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Thursday, June 15, 2006

Customer Service

I'm a sucker for good customer service, even if it comes after someone has screwed something up for me. I recently had to deal with St. Vincent's billing department and I was less than pleased. You may remember T had a CT scan many months ago, due to a run-in with a classmate's knee and a school physical therapist who overreacted. Our insurance sucks and we were responsible for several hundred dollars due to our deductible.

I spoke with a not-very-friendly woman @ St. V's who indicated I could make 3 payments. I sent the first right away but because they didn't send me a bill or a statement, I forgot to send the 2nd the next month. I immediately got a letter - I know it was a form letter, but it pissed me off - indicating that I was being uncooperative and they were going to send the invoice to collections, yadda yadda. Most of the letter didn't apply to me, as we had already reached an agreement. I was late with 2nd payment, but I didn't appreciate the tone of the letter - and they tacked on a $20 late fee. I fumed for a couple of days and then simply paid the balance, minus the $20. Several weeks later I got a bill for the $20 with threats to keep adding additional late fees. I cannot express my frustration over this. I paid the entire balance faster than originally agreed upon and now they were going to waste resources going after their stupid late fee.

I always try to pick my battles and after more fuming I decided since my time and energy are in short supply I should just pay it and be done with it. The memo line on my check is titled "For_______." Instead of putting my invoice number I put, "good question." That'll teach 'em, I'm sure.

I had a better customer service experience yesterday. I spend a RIDICULOUS amount of time both online and on the telephone with Linksys, in an effort to get my laptop hooked up to our wireless network at home. I think I went through 3 online chats and telephone discussions with 2 different agents, mostly through no fault of theirs. During the 1st "chat," though, the agent simply stopped responding. I was irritated but simply got back in "line" to speak with someone else. Linksys generated an automatic e-mail asking me to fill out a short survey regarding my experience. I did, indicating in the comments section that the agent either got cut off or simply stopped responding to me.

In less than 5 minutes, my phone rang. It was a California number. Someone from Linksys was calling to apologize that I'd been cut off and to ask if I'd like to speak with a technical support person to remedy my problem at home. Now that is customer service. I thought it was supremely nice touch and I appreciated the effort. Not to mention that I am back to wireless functioning, so far with minimal complications. I'm looking forward to hanging out on my back deck while surfing the internet (okay, and while working).


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(Fresh Pepper)
In the Agora
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Do Not Overmix
From Engineer to Lawyer
Failure to Comprehend
Favorable Dicta
A Girl Walks Into a Bar(exam)
the imbroglio
Indiana Barrister
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Legal Underground
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Mother in Law
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Screaming Bean
SC Trial Law Blog
Taking Down Words
teahouseblossom


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advanced maternal age
Approaching...
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code blog: tales of a nurse
Deb, hatched
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Going Bananas
The Great Spirit
Hopedaddy
Jelly Beans...
Martinis, Persistence...
Overheard in New York
The Perils of Being in 3D
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preaching to the perverted
Rebirth
Ruth's Blog
...the slack daily
Stay
Texas T-bone
30 Something Baby Doc
Unnamed Source
Waiting for the Punchline

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