever deliberately rude to us.

Until my son experienced bad, unfriendly and downright rude service.

There is a difference between bad and unfriendly service with one thing in common.  Neither is acceptable.

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