I had to pick up new glasses today. Actually, I kept my old frames but needed to up the prescription. I only took the appointment today because the nice lady on the phone assured me it would be a slow day and I wouldn’t have to wait forever to switch out my lenses.”You’ll be in and out.” She promised.
Bet you just said, “yeah right!” too.
20 minutes later we’re at the mall and I hand the sales lady my frames and prescription. “See you in two hours.” She waved me away.
“Excuse me?” I asked. “You promise one hour lenses.”
“Not today,” she responded. “we’re too busy.”
There was no one in the shop. I reminded her that she promised me over the phone that it wouldn’t take to long to fill my eyeglass prescription. “Two hours isn’t bad,” she remarked. “At least it’s not a few days.” I rolled my eyes and walked out of the shop.
For some inexplicable reason I took my husband and son with me to the mall. None of us are mall people. We do our best to stay away from any stores not selling groceries until at least the second week in January. Two hours in mall time is like six hours to a seven year old. I’ve never been one to spend the day at a mall and when I’m forced to do it I get very cranky. Imagine my mood after having the time asked of me every 9 minutes or explaining for the umpteenth time why we can’t go home. Now multiply that times two because Mr. Ng doesn’t dig the mall either.
Two pretzels, a banana milkshake and a skateboard later I returned to the lens shop to pick up my new lenses. Except they weren’t ready yet. Not only were they not ready, but the lab was across the mall and down two floors -they weren’t even in the same place. I was told it would be a minute but after 45 minutes and lots of “Please don’t touch” or “please don’t try on the glasses” later, the saleslady sent someone to get them. I was livid.
I thought about my own business where deadlines and on time deliveries are important. There’s no way I could say to someone “I’ll have it Friday” and deliver it Tuesday without even batting an eye. It’s the best way to lose a client. When I told the sales lady I was very disappointed at having to wait for 2 1/2 hours after being assured before I even drove out there I’d be “in and out” she said, “Ma’am, you’re being unreasonable. If this was fifty years ago you would have to wait two weeks for your lenses to come in.”
I wonder if I would be able to tell my clients to be happy they get stuff from me at all because I could have sent it snail mail and not email.
I understand some things take time. There’s a reason I called and asked if the shop was busy. There’s a reason I went this afternoon instead of another morning when my son is in school. Even if this place didn’t promise a one hour turnaround, to tell me I’m unreasonable isn’t exactly good customer service.
Yet again, I have another example of how not to treat people. Two good lessons came out of it: Deliver what you promise and never promise what you can’t deliver.
Make that three lessons: When waiting on lenses, leave the seven year old at home.