Ford Cebu-A A +A
Saturday, August 17, 2013
I’VE written about poor Customer Service and some lessons businesses need to learn. Today, let me concretize the concepts I have spoken of previously.
Last Monday, Aug. 12, Mr. Dennis Sanchez of Ford Cebu called to let me know that our Ford Escape which had been sent in for repairs was ready for pick-up. He dictated the billing amount to me. I immediately jotted it down. I repeated the amount to Mr. Sanchez for confirmation and asked for the payee name.
An hour later, I get a call from our driver at Ford Cebu. To my surprise, he told me that we had the wrong amount on the check. The bill was P12,926 not P11,926. I asked to speak to Mr. Sanchez and proceeded to tell him that the amount he dictated to me over the phone was P11, 926 and that I was reasonably certain of this because I immediately wrote it down. In fact, I reminded him that I had repeated the amount over the phone and he had confirmed.
I expected Mr. Sanchez to apologize for the miscommunication and the inconvenience. I was shocked to hear instead his dogged insistence that he “could not have been wrong.” He repeatedly told me that he had dictated the right amount until I got so pissed that I asked if he had a recording of our conversation to prove his point.
I know these things happen. But how could he INSIST that he could NOT HAVE BEEN WRONG? Lesson No. 1: The customer is always right.
He could simply have apologized and I would have let it go. But not a word of apology passed his lips.
Lesson No. 2: Right or wrong, always apologize to the customer for the inconvenience caused.
At this point in time, I was incensed. I gave Mr. Sanchez an ultimatum. I demanded that he admit to his mistake and apologize to me or I would report him to his superiors. He quickly apologized. My driver, however, reported to me later that Mr. Sanchez threw the Service Invoice at him.
Lesson No. 3: Do not antagonize the customer.
A few minutes later, I called Ford Cebu and asked to speak to the manager to file a complaint. After a long wait, several transfers and excuses, Ms. Mary Claire Jessica Soriano took my call. I asked what her designation was and she said, DCR Assistant. Lesson No. 4: Never use jargon with customers. Was I expected to know that DCR meant Dealer Customer Relations?
After listening to my experience, she said she would make a report, investigate the matter and have the Technical Services Manager, Mr. Frederico Bilbao call me WITHIN the day. I reiterated my name. And she asked, “Mrs., right?” Lesson No. 5: Never assume that all women are married.
As of this writing, I haven’t heard a peep from Ford Cebu. No callback about my complaint. Is everyone at Ford Cebu dead? Or brain-dead? Mistake No. 6: Do not make promises you can’t keep. I specifically told Ms. Soriano that if the matter was not resolved, the problem would escalate. Lesson No. 6: Take every complaint seriously.
Ford Cebu, I gave you a chance. You denied me access to redress and refused to act on my complaint thus forcing me to go public.
Lesson No. 7: Never ignore a customer.
Ford Cebu, you asked for this. Lesson No. 8: Bad service spreads like wildfire.
(E-mail: email@example.com,Twitter: http://twitter.com/melanietlim)
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 18, 2013.