Remember the good ole days? You know when you went into stores and businesses and they stood up and said, “Welcome.” And then offered to help you?
Today it feels more like you have to bring a rope and lasso and hogtie someone to answer any questions you might have. If you happen to find someone, they usually don’t know the answer, and instead of going to find out the answer, they walk away.
This amazes me every day. Even after years of customer service falling by the wayside, it still shocks me when I, the customer, is treated as if I didn’t come in here to spend money but are simply annoying the clerk.
Even more incredulous to me is when I actively seek out businesses, because I might want to hire them to do something for me, and they don’t respond. I can only assume they are so busy and making so much money that they don’t need my business.
When I started my first job at sixteen at Burger King, that was the first thing they taught me. The customer is always right. It was the motto you lived by as you shuffled burgers and fries to the masses. That phrase stuck and I’ve used it throughout my life in the many retail jobs I’ve had during college and as side jobs.
But now, I don’t think anyone hears that phrase anymore. The customer is always right. Is that the truth, of course not. Many customers are insensitive jerks. But, if you choose to be of service to someone, then that phrase should be your mantra.
It isn’t any revelation to anyone reading this that service has fallen. I’m sure it is due to busy lives, stress, too much worrying about problems, etc. But maybe it’s as simple as we have forgotten what courtesy is.
Not just in a customer service situation. The lack of courtesy when someone steps in front of you when you’re walking in a door. Or someone not saying excuse me when they bump into you. Or driving…I think that’s a whole different blog.
We as a culture are slowly slipping into no manners, thoughtlessness, and an abyss that our great grandparents would shudder to see.
So, my challenge is this. What can you do today to be courteous?