So, I went to the Sprint store yesterday.
Okay, no, wait, let me explain.
I really like my local Sprint store. The local store is why I’ve kept a Sprint account for, oh, a kajillion years. They don’t always have exactly what I want, but I find the process of going in and getting things fixed or replaced to be really easy.
Or, possibly that whole paragraph is now in the past tense.
The power jack on my phone is not working properly. I took my phone in to have it replaced under the warranty plan I am paying for. When I arrive, the woman at the desk takes my name. I spell it for her, since my name is Sigrid, and this is very difficult for some people to hear properly, pronounce, or spell.
I go wait.
I see on a wall screen the list of people waiting. I do not see my name. I see “Sucrig,” though. I go back to the front.
Excuse me, I say, I think that’s me, and my name is spelled wrong. The man at the desk asks how I spell it. I spell it for him, twice. He says yes, that’s me. I nod and say thank you. I go wait.
After a while I notice the sign flashing “Sucrig we are ready for you.”
I go to the desk.
I explain to the third person that I think that’s me. He says okay, and we go to tech support. I tell him that my power jack is broken, that no matter what it indicates 80% power, neither more nor less, and that the jack itself requires wiggling to get it just right.
The tech tries a few things, and tells me the power jack is broken. He then says that the phone is showing 80% power, so that’s good.
I tell him it always shows 80% power, as I said.
He says, so the indicator never gets to full power, only up to 80%?
No, I say, it never moves from 80%, either higher or lower, as I mentioned.
Well, it’s broken, he says.
Yes, I say, I would like to replace it under the plan I pay for.
Tech looks at the computer. We don’t have your phone.
Okay, can you order it?
The warehouse doesn’t have your phone. We can get you an EVO, or you can buy a different phone.
I don’t want an EVO, I say. I would like a Nexus. Can you order it from somewhere else?
No, the warehouse doesn’t have your phone.
Okay, I say, does that mean, there’s no phone in the entire Twin Cities? Is there one in Chicago?
I don’t know, he says. There’s no phone in the warehouse.
I sigh. Okay, I tell him. Let me look at the EVO.
He brings out the EVO. I look it over, I shrug. I really want a new phone before I leave for Worldcon next week, so, sure, this will likely be okay. Yes, I tell him, I’ll take the EVO.
Okay, he says, typing. That will be here next week. Maybe this week.
Oh! I exclaim. You don’t have one here?
No, he says, we’re out. I have to order it from the warehouse.
I take a deep breath. Okay, I say, when can I expect it.
He checks a few things. Maybe tomorrow, maybe Friday. Don’t worry, we’ll call you.
I would prefer you email, actually, I say. I don’t answer the phone much.
Oh, he says, email isn’t in the system. The system will leave you a voicemail if you don’t pick up.
He stands up as I stand. By the way, he says, you will be called about our service. I need a five to pass. Anything less is a fail. He looks me in the eye. It’s about me, he says seriously, not whether or not we have your phone.
You are correct. It is about you. It is about the fact that not at any single point did you give a hoot whether you were helping me or not. At no point did you apologize. At no point did you express regret that you could not give me the service and products I desired. At no point did you or any other person at Sprint even spell my name correctly, or apologize for getting it wrong, despite having said name spelled for you repeatedly.
That is poor customer service.