Food Inedible, Policy Untenable

, , , , , , , | Working | November 24, 2017

(Some friends and I go out to dinner. All of us have worked in the service or customer service industry at some point, so we tend to be pretty understanding and forgiving of most things. However, the service on this night is bad enough that we have no choice but to ask for a manager. The hostess and wait staff have been rude, and our food shows up inedible; six people order at the table — one steak, two burgers, and three chicken dishes — and every dish is burnt or overcooked. The burgers are so bad they are basically hockey pucks, the steak was ordered medium and comes out blackened and hard, and the baked chicken is hard and stringy. We point this out to our waitress.)

Waitress: *huffs and rolls her eyes* “Well, what do you want me to do about it?”

Friend #1: “The burgers are really overcooked, and anyone who got chicken can’t even eat theirs, it’s so bad.”

Friend #3: “And my steak is really overdone. I asked for medium and this is… Well, it’s a tire.”

Waitress: “If you want new dishes, you have to pay for those meals, too.”

Friend #2: “No, we don’t. Since when is that a rule? It’s the fault of the kitchen.”

Waitress: “If you don’t like what you get, and you order something new, that’s not our fault. That’s on you. We had to keep everyone’s food under the heat lamps because that one ordered a steak and that takes longer to cook. Blame her.” *storms off*

(At this point, we are all shocked. We flag down another waitress and ask her to send over a manager — this waitress at least is nice. We explain to the manager what has happened and find that the manager has the same attitude. She insists that if we are getting new food, we have to pay for those plates along with the first. She refuses to even acknowledge how burnt our food is.)

Manager: “I won’t explain this again. If you want another dish, you have to pay for it. I can’t just give free food to every customer who is picky. Don’t order things that you don’t like.”

Friend #3: “Look, lady, we aren’t looking for a freebie here; we just want food we can actually eat. You can’t expect us to pay for food that we can’t even eat. Your kitchen made the error, not us. I sure didn’t go back there and burn my dinner.”

Manager: “If you aren’t going to pay, I’m going to call the cops.”

(We all share a glance because we’ve never experienced something quite like this. We have, to our best ability, made it clear that we intend to pay for dinner. We just want to eat that dinner first, and we can’t eat the dishes we have been served. I finally sigh and shake my head.)

Me: “You know what? Forget it. Just bring us the check. We’ll find somewhere else to eat.”

(I throw down my credit card, pay, and get us out of there. I’m irritated and starving by this point, as are my friends. Instead of waiting at a new restaurant we just go to [Friend #1]’s house and make a few frozen pizzas. We all have a good laugh after we eat and calm down but are all still pretty irritated by the situation. I grab the website for comments and questions off of our receipt and send the story of what happened. Two days later I get an email from a customer service rep. The email starts with a very scripted line thanking me for my patronage of their restaurant and that they “always strive to give the best customer service possible.” Then it takes an interesting turn.)

Customer Service: “It’s always hard to hear that someone is not happy with our service. We reached out to our [Town] location for their version of the story, as well. The particular event you described can be especially confusing for those not familiar with our policies; however, rest assured that the wait-staff and manager were both acting upon a policy that is the same for all our of stores. We are always so pleased to hear our team members upholding the values we have built our company around. In the event that a customer is not happy with their meal, they always have the option of ordering another item off of our generous menu. However, in the event that someone does order something new, they are responsible for both dishes ordered. It is only in a rare occasion that [Restaurant] will waive the fee of an ordered dish. I hope this clears things up, and we hope that you will give us a chance to serve you again in the future!”

(I am shocked at this point. I wasn’t expecting much to come of reaching out to the company, but I certainly wasn’t expecting that! About ten minutes go by; then, I see another email appear in my inbox. It is from a name that I don’t recognize, but upon inspection, I see that it is someone who had been CC’d in the response from the customer service rep. He obviously hit Reply All instead of replying directly to the original sender.)

