Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Another Horror Comes Out of Texas

We Need A Regulation That Forbids Customer Service People From Selling or Working on Commission

Is One Hour Long Enough to Wait On Hold?

Is it my imagination, or are BellSouth and AT&T the absolute WORST phone companies in the world?

Not that there is a good phone company any more. That’s another thing we have Ronald Reagan to thank for. Back in the 70s and before, if you’d ever been to another country outside the US you were aware that we had a phone system that was head and shoulders above any other anywhere in the world. That was back in the day when this WAS the most prosperous nation in the world.

In other countries the phone service was like the electric service in Iraq today. Service was spotty. There were hours each day when you might not even get a dial tone. Even if you got a dial tone, there was no assurance the call would go through. But in the good old US of A, the phone service worked like a charm. At least from the time I was born, more than half a century back in the last century, there was never a time you couldn’t get a dial tone. Never a time when you couldn’t get through. And there was never a worry that you couldn’t run your mouth just as long as you pleased and as long as you could pay the bill without a dropped call. And that included long distance. That’s because AT&T was the one and only long distance company, because they had the biggest electronics research labs in the world and because the regional phone companies were pretty much just puppets of AT&T.

Back then, everyone used to complain that the phone companies were arrogant and wouldn’t listen to your complaints. But that was because they never had to deal with today’s phone companies, which stand head and shoulders above their predecessors in terms of chutzpah.

And there’s a definite reason and cause for modern phone companies being a pain in the ass: That’s how they’re paying their employees.

Today, I finally got connected with "customer service" at AT&T after 3 days on hold for over 15 minutes each day. Today I waited 30 minutes. The problem here is twofold. AT&T is not taking over BellSouth, BellSouth the rabid monster, is pretending to be AT&T. Number 1 we need to get this corporation and its influence out of Illinois.

Number two, and here’s the reason that phone companies are such a pain, when you call the phone company customer service department today, any phone company, you don't get customer service any more. You get sales people. There's a huge conflict of interest there. Customer service people should be getting a salary to help you get the best out of your account for the most money. Sales people are paid on commission and have the exact opposite goals. Sales people are trying to get the most money out of you for the least service.

I have no problem with the sales force. When I call the sales force. But when I call customer service, I want service.

This is no joke and it is evident because customer service people are always trying to sell you new service. They will not recommend a cheaper service unless you ask for it. If you don't know about the cheaper service, you are SOL.

We need to pass a simple law that customer service departments cannot be connected to the sales department and that customer service people cannot sell products.

Then we need to drop BellSouth off of a cliff. Does nothing good come out of Texas any more? - © 2007 The Chewed End All rights reserved.

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Seamus O'Bròg is an artist and freelance writer who tries to turn life's irritations into life's lessons.

His money back guaranteed newsletter "The Pitfalls of Unlocked Cell Phones and SIM Card Cloning" can be purchased by clicking here.