Greatness

I spend a lot of time writing about frustrations with service, or bad service, so I thought I ought to point out that I actually receive really good, awesome, excellent service the majority of the time. I think this is actually the case for most people, but tales of good service aren’t exactly thrilling, so no one writes about it. I mean, saying “Dawn anticipated my request for oil and vinegar with bread and reminded the busser to bring it” is much less exciting that “so I asked the clerk for a larger size and she brought me a small.”

Anyway, there are two corporations I actually get excellent service from on a regular basis, which is why you never see me writing about them.

The first is UPS. UPS is awesome. I’ve always had a good relationship with UPS, and it only gets better over time. The drivers are always friendly and super on top of it, and they seem to keep an internal rolodex about all their customers, there they live, and the companies they order from on a regular basis. I found this to be the case in San Francisco as well as here, so it’s obviously a UPS thing and not a small town thing. UPS drivers keep track of their customers in a way that’s really amazing, and I’ve seen them go above and beyond the call of duty constantly. UPS has yet to lose or damage a package; the only times goods have arrived damaged, it’s obviously been because the shipper didn’t bother to pack them properly. Not only that, but UPS consistently surpasses the delivery estimates; the tracker says a package will get here on Thursday, and it shows up on Wednesday. Or Tuesday. That’s pretty sweet, if you ask me.

The second is Verizon. I know that a lot of people have had their difficulties with Verizon, but I feel obligated to point out that I have had service with Verizon for almost eight years with almost no problems. The only problem I ever had was roaming charges on my supposedly no-roaming plan. When I called to find out what the deal was, the woman on the phone gave me a number to call to update my phone software so that I would be on the most current and actual no roaming plan…and she took the charges off my bill. Other than that, my bills have been precisely what I expected, and while service up here isn’t that awesome, that’s not exactly Verizon’s fault, and they are working to improve service coverage. It’s a bummer my phone doesn’t really work at my house…but then again I don’t really like phones anyway, so it’s not a big deal.

It’s sort of unfortunate that we don’t recognize or acknowledge great service when we see it. We’re big on complaining, perhaps because we find it more satisfying and fun, but there’s something to be said for praise, too. Don’t get me wrong, when a business demonstrates a need for improvement, I think that customers do that business a service by bringing up the issue; but I think that great businesses deserve a pat on the back too. Like Northsoles, where the staff are always friendly and incredibly helpful even when I try on 10 pairs of shoes. Or Pippi’s Longstocking, where the owner will talk enthusiastically about where she sources her socks, and she’ll also provide recommendations for specific sock needs. Or Headlands, where people are friendly and efficient, even on incredibly busy days or nights when the music is so awful that it makes me want to tear my ears off. Or the post office, where Chris knows my post office box number and she’ll go to the back and grab my package while I’m still in line if she’s going back there anyway.

I thought about keeping track of all of the great service I receive for a week, but it occurred to me that it would probably be rather boring. Instead, why don’t you tell me in the comments, gentle readers, about an instance of service that really blew you away with excellence?

3 Replies to “Greatness”

  1. I also like UPS and have only very minor complaints about Verizon. I’ve had great luck with my bank Wells Fargo and last year during a major weather event (ice-snow) Vancouver bus system C-Tran was on fire. They were so organized and on top of it. I never had time to get cold waiting around for a bus. It was a nice treat.

  2. We get our long distance and cellular service from Credo (formerly WALD) http://www.credomobile.com/index.cfm?

    Recently my husband and I upgraded our cell phones and added the girls to the plan. Yesterday morning we got a call from Credo, telling us that the web usage from one of the phones was ‘a little high’.

    We discussed it, and I said I wanted to change to unlimited web usage for that phone. The CSR said she’d void out the charges for the current billing period. Then she pulled up my account, saw that the billing cycle had already passed, and went to her manager to make the billing change retroactive.

    She was terribly apologetic about putting me on hold while doing this.

    I’m pretty happy with them.

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