Email: “Nicely handled! Gotta let these scammers know whose boss!”

(The email is signed by someone with a position stamp of some sort of District Manager. I take a moment to quell my rage before sending my final email. Just as this DM did, I make sure to hit “Reply All.”)

Me: “*Who’s. ;-)”

(Immature? Maybe. But it sure made me feel better.)

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Account Is More Frozen Than An Unpaid Freezer

, , , , | Right | November 22, 2017

Me: “[Company], how can I help you?”

Customer: “Yes, this is [Store], and someone is here to pick up the freezer from your company.”

Me: *looks up customer info* “Yes, it looks like it is being picked up due to low sales.”

Customer: “I don’t understand! No one has come to my location to place the order in months!”

Me: “Let me check… It looks like I personally have been calling you since July. It’s October now, and I haven’t been able to reach anyone. That’s why we closed your account and put in a freezer pick-up.”

Customer: “That is ridiculous! I haven’t seen anyone in months to take an order!”

Me: “Ma’am, we have been trying to call you to take an order over the phone. Is your phone number [number]?”

Customer: “YES!”

Me: “Then I have been calling the correct number for months now and leaving voicemails.”

Customer: “Oh, I don’t check voicemail. Why are you closing my account?”

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It All Boils Down To Stupidity

, , , , , | Right | November 20, 2017

(I am working in customer service, taking calls from customers with questions about our product line, how to cook, etc. A woman calls to complain about our BREADED chicken fingers.)

Me: “Good afternoon. How may I help you?”

Caller: “I want to complain about your chicken fingers. They’re awful; even my dog won’t eat them!”

Me: “I’m sorry to hear that, ma’am. Which product did you purchase?”

(The caller gives me the product code, etc. They are breaded chicken fingers, meant to be baked or deep-fried only. The instructions are clearly on the box.)

Me: “Which method of cooking did you use?”

Caller: “I boiled them!”

Me: “Excuse me, boiled? In water?”

Caller: “Yes.”

Me: “Ma’am, they are breaded chicken fingers; you can’t boil them. They are to be deep-fried or baked only.”

Caller: “Well, I boil everything.”

Me: “I’m sorry. You cannot boil chicken fingers, because the breading will come off and turn to mush.”

Caller: “Well, you should say that on your product boxes.”

Me: “…?”

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Highway To Heaven

, , , | Right | November 7, 2017

(I work at the customer service desk answering phones, giving directions, etc. I see a customer taking one of my manager’s business cards.)

Me: “Hi, is there something I can help you with? I noticed you taking a card, and wanted to make sure everything’s all right.”

Customer: “No, no, I just wanted to take one of the cards. I picked this one because it has the number written in.”

Me: “All right. That’s the card for our leasing representative, just so you know.”

Customer: “Oh, I won’t call it or anything. I just like to have it. Thank you. What’s your name?”

Me: “It’s [My Name].”

Customer: “Oh, that’s a beautiful name. You remind me of a beautiful girl named [My Name] who went to [University].”

(I smile, figuring it to be a compliment.)

Customer: “Her boyfriend broke up with her one night over the phone. She went out and got drunk and got on the highway going the wrong way and died.”

Me: *smile frozen on my face now* “Wow, that’s… awful.”

Customer: “Have a good day!”

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Very Human Resources

, , , , , | Right | November 3, 2017

(I’m answering phones for a big department store when I get this interesting call.)

Me: “Hello, thank you for calling [Store]. This is [My Name] speaking. What can I help you with today?”

Guest: “Can I speak to a human?”

Me: *pauses* “Yes.”

Guest: “Oh, is this a human?”

Me: “Yes, my name is [My Name]. How can I help you?”

Guest: “Is your store working today?”

Me: “Yes, it is.”

Guest: “Like, can I go in and shop?”

Me: “Again, yes.”

Guest: “Well, thank you, human.”

Me: “Thank you for calling. Have a good day.”

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