Home > Business > What is the problem with your problem?

What is the problem with your problem?

The other day, I visited a web site with an e-com solution as a wanted to make a purchase. I looked at their product catalog and found that they had the product I wanted.

I turned to the site’s web shop, ready to complete my purchase. But when I searched for the product, I couldn’t find it.

I looked again at the product description. Yes, there was nothing indicating that this wasn’t being sold, or that there was any problems with the stock of the items.

But I still couldn’t find the stuff on the web shop.

And there I could have left it, gone to someone else, but since I’m myself developing e-com solutions, I became curious. So I contacted the help function.

I provided a link with the product description and described how I’d tried searching for the item.

The response I got was that the product was only sold during summers. Yes, I could imagine that the product was for summer days but since people go on holidays during the winters, you might want it anyway. And besides this; why market a product you don’t sell?

The response was that there was no error in the e-com site. The stuff wasn’t supposed to be sold so you couldn’t buy it. And that was it. He wasn’t even interested in why I was spending all this time on this question. So, bye bye.

This is just an example how poorly some companies treat their customers. When a felt error is reported, the definition of a Case or an Issue is being thrown in the face of the reporter and the staff doesn’t anything about taking care of the person’s complaint. What really happened during our discussion was:

I: “There is an error”

He: “Your complaint does not meet our definition of an error. So, bye bye. Since I don’t really care about your feelings about this being an error, stop wasting my time.”

Perhaps this had a good explanation. Perhaps they couldn’t remove stuff from their site based on season. Perhaps the person responsible was sick or something. But since the person I contacted didn’t even wanted to recognize that this was perceived as an error, I lost my trust in his business.

But I also have a happy story to tell. My bike was stolen a couple of weeks ago and I contacted by insurance company and filed a case.

A couple of days later I was called by a person from the firm and after verifying that she had the right person on the phone, she before anything else expressed her condolences for losing an almost new bike. I don’t know if she really cared but the mere fact that she bothered to try to see it from my perspective made all the difference. She recognized me.

This affected our whole conversation and I probably feel better about our deal than I would have hadn’t she been such an empathic person. (Btw, the company is TryggHansa!).

We can all learn from this; from the project manager rejecting a new requirement, the developer getting bugs reported, a boss hearing some complaint from his staff.

Read more in

Wired to Care: How Companies Prosper When They Create Widespread Empathy

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Categories: Business
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