Let Me Explain This To You In Black And White

, , , , , | Right | March 12, 2020

(I’m the owner of several copy centers. In the early days, I used to be on location quite often to adapt the business to customer needs. I answer the phone in order to let employees concentrate on in-store clients.)

Customer: “Hi, is this [Copy Shop]?”

Me: “Yes, how may we help you?”

Customer: “I’ve seen your advertising on the street and it says you also make color copies?”

Me: “Of course.” *gives her some pricing information*

Customer: “Can you also make a color copy of my ID card?”

(This is a precise translation of the customer’s wording; luckily, I have a recording of the conversation.)

Me: “Yes, sure, we can do that.”

(I give the customer our address and instructions on how to get to us. One hour later, in the store, I overhear this from the back:)

Customer: “Hi.”

Employee: “How may I help you?”

Customer: “I spoke with somebody on the phone and he told me that you can make color copies.”

Employee: “Sure.” *gives pricing information* “Can I have the material?”

Customer: “Here you go.” *hands out an A4 sheet and a black and white copy of her ID card*

Employee: *confused* “Are you sure you want a color copy of this? Please note that using a color copier will usually give better quality in this instance.”

Customer: “Yes, sure!”

(My employee makes the copy, which is obviously still black and white, and gives it to the lady.)

Employee: “Here you go!”

Customer: “What’s this? Where are the colors?”

Employee: “Since your original only had the color black, it is the only color on the copy, even if it’s a color copy.”

Customer: “No, I want a color copy. I specially called in advance and asked if you make color copies and I was told so!”

Employee: “I am sorry, but what you demand is technically not possible; I would need your original ID and then the copy would have the colors.”

Customer: “Well, I don’t have it, so this will have to do. Please do your minimum-wage job or get somebody more competent here; I didn’t spend an hour reaching this place only to be refused service.”

Employee: “I’m sorry, but there is no one else to take your order.”

Customer: “How about the guy over there, pointing at me?!”

Employee: “That is our manager.”

Me: “I’m the owner, and it is me that you spoke with on the phone. Everything that my colleague did and said is correct.”

Customer: “Are you joking? Are you making fun of your clients? You gave me misleading information.”

Me: “No, the information was correct. Either you failed to provide us with all the information or failed to understand the basic concept of a copy.”

Customer: “Well, I don’t care. I was misled and I’m not leaving here unless there is color on that copy.”

Me: “Okay, one moment, please.”

(I go with the copy in the back, take some highlighters, and put some color on it before returning.)

Me: “Here you go.”

Customer: *still taking the sheet and before looking at it* “See, it was possible all along!” *looking at it* “What the h*** is this? Are you making fun of me?”

Me: “Yes, it’s most entertaining, and as it turns out, you were right; I was able to add some color.”

Customer: *takes the tip jar off the counter and throws it at me* “You are a cretin and an idiot! I’m going to close this business; I’ll send ‘Consumer Protection Oversight’ and the police! You’ll see!”

(She left, slamming the door, forgetting the folder containing all of her paperwork. That’s probably how she “lost” her ID in first place, to be left with only a copy. To this day, she hasn’t returned for her stuff, but as promised, we got a visit from the “Consumer Protection Oversight” after a complaint from her. They brought the complaint paper, which was quite accurate, and only came to see if it was true; they were as amused by the events as I was and did not even consider giving us a fine or asking for a bribe, as it usually happens around here!)

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