Ohio appeals court ruling is a victory for punctuation, sanity

This is a big win for those of us obsessed with punctuation and grammar!

“If the village desires a different reading, it should amend the ordinance and insert a comma,” Judge Robert Hendrickson wrote.

Ohio appeals court ruling is a victory for punctuation, sanity – The Washington Post

‘Free’quent flier has wings clipped after American Airlines takes away his unlimited pass | New York Post

He’s the man who flew too much.
He clocked more than 10 million miles and 10,000 flights. He used his power to fly hopeless strangers home, a friend to the Louvre, and a priest to Rome to meet the pope.
He hopped planes to other cities just for a baseball game or a sandwich.
Everybody, even American’s CEO, knew his name.

http://nypost.com/2012/05/13/freequent-flier-has-wings-clipped-after-american-airlines-takes-away-his-unlimited-pass/

5 customer service fails that will make you squirm

Ever told a customer they have zero fashion sense? Or held them to ransom just after their house was wrecked by a tornado? Maybe you’ve spent 20 minutes arguing on the phone like a spoiled child because they no longer want your service? If so, congratulations, you’ve made it into the exclusive club of the worst customer service workers in the world!

5 customer service fails that will make you squirm — James Thornton, Get App Lab

Customer Satisfaction vs Customer Loyalty

Imagine this scenario: a customer is perusing the aisles of his local grocery store in search of a bottle of remoulade (or remúlaði in Icelandic). After he has located a handful of different brands of this most famous mayo-based pickle-infused hot dog condiment, the customer now faces a dilemma: which one to buy? Should he choose the same old bottle he did the last time, the cheapest one on the shelf, or his childhood favourite? What it all adds up to is how the brand connects with the customer, and how this connection influences his buying behaviour.

DalPay Blog: Customer Satisfaction vs Customer Loyalty

What is customer service for?

Customer service succeeds when it accomplishes what the organization sets out to accomplish. Google doesn’t have a phone number, doesn’t want to engage with most users. McDonald’s doesn’t give you a linen napkin. Fedex used to answer the phone on one ring, now it takes 81 seconds for them to answer a call. None of these things are necessarily bad, they’re merely examples of alignment (or non-alignment).

–Seth Godin, “What is customer service for?

Happiness Delivered Overnight

As someone who has always worked in service focused positions, I place great value on the quality of the service I receive. Where I do business, both in person and virtually, is heavily determined by the attention to positive service and making the consumer happy. Some companies put out a product just expecting that it will sell, no matter how little support is backing it.

This is why I enjoy open source software. The products are often supported by a community of volunteers who are really dedicated to the product and care about it.  It’s not just a job.  In fact, it’s often unpaid volunteer work.  But when someone cares about the product and is passionate about it, they want to share that passion with others.  They even give of their own time for that.  It’s a wonderful thing to see.  Now, once in a while you see a paid employee of a company truly passionate about their product or service and making it the best available.

So what inspired me to write this post?  I have recently been reading Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh.  Though I have not finished the book, I can tell you that he is clearly focused on the importance of passion in your work.  I had a recent interaction with Zappos customer service and I have to say that they exemplified everything that Tony talks about in his book and I agree with.

A while back I bought shoes from Zappos that unfortunately wore through the sole quite quickly.  I literally had a hole I could look right through in the bottom of the shoe.  That makes for some very wet socks!  I contacted Zappos to let them know about the issue and they were happy to make an exchange.  I wasn’t ready to pick a new pair of shoes, so they happily made a note on my account and left it for later.

Due to various extenuating circumstance it took me more than a year to get back to Zappos with my decision.  When I contacted Zappos Customer Service by chat, they happily assisted me in arranging my exchange of shoes.  Despite it being almost two years since my original purchase they took great time and care to make sure I was happy with their product and service.  I finished the transaction by 5pm, and I had my shoes delivered the next morning.

Zappos truly delivered happiness for me.  This is what real support and service is all about.  Something that is lacking too often nowadays, but we need more of.  The classic rule of support is, “The customer is always right.”  One thing I have learned is that this is not true.  The customer is not always right.  But that does not mean the customer shouldn’t be happy!  If you respect a customer and make sure they walk away happy, they will feel that they are right.  That is the real rule in support and service.

What experiences have you had giving or receiving service/support?  Do you find my outlook to be right or wrong?  Let me know what you think!