His Listening Skills Are Not On Fine Form

, , , | Right | April 16, 2019

(My company has two offices. One is open for visitors with questions; the other is for appointments only. I work in the appointments-only office, but we occasionally get walk-in visitors with questions. While I know a lot, I am technically not allowed to help them, to prevent them from returning another time or getting more visitors with questions than I alone can handle. It’s not the most customer-service point of view, but it’s the choice made by management. A man walks in wearing casual clothes; most appointments wear three-piece suits. I know I am making an assumption, judging a person on his looks, but most of the time I’m right.)

Visitor: “Is this [Company]?”

Me: “Well, it’s one of the two offices. Do you have an appointment, or are you looking for our visitor office?”

(A moment of silence follows and the man continues. After each question of mine, a silence follows and the man slowly speaks.)

Visitor: “I don’t have an appointment. I just want to change the way I pay.”

Me: “Then, I’m sorry, sir, but you are at the wrong office. I can’t change that here for you.”

Visitor: “But I want to change the way I pay. Can you change that for me?”

Me: “I can’t change that for you here. I can print the form from our website, so you can fill it in and hand it in at our location [Other Location].”

(I am not even supposed to do that.)

Visitor: “Where is that?”

Me: “It’s at [Very Obvious Landmark].”

Visitor: “That’s quite far away. Can’t you do that here?”

Me: “No, sir, I can’t. I can print out the form for you and you can hand it in at [Other Location], but you can also send it through email or post. Shall I print out the form for you?”

Visitor: *sees my desk phone* “Can’t I call them?”

Me: “I’m sorry, but we need a signature to change the way you pay. Let me print out the form for you from our website.” *after printing* “Here you go. You can hand it in at the [Other Location].”

(The man sits down at my desk and takes my pen.)

Me: “Oh, you don’t have to fill it in here. I can’t accept it, anyway. If you want, you can fill it in at home.”

(The man continues to fill in the form, anyway. Since he’s not harming anyone and I have no appointments walking in, I let him.)

Visitor: “It says I need a code?”

Me: “That is something your bank can give you.”

Visitor: “But what is the code?”

Me: “I wouldn’t know. You can ask your bank.”

(The man gets up and, as expected, he hands me the form.)

Me: “I’m so sorry, but I can’t accept this form here. I can’t do anything with it. You really need to go to [Other Location] for them to process this, or take a picture of it and send it through email.” *the hand is still stretched forward* “I’m sorry. I really can’t do anything with this form.”

Visitor: “Oh… so, I need to go to [Other Location]?”

(He folded the form, put it in his pocket, and finally left. I have a feeling that form will never reach us.)

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