Customer Service

Recently I had two experiences with customer service, one dismal and one exemplary, one with an old established Canadian behemoth and the other with a new, local business.

Bell Canada, our long-time service provider (my husband has used Bell for 40 years or so), disappointed me and left me hanging.

I had to return equipment and even though it was Bell that dropped the ball, not telling me the proper procedure for equipment return and not following through on their part in their own process, the company representative put up barrier after barrier (just envision a "talk to the hand" attitude). It stretched my ability to respond nicely to the max, but I did manage to stay cool and calm.

Conducting a bit of customer service (CS) research, I stumbled upon this idea at Maximizer.

The key to making these [i.e. CS] interactions run smoothly and keeping the customer happy is knowledge.

Bingo! Had the rep had the knowledge of how to resolve the issue, I would have left a much happier customer. After receiving three no's to our quandry of how to return equipment the same day we were leaving the province, and after insisting that a rep call head office to inquire, and after finding out that yes, there was an easy enough solution, I was not impressed with the string of no's.

Contrast this with our experience at 2 Chefs, a restaurant in Nanaimo on Vancouver Island. Our need to order gluten free (my husband is a Celiac) was no problem. The server was attentive to service needs, and she also spent a few moments engaging us in lovely conversation. As customers wandered in to this unassuming spot, it was clear that the ambiance - congenial, laid back - was part great quality and part great service.

The food, pictured above, was phenomenal! Home made ketchup, home-made blackberry jam (these grow in wild profusion on the Island), and the gluten free toast was so tender and fresh - and if you've ever eaten gluten free bread, you'll appreciate that this is huge, HUGE!I finished the entire plate, down to the last drop of ketchup and jam, which I never do! I highly recommend this eatery, without reservation.

Yes, two wildly different companies, but CS is a constant in every business that provides a service.

So, any recommendations for a mobile phone service provider? I've no desire to continue helping Bell earn revenues until it steps up its treatment of customers in a bind, which are the ones who need help the most!

As for Two Chefs? We'll be back to the eatery that was born "for the love of food"!