Another Quality Customer Service Experience

Friday, February 29th, 2008 @ 7:44 am | Business

After commenting on Jeff Carlson’s quality customer support experience with Apple, I had my own comment-worthy experience today, this time with Douwe Egberts / Sara Lee.

As a slightly early birthday present, my folks got me the Senseo Gift Pack. I like drinking coffee in the morning, but hate the process of making coffee. Let’s be honest, I am not a morning person… particularly before I’ve had my caffeine hit (so you can see why making coffee is somewhat of a chicken-and-egg issue).

The gift pack is supposed to include 2 packages of coffee pods. However, one of the packages was missing from my kit. When I called customer support, I had the choice between talking to somebody about Senseo issues or about coffee pod issues. I chose Senseo issues, since I was calling about a kit. It took maybe 30 seconds to explain my issue, where I was told I actually wanted to speak to the Douwe Egberts / Sara Lee folks, as they were responsible for that portion of the package. The CS rep transferred me over, where I explained my issue once more. The Sara Lee rep immediately apologized and offered my a coupon for a free package of pods, no questions asked.

The total experience took less than 5 minutes, maybe a minute of which involved hold time. Whereas some companies would make me jump through hoops to ascertain whether or not I was truthful, Sara Lee gave their representative the ability to set things right in short order. Giving me a coupon for the free pods has minimal cost to them and is an easy way to build goodwill among customers (ie, things like this posting). Plus, with the coupon, I have the freedom to choose the type of coffee I want instead of taking whatever type they threw into the box.

Again, in a perfect world, quality customer service experiences would be the norm. As the real world seems to have beaten down my expectations, though, I am often pleasantly surprised when things turn out this quick and painless.

Update: …and but a day later, Tom provides something of a counter-example.

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