How much does it cost? "Click"
I want a refund
Give me what I want or I'll give you a bad review
Have you heard an angry customer mutter these phrases to an employee who is required to maintain their composure while being attacked?
I often create content about how businesses need to care immensely about their customers and their employees in order to build a culture of caring and trust with potential customers.
But a trend I've noticed recently is the customer, when angry, feels as though it's okay to attack the employees behind the desk. These employees are there to represent the company in the best way possible and to provide information that the customer needs while maintaining composure and professionalism.
More often these employees are young and using the position to get them through college or to make ends meet for whatever reason they need.
Don't get me wrong there are some companies who create disastrous policies around customer service designed to protect the company and not the customer. Which is going to be a catalyst for infuriating the customer.
But this blog is for the lowest level employee who has to be on the front line and who has to be the face the customer sees as the product of these policies. The employee who has to smile and remain quiet and calm while a customer screams at them to make whatever it is they need to happen for them right now.
I talk about how much we need to care about the customer and now I feel as though it's time to talk to the customer about why it's not okay to treat these employees like they aren't real people, like they don't have feelings, like they don't deserve our respect.
No amount of anger is an excuse to treat other people who don't deserve it like garbage or to treat the person on the other end of the phone like they don't deserve our kindness.
Why as a society have we put a badge of honor on how we told that customer service representative what we thought of them and when did it become okay to feel as though we're above them?
These people are working a stressful job that forces them to become so bitter there's social media accounts devoted to how they feel and what they experience.
These are the people who go to work already stressed out, get attacked by the customer and then feel the need to either cry or go in the bathroom to cry for 15 minutes and disappear. Why is it okay to feel good about creating that kind of emotional stress on another person and why should that ever be a badge of honor?
Here's my challenge to you. When you're upset with a company just know that the person you're talking to on the other side of the counter is someone who has feelings, get stressed and feels the burden you put on them when you're angry.
Stop letting your anger cloud the fact that you're treating another person like garbage. They don't deserve it and you're not accomplishing anything by being a jerk to them.
The next time you find yourself angry at a company either in person or on the phone take a step back and ask yourself:
"Would I treat my family and friends this way?"
If the answer is no, then don't treat the person behind the counter or on the phone that way. Be a good person and treat people with kindness and show empathy. You have no idea the impact you can have on someone's day by being either kind or a jerk.
Make that impact a positive one!