Friday, May 10, 2013

Customer Service

I saw this quote on FB:

“Whoever said, ‘There’s no such thing as a dumb question’ never worked in Customer Service.” Well, I work in Customer Service, and here are a couple of things that happened recently:

Part of my job includes weighing packages and putting postage on them for mailing. A young lady approached me with a package to mail and said, “This is a birthday gift for my mother, but I don’t want her to know it’s from me until after she opens it. I want her to be surprised. Would you write her address on it for me? If she sees my handwriting she’ll know who it’s from right away.”

Always happy to oblige, while she answered a call on her cell phone, I wrote the address on the package, weighed it, applied the postage and placed it in our outgoing bin. “That will be $5.60,” I told her.

She lowered her phone, looked up at me and said, “Did you put my return address on it?”

“Ah… no,” I said.

“Well, you have to put my return address on it! What if it gets lost!?”

I wonder how surprised her mom was to receive a package from her daughter addressed to her in my handwriting?

We often get lost cell phones turned in to us and we usually let them sit on our counter and within a half hour or so, it rings and then we are able to explain to the caller that the phone they just called is in the lost and found at our store. They are usually able to contact the phone’s owner and get word to them about where their lost phone is waiting for them.

One day, a phone was turned in and after a couple of hours, it still hadn’t rung, so I picked it up, found the phone’s list of numbers and called the one labeled ‘Dad’. Dad answered and I said, “Hi, this is Janell at Customer Service and this phone was turned in to our lost and found. I found your number on the list as ‘Dad’. Did one of your kids lose a cell phone today?”

“Oh!” he said. “I’ll bet it was my son. I’ll give him a call and let him know where it is.”

“Okay, thanks. Good bye.” About 30 seconds later, the phone began to buzz and tweet and spin on my countertop. I answered, “Hello?”

“Hello?” I recognized the voice of the ‘Dad’ I had just spoken to. “Is John there?”

“Um…. no this phone is in the lost and found at my grocery store. I think I may have just spoken to you?”

“Oh! So you did. You have John’s phone?”


“Okay, I’ll try to call him and let him know.”

“Okay, thanks.”

Another 30 seconds later, the phone began to buzz and tweet and spin. Caller ID said ‘Dad’.

I elected not to answer it.

This next one didn’t happen to me, but it’s too good not to include.

This happened shortly after the USPS first started issuing Forever Stamps. One of my co-workers, Bea, (not her real name) waited on a young lady, who requested to buy a Forever Stamp. The stamp was handed over and the young lady paid for it, placed it on a letter and dropped it in the out box. She turned to leave, but then turned back and said to Bea, “Now, how will the mailman know to get that stamp back to me?”

“What do you mean?” Bea asked.

“Well, it’s a Forever Stamp, right?”


“How will I get it back when I need to use it again?”

“Ma’am, Forever Stamp just means that if you still have some of these,” holding up the familiar Liberty Bell stamp, “in your possession next time the price goes up, you won’t have to pay the increased cost. Uh… each stamp is only good for a one time use.”

My favorite one didn’t happen to me, either, but it’s too funny. It came from a computer telephone helpline worker. A caller wanted to know, “Where is the any key?”


Jim said...

Good Janell, very good. Too bad I couldn't come up with something stupid to ask you but maybe next time. I hope you're doing fine.

Rachel said...

Haha Janell! All funny and I have to admit that I have had my goofy moments too!!!