Right Working Romantic Related Learning Friendly Healthy Legal Inspirational Unfiltered

You Made One Mistake: You Showed Them How To Do It

, , , , , , , , , , | Working | CREDIT: Flighterdoc | December 24, 2022

Decades ago, I was the IT purchasing person for one of the very largest law firms in the US. We had offices across the USA and in England, and a couple in Asia, as well. I had to arrange for all their IT equipment. This was in the days when law firms were just starting to put a computer on everyone’s desk, and everything was done on Word Perfect under DOS.

A couple of days before Christmas, I got a call from the office manager in the London office. Their laser printer needed a new toner cart, and they were out. They had a HUGE (multi-billion-dollar) acquisition deal going down and needed to get it fixed.

Me: “Who usually replaces them?”

Office Manager: “We have a deal with a local guy who comes and installs them when needed.”

This guy charged GBP350 for the toner cart and another 100 and change for “installation,” roughly a thousand US dollars, which was totally outrageous for a single toner cart.

Office Manager: “He has already left for his holiday, and we can’t find anyone else as things are already shutting down for the holiday. No one here has a clue how to install a toner cart.”

Long story short, the only alternative was for someone to fly to London with a toner cart and install it. We tried to find someone at the NYC office, but none of the techs had a passport.

I decided that if that’s what they wanted, I’d do it. I wasn’t the tech, but I could certainly hum the tune and dance the steps, so I grabbed a couple of toner carts (after verifying the model). I met a jet at Hollywood Burbank Airport and flew to London (eleven hours later).

I got picked up and delivered to the office, made a point of showing the staff how to install the cart, left them a spare, and I was done.

Except… I was stuck in London… on Christmas weekend. And not just Christmas but Boxing Day, as well. There were no flights back to the land of free; they were all booked up.

I called the IT director and explained that I would be delayed.

IT Director: “No problem. Just get a hotel and stay available for any issues that may come up.”

I spent three days in a five-star hotel with room service. I had to buy some personal items, which went on the company. The flight back home? The first seat I could get was in first-class.

All in all, the toner carts that I would buy for maybe $45 each cost the firm well over $150,000 — those jet flights aren’t cheap. Considering the client paid for it, no problem. The firm billed in excess of $10 million for the work — mine, and of course, the lawyers’.

When I got home, I was on vacation anyway since it was between Christmas and New Year’s.

Not all tech support issues are horrible, just most of them!

Question of the Week

Tell us about a customer who got caught in a lie!

I have a story to share!