Putting The Grin In Grinch

| WI, USA | Right | December 24, 2014

(I do chat support for a major mobile device manufacturer. A customer comes in to chat all upset:)

Customer: “Christmas is ruined! I spent $180 on a cell phone and it isn’t going to be delivered in time.”

Me: “That is unfortunate, sir. I see we shipped it on time, and it is in the shipping company’s possession. But for some reason the tracking shows that the package had been diverted, causing a delay in delivery. I apologize.”

(I try to explain that it is not something I have any control over, but he isn’t having any of it. Finally, there is a pause, and then he tells me:)

Customer: “Okay, I just called my son over to the computer. He is here now. Go on… explain it to him. Tell my 12-year-old why you ruined his Christmas.”

(I was stunned. There were a few false starts where I started typing a reply, then deleted it and tried to gather my thoughts. I was SO glad this was a chat and not a call, or things would have probably gone downhill very fast.)

Me: “I am very, very sorry that the package did not arrive on time. I promise you, it is on its way and you will receive it soon. In the meantime, I want to ask you to please be patient, and to be grateful that you have a dad that would buy a cool phone like this for you, because there are a lot of children who have to make do with much less. I want to wish you a very Merry Christmas, and a good night.”

(The chat suddenly terminated a few minutes later, when he disconnected without a word.)

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Thank You For Calling The North Pole

| Dublin, Ireland | Right | December 22, 2014

Me: “Good evening. You’re through to [My Name]. How can I help you?”

Customer: “I mean it. It’s really him!”

Me: “Excuse me?”

Customer: “It’s really Santa Claus!”

(I now realize the customer is speaking to someone on his end. I hear gasping on his end.)

Me: “Sir, did you redial this number by accident?”

Customer: *still talking to his child* “Yes, yes, Santa. Jack is being naughty.”

Me: “Put me on speaker.”

Customer: “Jack, Santa wants to talk to you.”

(Puts me on speaker.)

Me: *in my best Santa voice* “Ho ho ho, Jack, you be good now so your Dad will let me bring lots of presents to you this year.”

Tiny Voice: “Yes, Santa, I promise.”

(Clicks off speaker.)

Customer: “Thanks for that. Couldn’t get him to go to bed.”

Me: “No problem. Merry Christmas.”

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Don’t Hate All Men, Just You

| USA | Right | December 15, 2014

(I answer the phone and the most misogynistic guy I’ve ever talked to states he is on hold for a supervisor. I apologize and say he was misinformed he was holding for one, ask for his account number, and offer to help him.)

Me: *after a few seconds of silence and no response* “Sir?”

Caller: “Yes, I’m holding for a supervisor. Are you one?”

Me: “No… This is the same operator you were speaking to. As I explained, I can’t transfer you to a supervisor. If you’d like to speak to one, I’ll need your account number so I can—”

Caller: “—I’m not giving you my account number. That’s private information. Now, put an adult on the phone.”

Me: *thinking its going to be one of THOSE calls* “I am an adult, sir. I’m 38.”

Caller: “Sure you are.” *talking to someone in the background* “I’ve got some man-hating idiot lesbian on the phone who won’t help me. She talks like an ignorant d***.”

Me: *mouth open in shock* “Sir, if you can’t be professional—”

Caller: “—Look, I want to speak to a supervisor. I know you must hate men, and I don’t need to take your abuse. If you want to abuse someone go home and abuse your girlfriend.”

Me: “Sir, there is no need for how you are talking to me. I am trying to assist you. May I please have your account number?” *dead air for about 10 seconds on the line* “Sir?”

Caller: “Yes, I am holding for a supervisor. May I please speak to one?”

Me: *wishing I could reach through the phone to slap him* “I heard you the first few times you said that, sir, and I still can’t transfer you to—”

Caller: “—Look, I know you are an ignorant d*** who isn’t capable of doing this job. Be a good girl and transfer me to someone who is an adult and know what they are doing so you can go home, abuse your girlfriend, and look for a job at McDonald’s where you might actually be qualified to work.”

Me: *struggling hard to remain professional myself* “Sir, if you can’t be professional I will have to end the call. I am trying to assist you. If you want to speak to a supervisor, I need to have your account number so I can issue a call back.” *silence on the line again* “Sir?”

Caller: “Yes, I’m holding for a supervisor. Did that d*** finally transfer me to one?”

Me: *finally had it* “Sir, it’s still me and I heard you the first few times you said that. I am not transferring you to a supervisor. If you won’t give me your account number and speak to me politely, I will have to end this call.”

Caller: “Don’t you talk to me like that, you d*** b****. I’m not giving you my account number so you can steal my info! Put a f****** adult on the phone like a good little lesbian. Don’t know why they hired a r***** like you. You probably are too dumb to work at McDonald’s, too. I want a supervisor. NOW.”

Me: “I’ve warned you multiple times about how you’re talking to me. You are refusing any assistance I can give you and you are being vulgar. Thank you for calling. Have a nice day. I am disconnecting the call.”

Caller: “Don’t you dare—”

Me: *doesn’t let him finish and hits the release button*

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Going Postal Over Postal

| Birmingham, England, UK | Working | December 11, 2014

Customer: “Do I have to post the letter in? Is there no other way? Can’t I email it?”

Coworker: “Unfortunately, we will need the original paper copy for our files so it would have to be posted in.”

Customer: *getting annoyed* “Well, that’s just stupid. This is the modern world; I shouldn’t have to post this in.”

Coworker: “I understand that, sir, but unfortunately for our records we will need the original copies.”

Customer: “If I can’t post it in what other options do I have?”

Coworker: *straight faced and with a pause* “Carrier pigeon.”

Found The (Out)Source Of The Problem

| Portsmouth, England, UK | Working | December 10, 2014

(I work for a telecommunications/TV company in their talk and broadband ordering and order problem department. We have to outsource all of our installations and repair calls to a specific company due to the set up of the UK phone line system. My colleague sitting next to me has escalated a call to a manager and I’m waiting between calls when I overhear the following:)

Manager: “I’m sorry Ms. [Name] but if [Outsource Company] says they won’t be installing a socket there’s nothing we can do. You need to call us after the line goes active and we can book a repair visit.”

(I start waving to get the manager’s attention.)

Manager: “Can I place you on hold for a second and see if there’s anything more I can do?”

Manager: *to me* “What?”

Me: “You call [Outsource Company] and tell them you need the appointment.”

Manager: “No, we can’t.”

Me: “No, that’s what you do. It’s why the text says ‘please contact your provider if you need this appointment.’ Have you called them and they’ve said no?”

Manager: “We don’t… That’s not… Wait, is that what you’ve been doing? Does it work?”

Me: “Well, it has for the last eight months… Wait, have you been telling every customer who calls because of this they need to call us and get a repair done? You’ve been here two years!”

Manager: “Um, yes. Can you call them for me?”

(I call the outsource company, tell them we still need the appointment, and pass the good news to the manager.)

Manager: “Right, I’ll… Can you call the customer back and tell her you’re my manager and you pulled some strings?”

Me: “I can call her back and tell her you don’t know how to do your job correctly, if you’d like…”

Manager: “No, no, I’ll do it.”

(I checked the customer’s account the next day and saw everything went fine. The manager left a note detailing how he’d saved the day and persuaded the outsource company to reinstate the visit as an emergency favour.)

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