I should start teaching Customer Service classes

Two things are really getting my panties in a bunch right now. Both of them are how I’m being treated by companies, and I think it boils down to my impotent anger at not being treated the way I treat people. Why is customer service such a GD challenge for some people? Leaving aside that old hated adage “the customer is always right” — which is utter bullshit; sometimes the customer has their head in the sand — BUT… the customer does always come first. Whether they’re right or not. In this case (both cases), however, I’m in the right — and I’m not just saying that because it’s me. I really AM in the right.

My Vet. Long-time readers know that we had a mobile vet, whom we loved, for years. Dr. Steve Camp. Fabulous man, great with the animals, and he trusted you to know what was wrong with YOUR pet. If we called and said “Bridgett has an ear infection again,” he would drop off medicine on our porch, with an envelope so we could mail him a check. If there was anything he couldn’t do, he had an associated office, which was maybe half-way across town from us. (Gainesville is divided into four parts; NE, SE, NW, and SW — we live in about the southern portion of the NE section of town, and his associated office was just on the other side of the SW division line of town.) Perhaps a 20 minute drive, with traffic, and I think we had to go there three times in twelve years. Then he retired (not that I begrudge him that!). The vet who took over for him is associated with an office that is in the outer far reaches of the SW part of town. If we live ten minutes from the center of town (corner of University and Main, which, really, we can walk to) then their office is another 30 minute drive from there, and it’s been longer, with traffic. You’ve all heard me bitch that I have to go out there about every ten days, because the office chicky seems to take it as a personal attack when I ask if they can mail me the medicine, what with the new vet’s view of “mobile” not being the same as Dr. Camp’s view. Mobile to see your pet, sure; anything else and you’re on  your own, Jack.

And here’s where I’m confused. New Vet said that the office would be happy to mail my medicine so that I don’t have to carve out a good hour to 90 minutes for drive for an errand that takes two minutes. But when I call the office, they show a marked reluctance to mail things. So far excuses have run the gamut from “I don’t think we have any stamps” to a flat out “I don’t think I can get that done today.” OMGWTFBBQ. I wonder what some of my customers would say if I said to them, “I know this is an important piece and you need it by such-and-such date, but I just don’t think I can get that out today.” I probably wouldn’t have that customer much longer, eh? However, Bridgett, when she’ll take the medicine, is doing well with it. So even though I have a line on a different mobile vet, I don’t want to be arsed to call her and pay a huge sum to get everyone checked over AGAIN. I was loosely contemplating putting up with this for a year (grabbing my friend Laura and taking her with me for a knitting-and-cupcake date when I can) and when it’s time to get the pets shots in a year, getting that number again from Ginger.

I vaguely complained to the vet when they were out last week giving Bridgett her shots, and while they didn’t seem concerned, they did seem interested. I’ve also learned a couple things, mostly from a phone call I got when Corwin pulled a muscle last week (did I mention that? She couldn’t walk for two days, and my phone call to the mobile vet remained unanswered until after I took matters into my own hands, crated her for two days, and gave her some of Bridgett’s pain relievers… don’t judge, she’s fine.). Since then I’ve learned that the mobile vet people are a little different than the front desk people. The front desk people (out of spite or laziness) don’t answer the mobile vet people’s phone when they hear it ring but the mobile vet phone-answer person has stepped away (hence no returned call, for which the mobile person apologies profusely). The number listed on the pill bottle is the front desk, and silly me, I thought that’s where I had to call. But it turns out I can call the mobile number, and get my refills, and they’re happy to mail it. They also signed me up for some fancy-pants online thing, where I can request refills and have them mailed (which I did yesterday). The online service goes directly to the mobile people, and doesn’t go through the front desk at all. SO THEN.

I guess where I’m going with this is that the front desk people are sullen and craptastic, but the mobile people I’ve talked with are helpful and sorry about the front desk people. So I’m impotently angry at the front desk chicky who apparently has it out for the mobile vet people who are a drain on her precious resources. And I’m shaking my fist at the sky that this has to be so GODDAMNED COMPLICATED. It doesn’t have to be. Tell me who to call, and I’ll call them. Sweet Zombie Jesus. So from now on I’m just going to call the mobile number, and that front desk chicky can just go suck a bag of dicks. Because, really? This is how you treat a new customer? By dragging your feet, whining when I ask for help (which is kind of your job, being that you work AT THE FRONT DESK OF A SERVICE INDUSTRY), and generally making me feel as if I have done something wrong by not understanding the rules that you haven’t explained to me? I wonder how many of Dr. Camp’s people have just given up and gone with a different vet.

My Dentist. Good lord. This is already 1000 words, and I could do another 1000 just on the dentist. I’m going to have to finish this up later. Stay tuned for part two, which to be honest probably won’t be posted until tomorrow or the day after because TODAY AHHHHHHHHHH THE BUSY.

5 Comments

  1. I love when you inadvertently get stuck in the middle of a pissing contest between different factions of a business. Really, that vet needs to step in and fix this or he’ll lose a lot of business.

    That stinks. I’m sorry. 🙁

  2. nakhira

    Unfortunately, Dr. Vet probably doesn’t know that Front Desk is being craptastic, because people keep coming in the front door & not mentioning surly CS folk, being too concerned about Fido/Fluffy, who Dr. Vet takes good care of; and mobile folk, having figured out that the mobile # is good and front desk # is bad, also don’t mention to Dr. Vet that this # sucks for service.

    I am fortunate in that my vet techs recognize my voice (!!), and work with me to get what I need for my three funky kittehs. It helps a lot when I don’t have to explain every last detail – the code phrase “Fat Kat Fud!” or “Kidney Kitteh Kibble!” summons what i need, generally with a smirk or a laugh.

  3. clickr (Joan)

    Dang, that vet really needs to do something about his front office or he for sure will start losing clients. So sorry you had to deal with such a poorly trained front desk (dare I call her) “person.”

  4. Chronus

    I think a convenient solution is to have one of your good and true friends email this blog directly to all the doctors in that practice. You write well. You are an expert in on line marketing. This can easily go viral. They need to fire everybody on the front desk because they have already poisoned the business and cannot be trusted.

    Now you have motivated me to write that letter to Bank of America…”call customer service” indeed.

  5. Catherine

    Literally had to read a portion of this out loud to DH. I have a similar issue with the receptionist at my Dr. I have no idea where these people come from, but if you have an extra bag of dicks…she could use them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.