Wednesday, May 30, 2007

What Not to Do

So - when I was having all my fun last week dealing with flames and potential flames, I happened to run across yet another example of companies that mean well but don't really take customers into account when they design their processes... or perhaps it's just a matter of not really thinking through what happens if you put a "fake" domain name into your Reply To address field.

What happens is that someone named Chet goes and buys up the domain and airs out your stupidity for the world to see. I felt sad for the companies with such poor customer service and sad that some of their customers don't get the service they want or need and maybe even ended up looking worse for themselves in the process. Okay, so I laughed a bit too - you know, that dark, "sometimes it gets so bad, you just gotta laugh, especially when it makes you feel better about your own problems" kind of way. I mean, what did they think would happen? At least I'm luckier than all the folks who still aren't grilling.

What's particularly sad is that providing good customer service isn't any more difficult and I do see it on a regular basis... though frankly, the bad stuff is far more fun to talk about. Easier to learn from too, which is my primary goal in calling attention to poor behavior. You didn't really think I was so cynically sadistic to just be poking fun at the misfortunes of others, did you? Nah!

Send your thoughts about what you've learned from past mistakes (yours or someone else's) to me at and save someone else from the embarrassment of making the same error.

What will you do differently next time?

Kimm Viebrock is an ICF-credentialed Associate Certified Coach who helps technology professionals and service-oriented technology groups develop and use their skills more effectively and increase their value within the larger organization, allowing them to do more, do it better and have more fun doing it. Kimm is devoted to finding the connectedness in life.