We baby boomers were raised in a time where integrity, hard work, sincerity and honor were key principles in all parts of our lives. We were taught to work for what we wanted, too. No one I knew while growing up had the kind of money to just go buy a new bicycle or TV or new car, etc. No one we knew of even paid for things “on time” either. It just wasn’t done. You saved for what you wanted, and when you had the money for it, you paid in full and took exquisite care of it to make it last.
The same principles went for jobs as well. When you took a job, you did what you were told, and, should something go beyond your responsibilities, you found out what to do next. In other words, you didn’t just sit on your hands; you were proactive. As one boss I had once said to his team, “don’t just stop at the first red light and sit there! Go forward!”
Customer service these days seems to mean less service and more aggravation. When something goes sideways, it’s now the customer who has to work it all out. Customer service now seems to mean “I can’t help you, I don’t care, work it out yourself.”
This isn’t to say that a lot of customer service people are not doing a good job; they may be few and far between but they are there. They care about the customer and they do their level best to help them when something goes wrong. But sadly, it seems that the majority are just working for the money and don’t care about the customer and doing things right.
I recently had an issue with a compounding pharmacy that was providing one of our cats with a particular medicine for his tremors. He has to take a syringe full of the medicine morning and night to help reduce these tremors; some which are so strong that he stumbles and sometimes falls. Without it he could have far more serious seizures or fall down the stairs and injure himself.
I had a running order from this pharmacy for four months, and the bottle would arrive either half-full, sometimes one third full, and only once filled to the top. Also I could not depend on the medicine arriving on time; many times I was down to mere droplets of medicine, waiting on the next bottle. The pharmacy insisted on my signing for each delivery, so I had to be home at all hours to sign for it. Twice out of four deliveries they just left the box on the steps. I was always anxious, never knowing if I would get the medicine on time and in the right quantity.
I tried speaking to the people at the pharmacy, and they were not helpful. I finally found another compounding pharmacy that is not only closer to me, but is half the price of what I paid for from the first pharmacy. Don’t get me wrong, I would pay anything to keep this cat healthy. But the first pharmacy’s customer service was ineffectual and in my book, careless and possibly dangerous.
Sadly, the prevailing customer service attitude with few exceptions seems to be “whatever…” said with a shrug and an eye roll. What happened to our work ethic? What happened to personal integrity? Has this too gone by the wayside?
Are we losing our humanity as well?