'"I've had terrible service, why do you still recommend those b*****ds?"'

This is the discussion to link on the back of Martin's blog. Please read the blog first, as this discussion follows it.




Please click 'post reply' to discuss below.
«1

Replies

  • RuthnJasperRuthnJasper Forumite
    4K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Photogenic Combo Breaker
    ✭✭✭✭
    I agree. People (and we all can have off-days) may have called and got through to a representative who was having a miserable or difficult day, or may not have actually been able to offer a response that suited the complainant.

    All comments like the one described - and this one! - are subjective/responsive. One man's "terrible" is another man's "perfectly acceptable". In such cases, I always believe that "impartial majority rules". Say there is a particular company, about which three people have complaints, but sixteen are satisfied, whilst a further twenty-seven have only compliments - the overall picture of that company would be that it's generally not too bad.

    Sometimes, people forget that opinions and recommendations online are OPINIONS only and recommendations based upon a majority view. Also, how can one know if the person who stated "I've had terrible service, why are you recommending these b*st*rds?!" did not bring the kind of "service" they received upon themselves by ranting, swearing at, and insulting an innocent helpline employee...?

    I'm always sorry to hear that someone has had a negative experience. But taking it out on independent and impartial sites like this one is NOT the way to make a legitimate protest.


    I WOULD have posted this on Facebook - but it's Armistice Day, and I didn't want to replace my last "remembrance" post with this comment... :o

    R&J xx
  • ErrataErrata Forumite
    38.2K Posts
    10,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    Sometimes some customers may be as thick as bricks, unable to communicate effectively and consequently think they've been badly served.
    .................:)....I'm smiling because I have no idea what's going on ...:)
  • Errata wrote: »
    Sometimes some customers may be as thick as bricks, unable to communicate effectively and consequently think they've been badly served.

    Absolutely. Working in a large national company banking hundreds of chqs ever day I once had to deal with a client who insisted on sending in his payments with no account details or even full name (and it was a really common name, on a bank that didn't show location on the chq, with a really common value).

    After lots of checking and guessing I managed to establish who he was and politely asked him to send his payment in either with the remit that he would have received from us or to add his details on the chq. He went ballistic - apparently he was an individual and did not need to add any of his details so we should be able to work out who he was.
    I'm sure that he thought that our service was rubbish - perception is the key.
  • edited 13 November 2011 at 2:22PM
    stingyscotstingyscot Forumite
    81 Posts
    edited 13 November 2011 at 2:22PM
    Please don't encourage Facebook (Comment under Facebook login). They already keep us under 24 hour Stasi-like surveillance: don't make it even easier for them!
  • As a sole trader who provides a service to customers, I was interested to see this. I have about 250 customers on my books. My guess would be that 10% would say it's a very good service, 85% would say that they are satisfied and 5% would say that they're not particularly happy but they stick with me because I'm the devil they know and my industry (window cleaning) is notorious for fly-by-nights and at least I'm honest.
    While I won't pretend to be perfect, the irony here is that most of those 5% often bring the situations upon themselves.

    Examples: some jobs I need to text the night before to ensure a garden gate is left unlocked. I make the effort to get there and find the gate locked. Result is that they don't get a clean until my next visit to the area - usually a few weeks because I'm not prepared to increase my mileage (expenditure) for a customer that has effectively cost me money. Indeed, if this is persistent, the customer is dropped from the customer list. Depending on my mood, it's possible that I may not even contact them - especially if it's a customer who has shown a tendency to be argumentative.
    To such a customer I become yet another window cleaner who stopped turning up.

    Another example: Some people seem to think that I don't have a mortgage or bills to pay and that I live on fresh air. So if my cash flow is running tight (especially in a Winter freeze) who do I clean for as a priority? The prompt payer? Or the one who I know won't pay me for at least another 3/4 months?
    To such a customer I can become one of those window cleaners "who only turns up when he feels like it".

    In truth, most of my customers are fine. Some are brill. Some are a pain. But most are OK. This is probably almost directly in proportion to how they would rate me (though obviously I can only guess). I don't think that's coincidence.
  • Absolutely. Working in a large national company banking hundreds of chqs ever day I once had to deal with a client who insisted on sending in his payments with no account details or even full name (and it was a really common name, on a bank that didn't show location on the chq, with a really common value).

