Friday, December 17, 2010

The Most Hurtful Customer

As Tech Support "dude," people do some stupid, nasty, mean, idiotic, brain-dead, self-serving, circular stuff. But at the end of the day, it's just part of the working environment. Tech Support is deceptive. Inside, at a cubicle (most times your very own), fluorescent lights, office environment, semi-comfy chair. Then the s--t starts to batter you as you deal with unaccountable customers all day every day. And the phone becomes an anchor, your headset like the tentacles of the Borg assimilating you into the system... but that's Tech Support. Take it or leave it. I can and have put up with all of this. It doesn't mean I stop seeing it for the crap that it is, but I deal with it as a professional.

Until one day at Sony Tier 2 support a customer brutally ripped into my psyche like nothing I had never experienced before. Seriously. What he was upset about I could not recall. What he wanted I was forbidden to do and there was no escalation path. My management basically told me to shoot him down without being willing to take the call. At the end of the call, the customer uttered something like the following:

"I hope when you go home and lie in bed tonight, that you remember this and feel like really terrible inside about the way you treated me."

Forget that giving into his demands would have resulted in disciplinary action being taken against me. The customer condemned my conscience to the type of guilt that robs you of a good night's sleep. Perhaps it wouldn't have hit me so hard had I not already spent most of the day absorbing the customary beatings from other unhappy customers. It still hurts a little to think about it. Sorry guy. I wasn't going to lose my job for you. You are a douche-bag.

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