The Owner's Manual

Lip Service/ Customer Service

I subscribed to a well-known publication several months ago. It’s delivered six days a week and is a real pleasure to read….when I get it. I called customer service (which is outsourced to a separate continent where English is a secondary language). Around the tenth time I called I decided enough was enough. I emailed the General Manager with my complaint. I received a stock email back that afternoon saying that the problem was being attended to and I would be called that day. No call. I did get a call the following day. But in my email to the General Manager I said – maybe you need a system that sorts someone into a more customer oriented path once they have called three times.

I think some people would have cancelled their subscription, some would have blustered at a person with no power, and maybe some would have even kept on calling customer service.
But, here’s the question – do they really think that what they call customer service is that ….or is it just lip service? Having a strong brand means that you do what you say you will do.

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So, what’s with the Big Shoes?

I get asked that a lot. So, instead of keeping you in the dark, I’ll explain. Although it was the best decision I ever made, going out on my own was a bit terrifying at the time. I knew I had to scare myself to death – well, maybe just hovering on the edge of death…I tried to think of something that would be a mental and physical challenge that could teach me to face down those growling fears. It is somewhat ironic that the idea I came up with was something I had always wanted my boys to do – Outward Bound (www.outwardbound.org) Naturally, having their mother suggest such a thing was the absolute kiss of death but the idea of the challenge drew me in me and I signed up. I did take myself to the outside edge of my fear and realized that it was all in my curly head. And it was a life changing experience mainly because it taught me that whenever I get rattled, I can go back to that one moment at treetop level in the pouring rain, climbing a pole and finishing the high ropes course. I faced down my worst fear of the moment – heights and came through fine.

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