    After lots of checking and guessing I managed to establish who he was and politely asked him to send his payment in either with the remit that he would have received from us or to add his details on the chq. He went ballistic - apparently he was an individual and did not need to add any of his details so we should be able to work out who he was.
    I'm sure that he thought that our service was rubbish - perception is the key.

    I know where you're coming from :D .
    I get cheques with no address on the back. Fortunately, my database has about 250 customers on it and it's all frequent repeat work (window cleaning) so I can usually figure it out by the name and the amount. I have been caught out before though when the other partner of an unmarried couple (the one whose name I don't know) sends the cheque instead. Similar with BACS. I always give them a reference based on their address and postcode so I know where it's come from (some banks such as IF withhold the customer's name). It doesn't stop the occasional one coming througfh with a reference of "Windows" or similar as if I couldn't guess that bit :D .
  • verybigchrisverybigchris Forumite
    630 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 500 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    ✭✭
    I think MSE could do more to take customer satisfaction into account in its recommendations.

    For example, when the difference between the interest rates on the top savings accounts is negligible perhaps they should take into consideration how well the banks performed in the last customer survey, rather than automatically promoting the account that pays 0.01% more.
  • jetfighterjetfighter Forumite
    248 Posts
    Mortgage-free Glee!
    ✭✭
    Personally, I look at MSE newsletters and articles for the cheapest deal, then come onto the forums or search Ciao and ReviewCentre for reviews of the companies/products before making a final decision about whether to go for the cheapest.

    In many circumstances, such as with top picks of bank accounts, I have been perfectly happy with Martin's top recommendation regardless of any poor reviews I have read. Santander for example: they've been fine for me, despite everyone else thinking they're a load of rubbish.

    I think we've all got to have a bit of common sense and research options thoroughly, particularly financial products and utility companies, before making the commitment.
  • StryderStryder Forumite
    1.1K Posts
    This website always tends to express a "money at all cost" attitude, which I do not feel is healthy.

    On the practical side, if you are "recommending" and promoting a product you can either take the "consumer champion" stance and look at the company in a holistic manner, or take a "cash is king" response, and go for the bottom line.

    I feel a more holistic approach is key for long term longevity. In terms of customer service, this should generally be on the basis of a mixture of both 1st line and 2nd line support. This is not just how problems are dealt with, but the dealing of complaints. Anyone can get on the wrong side of a customer or call handler, either through temperament or confusion. Measuring these things but this probably should be considered in terms of 1) customer satisfaction, and 2) results from the watchdogs and ombudsmen.

    However, this site could be a lot more transparent.
    1) all recommendations could link information about the nature of the financial relationship between it and this site.
    2) each "recommended" company could be given a rating (like bronze, silver or gold star) based upon the assessment, and a link to summary of the information from annual reports, surveys etc.
    3) each recommended company could also be linked to an "issues" page, where recent news stories could be linked to it - for example, a mix of positive and negative, like recent campaigns by Amnesty International (like recently with oil producers), and also more "good news" stories like when supermarket raise their animal husbandry standards, etc.

    To be honest, if you do not take an overall look at the companies you recommend, and be transparent to the nature of the relationship, people will always get frustrated and suspicious about why you choose what you do.

    The best example of this would be with Tesco deals and MSE's relationship with the supermarket giant, particularly in terms of the Clubcard and many peoples comments about the way the deals are presented.
    ............... Have you ever wondered what
    ¦OO¬¬ O[]¦ Martin would look like
    ¦ _______ ¦ In a washing machine
    ¦ ((:money:)) ¦
    ¦
    ¦
    ¦''''''''''''""""""¦
  • I signed up for a Talk Talk package as recommended on your site. Part of the offer was a £60 TESCO voucher. signed up on 31/08 to date (16/11) still haven't received it. When I contacted talk talk they said deal doesn't come from them. Uswitch who I had to go through to sign up for the deal are also useless. Sick of chasing it now but don't want to just give up and let them get away with it. Can I cancel the contract with talk talk (its a 12 month contract) seeing as they haven't kept their side of the deal. Any ideas where to go now, seeing as you recommended the deal!!!
This discussion has been closed.
Latest MSE News and Guides