Not So Polite Dinner Conversation: a view from behind the phones, thoughts of a CSR.

customer-service-representative-for-a-year-74942I’ve spent a few years working customer service now, in person and on the phone.  Customer service work is a great way to be an even greater misanthrope than one might ever be.  This is because you always get the problem children.

Now, for these problem children, I have some advice, and yes it’s presented with quite a bit of snark:

Read.  For sanity’s sake, read.  It isn’t that hard to read the form you have to fill out, the instructions on a package or the letter you were sent because you screwed up which has the instructions on how to un-screw up.   Unless you really are illiterate, and in the area that I license, I sure as hell hope you are not, it is just laziness that prevents you from taking responsibility and reading for yourself.

If you are on a website, you got to look around. No joke, I have people calling me having fits about a website that they can’t log into, and less than an inch from the username/password boxes, it says that if you don’t have a user name and password for the site you need to register, and the registration tab is right at the top of the screen.

You do indeed get ridiculed by the CSRs if you are too lazy to read the information you are given.  After the call ends or you walk away from the counter, your particular idiocy is shared with everyone.

This is why a CSR sounds bored or irritated with you, because you are just one more person who asked the same question that day and who was too lazy to read the information.  It even irks us more when you get pissy when we point out that the information was always available to you.  It’s not rude to point out you’ve failed.

If you let someone else fill out your paper work or buy your stuff, and it’s wrong, it’s your fault, no one else’s.

If you lie to us, or do not give us the information we need, we can’t help you.   If you are so paranoid that you refuse to give us your social security number, we can’t help you.  And we likely already can see it, so just calm down.

If you try to pretend you know it all, we’re more than happy to let you hang yourself and will offer no more information to someone who says “I did that” or “I know that” before we are finished talking.

Don’t expect the CSR to teach you how to use your computer or to cook or whatever basic skill you lack that you thought you had but has found out you fail at.  If you don’t know how to use a computer (and age is not an excuse), then go to a class to learn.  I am sick of hearing “I’m old, I can’t use computer.”   It’s damn time you learn.  If you don’t want to, then you’ve selected yourself out of civilization and it is not my problem.

The CSR doesn’t care that you’ve been a purple people eater for 40 years or whatever you claim in order to try to get special attention.  We also don’t care if you’ve “never ever had a problem like this before.”    Surprise, problems happen at any time, especially with computers.

If the website says to contact certain people if you are having a problem with the website, contact them. Do not call everyone else but them because we can’t help you and you getting bitchy about that doesn’t help.

If the CSR says something is the only way, that’s the only way.  We aren’ t keeping a secret special way for those who have the magic password. No matter if you shout, cry or beg, the rules won’t change. And please, don’t call back hoping to get an answer you like better.  Most CSRs for a certain area sit very close together.  We can hear the call and know that some idiot doesn’t want to accept what they are told and will be fishing for another response.   You’re not being clever, you’re being a dick.

For those who do read what they are sent and call for help after doing all they can to help themselves, know that it’s those that are asking questions they already have the answer for that are making the wait times on the phone longer and longer. From my experience, 9 out of every ten calls never had to be made.

And thus endth the rant.  🙂